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Sigur Rós - ( ) CD (album) cover

( )

Sigur Rós


Post Rock/Math rock

3.98 | 391 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars ( ) has generated some mixed reviews, and it's understandable why. First off, it's entirely in Sigur Rós' made up language hopelandic, which is a language with no meaning; the words are merely used as syllables with which Jonsi makes a melody with. Nothing more. It's a little more sophisticated than skat, but the purpose is the same: to use the voice as strictly an instrument. Second of all, it is a slow and largely ambient album. It's not ambient in the way that is just a series of lush soundscapes, but rather ambient in the sense that the pieces are very minimalistic and very ethereal. They have structures and riffs and what not, but the atmospheres are perhaps even more important than the instrumentation that drive them. Third, it's a long album. 71 minutes of ambient, low tempo music may be a bit much for some. But, for those who are willing to take the time, Sigur Rós' oddly titled album of untitled tracks will envelop you in their sheer beauty.

( ) is divided into two sections: the first half is a more bright and hopeful set and the second half, quite a bit longer I might add, is more along the dark and brooding side of music. It's all melancholic, all emotive, and it's all absolutely gorgeous. The vocals, while they may be an acquired taste, are very nice. The hopelandic works perfectly here. They convey such great emotion that words aren't even necessary! We all knew that to be true from Ágćtis Byrjun, where even those who have not the slightest clue as to what the lyrics were (as they were all in Icelandic, with the exception of one hopelandic song) we knew exactly what they were feeling. It's quite a testament to their songwriting prowess. Truly, I can not say enough about how beautiful, emotive and powerful this band and album are.

Really, I feel unjust in singling out tracks, because they are all so stunning, but it's possible that the final song on this album is Sigur Rós' finest piece to date. It follows that traditional post-rock slow start with a build to a climactic ending, but it's done quite differently than the other post-rock groups. It should be noted that while this band is often identified as a post-rock band, they are in a group all their own. The atmosphere is dark and portentious. Tension starts to build until we are paralyzed by the finale. It must be heard to be understood. I have no idea how to describe this music; it's so darn ineffable. What's the deal with all of these bands that are just too awesome to be describable. It's ridiculous! And Sigur Rós is one of the hardest to describe.

All you need to know is that ( ) is a paralyzingly beautiful masterpiece. It's worth the effort, really. I'm not kidding. Why would I need to move when I could listen to this? I wouldn't As a matter of fact, I'm dictating this review to my brother from my bed because I can't move. And truthfully, I am content.

Moatilliatta | 5/5 |


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