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Genre > Rock > Alt & Grunge
Agaetis ByrjunReykjavík-based noise quartet Sigur Rós are the biggest band in their native Iceland, which should say much, much more about the collective insanity of that earthquake-ridden, blizzard-beaten crag of an island than anything to do with Sigur Rós's sound. But in their music, Sigur Rós reflect all the breathtaking glory of the Icelandic wastes--a fairy-tale explosion of unhinged elemental majesty that's finally crystallized here, their debut European release. Poised somewhere between the haunting soundscapes of Labradford and the lilting Celtic falsetto of Enya, Agaetis Byrjun is a truly breathtaking listen. Frontman Jon Por Birgisson sings in a language that Sigur Rós dub "Hopelandic"--an otherworldly mutation of Icelandic, sung in the falsetto cadence of angels; similarly, he plays his guitar with a violin bow, opening the floodgates for brilliant waves of feedback. And while it's the opening "Svefn-G-Englar" that's Sigur Rós' moment to date, there's far more that they have to offer; listen to the pomp and flourish of a full orchestra on "Flugufrelsarinn," or the awe-inspiring near-religious mantra of "Ny Batteri."LP 1
4. Ný batterí
1. Hjartađ hamast
2. Viđrar Vel Til Loftárása
3. Olsen Olsen
4. Ágćtis Byrjun
$29.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs SealedBuy Now
VonThe heaps of praise during 2000 surrounding 1999's Ágćtis Byrjun brought surprisingly little attention to Sigur Rós' first record, released in 1997. Remaining available only through the band's Icelandic label, it took some effort to obtain, but those who did get a copy probably found it to be just as adventurous as Agćtis. Though darker and more fractured than the string-laden nooks of the follow-up, it's just as sprawling and outright bombastic. It's remarkable that such a young band would be this experimental at this stage in their lifespan, but the sheer breadth gets to be an albatross. Poking fun at '70s prog rock is just as easy as shooting at cement gargoyles on a suburban rooftop, especially when you're an indie kid or a fan of post-rock. But Sigur Rós makes Yes look like the Minutemen. Whittled down to 40 minutes, Von would be considerably more effective than it already is. As a mood setter, the 10-minute opening track really takes about three minutes to do what it needs, and a few other spots seem to drag on for the sake of sucking time. That doesn't prevent Von from being impressive, veering from Gavin Bryars-style aquatic minimalism to My Bloody Valentine-style dream pop. Varying states of isolationist ambience run throughout, whether evoking unrest or tranquil rest. You can practically envision a stray headboard floating through the Sinking of the Titanic-type passages, and the lush "Myrkur" comes from a planet where MBV's Kevin Shields and Kitchens of Distinction's Julian Swales are accorded the level or worship that Earth gives to Hendrix and Clapton. And then there's that voice, one of the most distinctly unintelligible voices since the Cocteau Twins' Liz Fraser. Boy? Girl? One would be hard-pressed to guess without liner notes. Based on pure sound, Von is just as much of a treat as the acclaimed follow-up.
- Andy Kellman (All Music Guide)LP 1
1. Sigur Rós
3. Hún Jörđ…
4. Leit ađ lífi
6. 18 sekúndur fyrir sólarupprás
1. Veröld ný og óđ
4. Syndir Guđs (Opinberun frelsarans)
$29.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs SealedBuy Now
Kveikur“This is the most exciting new Sigur Ros song I’ve heard in a long time, and I love the band’s music.” ~Bob Boilen, NPR
Kveikur is the band’s first release on XL Recordings worldwide.
The record, which was self-produced by the three members of Sigur Rós: Jón Ţór Birgisson, Georg Holm and Orri Páll Dýrason, sees the band shifting towards a more direct, aggressive sound.Brennisteinn
$25.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs SealedBuy Now
Hvarf - HeimHvarf, is a five-track collection of rarities from Sigur Ros' vaults. Heim, is comprised of six acoustically performed versions of favorites from their back catalog.Hvarf "disappeared" or "haven"
Salka – 6:06 [The name of Georg's stepdaughter], previously unreleased
Hljómalind – 4:53 (Formerly known as "Rokklagiđ" ["The Rock Song"]), previously unreleased
Í Gćr – 6:22 (Formerly known as "Lagiđ Í Gćr") ["Yesterday"], previously unreleased
Von ('Hvarf' version) – 9:12 ["Hope"], original version on Von
Hafsól (2005 version) – 9:46 ["Sea Sun"], same version as on "Hoppípolla", original version on Von
Samskeyti ('Heim' version) – 5:20 "Attachment", original version on ( )
Starálfur ('Heim' version) – 5:25 "Staring Elf", original version on Ágćtis byrjun
Vaka ('Heim' version) – 5:17 The name of Orri's daughter, original version on ( )
Ágćtis byrjun ('Heim' version) – 6:35 "A good beginning", original version on Ágćtis byrjun
Heysátan ('Heim' version) – 4:40 "The Haystack", original version on Takk...
Von ('Heim' version) – 8:14 "Hope", original version on Von
$22.99Vinyl LP - 2 LPs SealedBuy Now
Alternative rock first emerged in Britain in the late 70s and early 80s, but it didn’t really hit its stride until the 90s with the arrival of bands like the Red Hot Chili Peppers and
Alternative rock first emerged in Britain in the late 70s and early 80s, but it didn’t really hit its stride until the 90s with the arrival of bands like the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Jane’s Addiction. That was also right around the time that Nirvana and Pearl Jam fueled the grunge rock explosion.
And when you want the full and real alt rock experience, you’ve gotta try it out on vinyl, and SoundStage Direct is your one-stop shop for all the best alternative rock vinyls.