All the best things come from Iceland. Hot springs, volcanos, poneys, Björk (the drink) and astvaldur.
An Icelandic exilee in Berlin, astvaldur is one of the four founders and core members of the sound art collective oqko. Also home to smog, DEKJ and Lvis Mejía, oqko have been making steady waves in the experimental world, performing individually and as a collective in festivals like Secret Solstice, Dark Music Days and Visiones Sonoras. Their strength resides in their ability to capture both the attention of academia as well as the club crowd and oqko regularly perform in some of Berlin’s best spots.
astvaldur’s debut album At Least ‘traverses overcast atmospheres, physical bass hues and radiant melodies, synthesizing elements over a fine composite of sound design, polyrhythmic patterns and club-influenced design’ – in short, it’s a beautiful piece of refined deconstructed club music to be filed close to Lotic and Arca.
With the album now out in the open, we’ve asked astvaldur to take a seat in the LSD Faze Time hot chair. Stream At Least below and read on.
My name is Ástvaldur Axel Þórisson but you might know me as astvaldur. I was born in Reykjavík and grew up in Reykjavík. When I was a child my idol was nobody really, because I couldn’t make up my mind. When I was 8, I started to learn how to play guitar. It was then that I realised that I wasn’t that good at playing the guitar and decided to keep on playing the guitar. Since then I always played the guitar.
One of the best gigs I played was Kantine am Berghain at the one year anniversary of oqko. It was so much fun because it went well and we had so much fun.
One of the best gigs I have been to was Haxan Cloak at ATP Iceland. I loved, not anymore.
Now I live in Berlin with my girlfriend and friend. In my house you can find a bottle of tequila, mezcal and 5 different mexican sauces and my refrigerator is usually full with different cheeses. I enjoy a lot and enjoy a lot. I can spend hours in nature. One of my favorite places to visit is the internet, because there I find everything.
On weekdays I work and on weekends I usually work and drink.
My favorite song at the moment is the remixes from my album that will be released after my album. A film I watched lately and really liked was Zorns Lemma. The last series I watched and loved was Planet Earth.
I am very inspired by data. My dream is to exist. My worst nightmare is not to dream.
I love to be and hate to be.
I am addicted to the internet, I just cannot stop sleeping.
I get totally fucked up, when I meet DEKJ. The next day I need to think harder.
Local Suicide reminds me of Berlin.
Tomorrow I hand paint my covers. Next month I play my release concert. Next year I work on my next album. In 10 years I hope to exist.
If I wasn’t a human, I would be a drone.
If my life was a Hollywood movie, I would have the main role, because I’m very realistic in that role.
If I was a car, I would be a Trabant. If I was an animal, I would be a human. If I was a drug I would be coffee. If I was an invention, I would be a lamp. If I was an object, I would be objectified. If I could date myself, I’d outdate.
If I could play with anyone it would be Oliver Kahn. I would like to collaborate with The Berlin Symphonic Orchestra.
If I had only one wish, it would be to keep on being.
My word of advice to the reader would be to buy my album.