Between Mountains, "Into the Dark" (Soundcloud); Gaukurinn, November 5th
There are no records – yet. That is sure to change soon. This female duo from the Westfjords hit the national radar last April when Katla Vigdis and Ásrós Helga, only in their mid-teens, were the surprise winners of the 2017 Músíktilraunir, a national battle of the bands. (To give you an idea of the calibre of acts and judgement, the 2010 winners were the folk-rock export Of Monsters and Men.) Tonight, the din back at the bar was distracting. Between Mountain's accomplished multi-instrumental blend of keyboard, electric guitar, marimba and accordion floated through with feathery vocal harmonies that moved in pinpoint Byrds-like formation. The songwriting was sugary optimism and lovesick blues; the duo writes what it knows. But the playing and singing were a soft-psych pleasure with room and time to grow. Next year, I can see how far.