I was looking for Icelandic folk songs to serve as source material for music I was composing for my friend Simone Couto, a visual artist working on a multi-work installation based on several trips to volcanoes in Iceland. After some internet research, I discovered the Lilia Hymn, an ambiguously modal tune which is still known in Iceland today, and was recorded as far back as 1780, on page 406 of the multi-volume French folk music compendium Essai Sur La Musique Ancienne et Moderne.

The piece runs through the melody twice, harmonizing it differently each time.

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