Retro Stefson at The Lexington
Monday saw Reykjavik’s septet Retro Stefson begin their European tour at The Lexington, London, promoting their 2012 self-titled album.
Notorious in Iceland for their charismatic and captivating presence, it was interesting to see if the modest venue, accessed by a small flight of wooden stairs, would be fitting for their performance. With eight musicians huddled on stage they made room for dancing, and by opening with first album track Solaris, they had London spellbound within seconds.
The group came together during their school years to gain free entry to a local youth talent show. They lost, but Retro Stefson soon became their passion, developing into a tight-knit group bursting with confidence and a strong party ethic. Monday witnessed this same energy, with their seminal pop songs grabbing the attention of every person in the audience.
It was refreshing to see a crowd let loose, but then Retro Stefson’s infectious beats would get anyone dancing. From pop, to funk, to dance, to head banging, innovatively fusing genres, there was a track for everyone. As lead vocalist Unnsteinn Manuel Stefánsson said, “If the sound engineer is moving, then you know it’s a good song”.
During Fall, Haraldur Ari Stefánsson came on stage, playing percussion with style and at one point with a tambourine on his head. Unnstein Manuel spent much of the time performing on top of an amplifier, while other members jumped up and down.
The engaging performance by the band and the intimacy of the venue allowed the audience to feel part of Retro Stefson’s desirable dynamic. Watching the crowd get lost in Kimba and Glow; it was a shame when the gig finished, even after the encore, leaving everyone desperate for the party to continue.
Photos: Ãžorgils VÃlundarson
Watch the video for Glow here: