Icelandic singer/songwriter Daníel Hjálmtýsson kicked off 2020 in a big way: by releasing his debut solo single "Birds" back on January 3rd.
Hjálmtýsson may be better known as half of the experimental duo HYOWLP, a project with producer and multi-instrumentalist Hjalti Steinn Sigurðarson (and a KEXP podcast alumni)! On his own, he continues to produce dark, emotional music in the vein of Nick Cave or Mark Lanegan. (Incidentally, he's backed on this track by the Dutch group Red Limo String Quartet, who he met when the band toured with Lanegan back in 2013.)
He explains online that "Birds" is "inspired by the tragic, personal and familiar, struggles of being yet the glory of overcoming and acceptance," adding, it's "a homage to all the friends and fellow travelers that have gone too soon."
Hjálmtýsson plans to rehearse with his band in early May, with an album ("hopefully," he writes on Facebook) out this Fall.