Icelandic newcomer Heidrunna hosts a celebration of kaleidoscopic glittering synth pop and often melancholic dreamscapes in her debut album, Melodramatic, just out in April 2022.
The album comes with a daring vulnerability and expression and with Heidrunna’s angelic vocals, she shares a collection of short vignettes of these uplifting and beguiling meditations on the diverse and often unfathomable landscape of love and intimacy. The production is clean, crisp and clear, almost an ornate sound delving into the retro-sphere of 80s synth-pop. Rapturous melodies suggest stories of lust and betrayal, in these dramatic portrayals of heartbreak and the shimmering mysteries of the heart, she weaves dreams in these whimsically enhanced musings.
As we wake from the recent pandemic looking for optimistic highs, it seems pop is starting to wake us from two years of hibernation. We begin to welcome the likes of Kaiyra, Sabrinna Kennedy, Alice Pisano and Natalie Shay to name a few and find comparisons to Heidrunna in the likes of Lykkke Li, Annie or Vanessa Paradise, especially in vocal style.
Standout tracks include the diva-like Borderline that has a distinct electro-clash feel, reminiscent of Fisherspooner, only on a higher frequency, with an almost baroque style attention to detail, complete with mix from NZCA Lines. The second track, Daydreamer has a more whimsical feel, melancholy and reminiscing, she shares flashes in time, as she transports herself back to moments of bliss and idyllic lisaisons.
Stand out single, ‘Erasing You,’ was first released in 2021, an uplifting exploration in a search for meaning and answers, as she seeks to release herself from a maze of deceit, where she eventually breaks free. ‘No Valium,’ is a tender exploration and search for deeper meaning, where she expresses the pain of disillusion in a friend. ‘You Can Go Your Own Way’ is a more stripped back sound, a coming to terms and rising from the ashes, as you get the feeling she takes a more objective approach to life’s varied offerings.
The track ‘Cindy,’ is sang in her own Icelandic tongue, in her tribute to Cindy Lauper’s, ‘Girls Just Want to Have Fun,’you get the feeling this cathartic album is starting to turn full circle into a fresh optimistic dimension.
With ‘All Cried Out,’ the final track, is an acceptance, a final letting go of previous experiences and coming-to-terms with past liaisons. You get the feeling that Heidrunna has summed up a lifetime of relationships and a purging of previous experiences, in these stories of her heart. In this album of complexity and loving, Heidrunna starts to move forward freely, as she accepts and transforms her experiences into something new.
Heidrunna takes us on a journey through the many facets of love, some welcomed, some are broken dreams – she always brings a sense of buoyancy, with a collection of tracks that would make a perfect addition to any dancefloor.