Of all the bands on our lineup at Kex, Icelandic electro-pop outfit aYia brought the strongest sense of "mood." "Mood" is an ambiguous term, but it's the word that most comes to mind when hearing the band's music. Vague as it may be, the trio commanded the aural and visual sensation of the audience. When you walked into that room, you were going to feel the things the band was expressing. The deep, blood red lights splashing over their shadowy figures and the brooding, gloaming beats they crafted spread through the hostel like an eclipse slowly shadowing the sun. Drum machines and synthesizers boomed out the speakers, hinting at an industrial coo but still residing firmly in the realm of pop.
Glittered adorned their faces, glistening under the red lights and the fluorescence beaming from the ground. Vocalist Ásta Fanney Sigurðardóttir would wander across the stage, often looking down as she sang wistful melodies against the harsh and booming beats. Still, she was commanding. Her power came from looking inward – as if the audience wasn't just feet in front of her. The band pulled from the obliqueness of trip-hop while producing decadent beats that measured up against the expansiveness of the Iceland terrain. It was hard not to be hypnotized by the performance, the band bewitching the audience with every near crashing drum sample and electronic wizardry they conjured in front of us.
During his set at KEX Hostel, KEXP gives another glimpse at the member of Icelandic reggae outfit Ojba Rasta.
The Dublin act makes their second appearance on KEXP this year with another invigorating performance at KEX Hostel in Reykjavik, Iceland.