Jóhann Jóhannsson announces first solo studio album in six years, considers first show in the Greek underworld

Jóhann Jóhannsson announces first solo studio album in six years, considers first show in the Greek underworld

Let’s face it. There are only so many movies centered around the Latin American drug trade that Hollywood can conjure within a given amount of time, so those of us who are fans knew that Icelandic composer Jóhann Jóhannsson would eventually return to the thesis that garnered our initial love. For those who don’t know: Jóhannsson did the Oscar-nominated score for last year’s Sicario, the movie in which Benicio Del Toro resorts to his archetypal role as a level-headed badass, and now it’s just been revealed that a new solo studio album is set for release September 16 on Deutsche Gramophone. The album’s called Orphée. It’s Jóhannsson’s first solo album in six score-concentrated years, and unlike America’s fatally-conceived War on Drugs, there’s actually a hint of optimism in this topic.

You may have guessed that the title of the new album is a reference to Orpheus, the mythical poet of ancient Greece who (legend has it) descended into and returned from the underworld trying to bring back his recently-deceased wife. Jóhannsson was drawn to this story (and its many retellings) partially due to his move from Copenhagen to Berlin, and likewise, the music itself demonstrates change manifested “over a long gestation period of several years.” That’s reportedly what it took to finalize the tracks on Orphée, many of which originated from an “ascending harmonic momentum.”

Change can lead to great things! That’s what I’m getting out of it, anyway. Check the wonderful vid for the track “Flight from the City” below, followed by some tour dates and the tracklisting.


10.16.16 - Chicago, IL - Thalia Hall
10.18.16 - Minneapolis, MN - The Cedar
10.19.16 - Toronto, ON - Danforth Music Hall
10.20.16 - Montreal, QC - Cinquième Salle
10.21.16 - Boston, MA - David Friend Recital Hall
10.23.16 - Brooklyn, NY - Cathedral of St. Joseph
12.01.16 - Berlin, Germany – Funkhaus
12.02.16 - Nijmegen, Netherlands - Doornroosje
12.03.16 - Copenhagen, Denmark - Bremen Theater
12.04.16 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - Paradis
12.05.16 - Leuven, Belgium - 30CC
12.06.16 - Paris, France - L’alhambra
12.07.16 - Hassel, Belgium - CCHA
12.09.16 - London, UK - Barbican
02.10.17 - Hamburg, Germany - Elbphilharmonie
03.25.17 - Durham, NC - Baldwin Auditorium
04.17.17 - Los Angeles, CA - Walt Disney Concert Hall
04.18.17 - San Francisco, CA - Regency Ballroom
04.20.17 - Seattle, WA - Nordstrom Recital Hall

Orphée tracklisting:

01. Flight From The City
02. A Song For Europa
03. The Drowned World
04. A Deal With Chaos
05. A Pile Of Dust
06. A Sparrow Alighted Upon Our Shoulder
07. Fragment I
08. By The Roes, And By The Hinds Of The Field
09. The Radiant City
10. Fragment II
11. The Burning Mountain
12. De Luce Et Umbra
13. Good Morning, Midnight
14. Good Night, Day
15. Orphic Hymn

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