By Aline Mahrud
WORTH A LOOK?: ****
WHEN?: Friday 26 November 2021, tour runs to 16 June 2022
SETLIST: Lag sem ég gerði; Where We Wanna Be; Hvað með það; Kemur Þér ekki við; Skiptir ekki máli; Clear My Head; Somebody Else Now; Birdy Song; Fugladansinn; Feel The Love; 10 Years; Næsta skref; Something Magical; Think About Things; Daði Guitar song; Endurtaka Mig
The winner of 2020’s Eurovision-that-never-was not only sold out the 2,300 capacity 02 Forum Kentish Town but was uttely charming in doing so.
- Read on for reasons including how support band HYYTS revealed their Eurovision story
He returned to Eurovision for Iceland in 2021, finishing 4th behind Italian winners Måneskin, with the laidback and brilliant 10 Years but it is final main set song Think About Things which has the predominantly young audience bellowing every word at the top of their lungs in appreciation.
Rewind to support act HYYTS, who we only heard the very tail end of supporting Little Boots at Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club last month, who reveal they narrowly missed out on representing we assume the UK in 2021’s Eurovision.
The Glasgow electropop duo would be highly suited to Eurovision because lead singer Adam Hunter has a fine voice and keyboardist Sam Hunter, no relation, knows his way around a catchy tune. They seem genuinelly delighted to be here, complimented Freyr’s fans and get everyone swaying in unison to a fine cover of Shania Twain’s You’re Still The One.
Recent single Singing Your Name closes out the set and is strong enough to be the UK’s 2022 Eurovision entry. Consider our vote cast.
Freyr chooses to play half his set in its original Icelandic and, while it’s a decision pleasing those in the audience we can tell are Icelandic because it’s clearly meaning a great deal to them, it means the warmth of the crowd is initially a little more restrained than we might have expected.
Freyr is joined by a percussionist and multi-instrumentalist and plays a variety of instruments himself through the show while also in part playing DJ and twiddling some impressive looking knobs while singing stylishly.
He’s not joined by band Gagnamagnið who rehearsed with him in Rotterdam for Eurovision in 2021 but were ultimately not able to play live because of Covid with rehearsal footage being shown on the night of the final.
Instead Freyr makes for a self-deprocating host, occasionally very funny, and clearly loving this UK tour which returns to these shores in June 2022 with gigs including the 3,300-capacity Camden Roundhouse. Tickets
There’s even a cover of The Birdie Song by The Tweets, a number 2 in 1981 and voted the most annoying song of all time, which could at be best be described as ill-advised and shouldn’t work – but does.
Guest Ásdís arrives onstage to perform Feel The Love, a song of the month for us in January, which is an absolute barnstormer, provides a bonding moment with the audience and we can’t help but think is so simple and strong that it might have even outperformed the more refined and classy 10 Years at this year’s Eurovision.
10 Years is pure class and, while the later Think About Things proves it’s very much Freyr’s most popular song, his songwriting is still so consistently good that you wouldn’t bet against something as strong emerging from his keyboards sometime soon.