I wrote for The Japan Times about dance music scenes in Tokyo while conducting research at Tokyo University of the Arts. After returning to Iceland, I contributed to the Reykjavik Grapevine.
Dubstep in Japan: On Scenes and Genres. (2017). In After Musicking (pp. 217–248). Tokyo University of the Arts Press.Journal Article『クラブ・ミュージックのローカル化における真正性—日本におけるダブステップとヒップ・ホップの比較—』
Authenticity in the Localization of Club Music in Japan: A Comparison of Dubstep and Hip-Hop. (2012). In The Annual Review of Musicology and Music Studies (pp. 65-76). Tokyo University of the Arts Press.
NTTR is a life-simulation game for PC/PlayStation/Xbox/Nintendo Switch from Icelandic studio Porcelain Fortress. I translated the UI and game content from English/Icelandic to Japanese. Outside of direct translation, the work required localizing cultural references and making sure the jokes worked.
Here are a selection of logos and illustrations I've done throughout the years for music events, web sites or personal projects.
Club event logo
Music event logo
Tokyo Sengen logo
Music event logo
Japanese family crest
Logo for Record-shops.org
Art exhibition logo
Club event logo
This series was born in 2008 when I started compiling the best boogie, disco and funk discoveries into mixes. Each represents 1-2 years of record hunting in Reykjavik, Tokyo and online.
Austurvöllur (2010) Download
My winning entry to radio show Party Zone's summer DJ mix contest, a blend of boogie, disco and funk.
Party Zone (2013) Download
A mix I contributed to Party Zone a few years later, centered on boogie funk and disco.
DansiDans (2010) Download
Boogie-funk centered mix I contributed to DansiDans.com, a now defunct blog about dance music in Iceland.
Born in Reykjavik, Iceland, in 1981. An avid music fan from an early age, Arni became a DJ in the mid-90s during the house music boom. In high school, he joined rap duo Bent & 7berg as a producer and started the comedy rap group TZMP with friend Steinn Linnet.
Inspired by Japanese films of the 90s, he took a chance on a Japanese course in high school and something clicked. In 2003, he enrolled in the Japanese department at University of Iceland and spent a year in Japan as an exchange student. After graduating and a brief stint on the job market, he moved back to Japan in 2008 for graduate school.
At Tokyo University of the Arts, he researched how music scenes form in Japan. He got his masters degree in cultural studies in 2011, but disillusioned with the academic world, he left the doctorate program in 2014. He stayed in Tokyo pursuing creative interests while working as a receptionist at a mental health clinic.
He held several photo exhibitions and designed a fake book cover that went viral. He DJ'd regularly across Tokyo, contributed voice acting to a jazz album and was profiled on Japanese TV. A visit from TZMP's other member to Japan facilitated the release of their second album, which they launched in 2016 with a show in Tokyo and Reykjavik.
In 2018, Arni moved back to Iceland. He landed a job as a Japanese-speaking tour guide, returned to DJing and tried his hand at painting. He held a joint exhibition named "Works of Fart" with Arnaldur Grétarsson in 2019, and started 90's house club night JACK THE HOUSE and Paradise Garage tribute night Paradísarskúrinn.
During the downtime of covid, Arni learned 3D modeling and HTML/CSS, which birthed this website and a slowly building collection of 3D works.
Fresh from a successful Tokyo exhibition of paintings in March 2023, Arni is currently working on a new exhibition set for the fall.