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Sigur Rós - ( ) CD (album) cover

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Sigur Rós


Post Rock/Math rock

3.98 | 391 ratings

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Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The sound of coldest winter and of thawing.

This album is so slow and brooding, so seemingly monotonous and boring on the surface, so pale and anonymous. It is not music I choose very often. Sometimes when I do choose it I just can't finish it. And yet I haven't been able to part with it either. There is a part of me that understands this and yet I don't really know that part of myself, if that makes any sense whatsoever.

I have mixed feeling about this album. I find it beautiful, constraining, calming all at the same time. Many feel it is quite depressing. But are we always supposed to enjoy our music in the usual way? Are we always supposed to grab our 5-star CDs and have the "up" experience? Is the only role of our music to entertain us or please us? Or are there other uses for this stuff in our lives? These are the kinds of questions I ask myself when I ponder selling a CD like this one. I think being a prog music lover means we need to challenge ourselves occasionally by playing music that confounds us, annoys us, makes us sad, or that we just plain detest.

The cold, barren, white landscapes of Sigur Ros are not where I am or want to be most days in my life. But I do have days like that. There are days where I sink lower than I want to, when life is stark winter, and when I need music that is ambient or drone one-level mood music to share those moments with. I have Eno albums that serve that purpose as well as Voice of Eye's "Vespers" which I can't believe is not on this site. Sigur Ros pulls the curtains on the outside world and the gentle piano and odd vocals can provide a useful emotional conduit for those days when ice is what our heart feels like. With that said, I also don't feel that this album is completely depressing. Not to me, anyway. I think it has passages that are sad and desperate, but also many that are hopeful and introspective. I find some songs have these nice piano runs that really sound like winter turning to spring. One example would be from about 4:15 to 5:15 in track 3. Beautiful and yes, hopeful. There are quite a few moments like this sprinkled throughout this album and playing this repeatedly lately for this review has made me realize I like this more than I thought I did.

This is an odd review that sounds more like a therapy session and I don't know if anyone will find it helpful. But an odd review for an odd band I guess. I don't know what else to say about Sigur Ros and perhaps that's what the boys want, just for the listeners to absorb and close their eyes for an hour.

Recommended for people who like to turn off their minds occasionally and just float away, for lovers of ambience and drifting. Not for people looking to rock. Definitely not for over-the-road truck drivers trying to stay awake.

Finnforest | 4/5 |


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