FM Belfast – How To Make Friends (2010)

FM Belfast - How To Make FriendsI think I need to make a full disclosure. I love Iceland. I’ve never been, of course. But it’s a place I feel as connected to as the bedroom. All those lovely pictures of Iceland’s cities and fjords seem so magical.

No, I don’t work for a travel agency. No, I don’t for Expedia or Priceline. And no, that wasn’t me starring in that HomeAway commercial during Super Bowl XLIV, that was Chevy Chase.

To be honest, I will probably never visit the European island, but I’ll take in any part of it I can. This would include listening to many of the Icelandic bands starting to catch American buzz. Recently, it was Seabear that caught my ear, and now it’s electronic band FM Belfast that I can’t get out of my head.

The former duo turned quartet FM Belfast (Lóa Hlín Hjálmtýsdóttir, Árni Rúnar Hlöðversson, Árni Vilhjálmsson, and Örvar Þóreyjarson Smárason) cranks out the kind of electro dance tracks that pushes you to either head bop until your neck hurts (with the mellow, yet very smooth “Tropical”) or get up close and personal with the babe next to you (with the unorthodox and probably highly inappropriate slow dance ballad “Pump”). But to be fair, how much dance or electronic music is not inappropriate?

No one should go home unhappy, especially if “Frequency” (with lyrics like “Put on your smile baby, you’re the designated driver”) or “Underwear” (“We are running down the street in our underwear”) gives you an indication of how you should be partying. Neither track immediately grabs you and forces you to shake your moneymaker like a Lady GaGa hit, but instead creeps up on you like a bar tab after you’ve bought a few too many drinks to unsuccessfully woo someone or someones.

Not surprisingly I also have a sudden urge to dig out of my closest a few neon shirts I swore to burn long ago, since much of the FM Belfast’s debut How To Make Friends oozes with such a retro 80s vibe. Although I think the track “VHS” takes away some of that potential mystery.

How To Make Friends runs a brisk, yet expansive thirty-six minutes, to which FM Belfast strives to always keep the beat alive and bumping.

FM Belfast

FM Belfast

FM Belfast

[photos via Big Hassle Media]

Track list:

    1. Frequency
    2. Underwear
    3. I Can Feel Love
    4. Tropical
    5. Pump
    6. Par Avion
    7. VHS
    8. Lotus
    9. Optical
    10. Synthia
    11. President

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