At SW's REVERB Music Festival last month, fans voted to send Seattle's Massy Ferguson on an all-expense paid trip to Iceland's Airwaves Festival in Reykjavík, courtesy of KEXP, SW, and Iceland Airwaves. Now that they're home, bassist/vocalist Ethan Anderson recently filled us in on Icelandic music, Icelandic women, and Icelanders who look like John Roderick.
Here's the abridged version of Anderson's telling of Massy Ferguson's time in Rekjavic:
The whole thing was, holy shit we're in Iceland! Holy shit we're at the blue lagoon (natural hot springs w/a DJ)! Holy shit we're playing a show at Iceland!
The festival was pretty amazing. It was somewhere around 200 bands from all over, but mostly Iceland. It felt like a much bigger version of the Ballard's Reverb Fest. I could see a serious connection to it. The thing is, too, it rained the whole time we were there. It felt eerily like Seattle in November. There are a lot of parallels between the two towns. There was a ton of people from Seattle there, too just like, "Hey we come to Airwaves Festival every year, too."
There was a guy on the street and I went up to him and was like, "Hey, John Roderick!" And it wasn't John Roderick. His name was John Roger, and he looked just like him. It was the weirdest thing. And I kept running into the guy, too, which was crazy.The Icelandic people are cool. We had a chance to go out the first two nights and just check out Icelandic bands. The thing I can tell you about Icelandic people is you have no hope of pronouncing their names.
We found our guitar player downstairs in a club with these two really attractive Icelandic chicks, so we left him alone. And about half an hour later he comes up and we were like, "What happened with the really hot Icelandic chicks?" and he said, "Man, I couldn't pronounce their names!"
I would say, as a whole, there's a lot less hooting and hollering going on over there. It's a little bit more of a reserved audience. It's not like everyone was too cool, it was more like people were appreciative, but in a very reserved way. But at the same time, we played this rock venue kind of like the El Corazon of Iceland ... we weren't even close to these Icelandic screamo bands. When I say screamo, I mean, like Cookie Monster band. When we went on it must have felt like Seals and Croft.
One of the cool things was on the way back, some mistake was made, I'm sure, and we ended up in first class. We flew over Greenland during the day, and something about sipping a bottle of wine in first class going over Greenland was about the coolest thing ever.