Hailing from the harsh Icelandic western fjords, Icelandic Troubadour Svavar Knutur (you can call him Knute if you like), summons his inner demons and outer storms to reflect upon the existential crises and frolicking joys of modern day rustic fjord dwelling men. Channeling the pain and angst of long dark winters and the insomnia of the 24 hour glaring summer sun, this eclectic musician has in recent years blossomed into a serene and sublime singer and songwriter. Knutur's songs of misery and redemption deliver a healthy dose of hope in the midst of despair.
Svavar Knutur's performances have been described as 'swoon-worthy vocals to the beautiful simplicity and raw emotion' of his songs. An article in the German Publication of Rolling Stone (april 2009) also described "an energetic man with entertainer qualities and and soft cotton, nordic folk reverie." Add to this humoristic storytelling and self beratement of the highest standards and reap a fantastic mixture of art and entertainment. Knutur, a former student of Philosophy and Anthropology, thrives on the human condition and never tires from diving in its murky waters.
Knutur has worked on several projects with the aim of strengthening and empowering songwriter communities, both locally and globally, one of the founding members of The troubadour conspiracy and the Icelandic Chapter of Undercover Music Lovers, Knutur has worked on bringing the Melodica festival to the northern Hemisphere and done extensive work with the Troubadour Olympics tour, helping international artists book tours in his country, where not only the music matters, but the tour is also turned into an expedition of adventure and exploration.
Drawing upon a wide range of influences, three of Svavar Knutur's most governing ones are without doubt Nick Drake, Will Oldham (Bonnie Prince Billy) and Kris Kristofferson, although such artists as Leonard Cohen, Cat Stevens, Joni MItchell, Nick Cave and many more singer/songwriters have contributed to the icelandic troubadour's development.
Knutur's songwriting has not gone unnoticed internationally, as his song Astarsaga ur fjollunum (Lovestory from the mountains) propelled Hraun to participate in the final 5 competition on BBC World Service's Next big thing, playing for millions of viewers and listeners all over the world.
Knutur has already released two albums along with his band Hraun, where he is the main songwriter. His latest solo release "Kvöldvaka" (Evening wake), released in the spring of 2009, features a selection of Hraun Songs along with some new compositions and has received rave reviews in the Icelandic music press.
Whether to describe Svavar Knutur's music as Troll pop, Fjord folk or Mood Swing is up to you, but it'll be worth your time to listen to.