Casual fans of music will know Emiliana Torrini from the track “Jungle Drum,” which was an unexpected hit in 2009 (and was subsequently drafted in for the Inspired by Iceland campaign—it’s the one everyone dances to while prancing around in Iceland’s nature). Others might have heard Emiliana—without even knowing it—in songs she has co-written for other artists, like Kylie Minogue’s number one hit “Slow.” While those songs are good and well, they are hardly representative of the singer/songwriter’s body of work, which bears close examination.
She became a star in Iceland in the mid-‘90s, singing everywhere she could, from performing covers at hotel bars to starring in musicals like “Hair” and “Stone Free.” She fronted a successful rock band, and independently released two albums of cover songs (currently out of print, with no plans to reissue) that were bona fide hits, shifting thousands of copies and winning her legions of rabid fans.
Leaving a fruitful career behind, she relocated to London in the late ‘90s, learned how to write songs and started building what is now an extremely successful solo career. Her first ‘proper’ album, 1999’s ‘Love In The Time Of Science,’ set the stage, while the follow-up, the haunting ‘Fisherman’s Woman,’ was widely hailed as a masterpiece (one that has absolutely withstood the test of time). ‘Me And Armini,’ with its infectious “Jungle Drum,” brought mainstream success and a taxing world tour.
October 30, 2013
0:10 Harpa Silfurberg