Icelandic band Steed Lord’s creative reach extends far beyond music alone. The bandmates, Mega, Demo, and Kali can call themselves fashion designers, graphic artists, film producers, directors, and photographers. Oh yeah, they’re also musicians. Read on to learn about the two part album “The Prophecy” being released this year, the relationship between their music and visual art, and how the band comes alive onstage.
Without using any “conventional” genre words, describe your sound.
Icelandic Synthesizer Pop.
You’ve got a new album in the works, The Prophecy, to be released in two parts this year. How did this album come about?
This is our third studio album but we are approaching it like it is our first and last album ever. We are pushing ourselves out of our comfort zone and also experimenting with our songwriting. We’ve been working on this album for a long time but it feels like a new start for Steed Lord because we are evolving as artists and experimenting with new sounds and feelings.
How are the two parts tied together?
Sort of like an epic movie sequel where part 2 just gets better. The Prophecy Part 1 will contain songs that we have already written and produced in the last year or so and have been working on all summer. The Prophecy Part 2 will give us an opportunity to sit down and write the second half of the story but with the same instruments and vision of the very first idea.
Your artistic creativity goes far beyond music. You’ve designed clothing for H&M and have worked closely with WeSC, directed and produced music videos, and commercials, and your photography has been published in high fashion and art magazines. When did visual design/film/fashion become a part of the band?
Well our background is within all these visual outlets and we have always been a very hands-on visual band from day one, so it’s totally natural for us to do all of these things under one roof as Steed Lord. It’s more like a lifestyle than a band really.
How does your design sense play into your music?
It’s like the frame around the painting. When we have written a song, EP, or album, we start visualizing the artwork, music videos, merchandise, costumes for stage, and our live visuals, and we get a feel for the look of the music. But we are very experimental with it and we don’t plan too much—it kind of just comes to us somehow with the beat of the music.
Likewise, do your designs have any musical traces?
Sure, it can work both ways especially with our live visuals when the videos are driven by the mood of our live music. We are also super tech nerds and are always thinking of the future and what we can do with our music live on stage and how we can make it interactive for the fans and even the audience at home. The technology of today is very exciting and we try and embrace it.
What’s your live show like? Do you make all of your performance costumes?
Our live show is the soul of Steed Lord. It is where we started, before we released any music as Steed Lord. If you haven’t seen us live on-stage then you really haven’t experienced the true power and energy of our music. We put everything into our live shows and we never want to repeat ourselves, so we produce every show individually. It’s exciting for us to perform and have fun on-stage. Kali designs and puts together all of her stage outfits and it is a true passion for her to express herself while singing. She helps us boys in the back with looking proper for the show.
You’ve now had three songs featured on “So You Think You Can Dance.” Congratulations! How does an independent musician secure features like that?
Thank you! It has been amazing for an independent Icelandic band like ourselves to have a platform on national television so our music can get heard in homes it normally wouldn’t be heard in. Sonya Tayeh who is a choreographer on the show is a fan of our music and we are fans of her art as well, so much so that we have worked on two music videos together and are about to collaborate on some more exciting projects. She gets our music and we even customized our two recent mixes for her pieces on the show this season. This was a very fun and challenging collaboration for both us, and all the crazy reactions have been a phenomenal surprise for us.
You’ve had great success as an independent band. What advice can you give other independent artists?
Thank you! It’s cheesy but… never give up, always believe in what you are doing, don’t compromise your art or music for others and work very very hard 24/7 if you want to do this for a living. It’s far from being easy. It’s a constant struggle.
So what can we look forward to next from Steed Lord?
We are about to release a brand new music video to our second single ‘Hear Me Now’ on YouTube so stay tuned! We are also very excited about all the new music that we are about to release this year and all the music videos, short films and other visuals that we are creating around it. We can’t wait to start touring again so feel free to contact us at [email protected] for some crazy live shows. Then new Steed Lord fashion design and some fun collaborations and maybe even an interactive app… we are working on a bunch of cool things, but we never know what tomorrow will bring, so it can be something completely different from what we think at the moment 😉