Teasing new music with last year’s glacial, ‘Blanket Of Sorrow’, Nordic duo When ‘Airy Met Fairy (WAMF) are back to announce their anticipated second album, Esprit De Corps. Their Reimagination of Rufus Wainwright’s original track, ‘Going To A Town’ is out now.
Translated literally from the French expression, Esprit De Corps means ‘spirit of the body’. It’s a concept of grandiose proportions and one that When ‘Airy Met Fairy relay with absolute artistic assurance. Brimming with subtle melody and minimalist instrumentation, their emotive melancholy excavates the foundations of our very being. Ebbing and flowing like a distant memory and simultaneously embodying all that makes us innately human.
Developing the stripped back intimacy of their critically acclaimed 2018 debut Glow, WAMF have spent the last few months cultivating their sound’s bewitching aesthetic. Locked up inside instrumentalist, Mike Koster’s empty apartment, sitting upon the derelict wooden floorboards, their bare and intimate surroundings provided an ideal canvas. Infusing elements of meticulously crafted trip-hop, Esprit De Corps paints an honest portrait that retains its own blemishes and imperfections.
Vocals/instrumentalist, Thorunn Egilsdottir: “To me this album captivates the essence of who we are as people. No attempt to embellish anything. We left the sounds of me breathing and Mike’s instruments rattling while we switch between intensity and intimacy.”
Recorded without any knowledge of what Rufus Wainwright’s original track sounds like, lead single ‘Going To A Town’ was written without any set ideas or predetermined path. Mike Koster: “I insisted on not hearing the original until it’s done. I wanted to stay a musical virgin in order to get involved in a creative way.” Reimagining Wainwright’s version, WAMF breathe new life and mystique into their murky, beats-led rendition. Elsewhere, ‘It Was Love’ and ‘That’s My Rock and Roll’ serve up icy lullabies for yearning and unrequited love whilst ‘On Your Own Again’ chronicles biting loneliness and alienation.
Behind dulcet textures of chinking piano keys and swelling atmospherics, ‘Home’ is a dimly flickering ode to those we cherish. Egilsdottir’s vocal flutters above hazy atmospherics on ‘I’ whilst ‘Once’ seeps between the cracks of winding synth arrangements; its verse teaming with tragic awe and wonder. Condemning society’s social media obsession, ‘Inside Your Lungs Superstar’ is a percussive groove grimly ridiculing our dystopian, digital reality.
When ‘Airy Met Fairy consists of Iceland’s Thorunn Egilsdottir and Luxembourg’s Mike Koster. First forming in 2015, the pair were spotted by Icelandic musician Bardi Johannsson (Bang Gang, Lady & Bird, Starwalker), who went on to produce their maiden single, ‘Intoxicated’. Later releasing their debut album Glow in 2018, it garnered critical praise from the likes of Clash, Line of Best Fit, The 405, Louder Than War and God is in the TV. Touring and playing shows all over the world, WAMF have performed at notable festivals such as The Great Escape, Reeperbahn, Iceland Airwaves and Eurosonic.
WAMF’s second album, Esprit De Corps will be released on May 8th with lead single, ‘Going To A Town’ out now. Stay tuned for more info.