You all have heard of Bjork,whether it before her less than popular political views,her red carpet fashion exploits,or maybe even,though less likely,her eccentric songwriting. But before all this notoriety, she was the voice of the Icelandic treasure K.U.K.L.
K.U.K.L. ,Icelandic for witchcraft,was originally was conceived as a super group of various members of Icelandic bands like Tappi Tikarrass,Purrkur Pillnik,Spilafifl,and Medusa.I'm quite sure that none of those names mean a damn thing to you,but that is hardly the point here. They played their first show in Reykjavik,Iceland's capitol,opening for Crass on September,20th 1983. Shortly thereafter they released their debut,the 2 song ep Songull.
Get Songull here.
Around a year later, K.U.K.L. presented their first full length,the hypnotic Eye LP.
Released on Crass Records in 1984, the album named after the 1928 book "Story of the Eye" by George Bataille. The Eye was a far cry from anything that had come out on the label prior and bore a more experimental sound influenced by acts like Killing Joke and Einsturzende Neubauten,albeit with Bjork's instantly recognizable voice wailing and shrieking over top .Really, I challenge you to name a more distinct voice than this!!
Get The Eye here.
After touring the rest of Europe extensively for the better part of the next 2 years,
K.U.K.L. returned in 1986's Holiday's in Europe.(The Naughty Nought)
Recorded by Penny Rimbaud and once again released on Crass Records, they gained the distinction of being the only band other than Crass to release a second record on the label.
Take the Holiday in Europe here.
This would be where the K.U.K.L. would end their legacy on. Bjork and a couple other members continued on in the much less riveting Sugarcubes before she went on to her much documented solo career which I won't touch on here.
With this said, I will leave you with this eulogy written by an unspecifies member of the group:
"The engine idea of KUKL was to cause a change in society through music using it as a means of transmission. To this end, the group refused to fall into commercialism and only used to appear during special occasions so that they could keep their quality of inspiration. KUKL’s members kept the stance that the power is within us and what we do. By listening to their music, people would become an integral part of that power transmission, even without wanting to.
Without holding out an accurate definition of their philosophy to avoid being type-cast, KUKL members considered that there is more in life than what is predetermined. They wanted to light other people’s minds avoiding restrictions since nowadays music served as a tool to numb people while those in the post of authority watched how we all go down to doom.
KUKL pointed out that we shouldn’t be satisfied with our own life’s style, our arts or attitudes. By having this in mind when music was concerned, KUKL introduced an incongruence in the psychic of their audience and as they did not use it to its own profit, individuals would have room enough to fill in with themselves. A non conformist attitude would bring another new wave of listeners. The option is being oneself."
Take from that what you will.
In addition to these albums,they also released a live album. If anyone out there has it,email me because I would like to hear it. That is all.