Moving from the American scene to the 'British' scene in 1997, I was stunned by the differences in music as I crossed the shores. I had been out of England for years and years, and upon my return I had to play catch up with the British music culture, and fast. I had a history of The Kinks to catch up on past ''Lola'' and ''Low Budget''. 10CC waited in the wings beyond ''I'm Not In Love''. And on the horizon were Massive Attack, and Supergrass.
And Gus Gus are from Iceland. I'm just stating that so you don't think I'm thinking they're from the UK. But this is where I heard them, and I'm not sure I would've heard them hanging out on the East Coast of America. Maybe if I frequented more clubs I might've, but somehow being able to see them on MTV Europe, in the comfort of my own home, says the likelihood would not have been great of a Stateside viewing.
And it was one viewing of Gus Gus's ''Starlovers'' that got me to say, ''Who is this????'' The immediate thing that made this song stand out to me was Daniel Agust's voice. It was beautiful. A truly truly great singer. That was the first thing that stood out to me. And then the song's groove and melody stood out next. I had to hear more of this thing called Gus Gus, and I was glad I did. ''This Is Normal'' is an album worth purchasing. One thing urging you to do this is the promise that Daniel Agust's voice is worth it. Ethereal, melodic, soothing are a few words that can describe it.
And then I heard ''Snoozer''. Which slowly turned into my favourite song from this album.
I really can't say enough about this album. It thoroughly convinced me that the European/British scene was headed somewhere entirely different than the American scene, particularly in regards to Iceland! But it was an immense culture shock hearing bands such as Massive Attack, Supergrass, Gus Gus, Roni Size and Daft Punk in constant play on UK shores, where I knew living in America I would have to seriously go underground to hear some of it. Or be a fan of Soul Coughing and hunting down where they got it from. Which I am.
There are a few reasons to buy this album. The most important is of course the songs themselves, the greatness of ''Ladyshave'', ''Teenage Sensation'', ''Snoozer'' and the irresistible ''Starlovers''. Another reason is to hear the voice of Daniel Agust. I think I'd buy an album of him singing a Chinese menu (wait, Anthony Kiedis already does this doesn't he?) And a final reason is to own an album by Gus Gus just to say you have an album by Gus Gus. You'll look ''cool'', trust me.