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Magnified Love

One of Icelands most engaging musical exports lands in St. Petersburg as part of a Russian tour.

Published: March 13, 2013 (Issue # 1750)



  • GusGus is a band which reinvents itself as artistic demands dictate.
    Photo: KOMPAKT / SPT

GusGus, an internationally recognized top-selling act noted for its passionate, high-energy shows, and one of Icelands best-known bands, launches its six-date Russian tour this week.

Formed in 1995 in Reykjavik, Iceland, the electronic soul band, which balances its concerns between commercial pop and underground dance music, reemerged in 2011 with its seventh full-length studio album, Arabian Horse, which has been described by their current German label, Kompakt, as Icelandic Hi-Tech Soul.

The St. Petersburg Times spoke to GusGus singer Daniel Agust Haraldsson via Skype in advance of Sundays concert.

Q: This interview has been postponed two hours because of the blizzard there. What happened?

A: Oh, it just came all of a sudden. Yesterday was fine and there was no sign of this crazy snowfall coming down. So much snow, everybody getting stuck in traffic... I was fine in my car, my small Nissan Micra, but then I got stuck in a pile of snow just after having taken my kid to school.

Q: On Wednesday, youre starting a six-date tour in Russia. I guess you havent done that before, have you?

A: Its the first time we are doing a comprehensive tour like this, a big tour. We played St. Petersburg and Moscow quite a few times with great success. Now it was time to step up and do a bigger tour around your huge country. Well go to Krasnodar, Nizhny Novgorod, Chelyabinsk and Krasnoyarsk, I see here on our website. Some of these cities, with millions of people living in them, I hadnt heard of before. So I am going to do some reading over the weekend before taking on the journey.

Q: What material are you going to perform in Russia?

A: Well, mainly well be performing songs from Arabian Horse, our last album, which weve done before in Moscow and St. Petersburg. But were going to do a few new ones as well, so you have some special treats. Were going to give you some sample of whats coming up on the next album.

Were planning to release an EP, a short album, in a couple of months, two or three months, and yeah, were finishing, like, a three- or four-track album for release in May, probably.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, Oct. 22


English teachers can expect to receive a few useful pointers today from Evgeny Kalashnikov, the British Council regional teacher, during the EFL Seminar this afternoon hosted by the British Book Center. The topic of todays seminar is Grammar Practice.


Young Petersburgers will get the chance to jumpstart their careers at Professional Growth, a job fair and forum featuring more than 40 major Russian and international companies vying for potential candidates for future positions. The forum not only is a chance to network but also to learn more about the modern business world and to understand what it takes to get the job you want.



Thursday, Oct. 23


AmChams Public Relations Committee meeting is scheduled to meet this morning at 9 a.m. in their office in the New St. Isaac Office Center.


Sportsmen get their chance to stock up on all kinds of gear at the Hunting and Fishing 2014 exhibition starting today at Lenexpo. Everything from rods and reels to boats, motorcycles and equipment for underwater hunting will be on sale so that any avid outdoorsman can always be prepared.



Friday, Oct. 24


SPIBAs ongoing Breakfast with the Director series continues today, featuring Tomas Hajek, Managing Director of the Northwest Division at Danone Russia. Hajek will be discussing collaborations between businesses from different cultures. The meeting is at 9 a.m. at the Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel and all who wish to attend must confirm their participation by Oct. 23.


Get your gong on at Sounds of the Universe, a concert at the city planetarium this evening incorporating six different gongs to create relaxing songs that will transport you upwards into the stratosphere. Tickets are 700 rubles ($17).



Saturday, Oct. 25


AVA Expo, the eighth edition of the event revolving around all things pop culture, returns to Lenexpo this weekend. Geeks, nerds, dweebs and dorks will have their chance to talk science fiction and explore a variety of international pop culture. Tickets for the event can be purchased on their website at avaexpo.ru.



Sunday, Oct. 26


Zenit St. Petersburg returns home for the first time in nearly a month as they host Mordovia Saransk in a Russian Premier League game. Currently at the top of the league thanks to their undefeated start to the season, the northern club hopes to extend the gap between them and second-place CSKA Moscow and win the title for the first time in three years. Tickets are available at the stadium box office or on the clubs website.



Monday, Oct. 27


Today marks the end of the art exhibit Neophobia at the Erarta Museum. Artists Alexey Semichov and Andrei Kuzmin took a neo-modernist approach to represent the array of fears that are ever-present throughout our lives. Tickets are 200 rubles ($4.90).



Tuesday, Oct. 28


The Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel plays host to SPIBAs Marketing and Communications Committees round table discussion on Government Relations Practices in Russia this morning. The discussion starts at 9:30 a.m. and participation must be confirmed by Oct. 24.



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