What’s In The Bag? (73)

I am a huge lover of Sigur Rós and have been since the moment I first heard them. They are one of those bands that never seem to be able to do anything wrong, for me at least. I don’t want every album to be the same as the last one and I like how they progress while still maintaning that same something that singles them out and gives them individuality. I don’t mind that the words are often in a completely made up language (Hopelandic) as the voice is an instrument and doesn’t have to be coherent, and I like, for instance, opera, but haven’t a bloody clue what anybody is singing about.

The most recent vinyl Sigur Rós I picked up is titled (), yes, that’s open bracket close bracket, and the 8 tracks are untitled. Band guitarist and keyboardist Kjartan Sveinsson said of this choice, “we didn’t want to put titles on the record just because there are supposed to be titles on the record.” The band themselves do have titles for them, though unofficial:

1. Untitled (“Vaka”) “Vaka” is the name of Orri’s daughter 6:38

2. Untitled (“Fyrsta”) “Fyrsta” means “The First” or “The First Song” 7:33
3. Untitled (“Samskeyti”) “Samskeyti” means “Seam” or “Joint” 6:33

4. Untitled (“Njósnavélin”) “Njósnavélin” means “The Spy Machine” but is known as “The Nothing Song”

5. Untitled (“Álafoss”) Álafoss is the location of the band’s studio 9:57

6. Untitled (“E-Bow”) Georg Hólm uses an E-bow on his bass in this song 8:48

7. Untitled (“Dauðalagið”) “Dauðalagið” means “The Death Song” 13:00

8. Untitled (“Popplagið”) “Popplagið” means “The Pop Song” 11:44

Total length: 72:05

() was released in 2002 and I had it on CD for about 10 years before buying this vinyl edition. That it was that long ago when I first heard it is rather a shock as certain music seems to me to have an almost ageless quality about it and this falls into that category. Perhaps because there are no words it doesn’t have to fit in any time period. Thought it peaked at only number 49 in the UK album charts I think it’s been a bit of a slow burner, as lots of people seem to know it, which is probably helped by the appearance of certain tracks in films and TV series. It’s appeared in ‘Vanilla Sky’, ‘The Invasion’, the video game ‘Dead Space’, TV series ‘Queer as Folk’ and CSI:Miami amongst others. If I didn’t know it already I think that upon hearing it in any of the above I would probably investigate it as it is quite unusual sonically.


If you happen to be unaware of their back catalogue, then this is a pretty decent place to start, or maybe Ágætis byrjun

I’ve been after a vinyl version of TAKK for quite some time (it’s a double 10″) but it is going for crazy prices, over £150, which is ridiculous. The good news is that it would appear that it is to be re-released on vinyl and I should be able to get it for a reasonable price. More on Sigur Rós in the future


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