Agætis Byrjun turns 20

Released in 1999, Sigur Ros' 2nd mythical album has finally been re-released in a deluxe edition.

By Marc Zisman | Video of the Day | July 3, 2019
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Qobuz

Rock? New Age? Post-rock? Trippy? Progressive? Psychedelic on Xanax? Or something even more alien? Sigur Ros’ second album has retained the same extra-terrestrial quality since its release in June 1999.

Like with shoegaze, layer after layer of the Reykjavík collective’s light electro creates a unique hypnotizing effect, similar to the echoes featured in Brian Eno’s work.



But under the guise of an experiment lab for the mad scientist, Agætis byrjun (a good beginning in English) marries real songs with solid harmonic constructions.

Whether it’s the impressive falsetto and heady chorus of Svefn-g-englar, the refined violins of Staralfur or the faux-jazz with a touch of trip-hop in Hjartao Hamast, Sigur Ros’ magnum opus is just one gorgeous idea after the next.



This 20th anniversary edition celebrates the shock to the senses that this album truly is; in addition to the remastered album, it includes a 1999 live performance at the Islenska Operan as well as a number of demos. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz

LISTEN TO ÁGÆTIS BYRJUN - A GOOD BEGINNING (20TH ANNIVERSARY DELUXE EDITION) BY SIGUR ROS ON QOBUZ


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