The Russian Icelandic Remix Company Inc (RusicRemix) was conceived and made operational late winter 2005. gímaldin had always done farfetched remixes on the side (farfetched, meaning the outcome wouldn´t necessarily resemble the original), without ever looking into why he did it like that. Under sudden influence from some philosopher he met on a cruiser, gímaldin came increasingly anxious to delve into the “inner meaning” of songs, that is, had they or not an original meaning or essence which the “sound of the original” wasn´t necessarily the only way to convey. Realising that this was perhaps too personal and too abstract objective to offer to mainstream audience gímaldin added a twist to it. Thus RusicRemix was to become a machine which songs from all nations could go through, and receive a definite treatment of Icelandic base with Russian (or Eastern) influences – as gímaldin was living in St. Petersburg at the time.
These songs wouldn´t then appear on the myspace site, attached to RusicRemix, from 2005 to 2008, and most of the songs came with lengthy explanations, which are reproduced under the song list.
Heimsendaspár 2011 – The full name of this song is Drög að heimsendaspám, or Drafting the prophecy for the end of the World – it was written by my longtime colleague and friend, Hermann Stefánsson who played banjo and drums in 5ta herdeildin. I arranged this song i 2005 for an inclusion in a Radio Program
Heimsendaþjónustan 2011 – Hermann Stefánsson gave me three lyrics to work with in my RusicRemix session, this is one, the next one is next – and there is one more, or as Yoda would have put it, “There is another” – which will be remixed and included as soon as possible. The lyrics are a play off the words meaning “End of the world” and “Home delivery” – which you would easily understand if you were icelandic.
Tvær stúlkur með eð (The Poet/banjo meister Hermann Stefánsson gave us the lyrics to this one, it deals with the stealing of the letter ð from the Faculty of Geology. How fitting that the uploader won´t let me use the icelandic letter – it should read like this: Tvær stúlkur með ð)
The Sweetest gift – (The cutest song by the Judds, we didn´t feel it was dark enough so we total-remixed it)
Tiy menja ljubish – (An old Soviet favorite, sung by an unknown apparatchik known only as Masha – we wondered what the rastafaris would have done with it, if they´d had their way)
A little bit – Sign remix – (The first RusicRemix. Icelandic group Sign released the individual tracks of their song A little Bit, for fans to remix, as a part of a launching campaign for their album. RusicRemix then promptly did this version, though never turning it in – as far as I remember)
Fuck the Pain Away – Peaches remix – (I always wondered how classic minimalist songs would sound with a little bit more chords and orchestration. It sounds kind of nice, but there is no competition)
Hallelujah – Cohen remix – (When RusicRemix made this mix, only one troubador in Iceland was doing a personalized version of this rare Cohen hit. I think his name is Helgi – but I could be mistaken. However, in the last couple of years, Icelandic musicians from all flanks have been churning out cover versions of Hallelujah with Icelandic lyrics. Most of them are not really trying to represent the meaning of the original so it can hardly be compared, or?)
Oh, had I a golden thread – Pete Seeger remix – (RusicRemix used the Joan Baez version as the base for this one)
Creeping Death remix – I tried tuning my mandolin like a guitar, didn´t dare though to stretch it higher than a d – subsequently I found that was the proper range for me to sing this song, and thus – it was made
Parental Guidance remix – My friend Katja left her acoustic guitar with me, when she took off to Holland (and no, she´s not a spy) – my first reaction to her departure was to take the steel strings out of her guitar, and string it with nylon strings. Nylon strings in an acoustic body often don´t resonate enough, so I wanted to learn how loud I could make. What better way to do that than to play Judas Priest?
Is your love in vain – One of Dylan´s most forgotten pearls, this first came on Street Legal, but the version I like more is a live version. I was singing it constantly over some period of time, and my neighbor told me he hated these lyrics – then how could I do anything other than to keep the lyrics and replace the song?
Lullaby remix – I took this from a Foghorns live album, recorded in Amsterdam pub, I think. You should definitely check out the originals.
Minivan mom remix – I got in contact with the lady who runs the band The Serpentones, she had all kinds of interesting songs, but this one stuck.
Augað nemur – This is one of the handful of songs I actually got a permission to remix, Óli from Hanoi Jane gave his personal blessing.
Ballaðan um þunna manninn – Sometimes jokes really do get lost in translation, this is Dylan´s Ballad of a Thin Man
Hærra minn guð – from the religious period, I think this was basically completed in 2001 – we tried it with a couple of different singers, but it would always swing round and come back to me. This is not a RusicRemix song.
Seasons in the Sun remix – From 1997, made with an Alesis keyboard, and a minimal string section. A childhood favorite.
Simple Twist of Fate – One of my alltime Dylan favorites, first heard it from a bootleg tape off the last legs of the Neverending Tour, with fantastic guitars by GE Smith. It would always bother me though how economical Dylan is with chords and chaptering – it makes so much more sense to extend the composition in full context with the lyric evolution.