Kaktus Einarsson


Biography Kaktus Einarsson



Kaktus Einarsson
(b. 1992) has led a remarkable musical life. Born and raised in Reykjavík, Iceland, he was playing as part of experimental electronic act Ghostigital at the tender age of ten. He is the frontman of Fufanu, who have opened hometown shows for Radiohead and Red Hot Chilli Peppers. The band also broke out internationally, touring widely, supporting Blur in Hyde Park, and storming the festival circuit.

Having honed his understanding of songwriting, recording, and production, his debut album ‘Kick the Ladder’ is the culmination of his experience in contemporary classical and pop music and bridges the two sides of his work.

While writing and producing the album, Kaktus involved the French prepared piano experimentalist Thibault Gomez, for further sound developing. “I was using my knowledge of extended playing techniques and the contemporary repertoire, and getting them into my pop music,” he says. “We replaced synths with acoustic sounds that are familiar, but unfamiliar in many ways. It’s all organic, there are no artificial effects: we created all the effects with this one instrument, the grand piano. We tried it for every situation.”

Kaktus wrote the album in Iceland, then developed its sound in Copenhagen in collaboration with French prepared piano experimentalist Thibault Gomez. “I was using my knowledge of extended playing techniques and the contemporary repertoire, and getting them into my pop music,” he says. “We replaced synths with acoustic sounds that are familiar, but unfamiliar in many ways. It’s all organic, there are no artificial effects: we created all the effects with this one instrument, the grand piano. We tried it for every situation.”

The result is an intimate, melodic record with an expansive and experimental sound. The album also sees Kaktus evolve as a vocalist and lyricist, and expresses his outlook on a range of topics from interpersonal relationships to happiness, grief, and current events. “Every song on this album is a love letter to my environment, and my surroundings,” he says. “Some of the songs might be written to nature, and what is happening to our planet. Others are a dialogue between two people.”

‘Kick the Ladder’ was produced by Kaktus, alongside Swiss electronic composer Kurt Uenala, with whom he finished the record in New York City. ‘Daydream Echo’ builds on the words of an NYC street preacher. “They were standing in the same place every day, shouting about how we’re all going to die, and how we’re going on a ride,” says Kaktus. “A few weeks later, the world was in chaos. What if this New York lunatic was just more advanced than us, and we are the crazy ones?”

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