Sigur Rós – Brennisteinn

It’s a real credit to the band that musos have managed to write interesting things about Sigur Rós for this long. With a supremely critically acclaimed discography, by this stage you can be completely and utterly sure that you’re never going to be disappointed by new Sigur Rós material; a fact which makes this job a little bit harder each time something is released. And guess what, Jonsi and the boys (who are now only a trio) have done it again.

‘Brennisteinn’ is kind of a song of two halves. The first three-and-a-bit minutes channel HEALTH-esque industrials to great effect; plundering depths you might not think they were capable of, but still extracting a great deal of beauty from the darkness. The second half is a bit of a deconstruction of the first; everything breaks down into subtleties at the halfway mark, and the majority of the rest of the song is a steady crescendo back up to the previous noisiness, only this time laced with Jonsi’s soaring vocals. The track in earnest finishes at around the six-minute mark, but then there’s the customary soundscape to draw things to a sumptuous close.

‘Brennisteinn’ is a perfect example of how Sigur Rós can achieve as much in one song as any of us could hope to in an entire album, nay lifetime. Having reached the pinnacle of their genre a long time ago, but showing no signs of stopping, there’s nothing left to do but marvel at what’s yet to come.

By Alex Throssell
Dance Yrself Clean

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