The interview was held with Aðalbjörn “Addi” Tryggvason, on 1 November 2023, before the concert in Zagreb; held with Lost Society and Amorphis.

Q: What are your expectations from tonight?
It’s a nice size of avenue and bigger than the list time. Definitely you get more energy from the larger audience. I think there’s gonna be almost a thousand people here tonight so we will feed off that energy. Yesterday’s concert in Austria was sold out and the intensity could be felt. This is only the second time we’ve been in Croatia.

Q: This venue is also very close to being sold out as there are some tickets left at the entrance and that’s it. We are looking forward very much to the show tonight as the last time we saw you live was this year at MetalDays.
That was not the best show.

Q: But for us it was amazing as it was cancelled and at the last minute it happened as the show was moved to the tent due to heavy rain.
They had cancelled our show and we changed our clothes, ate our cold pizza and on the way to the car, they said: “Hey, can you play?” and we were like: “What, you just cancelled?”. To our question “When?” they just said: “Now”. It was impossible to do it “now”, as we have just packed all of our stuff, they were not going to give us a sound check. So, it was not the best gig. But seeing all the people that were soaked, so wet and drained was great as it was a good make-up gig for those that have been in the bloody rain for a long time.


Explaining rock’n’roll is like trying to explain God. It’s some sort of a spiritual drug.


Q: But the concert was great for the fans, especially as they have just received the only good news for that day. I found your music and concerts to be very inspiring and sort of an emotional travel through trauma and hard life experiences. What do you think about music therapy and music as a means of combating dark life experiences?
To me it is not like that, it is more like rock’n’roll, because I know people that use music for therapy, meditation, yoga, healing and all sorts of stuff. I’m into rock’n’roll, so to me: it can be sad rock’n’roll or different kinds. I mean, explaining rock’n’roll is like trying to explain God. The more you go into it- it becomes weirder. So, if people believe in anything spiritual, they can do their thing as long as they’re now beating up homosexuals with a Bible- I don’t give a fuck.
Being on stage is like becoming what you were supposed to be, as someone said. It’s fulfilling to get to be the one you were supposed to be or always wanted to be. Just playing music.
So, I’ve tried to explain it and I already think it’s a weird answer for me.

Q: Likewise, every single participant in the audience will have a different interpretation and experience.
Music is weird as you can get goose bumps, you can cry from it. It’s kind of weird. Rock’n’roll makes no sense but it’s some sort of a spiritual drug.


We are a “non-heavy metal- heavy metal band”


Q: What are your impressions about the labels that are being used to categorize bands. Eg. I’m never impressed when I hear the label “post metal”, but your band extends the frame and offers something unique.
Labels are just for record labels and stores. We are neither. It’s like “What I’m going to sell you? Well, this is what it is.”. I’m not into that. We just write music. Then people say: “What kind of music do you write?”. Hahah; well, that’s for you to tell me. I’m not gonna tell you. I don’t give a fuck really. It depends who’s asking. If my grandmother was asking, I would say “Its rock’n’roll”. Maybe if it were my parents, I would probably say it heavy metal as my dad would know a little bit. I can go deeper with someone who’s closer to the source. We are a “non-heavy metal-heavy metal band” as we play metal, it’s heavy but it’s not Judas Priest. We could say that we are a Pink Floyd- sounding metal band but it’s kinda lame, so you get the picture. Post-metal I think is boring, but I get it as you can’t say they are metal as they are not like Carcass or name any, it’s different. So, I don’t care. When we manage to be announced as simply Sólstafir- then I’m happy. You don’t ask what kind of music Rammstein, Nine Inch Nails or Pink Floyd plays. You just know. You wouldn’t say Nine Inch Nails are just industrial music or that Pink Floyd is a band like Led Zeppelin. They are just “Pink Floyd”. So, I just think we are just Sólstafir. But I get it. We are not as big as Metallica or Pink Floyd and people need to have the answer to: “Is it a blue sticker or red sticker?”. I don’t fucking care; put a fucking rainbow on it.


Just fucking be yourself, not anything else!


Q: Could you give me an explanation about Iceland? As I fell in love with Iceland when I was 13, right after a The Sugarcubes concert. I find the music from Iceland to be magical, like something out of this world. So do you have a theory about the mentality and the land and how come such unique music comes from Iceland?
WAU, interesting you saw The Sugarcubes, what was it 1989 or something like that? Well, you are not the first one or the last one to ask this question. It is a very valid question. I have no answer really. I can give you weird answers, like it’s the elves, the gods, the water, whatever; something in the air. Before the second world war we were like “the third world European country”, a very poor country and no one came to Iceland. There were no jobs, we were filthy. Isolation. We were like the asshole of the world and no one cared about us. In the 80s there was pretty much the isolation; still. No bands came to Iceland, we were not popular in tourism. And in this isolation, we just didn’t care as no one is gonna sign a contract with us, we’re not gonna go out of Iceland, we’re not going to go to a club, we’re just going to be in this room  and play music. All of our friends are going to listen to it and that’s it. So that was the mentality, it came from the heart and there was no hope.  The Sugarcubes came from 2-3 punk bands as well. And there are no clubs, no thematic clubs for specific music genres. There’s just one bar everyone goes to. Even when we started we were playing with indie bands, hardcore bands, pop bands, rock, metal and all other as we have a small scene. So, we are influenced by each other. It’s almost like inbreeding civilization, as you see a really weird stuff really close to you. The Sugarcubes were the first and they showed people that you can be a success by being a weirdo, as they were not commercial, this was weird music. They were not like the other stuff on MTV, they were punks and weirdos and they made it. So, we have always known: Just fucking be yourself, not be anything else. We are weirdos as there is a lot of isolation in Iceland. Our language is also influenced because of the isolation.
We grew up with no bands we love coming to hold concerts. There were rare ones, such as: the Rage Against the Machine came in 1993, Kiss came in 1988; Led Zeppelin in the 70s eg. The Rolling Stones never came to Iceland any many, many more never came.

Q: Do you have any special rituals before the concert?
I’m so sorry to break your heart. We don’t. We don’t sacrifice a goat or pray to the moon. Sometimes we listen to ZZ Top. We used to do drugs and drink whiskey, but we stopped doing drugs and drinking whiskey and now we just drink water and listen to ZZ Top. That’s basically the ritual.
Q: I’m amazed!! So, I gave up drugs and booze and only professionalism now!!
Jup, we are in our 40s and late 40s and we have done enough with the drugs and the booze stuff.


Always be prepared for the cold!


Q: What is one thing that you always bring on a tour that is always with you? Which is most important for you?
Sure. It’s one cowboy boots. I would wake up and pull them on and play in them. After 35 days in a row in the same cowboy boots; they are quite filthy. Now I’m older so I bring 4 shoes. Like a proper lady. So I have 4 pairs of shoes and to me it’s crazy.
Another thing is headphones. I think I have 3 headphones. One for day, night and live. It’s just having a little bit more comfort.
Another thing is I always bring my warm sweater, even if I go to Germany in summer where it is +30. If I don’t bring it- it will be raining day and night I believe.

Q: Even at MetaDays?
Yes, I had 3 of those with me- Three sweaters. As it is a mentality: “Always be prepared for cold”. Never trust the weather.
People ask me: “What is the best time to come to Iceland?”. I tell them we don’t have seasons. It is always cold.

Q: Planes for the future?
We recorded a new album in May that’s coming out next year. We have been planning a live album for a few years and we have recorded at least 2 or 3 of them. So, a live album is on its way. We don’t plan much ahead, we are a rock band, we only do albums. And that’s it. You do an album and tour, you do an album and tour, that’s what you do.
Thank you very much!
You’re so welcome.

The interview has been conducted by PH-Pit representatives: Pavao Hodap and Kristina Hećimović.

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