Sigur Ros

The fuck are they singing about?

*special introductory paragraph!
*Von
*Agaetis Byrjun
*Svefn-g-englar EP
*Rimur EP (with Steindor Andersen)
*( )
*Hlemmur
*Ba Ba/Ti Ki/Di Do EP
*Takk...
*Hvarf-Heim
*Meo Suo I Eyrum Vio Spilum Endalaust

Sigur Ros is from Iceland, and thus probably totally hang out with Quarashi. Their music is opague, dreamy, harrowing, beautiful, orchestrated, and full of lyrics that nobody in their right mind could understand. Half of them are sung in an antiquated, long-forgotten non-English tongue called "Icelandese," and the other half is just a bunch of made-up jibberish like the Melvins but with fewer hard syllables. Very interesting band though, filled with love, beauty, sorrow and really, really slow songs.


Von - SM 1997
Rating = 6

Sigur Ros began their storied career by PISSING ON THE AMERICAN FLAG!!!

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SEE???? THAT'S SIGUR ROS RIGHT THERE, PISSING ON THE AMERICAN FLAG!!! SHOVE YOUR GAS UP YOUR ASS, KHOMEINI!!! FUCKIN' SIGUR ROS WITH YOUR WHITE HATS AND YOUR LITTLE KID!!!!

My bad - that entire section, including the photo, was a typo. What I intended to say was that Sigur Ros began their storied career with a lengthy CD that combined goth sorrow, shoegazer melodies, haunting ethereal vocals, and Eno-y ambience. Most obviously, Von (Icelandic for "Hope" -- as in former Danzig bassist 'Eerie Hope') is a lot more experimental than their later works, which is to say that only half of the twelve named tracks are actual songs. So let's start by discussing the NON-songs!

Most of these evocative noise pieces drag on a bit too long to maintain interest, but they still constitute the absolute scariest ambient music I've ever heard. They're just CREEPY! Like horror movie creepy! If they were rubber vaginas, believe me you wouldn't want to stick your dick in 'em! Here, let me describe them briefly, so that we're all clear on what I mean by 'not actual songs':

- 18 seconds of silence (with a title that translates to "18 Split Second Pay Lip Service To Sunrise," according to a particularly bad online translator I found)
- Dark jungle noises, water bells and native screams ("Sigur Ros," which translates to "Victory Rose" and is also the name of a popular band from Iceland called "Quarashi." They hang out with Sigur Ros.)
- Sucking - in more ways than one - backward whooshy noises ("Hunt a Lifi"!? That's no help!)
- Scratchy clumpy rhythmic noise and guitar string swizzling ("World Neo- And Ouch" Hmm. I think I'm just about ready to give up on this 'translator')
- Creepy clunky wooden sound effects and footprints on a wet street ("Mist" - hey, that one actually makes sense! Way to go, InterTran!)
- A backwards version of a song appearing earlier on the record (Umm... "Krad" I guess?)

It's fun to translate words! Here are the supposed English titles of the six "actual songs," for shits and grins' sake:

- "Daybreak"
- "She Jor..." (?)
- "Dark" (hence the "Krad" I claimed above)
- "Ocean Floor"
- "Hope"
- "Pity Gus (Revelation Messianism)"

That was awesome! I LOVE pitying Gus!!! That poor, poor mule. Didn't they realize he just wanted to play football for the fun of it?

Now then, about those six 'actual songs.' The vocals are genuinely haunting: high-pitched disembodied ghostly asexual harmonies of eerie beauty. The accompanying music combines quiet guitar notes with unidentifiable waves of reverbed, subdued, delayed melodic sound (electronics, I guess?). However, as misty, foreboding and echo-laden as these tracks are, only two of them (Pink Floyd/Swans darkstone "She Jor..." and gorgeously forlorn My Bloody Valentiney strummy shoegaze track "Dark") fully demonstrate this band's unmatched talent for coming up with 'I gotta hear that again!' melodies and infusing them with an almost religious otherworldly atmosphere. The others sound more like early compositions by a band trying to work out an original sound. "Hope" and "Pity Gus," for example, wouldn't seem out of place on a Slowdive album.

If you take your little CD pointer thingy and listen to like one minute of every song on here, you'll be all like, "Dude, Why'd you only give this a 6? This stuff sounds great!" And indeed it does. But one minute of heavenly "whoooo"ing or suckity clip-clop noise is a lot less tiresome than 4-11 minutes of repetitive same.

Incidentally, all the lyrics on this are in Icelandic - no made-up silliness just yet. So if you speak Icelandic, let me know what they're saying and whether it's any good or not. On a related note, there's actually another Icelandic band called "Gus Gus" so either this translator's a piece of online dung or the Icelandic people have quite a soft spot for animals that can play football.

Wait! That explains why "Bjork" translates to "Air Bud: Golden Receiver"!

Add your thoughts?


* Agaetis Byrjun - Bad Taste 1999 *
Rating = 10

What a nice album! Where their debut concentrated on pushing you away and saying, "Don't come any closer or I'll kill you with my clunky wooden blocks in this eerie forest," this one smiles and says, "Hi! We're Sigur Ros! Come in and let us show you what we can do, musically-wise!" And then it proceeds to do so. And it's beautiful. Gorgeous! SLOW!

How many dadblasted singers does this band have though? In the first (real) song it sounds like a Daniel Johnson/Guy In Mercury Rev manboy that's afraid to grow up, then in the next it sounds like a Japanese woman, then in the third it sounds like a Hispanic 20-something male using the Cranberries' vocal inflection! Is this all a ruse to tie up my shoes?

cfvcffffvggvggfvcccccf cfeeegrrvnweyi23456vbnddsffdxsxcfvbghndmjkddddddddsmjvbnwwsedt

Sorry about that. Spilled some cola in my keyboard and had to clean between the keys with a wet paper towel.

(*has intense brainstorm, with light bulb*)

NO HANG ON! It was actually my latest textual sculpture, "Untitled #3 (cfvcffffvggvggfvcccccf cfeeegrrvnweyi23456vbnddsffdxsxcfvbghndmjkddddddddsmjvbnwwsedt)." So move over, Van Gogh! And take your fuckin' ear with you, Gross-ass!

According to the definitive online Icelandic translator "InterTran," this album title translates to Excellence Beginning and the song titles are:

- "Intro"
- "Sleep Exchange Rate"
- "Stare Elf"
- "Flying Saviour"
- "Neo-Batteri"
- "Palpitate (Bamm Bamm Bamm)
- "Virar Well Towards Air Raid"
- "Suck My Ass It Smells"
- "Excellence Beginning"
- "Avalon"

So here's my question -- if you don't actually know Icelandic, why would you create an "Icelandic-to-English translator"?

At any rate, this is a terrific CD and a significant departure from their debut. First of all, only two of the tracks are instrumental experimental works, leaving eight full-fledged compositions to chew on and eat. Secondly, they've apparently got a new keyboardist as well as a double string octet playing along with them. Thirdly, there's this lovely distorted yet tuneful noise going through several of the songs (underneath the piano, keyboards and violins) that is apparently the guitarist playing his instrument with a cello bow! It doesn't sound like "Dazed And Confused" though, so don't be all pissy when it doesn't rock ass.

These songs are lush, lovely, luscious, heartbreaking, soaring, gorgeous, heavenly, sad, slow, and beautifully arranged, with dozens of different instruments and countermelodies joining the lengthy songs as they progress. Not only that, but they manage this feat without sounding slick, sterile or overproduced. Instead, the tones are rich, real and alive, as if Sigur Ros are your little Icelandic buddies playing for you in your apartment -- and I mean even after the strings, horns and/or flute come in. Plus the whole idea of mixing the distorted bowed delayed reverbed guitar tone with all of these haughty classical instruments reminds me of the Flaming Lips back when they were INTERESTING GODDAMMIT, but that's a topic for another, more bitter time.

Furthermore, it's quite a diverse CD, ranging from beautiful pop songs, shoegazer masterpieces, orchestral geniusworks, '70s organ grooves, melancholy balladry, bass-driven soothers, horn-driven loneliness and acoustic guitar/xylophone melodry to an 'angry' song that revisits the old "I Can See For Miles" chord sequence! You never know what the next song is going to sound like or (especially) which instruments are going to weave into the mix as it meanders its lovely way into your heart.

Where would you place something like this in your record collection.... Hmm. Maybe alongside late-60's Moody Blues? It's definitely a very, very orchestrated record, but the guitar and vocal melodies are so beautiful you'll cry six or seven times so don't think it's bachelor pad boredom or anything. I get the feeling that this is the kind of record that Wayne Coyne was trying to make with The Soft Bulletin: a timeless piece of art filled with genuine emotion, unforgettably gorgeous melodies, and rich, ever-changing arrangements. In short, they've created a Pet Sounds for the "today" generation. Except for the whole "all the lyrics are in Icelandic except one that's just a bunch of made-up words" thing.

What a great album! That's all I have to say. If you like beautiful music, you must MUST buy this. MUST! It's A MUST! MUSTARDLY SO!

(If you only like grindcore, it's less of a must-own)

Final word: I don't know or really care what the dude is actually singing in the chorus of "Sleep Exchange Rate," but I've been singing "It's you-oo-oo!!!!! It's you-oo-ooooooo! It's you-oo-ooooooo!" to myself pretty much non-stop for the past three days. ABSOGODDAMLUTELY GORGEOFUCKINUS!

On the topic of beauty, does anybody know why I have so many dreams about shitting myself? I swear, like once a week I dream that I have to take a diarrhea and I can't find a clean toilet or one with a door or one that's working. In the one I had last night, I took a big smelly liquid shit crap in this toilet, then when I flushed it it didn't just overflow -- it SHOT OUT LIKE A FOUNTAIN! Then it changed (as dreams do) to where the toilet was in the shallow end of a public swimming pool. So my huge stinky bowel movement shot through the sky and landed in various places all over the pool, with everybody knowing it was mine! It didn't matter where you tried to swim, you'd inevitably run into one of my butt turds. I was humiliated of course, and left the pool in shame. But I have similar dreams all the time! Why? Why am I so afraid of having to take a dump and not being able to either (a) find a clean working private toilet or (b) reach a toilet before I fill my pants with smell-mud? Do you think it's my subconscience attempting to work through my lifelong fear of being laughed at and rejected, as I felt I was as a child? Or is it somehow related to my real-life fear of having to take a dump and not being able to either (a) find a clean working private toilet or (b) reach a toilet before I fill my pants with intestine fudge? Either way, it sucks assbutt! And I'm always afraid I'll wake up covered in brown matter!

So take it from me, if it's beautiful music you're after, look no further than Sugar Ray's homoerotic sophomore effort A Gay, T'is! Virgin?.

Reader Comments

Billdude
"Suck My Ass It Smells" is a great song from this album!! It's G. G. Allin's best 8 minute song that evokes a snowy Scandinavian Christmas party for elves. This whole album feels like Christmas. Not something to listen to in the summertime.

Yes, Birgisson's singing and guitar playing are excellent--you know who his (and the band's) inspirations are (Slint, Mogwai, My Bloody Valentine) but you can't call any direct ripoffs for these guys! Particularly the voice. No easy analogues for Birgisson's voice.

I'd only hand this a 9, though. Some of the songs in the middle aren't so distinctive to my ears (that "Good Day For Airstrikes" number closes with that big overblown string section but they didn't come up with anything particularly interesting for the big overblown string section to do, so it just sounds like a generic Verve trick.) However, "Svefn-g-englar" and "Ny Batteri" are awesome, and "Staralfur," "Olsen Olsen" and the title track are strong enough. Just so you know, if you want the real song titles, the English translation of Sigur Ros's website has them. The titles for the songs on the follow up album, Toilet Seat, are available too; they have titles, the band just didn't bother to put them in the liner notes!

edm1213@msn.com
Not having heard much of these guys but having heard a lot about them, i decided to check this out. Good place to start, this is pretty much quality all the way through. Simply put this is Post-Rock the way it was meant to be: long, pretty, and slow. Very slow. If you like "rock" in your experimental rock, stay away. Otherwise you'll be satisfied. Even the cover is pretty when you think about it. Actually don't. Pretty much agreed with a 10 on this (and surprisingly enough, the 7 Mark gave to the recent Flaming Lips as well).

Those translation results were funny. But for people interested in the real titles:

1. Intro
2. Sleepwalkers
3. Staring Elf
4. The Fly's Savior (What does this mean?)
5. New Batteries
6. The Heart Pounds (Boom Boom Boom)
7. Good Weather For Airstrikes (I like this one)
8. Olsen Olsen (not Icelandic)
9. An Alright Start
10. Avalon

Oh, and the album gets a 9 from me. It's probably the highest 9 ever, since (not counting Intro and Avalon) 6 of the 8 songs on here are some of the most glorious, beautifully written pieces known to man. Unfortunately, the other 2 aren't particularly interesting, and they're the 2 longest ones to boot (Svefn-g-englar and Vlorar Vel Til Lofatarasa, or just tracks 2 and 7.) Great album, though.

ddickso2@uccs.edu
I agree with Mr. Edm1213. This album is a high nine. Would be a low 9.5 if "Avalon" were an actual song and not just weird noises. And "Good Weather for Airstrikes" is so frickin' lovely. But it's not as high on the beauty scale as Nick Cave's No More Shall We Part, which takes tone-deaf piano ballad groaning to a whole 'nother "level" of "bonus," in video game parlance. Highlights of aforementioned album include "hit" "As I Sat Sadly By Her Side," "Love Letter," and pretty much every damn song on the second half, particularly the closer, "Darker With the Day," which is the closer to close all closers, including the one on Closer. Sorry for straying so much off Icelandic thrash metal, but I just think it's COSMIC that the two Nick Cave albums I happened to hear first are the two Mark name-"checked" in his Aladdin Sane review, namely the ones with "The Mercy Seat" and "Fifteen Feet of Pure White Snow" on it. Also the one with dat "Ba guy jimbobbil" bidness. WORD to tha jimbobbil.

But that's not the point. The POINT is, Mark, I feel your pain on the shit issue. I had a rather interesting variation of it roughly six hours ago: It was another night at the Rose Lyric Opera, and I had a backstage pass to Queensryche's Operation: Mindcrime--The Stage Version. Problem is, I was lost in the dressing room corridors and about to shit myself. Two of the corridors ran roughly parallel to each other, making a few unexpected turns and detours, sometimes running cati-wompous, but all seeming to resolve into each other in the end--just like the guitar interplay in the band! Such was the importance of just that one musical that they built the theater to complement the musical passages in one of the band's songs. Brilliant! All of which, unfortunately, was no comfort to me, as I was truly about to shit all over said ingenously-constructed musical corridors. Then I found a blue-tiled restroom just above the stage in a concrete crew-passageway, filled with dress-clad, similarly contemplatively-farting concert-goers, and at this point a turd was already on its way to the prog-metal-saturated world, so I found a stool that was about two sizes too small--then noticed most of the concertgoers had used the ENTIRE bathroom as a pisser (since the toilets were too small to aim at), and the next five minutes were spent in dodging the copious coating of waste fluid, failing, and then falling in a tangle of pants, poop, slipperiness, and banging the head on the edge of the pissy toilet. And the end of it all, just as "Suit Sister Mary" was reaching its goddamned culmination, I managed to find a nice spot hovering in MID AIR over said six-inch crapper. After waking up, dashing to the bathroom, and quickly figuring out that I didn't really have to defecate, but that it was all, as the naysayers say, a "poop dream," I consoled myself with having learned to shit on the fly. Sigur Ros is better than feces.

james.greg@bigpond.com
10.

I can't believe no one has commented on this yet.

The sound of something very far away that loves you, misses you, worries about you and celebrates you.

How the Hell do you make music like this?! The term "Other-worldly" gets flung about like a mentalist's shit, but it definately applies here (along with "Spiderland").

I'm usually skeptical about covers, but the anthemic crescendo to "Suck My Ass It Smells" sure makes GG's original two chord thing sound a bit thin. Although, I did read a transcipt of his interview with Larry King, where he said "Whilst I do try to celebrate life with my audience, to the hilt, alas, I find touring with an orchestra rather cumbersome".

Look forward to reading your thoughts on "Heima", the new SR DVD. Every time I watch it, I have to have a bottle of water on the coffee table, to replennish the tears. No Icelandic Council brainstorming session could've come up with THIS promotional tourism tool!

Add your thoughts?


Svefn-g-englar EP - PIAS 2001
Rating = 8

Careful, that 8 is misleading. I'll tell you why in a minute. First though, somebody needs to say something about this and I'm just the guy to do it, since I'm the one it involves. Last night, this broad from Chicago emails me (and by "broad," I mean "physician") and says all this crap about how when she was in college from 98-02 at Northwestern University, she and her friends used to always read my reviews and I had kind of a cult following there and now she wants to interview me for the campus paper and all this. But see, (a) why didn't anybody ever tell me I had a little cult following at Northwestern University a few years ago? I totally could have dedicated reviews to them, and written things like "Go Wildcat Women's Lacrosse Team!" in my Crucifucks reviews. But no, instead I'm left here to gather dust for four years thinking my only readers are people who typed 'niggerlipses' into Yahoo! (try it!).

And (b) here's the kicker -- after saying all these nice things about how she and her friends used to quote from my reviews in their campus paper and write doctorates about them and whatnot, she finally says, "Well to be honest, your newer reviews are the worst pieces of shit anybody has ever written." And yes that's paraphrasing but basically she's saying that The Old Gray Mark, he ain't what he used to be. And then she said if I ever need a physician in Chicago, I'd better find somebody else because she doesn't want my stupid body making her scalpel all smelly. And then she said that she actually wants to interview me so she can find out how the hot young literary talent responsible for the mind-expanding Bad Company reviews on www.markprindle.com could have deteriorated into the hamfisted dick-typer that shoved a keyboard up his ass and wrote those Foetus reviews with his large intestine. I can't believe people can be so mean, and here I am just trying to earn a living for my family. I guess I just have to take solace in the words of Joey Ramone: "You can't please all the people all the time -- but then, they don't please me!"

Also, "Got a 10-inch erection." Unless Dee Dee wrote that one. Either way, I win!

As for this Sigur Ros EP, don't be fooled. Two of the songs are straight off of Agaetis Byrjun (which you either already own or should) and one is just a live version of a weaker Von track, leaving a mere ONE otherwise unavailable track. However, it's a great one: four very slow beautiful guitar chords (sometimes arpeggiated), a bowed guitar and lovely vocals combine into a typically gorgeous masterpiece that goes on for nine minutes in that heartbuilding Sigur Ros way. Entitled "Nyja Lagid" (which translates to "New Song," and is a Who cover), this track was recorded live at the Icelandic Opera House on June 12th, Space 1999, and as far as I know has yet to be released in studio form. (If I'm wrong, please let me know!). I only paid $3.99 for this disc, and I'd say it was worth it just for this single great song. No violins or horns -- just sweet sweet Sugar Rose playing their lil' guitars out.

It's also a dadnabbed good introduction to Sigur Ros if you don't want to fork out the green for Agaetis Byrjun without knowing what it sounds like first. And please don't misread 'fork out the green' to infer that I want you to use a pointy utensil to clean out your nose.

And hey all you Northwestern graduates, Class of 2002: We've got another Young Alumni Ski Trip coming up in July so be sure and send your dues ($1000.00) via PayPal to mprindle@nyc.rr.com. But don't take it from me -- "I had a great time on this ski trip, and the planned activities were a good way to meet fellow alums,” says Sheila Ahranjani (C99). “This trip is well worth the money!" We tried to get some other quotes too but everybody else died in the avalanche. Go Wildcarts!

Add your thoughts?


Rimur EP (with Steindor Andersen) - Krunk 2001
Rating = 3

By mid-1976, Lindsay Buckingham and Stevie Nicks were no longer getting along at all. At the same time, Christine and John McVie watched helplessly as their marriage fell apart. As such, it was almost a miracle that these hurt souls were able to overcome their emotional distress and create the greatest album of their career, the masterpiece Rimur.

To be honest, I don't recognize any of these songs. I could've sworn "You Make Loving Fun" was on here somewhere, but instead it's just some old man singing like an Italian over eerie and somber tone-drones. Heck, half the time (as in "Second Hand News" -- or as it's spelled on the jacket, "Slaer a Hafix Himinblae") there's no music at all! Just la-de-da Vegas Italian singing! Don't get me wrong; I love Mick Fleetwood as much as the next guy. But why did they let him sing every song? Also, was "The Chain" just a b-side or something? I was sure it was on this album.

In summation, I guess "Gold Dust Woman" was actually on Tusk.

Now here's a list of songs I think Meat Loaf should write. If you're buddies with him, please pass these along. Or to that Jim Steinman asshole.

- "There's One Way Out Of Here Tonight, And That Way Out Is You"
- "I May Be Wrong And I May Be Right, But I'm Not Both Wrong And Right (So I Must Be Either Wrong Or Right)"
- "I Couldn't Make Up My Mind About Love, So I Flipped A Coin Tonight (Heads Or Tails, That's How I Made My Decision Tonight)"
- "My Heart Is A Muscle, Pumping Iron For Your Love Tonight (Because It's Pumping Blood, Which is High in Iron; It's Kind Of A Play On Words)"
- "There's A Star In The Sky And It's Making Me Think About The Time You And I Made Love On The Beach So Long Ago (Because You Had A Star-Shaped Birthmark On Your Gigantic Ass)"
- "Bat Out Of Hell Parts 4, 5, 6 and 8 (Ain't No Time For 7 Tonight)"
- "If One And One Make Two, And Two And One Make Three, Then Three Minus One Must Equal Two (I Accidentally Flushed The Baby Down The Toilet)"
- "I'd Do Anything For Love (But I Won't Do That) Part II: I Changed My Mind; I Will Even Do That (We're Talking About 'Up The Butt,' Right?)"
- "I Lost A Lot Of Weight (Please Stop Calling Me 'Meat Loaf')"
- "I Pledge Allegiance To The Flag Of Your Love, And To The Republic For Which It Stands, One Nation, Under God, With Liberty And Justice For All (But I Won't Add "Under God" Until 1954)"

Add your thoughts?


( ) - MCA 2002
Rating = 9

According to my favorite online Icelandic translator, this album's songs translate to:

-
(repeat x7)

Not only does this album have no listed song titles, but all the lyrics are in a fake language called "Hopelandic" that essentially allows you to tell people that they sigh, and that's about it. Luckily, the music is still heart-squeezing and the vocals sound like Radiohead. In fact, you might say that Jón Þór Birgisson is the "New Yorke"! :7D Incidentally, in case you don't know how to use Wikipedia, apparently Jon was born blind in one eye in April 1975, is gay, and loves Iron Maiden. How's that grab yer?

Musically, this album sounds similar to the last one, except more gay and Iron Maideny. Ha ha! No, I'm JUST KIDNEY ya! Good lord. My eye itches. Let's skip a line and begin anew.

First things first - this may be the slowest album ever recorded by man. And unlike Earth or the (early) Melvins, they're not even trying to be slow. This is just the pace at which they take things! Still, for the first 28 minutes of this CD, Sigur Ros brings Heaven to Earth and rams it up your stereo. These first four songs are tearduct-bustingly angelic. They tell you, in musical form, that they know things may not be going perfectly right now, but everything is going to change soon and it will all work out for you in the end. Everything is going to be okay. Sad but optimistic, and full of violins, cellos, violas and weird synth sample noises. First, the ever-resolving piano motif understands that "You sighed alone - fie! You saw the lie. You sew." Then the minimalist yet harrowing echoey guitar line reveals its knowledge that "You saw the fire. You ran low. You sat alone, fire. You run, sigh." Next, the instrumental piano ballad for young lovers doesn't even need to tell you in words what it knows about your feelings. You are young, you are free, you are alive, and your heart is full! This song - track three - NEEDS TO BE A PROM THEME NOW. It's similar in tone to "Pachelbel's Canon," but so much more beautiful that it makes Pachelbel look like he had a dick in his ear when he wrote that piece a shit. And finally, closing the first half, the chiming, celebratory U2-esque guitar riff jubilantly informs you that "You sigh low. You sigh, you're on the fire - oh!" Which doesn't sound like something to celebrate, but you'd be surprised. And four songs in, you have found the Rosetta Stone of stunning, statuesque, optimistic music.

Then the second half happens.

See, it's not difficult to sit through 28 minutes of slow music if it's uplifting and positive. It is, on the other hand, a bit more daunting to sit through 44 minutes of unceasingly downbeat, pessimistic deathtones that drag your soul through broken glass at about .004 miles per hour. Are the songs effective? Yes. Very much so. But does that make it any easier to SIT through all of them? Let me put it this way -- if you're feeling suicidal, listen to the first four songs on this CD and you'll realize that there is too much beauty in life to want to give it up. But for god's sake, when that 30-second pause between halves shows up, TURN IT THE FUCK OFF!!!!!! Tracks 5-8 are slower than Pink Floyd, more emotionally battering than the Swans, and should only be heard by people on very solid psychiatric grounding. Jesus, couldn't they have put a warning sticker on the cover or something!? It's the same exact instrumentation that Sigur Ros always uses (the bowed guitar, organs, piano, strings), but the chord changes and overall mood seem designed specifically to open your 20th floor window and throw you out! That being said, three of the four songs are incredible compositions (I personally could do without the 13-minute seventh track, which strikes me as numb, emotionless and dull more than anything else), and if they do start to feel a bit too depressing, there's always the comic relief of noting that the 'lyrics' are the exact same ones that made you feel so positive on the first half. I guess here you're just supposed to be sighing in a more hopeless manner.

So that's two masterpieces in a row for our friends at Sigur Ros. But let me warn you again: this is SLOW SLOW SLOW music. VERY slow. And it's a long album, so if you're not into slow tempos, stick with your hardcore punk rock Neurosis albums.

Except for their first album, which actually IS a hardcore punk rock album. Dammit! Foiled again with my hilarious metaphors!

Actually that wasn't a metaphor. I gotta tell you this hilarious story though. This is AWESOME. About 7.5 years ago when I first bought a CD recorder, I gathered up all my cassette tapes of rare Ramones songs (outtakes, b-sides, etc) and made myself a couple of CD-Rs, wrote down the song titles, and entitled Ramones Smorgasbord. For no real reason. I just like the word "smorgasbord." So I made a copy for a friend of mine and just lived the good life with all my rare Ramones songs all together on two CDs like that. So then about a year later for some reason I got the idea to sell a few copies of it on ebay. I must not have been making much of a salary at the time, because I certainly wouldn't waste my time doing something like that now! So I think I sold maybe two, at most three copies of "Ramones Smorgasbord" before eBay angrily made me stop. As the years passed, all those Ramones reissue discs came out and made most of the rare tracks available to the buying public (with much greater clarity) so my discs became fairly redundant.

FAST FORWARD TO EARLY 2006! (if you're watching this on a videotape of my life) I'm looking through the punk and hardcore CDs at Bleecker Bob's even though I never, ever, ever buy anything there because their prices are ludicrous. And what do I see but a Ramones bootleg... entitled Ramones Smorgasbord. My first thought: "What a stupid name for a bootleg! Sounds like something I'd come up with." My second thought: "Oops." So I grab the package, turn it over to examine the track listing, and yep. It's mine. But not mine as sold, you understand. One of the three people who bought it from me on eBay evidently decided to start producing his own bootleg copies of it, printed himself up some fancy artwork, duped my original CD-Rs and probably made himself a cool mint on the deal! Can you believe that!? I was floored! It was the exact same song order and everything -- I even know for a fact that the last track - "Come On Let's Go" with the Paley Brothers - cuts off halfway through! Man, I don't even think I sold a copy to anybody in New York; how on Earth did it wind up at Bleecker Bob's Shitty Overpriced Record Store Of Shit!? It just goes to show you - "It's a world of laughter, a world of tears/it's a world of (something), a world of (something)/(something)/It's a small world after all!"

Reader Comments

thepublicimage79@hotmail.com
are they slower than the swans and more emotionally battering than pink floyd?

ramiman@hotmail.com
Hiya. Yeah, those machine translators really do suck serious dongkey - it's the fact that languages are highly sensitive to context and synergy. Most of the translators aren't particularly good at deciphering sentences or anything, they just translate a string of words (usually not very well, either). Also, when a word in itself has like 25 different meanings, these translators apparently pick one at random or only have one meaning defined, which is of course a quick route to chaos.

One of my past favourite things to do with Internet translation services was to input a phrase in English, then translate it into German, and the result of that would be translated into Spanish... repeat and finally translate back into English for hilarious effect and a keen understanding of their shortcomings.

That bootleg story was amazing, by the way. I've compiled two like that, myself (and I even drew the abstract cover art), but they were for friends only and I'd never sell a bootleg CD-R, EVER. Hrrgh.

Oh, by the way, if this should interest you. There's a great Internet snapshot service in existence called archive.org, it crawls the 'net and saves pages as it goes along, and you're able to check out a given web address in various incarnations, listed with a date. I found the now-lost reader reviews of your site within it, too:

http://web.archive.org/web/20030202012848/http://www.geocities.com/taosterman/readers.htm

bladeystyle@yahoo.com (Johnny)
"...the ever-resolving piano motif understands that "You sighed alone - fie! You saw the lie. You sew."

I always heard it as "You sat along the fire, you saw the light, you saw".

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Hlemmur - Smekkleysa 2003
Rating = 3

In 2002, Sigur Ros were invited to record the soundtrack for Olafur Sveinsson's film Hlemmur, named after Reykjavik's main bus terminal. Thanks to my many Icelandic Hollywood contacts, I've secured the written screenplay for you. In the words of a Yardbirds cover, "Here 'Tis":

(Leif and Geir stand at bus station. Leif is covered in ice; Geir is naked except for a 400-mile penis.)

Leif: "Are you waiting for a bus?"
Geir: "Why yes, I am."
Leif: "Then you made the right move coming here, because this is Reykjavik's main bus terminal."
Geir: "Thank you. Or, as we say in our country, 'Pakka per'."
Leif: "Why, I'd LOVE a pack of pears!"

(Eiour enters, wearing a 15-piece suit)

Eiour: "Do you guys hear that?"
Leif and Geir: "What?"
Eiour: "That gentle chiming bell melody."
Leif: "Oh wait, I hear it now. Oh yes! It's set against two pretty drone chords."
Geir: "Thank you for bringing that music to our attention, Eiour. It is indeed warm and lovely."
Eiour: "Oh, you're welcome. Or, as we say in our country, 'Pu ert Velkominn.'"
Geir: "You pooped where now?"

(Kristbjorg enters, wearing an expensive evening gown and backwards hat that says "CAT" on it)

Kristbjorg: "GAH! What are those stupid noises!?"
Geir: "That's not a bus?"
Kristbjorg: "No! It's like a bunch of dumb squeaky toys, blorps and growls! Jesus, I HATE this!"
Eiour: "Is it maybe just noisy air you're hearing?"
Kristbjorg: "No! Don't you hear it!? And don't even get me started about those backward sucking sounds!"
Leif: "Yeah! They 'suck' in more ways than one, if you ask me!"
Eiour: "'Suck'? Oh! You mean, as we say in our country, 'sjuga'!"
Leif: "Sjuga my dick asshole."

(Magnus enters, wrapped entirely in cling wrap):

Magnus: "Am I crazy or does the audio portion of this bus station keep jumping back and forth between (a) gentle to the point of boredom and (b) stupid-toned to the point of annoyance?"
Leif: "Oh, I don't know. I think some of the gentle ambience is quite lovely, and reminiscent of Brian Eno."
Geir: "Yes, but this isn't an airport. Or a film either, for that matter."
Leif: "I see your point."
Geir: "Really? But it's 400 miles away!"
Kristbjorg: "Why is this bus station so new agey? This is Iceland! Where's the Quarashi?"
Magnus: "Yeah! We wanna rock out to some Quarashi! Or, as we say in our country, 'Linkin Park'!"

(Baltasar enters, wearing a bomb and carrying a briefcase full of deadly plutonium)

Baltasar: "Are you guys some kind of band?"
Leif: "Why would you ask that of us?"
Baltasar: "Isn't that you guys playing a bunch of minor variations on three or four electronic riffs?"
Geir: "No, man! That's the bus station! We were just talking about that!"
Baltasar: "Hmm. Well, that is certainly not dope. No sir, not dope indeed."
Eiour: "Wait, this part sounds like The Residents!"

(The Residents enter, wearing tiny heads over their eyeballs)

The Residents: "No, it's not us."
Leif: "God! What is up with all these stupid splotchy noises? Is somebody digging an icehole in the middle of the bus station?"
Magnus: "I don't know! But they sure would be fucking up this song if it didn't already suck a mile of dick in the first place!"
Geir: "Oh, I thought that was a squirrel."

(Anita, Elin and Halldor enter. They are conjoined triplets, wearing a gigantic three-necked Red Hot Chili Peppers shirt with an Ed Hardy graphic on it.)

Anita, Elin and Halldor: "Hi everyone!" (*attempt to rape Kristbjorg, Eiour and Baltasar*)

(Bus pulls up)

Magnus: "All right! The bus is here! Or, as we say in our country, 'El autobus esta aqui!'"
Leif: "Thank goodness! I've been waiting for 40 minutes!"

(Bus doors open and GIGANTIC STOMPING DRUMS COME BLASTING OUT, OVERDISTORTING THE BUS STATION WITH THEIR MASSIVE VOLUME AND POWER!!!!! Then they disappear. THEN THEY COME BACK!!!!!)

Leif, Geir, Eiour, Kristbjorg, Magnus, Anita, Elin, Halldor and The Residents: "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!"
Baltasar: "Fags? Where?"

ENDALOK

Or is it?

IT IS

(FAVITI)

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Ba Ba/Ti Ki/Di Do EP - Geffen 2004
Rating = 5

John Lennon once sang, "You know, life can be long. And you've got to be so strong." In addition to rhyming, this lyric tells us a lot about life, in particular how disorienting and momentarily frightening it is when your dog wakes you up by pressing his fuzzy little snout against your closed mouth. Sure, it's CUTE, but the feeling of a fuzzy little nose giving you a "Good morning!" kiss hardly fits well into ANY dream you might be having, so it's easy to wake up screaming and swatting away an imaginary mustache-bug. I only mention this because it happens to me about once a week -- and I don't even have a dog!!!!

Oh okay, I have a dog. Just thought I'd tell a hilarious "I don't have a dog" joke for all the peanut galleries out there in the peanut gallery gallery.

Another thing worth noting is that the Oklahoma City Bombing was the result of a bungled ATF sting. Instead of stopping the plot while the bomb was still being built, they wanted to wait and make a big news splash by stopping the caper at the last moment. Unfortunately they waited a bit too long! Even more interesting is that it was an ATF informant who pushed the idea of the Bombing in the first place and got the White Supremacist groups all excited about it. Who really cares at this point though - 168 victims? Ha! More people died of LUNG DISEASE on 9/11 than in that piddly-ass disaster! So up your ass, terrorism event nobody cares about anymore!

As you no doubt have already surmised by this point in the review, Ba Ba/Li Tl/Bl Acksheep features three songs that Sigur Ros composed for Merce Cunningham's dance piece "Split Sides." Each track revolves around what certainly sounds to me like a pair of music boxes playing their tinkly little tinkle-tunes - on in each speaker - against and during each other. They are presented first in a beautiful yet slightly eerie melodic context reminiscent of Philip "Mr. Exciting" Glass; then in a more abstract track in which tiny snippets of the music box tune are infinite-looped as a sad piano line tries to make compositional sense out of them; and finally as the backdrop to a collage of wind noises, organ tones, awful feedback, piano and some foul-mouthed tribal jerks chanting "Ba Ba Ti Ki Dildo." They should be ashamed of themselves for using such raw and titillating language. Think of the CHILDREN! Why doesn't anybody ever think of the CHILDREN anymore?!? The CHILDREN are all that matter! FUCK the adults! Who the FUCK are they!??!? It's the CHILDREN! THE CHILDREN CHILDREN CHILDREN!!!!!

No wait, that's not - what's the word for -

Ah! Yes. The CHARLESTON CHEW CANDY BAR. That's what I meant. Why doesn't anybody think of the CHARLESTON CHEW CANDY BAR anymore??? It's GOOD, people!!!! Don't neglect such a taste sensation!!!

As for this EP, the first track is haunting and all that other Sigur Ros shit the kids dig. The second one is interesting enough in theory, but less specifically enjoyable. And the third one with the chanting and feedback? Well let's just say if I wanted SHIT in my ears, I'd shove my head in a toilet down at the gas station!

Oh, it's dinner time? Well if I wanted FOOD in my mouth, I'd shove my head in a toilet down at the gas station!

Oh, you want to make love? Well if I wanted an ORGASM in my penis, I'd shove my head in a toilet down at the gas station!

Yes, it's amazing how many things you can get accomplished when you just put your mind to it and shove your head in a toilet down at the gas station. Remember Tony Danza? How do you think he got that cushy Who's The Boss gig? Believe me, it wasn't his godawful BLOW JOBS! It's like come on! Get your fuckin' teeth outta the way! What do you think this is, a Hardee's? It's my DICK! My dick doesn't dispense FRIES! There's no orange soda in my DICK! I can't sell you a chicken sandwich through my DICK!

Wait, what were we talking about? Ah! Yes. John Lennon. He was great. Married that Japanese salesman.

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Takk... - Geffen 2005
Rating = 7

Either I'm becoming more cynical or Sigur Ros's untouchable mix of emotion, arrangement, melody and orchestration is beginning to splinter into the opposing forces of 'rock' and 'schmaltz.' See, if your whole album is slow, it feels like a unique stylistic decision. But if you add mid- to uptempo drumbeats to half the songs and leave the rest to sit and melt slowly into the carpet, it makes the faster ones sound like The Flaming Radiohead Lips and the slower ones sound like ballads. This is exacerbated by the fact that a greater-than-usual portion of these melodies are syrupy rather than haunting. The 10-minute "Milano," for example, sounds more like Celine Dion than any Icelandic band should ever come, and ask Quarashi if you don't believe me.

On the bright side, there are still several amazing, soaring, mindblowing experiences to be had on here, in that time-honored Sigur Ros tradition what with the looped electronic samples, pianos, buzzing bowed distorted guitar and high voice. And let's face it, there's really nothing wrong with having another Flaming Radiohead Lips around (as long as they avoid that noisy At War With The Mystics sound). It's just always a drag when overwhelming genius fades to mere 'good songwriting' (and that really calls for another Flaming Lips reference, I'd say). Underwhelming lullabies like "Hufupukar," "Gong Endir" and "Heysatan" would never have made the cut on Aegetis Byrjum or ( ). Again, those only account for part of what's on here though. Other tracks give you what you want in exactly the same fashion you'd expect it -- which in itself isn't a terribly compelling reason to buy the CD, but oh well. I'm hoping they'll make a major change with the next one, because this is the closest they've come yet to a commercially viable sound and who the hell wants that? Who wants them to be able to buy a bigger house? Nobody! We want them living in TENTS by the ROADSIDE and eating SHIT out of a TIN CAN!

Best,
The Fans

While I'm here, I also simply must tell you about the dream I had last night. You're a Yes fan, right? Sure you are. If you like Sigur Ros, you like high voices and you like Yes. Well, in my dream (which, incidentally, came true in the middle of the night), Yes was getting ready to go on tour with a brand new line-up: Jon Anderson, Chris Squire, Alan White, Steve Howe, Trevor Rabin, and a guy I went to grade school with named Sanjay Aggarwal on keyboards. I went up to discreetly ask Chris Squire how Rabin and Howe were getting along (what with Howe having in the past bashed Rabin's Yeswork and refused to perform it). When Howe heard me say, "I have a quick question," I answered for Squire: "Let me guess - you want to know how Trevor and I are getting along. Like we're a couple of schoolchildren who must be kept separated or something!" Then I asked, “Weren’t there just four members on your last album?” (which is true – instead of a keyboardist, they had an orchestra). And Steve responded, “No, just three," looked at Alan White and added, "and a drum machine.” He was making fun of Alan White! Hee! Good old dreams. The best part about it is that I never even once thought to question why they would have picked up Sanjay Aggarwal as their new keyboardist. Last I heard, Sanjay had never touched a keyboard in his life!

This is kinda funny too, on the 'dream kick.' A few nights ago I dreamt that Chuck Negron of Three Dog Night (and Three Dog Nightmare) fame was back on heroin, which really upset me because it completely ruined his life for two decades before he finally got off the stuff. So last night (while -- and this may shock you -- I was drunk), I emailed ChuckNegron.com asking "Hi. I realize this is dumb, but two nights ago I dreamt that Chuck fell off the wagon and found his life in complete disarray again. I’m wrong, right? Please tell me I’m wrong!" And I got a response! The webmaster wrote back saying, "It was just a dream, but perhaps a little more. I don't know if you are on our fan club list or that you read the guestbook. Chuck's son Chuckie was aired on an episode on the A&E Channel show called 'Intervention'. I don't know if you saw that show but it was heart wrenching as his son has a serious addiction. If you did watch that show perhaps your dream stemmed from that?" Poor Chuck and Chuckie. Incidentally, Chuckie was BORN addicted to heroin thanks to his two hard-livin' parents. So don't blame him: blame Kurt Cobain for spreading a negative message to our young people!

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Hvarf-Heim - XL 2007
Rating = 8

I love my neighbors' pool so I've always been respectful of their wishes, but this morning when I caught them swimming in my toilet, I resolved then an

Before you get all uppity excited about a new Sugar Rose album earning an 8, please be advised that by your entry upon these premises, you are consenting to being photographed and having your likeness used in a motion picture and for other purposes. Furthermore, please be advised that Hvarf-Heim (or "German Dog Vomiting") is basically a greatest hits album with three new songs. In this way, it's not unlike such previous releases as Van Halen's The Best Of Both Worlds. However, all the Sugar Rose hits you grew up with have herein been re-recorded fresh and new! In this way, it's not unlike such previous releases as Blue Oyster Cult's Cult Classic. Interestingly, they chose to re-record most of the songs using only acoustic instruments. In this way, it's not unlike such previous releases as Nirvana's Unplugged In New York. Unfortunately for the rabid fan anxiously awaiting new product, the re-recordings are hopelessly similar to the earlier versions. In this way, it's not unlike such previous releases as George W. Bush.

ZING! POLITICAL ZING!

Hvarf-Heim is a double-CD (that would have fit on a single CD) featuring three previously unreleased songs, two alternate versions of Von tracks, and live acoustic/string section renditions of 2 tracks each from ( ) and Aegetis Byrnum and 1 track each from Takk... and Von. Annoyingly, the 1 Von song is "Von," which is one of the two tracks featured in "alternate versions" earlier on the disc. Come on now people. Think before you put together that track listing.

I completely understand the negative reviews that are appearing hither and thither about this obvious water-tread of a release, but I try to review CDs based on what's there, not what SHOULD be there. And what I hear are two excellent new songs (out of three) as well as such incredible accomplishments as "Starulfur," "Agaetis Byrjun," "Vaka" and "Samskeyti." These songs have always been beautiful; it's not like they suddenly became unbeautiful. Do Sigur Ros fans need this to complete their collection? Hell no. But it certainly doesn't hurt to hear these songs again, particularly if you're willing to pay $16 for two great new songs - and apparently most people are if Green Day's record sales are any indication.

So what are these three new tracks like, you're wondering? What gifts have Jon Paul Borgison, Kirsten Swinestein, George Holmes and Horrid Paul Diarrhea brought us this year? Well, I'd be happy to tell you, but... heh! Well, see it rained really hard yesterday, and I apparently put my umbrella back in my workbag while it was still wet (sexually aroused). And my notes on this album were on a piece of loose-leaf paper in the self-same pouch of this self-same workbag, and the next thing you know BAMM!!! There's a diagonal line of smudged ink running across my previously intelligible notes. I'll try my hardest to transcribe them for you, but some parts are awfully blurry so bear with me.

Particularly if you're a BEAR! HA HA HAHAH! HA AHAHAHAHH! fuck you

"Salka" - Sad but hopeful guitar arpeggios. High "Yu-ra" vox. Dria holdir drums. E-bow-style klgg%66 (volume pedal I guess?). Mostly three chords arpeggiated. Some missed vox (high part). Good, but doesn't develop or build, which kinda hurts it over the long-haul. The main part is lovely though.

"Hljomalind" - Pretty song, with vibes, 3-note bass, warm chimey tones. "You rise on my fovr" lundy vifo beautiful fuzz chords in chorus. More uptempo than track one. Very pretty!

"I Gaer" - Dark toy chimes, then searing angry guitar notes waddle (2 notes, but org bill) o->ooo OOOooo1 dark piano/guitar drone/bass/organ -> good! With pa very DankBlotZ! That organ tone, that forboding mood, -> then a chime/piano break (cold!) "You Ri" lyno.

Yes, you can always count on Sugar Rose to fill your homes and hearts with a soulful spoon of e-bow-style klgg%66. So head on down to Wal-Mart today and have the kids singing "You rise on my fovr" lundy vifo all season long! And if your Dutch father surprises you with a copy, be sure and tell him, "With pa very DankBlotZ!"

Here's you: "Hay, it's 'Sigur Ros,' not 'Sugar Rose.'"

Here's me: (*tinkles on your face*)

Here's you again: (*tinkle runs down your face*)

Here's me again: "That was tinkle."

Here's you again: "Ahhh!"

Yes, you can always count on Mark "Richie Unterberger" Prindle to bring you the most up-to-date clinical critiques of today's most overlooked wonderworks. So take it from me, Mark "Bruce Eder" Prindle: if it's today's hottest sounds you're after, listen no further than Sugar Rose!

For additional information, please visit Sugar Rose's world wide web site at http://www.sugarrose.com.au/Pages/default.aspx.

Reader Comments

3dsunglasses@gmail.com
some dumb bitch at my school calls sigur ros "sigur ROSS"

what a dumb bitch!

sasa.podunavec@yahoo.com
If they wasted as much energy into making music as they do in creating nice packaging for their records, they wouldn't be half as boring. My mom likes them and I have no idea why. Jonsi is just proof that gay people can't make good music (um, yes, I've heard Goodbye Yellow Brick Road).

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Meo Suo I Eyrum Vio Spilum Endalaust - EMI 2008
Rating = 6

EMI!? Only stupid bastards help EMI!

But before we get to Sigur Ros proper, I've got a bone to pick with Iceland. And I'm not talking about the decaying hip bone of Sveinn Bjornsson either! Ha ha ha! HA HAHAHAHAHA!!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!

No, I'm talking about the severed backbone of popular vocalist Bjork, which I'

No, I'm talking about the boneheaded ass-botchery that the Icelandic authorities recently perpetrated onto the person (or "bear") of Ofeig The Polar Bear. Frightened by the perils of global warming, Ofeig hopped onto an ice floe way over in Greenland and rode that ice floe THREE HUNDRED MILES (!) before disembarking on the Icelandic shore to enjoy some eggs in a bird reserve. Then, despite the facts that (a) Iceland was already up Bearshit Creek for murdering another Furry Greenland Refugee two weeks earlier; (b) there are only about four polar bears left in the world; and (c) Copenhagen zookeepers had flown in all special to help with his capture - despite all these facts, THEY KILLED HIM ANYWAY!

The official excuse is, "Doyee, he got scared and ran towards some journalists, doyeee," but WTF were journalists doing there anyway? Shouldn't the police have cordoned them off somewhere, perhaps with the warning, "Hay, it's a gigantic bear, running free in the wild. Maybe go inside or something, assholes."? Plus, and I'm not saying it's easy to tranquilize a frightened polar bear, but who the Dick decided it would be a good idea for armed policemen to escort the zoo specialists on their mission? Bears HATE cops! And even if they didn't (which they do), couldn't the police have shot him in the goddamned leg or something? Surely that would've slowed him down enough to allow for a tranquilizer shot. But no -- Go do a photo search, they shot him in the HEAD!

And then there's the Danish vet going, "Oh look at me, look at me. The bear was so tired from the trip, he probably wouldn't have survived a tranquilizer anyway." Yeah, and you probably wouldn't survive MY FIST UP YOUR ASS either, you fucking failure. 'Dane Failure' - that's your new name. I hope you like it, because YOU'VE EARNED IT!!!

My point is this: until Iceland stops killing all the adorable gigantic bears that wash up on their shore, I'm not going to give any new Sigur Ros records higher than a 6. Hey, actions have consequences, pal!

Luckily, Meo Suo I Eyrum Vio Spilum Endalaust (Icelandic for Sue Me!? I Saw You Spilling The Applesauce!) isn't worth higher than a 6 anyway. They've expanded their instrumental focus a bit, adding acoustic guitars and long, sonically empty passages to their usual mixture of strings, organs, horns, vibes, bells and high Joshua Tree spiritual tones. However, as Led Zeppelin once said (about this album), "The Songwriting Remains The Same." Sigur Ros are still a bunch of calm, cheery and warm fellows out to mix some tasty optimism into the cold biting aftertaste of rock and roll. (Until the last few songs, when the pot starts to wear off and they all fall into a light melancholy.) Some of the songs are absolutely extraordinary melodic creations, completely in line with the band's past triumphs. But others, sadly, are just 'more of the same' -- less hooky variations on their signature sound. Or should I say "SIGURnature sound!" HA HA! WHEEEE! MY PANTS JUST FLEW UP IN THE AIR LIKE A BALLOON!

First of all, the front cover is a bunch of male butts running through a field. According to The All-Music Guide, the naked models are in fact Sigur Ros themselves. If so, hire some girls you smelly hippies. Secondly, lead track "Gobbledigook" may be the least Sigur Ros-esque song they've ever recorded, but it also sounds like Sepultura's Roots as covered by a folk trio and mixed by the Flaming Lips. And if that combination sounds appealing to you, then I've described it wrong.

Tracks 2-6 are wonderful: a gigantic bottle of peace, love and melody that conjures up sonic memories of late '60s Beach Boys and mid '80s U2 while retaining that blessed Sigur Ros sense of boundless emotion. But the disc falters on the overlong and underinteresting 7th track ("Ara Batur") and never recovers, instead turning into a numb, uninvolving set of 'whatever' tracks that, failing to achieve emotional resonance, simply feel dull. Plus, the main vocal riff in "Illgresi" sounds like Bryan Adams' "Heaven," which isn't going to help anybody in the long run.

Most distressing of all, however, is the way they murder a polar bear in the middle of "Fljotavik." Why would they do that? Don't they realize that bears are people too? But bigger and with gigantic claws and teeth? It's high time that somebody teach Sigur Ros a lesson about Man's immutable connection with the noble creatures of Mother Nature.

And that lesson is me.

(*shits in the woods; wipes butt on rabbit*)

Reader Comments

oskar@fjarhitun.is (Oskar P. Einarsson - Reykjavik, Iceland)
Hehe, funny review! I just love the involvement of Ofeig the Polar Bear.

Nice co-incidence, since both Björk and Sigur Rós are doing a free outdoor concert, just a few hundred yards from where I live, AS WE (or I) SPEAK. I'm not going...too many hippies.

Don't care a lot for this album, either, I only think S-R have done one outstanding song and that is "Suck My Ass, It Smells" (No, actually it's "Viðrar Vel til Loftárása") from 'Ágætis Byrjun'.

Same goes for Björk, really just liked her when she was in 'Kukl', back in the mid-80's.

amoy3r@gmail.com
ehh, I'm waiting for them to blow me away again but not this time.

funny review as always Markus

here is me making fun of Neutral Milk Hotel a year ago on youtube.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3BYbmckk9mU

lol

But yea, Agaetus Byrjun is one of my favorite albums and they are failing me since ( )

I don't know I just find them boring.

Add your thoughts?


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