Admittedly, I began this year’s Most Infectious Song list in unusual fashion yesterday, diving deep into the underground with songs by unheralded bands from records released on the very last day of last year. However, these next two songs come from better-known bands (though their names are not yet on the tip of every metalhead’s tongue) and from 2019 albums that have received quite a bit more attention (but still not enough).
Misþyrming’s 2015 debut album Söngvar elds og óreiðu opened a lot of eyes — opened them so wide you could see the whites showing all ’round. But these Icelanders were even better than we knew, because four years later they decided to throw us a curveball. Rather than build on the success of their debut with slight iterations on a proven formula, they spread their wings and flew in a noticeably different direction.
I’m not arguing that their second album Algleymi is better than the first one (choosing between them is a very difficult decision), but the fact that they followed their creative impulses even at the risk of not merely surprising people but perhaps even leaving some behind is worth a big round of applause. Of course, I probably still wouldn’t be applauding if their new one weren’t so fucking good.