Today marks the release of the first new Sigur Rós album in four years — Valtari. The album is available for download on iTunes and Amazon MP3 (links below) but you won’t find it streaming just yet.
Fans might have begun to wonder if the album was ever coming at all; it’s been four years since the Icelandic art band’s last release, Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust. That was a brightly weird, almost pop-like romp, but Valtari more closely resembles Sigur Rós’ earlier, more ambient and abstract work, albeit with fewer reverberating, bow-played guitars.
The album breaks an uncertain period in which the band all but broke up, and band member Georg Hólm even admitted, “We lost focus and almost gave up, did give up for a while. But then something happened and form started to emerge, and now I can honestly say that it’s the only Sigur Rós record I have listened to for pleasure in my own house after we’ve finished it.”
And so the soundtrack for many a college paper has resumed. The 8-track Valtari album is comprised of songs ranging from five to more than eight minutes in length, so don’t expect a lot of radio airplay — you know, if you still listen to the radio. Your best bet is it download it from iTunes or Amazon MP3 below. Enjoy!
Image: Shimelle Laine