Stream the “Aggressive” New Album From Sigur Rós

Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
June 11 2013 5:17 PM

Stream the New Album From Sigur Rós

Singer JónsiperformswithSigur Rós

Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Coachella

When Sigur Rós announced that it would be releasing a new album this summer, they described the new music as “more aggressive.” When they released lead single “Brennisteinn,” which opened with Inception-like braAAHMs and generally introduced a heavier, more metal-influenced sound, it became clear they weren’t kidding around. Since then the Icelandic band has also shared the dark title track “Kveikur” and a lyric video for “Ísjaki.” (The latter suggests that it’s perhaps more important to them than it used to be that their songs actually be understood.)

Now, the week before the album sees its proper release, you can stream it for free from Amazon. Not every track has the darker, noisier sound of a track like “Brennistein.” “Rafstraumur,” in particular, is closer to the lighter sound we’re used to from the band, with lead singer Jónsi’s falsetto soaring over strings, a bowed guitar, and a steady crescendo. “Var” mostly consists of a slow piano riff, sounding something like an instrumental version of “Untitled No. 1.”

Still, the noisier tracks predominate, with new elements like pitched-down vocals making occasional surprise appearances. For fans who’ve been waiting for the band to mix things up a bit, it’s a welcome change of pace.

Forrest Wickman is a Slate staff writer. 



The Irritating Confidante

John Dickerson on Ben Bradlee’s fascinating relationship with John F. Kennedy.

My Father Invented Social Networking at a Girls’ Reform School in the 1930s

Renée Zellweger’s New Face Is Too Real

Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band

Can it be again?

The All The President’s Men Scene That Captured Ben Bradlee

Medical Examiner

Is It Better to Be a Hero Like Batman?

Or an altruist like Bruce Wayne?


Driving in Circles

The autonomous Google car may never actually happen.

The World’s Human Rights Violators Are Signatories to the World’s Human Rights Treaties

How Punctual Are Germans?

  News & Politics
Oct. 22 2014 12:44 AM We Need More Ben Bradlees His relationship with John F. Kennedy shows what’s missing from today’s Washington journalism.
Oct. 21 2014 5:57 PM Soda and Fries Have Lost Their Charm for Both Consumers and Investors
The Vault
Oct. 21 2014 2:23 PM A Data-Packed Map of American Immigration in 1903
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 21 2014 3:03 PM Renée Zellweger’s New Face Is Too Real
  Slate Plus
Oct. 22 2014 6:00 AM Why It’s OK to Ask People What They Do David Plotz talks to two junior staffers about the lessons of Working.
Brow Beat
Oct. 21 2014 9:42 PM The All The President’s Men Scene That Perfectly Captured Ben Bradlee’s Genius
Future Tense
Oct. 22 2014 8:43 AM Thunderstruck: Rock Out With Mother Nature’s Evil Side
  Health & Science
Bad Astronomy
Oct. 22 2014 7:30 AM An Illusion That Makes Me Happy and Sad
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.