Just when they are in the previous moments of the release of it will be their first album, after their two beautiful Ep´s "AmimaminA" and "Seoul", A Letter For The Stars has had the chance to talk for a while with María and Hildur, members of the Icelandic band Amiina. Both are very very kind and happy.
Hello, How are you?
- We are doing good, thanks!
What does amiina mean? When and how you came together?
- Well amiina doesn’t mean anything really. We just like the sound of this made up word, and since it doesn’t mean anything, it’s easy to google amiina and find our web page.
The four of us met when we were in music school together here in Iceland when we were teenagers. We played some classical music together for years and really liked working together. Then in the 1999 we were asked to work with Sigur Ros and started touring and recording with them. Doing non-classical music together inspired us in wanting to do our own music and about two years ago we finally had the chance to do some. We recorded our first EP, AnimaminA in the summer of 2004 and then the ball started-rolling.
Talking about your new album, Can you tell me how has the creative process been?
- Well, we have been really busy the past year touring with Sigur Ros and we were working on the album in between tours. We had sessions were we recorded alot and worked like maniacs and then went straight on tour again. It was quite hard to always cut the process like that, but we managed it and we are really happy with the outcome.
Should we expect a follow up to EP?
- Do you mean if you should expect a similar sound on the upcoming record?
if so, yes and no. We recently released a single called Seoul which is a bit more upbeat than AnimaminA. You can expect the atmosphere on the new album to be somewhere in between those two.
What were the main inspirations that went into making the album? How is an Amiina song created?
- Our music is inspired by just everything in our lives. The album is the same way; we start playing around an idea and create together a song around that. The idea can be a musical pattern, a sound that we like or a combination of sounds that create an atmosphere we like. We write all our music together, even though one of us start it, soon the other join in, playing instruments that seem to fit into the atmosphere and from that the song is created.
How would you define your sound?
- To be really honest, we don’t like to define our music too much. It’s hard for us to tell if we do have a special sound even though people tell us all the time we do have our own sound. For us this is just our music.
When and how did you meet Sigur Ros?
- We met in 1999 when they were looking for a string quartet to play with them for the debut concert of Ágætis Byrjun. They just called us up.
Are they a big influence in your music?
- They probably are, even though we might not realize it. We have obviously spent alot of time together, and made music together. So they have definitely had some influence, just like everything else in our environment.
Were you influenced by non-musical things for your music? What have been other main musical influences to you?
- It's really hard to pinpoint specific influences, because we don't really think that way. We don't have the same tastes in music between the four of us and we never start out wanting to make any specific sort of music. We're more out after an atmosphere or a mood. So we'll have to go with the usual answer, anything in our surroundings that influences our lives also has an impact on our music.
What bands have you been listening to these days that you thoroughly enjoy?
- We don't all listen to the same stuff, but some of the things in our CD players would be Colleen, Grizzly Bear, Joanna Newsome, Nika soup & Saya source, Elsa Sigfúsdóttir, Under Byen, Savath & Savals, Final Fantasy, Lennon & Yoko...
Appart from the current dates, Will you be touring Europe to present your first album?
- Yes, we will in the spring. No dates have been confirmed yet though.
What are other future plans you have?
- We are waiting for our new album to be released, and when that happens we will be touring a bit. After that we'll hopefully have some time to do more new music.
Do you think that the Internet was useful in promoting your music?
- Yes, alot of people find new music through the internet, it's definitely useful.
Finally,just one more question, Could you tell me how can I say A Letter for the Stars in Icelandic?
- Bréf til stjarnanna.
Thank you so much and good luck!
- Thanks, and good luck to you too!
We will be really close to all Amiina´s musical things. They are beatiful and fragile.
Mp3 - Boga
Mp3 - Seoul