Hermigervill [er*muh*Gair*vill] is a one man electronic act from Reykjavík, Iceland that does it all from playing every instrument on his albums to deftly handling a variety of genres including House, Hip-Hop, and Trip-Hop. He currently has two self-released full-length records, entitled Sleepwork and Lausnina, available for free through his website, with several more apparently in the works. To date, he’s worked with a number of Icelandic musicians and tours as frequently as possible.
Hermigervill’s music is nothing if not diverse. From song to song, styles switch with such ease that the uninformed might assume that they’re listening to a homemade mixtape from a friend. Songs like “Army Of Them (Remix)” sound like a smoked-out Kanye B-Side while others like “Sveitin Milli Sanda” and “Blame It On Gray” are perfect specimens of Trip-Hop and hard-rocking House, respectively. The surprising thing is that it doesn’t seem overly intentional or labored. He’s simply an artist that likes to experiment and does it rather well.
In regards to instrumentation, one can expect an array of sounds from haunting Portishead-esque theremins to club beats with playful lead synth lines that sound like he might have spent a little too much time listening to The Well Tempered Synthesizer. The Hermigervill sound is also rather sample-heavy on his studio work which he says completely changes on the live stage. Rather than simply hit play on a sample and dance around, he reworks the most unique sample-based elements from each song into playable patterns on synths and whatever else is needed.
In past interviews, Hermigervill professed both his love of Icelandic music and slight lack of knowledge of other artists outside the country. However, he did happen to cite DJ Shadow and The Chemical Brothers as influences which are quite apparent at times in terms of his scratching and occasional big-beat sound. (If I’m not mistaken, “Blame It On Gray” uses the same drum beat as “Get Up On It Like This” by The Chemical Brothers.) But with his innate ability to get to the heart of a multitude of genres, Hermigervill is nonetheless a highly original artist worth listening to.
Here is a two song mix from Hermigervill’s Sleepwork album that feature “Hard To Stop” and “Darkshot”