Gunni started his career by doing old-school hardcore music (some connoisseurs say that these tunes are pure dance floor anthems) on an Amiga. Maybe these tracks will be released one day, but just maybe. Kristín and Gyða started to play piano and cello at a tender age, and when both were 9 years old, they decided to do a musical about garbage children with their classmates at music school. The boys spotted the girls playing at a community centre, as part of a dodgy band doing Pixies cover versions, both girls were then 15 years old. Örvar began to do music when his parents bought their first computer. He needed a tune for a game he was programming on BASIC. Since then his love for bleeps as never diminished.After Örvar found a tape of Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works on the floor at school, he had to re-think the boundaries of composition. "It changed my life," he says with tongue firmly in cheek. Up until then, Örvar had been playing in a rock band with fellow electronica convert Gunnar Tynes. Changing tack they joined up with classically trained twin sisters Kristín Anna and Gyða , and all four of them gathered around a computer in a room full of strange old instruments to start experimenting. múm was born. "We didn't know what múm meant in English when we chose the name," admits the very soft spoken Kristín. "It just sounds nice: moom..mooom, like the Moomins, you know. I don't think we would have chosen it if we had known what it meant." They were given a chance by Reykjavik's [Invalid Label] Records to go into the studio and put together their extraordinary album, "Yesterday Was Dramatic - Today Is OK". Sampling extensively from their environment - using clanking cutlery or closing doors as percussion - múm have since been asked for remixes by Emiliana Torrini and Sigur Rós, amongst others. "Finally We Are No One" took them about two years, on and off, to write, produce and record. Engineer Valgeir Sigurdsson who worked on Björk's "Vespertine" also worked on the LP. A large chunk of the record was made when the band spent a few months in a lighthouse on the North-West coast of Iceland - an apparently desolate but beautiful place. They liked it there. "I really connected with the place," says Gunni. "We didn't have television. We didn't have a phone. We didn't have any people. If we wanted to buy something we had to go get to a small town, we had to get there by boat. It felt great. I thought. This is how we are supposed to live." So what are múm like? Well, there's four of them, they're all early to mid-twenties, they finish each other's sentences and they're kind of happy right now. Being in a band suits them and they like it. "It's really nice," says Gunni. "and it's something you could easily combine with a lot of other interests - some work or some other art form." They also look forward to touring. "It's fun," says Örvar, "to have the opportunity to travel around and meet different people and play in different places. It's good fun."Gyða Valtýsdóttir left múm in late 2002 to pursue her studies at the Academy of Arts in Iceland followed by the departure of her twin Kristín Anna Valtýsdóttir who left múm in January of 2006 to pursue a solo career under the name Kria Brekkan. Currently múm are founding members Gunnar Örn Tynes and Örvar Þóreyjarson Smárason and for touring and recording, this line-up is expanded to include their friends Ólöf Arnalds (violin / viola / guitar / vocals), Eiríkur Orri Ólafsson (trumpet / pianette / moog / whistling), Hildur Guðnadóttir (cello / vocals), Mr. Silla (Vocals / various) and Finlander, Samuli Kosminen (drums / percussion).For 2009 album, besides Gunnar Örn Tynes and Örvar Þóreyjarson Smárason, múm consists of Eiríkur Orri Ólafsson (trumpet / piano / keyboards / string arrangements), Hildur Guðnadóttir (cello / vocals), Sigurlaug Gísladóttir (Vocals / ukulele / various), Róbert Sturla Reynisson (guitars / ukuleles) and Finlander, Samuli Kosminen (drums / percussion).
Canadian troubadours The Abrams Brothers are set to release their auspicious new album "Northern Redemption" on September 25 via United For Opportunity. This is the first studio album of original material for the band, which consists of brothers John Abrams (vocals, guitar, mandolin, keyboard, percussion) and James Abrams (vocals, violin) and their cousin Elijah Abrams (bass). Born into a four generation touring bluegrass family, John and James have been on stage in the family business since they were 7 and 10.
User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License and may also be available under the GNU FDL.