So, we’re going completely off the board for this one. If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you’ve no doubt by now come to understand that I am all about the metal. I live and breathe metal. It’s just what I do and who I am. However, I am not averse to breaking out of my normal comfort zone and will go see something outside of the metal realm when it seems like there is something cool and different to experience.
It is in this vein that I agreed to go see a little band from Iceland called Sigur Ros when my punk rock fiancée asked if I would have any interest in checking them out live. I had never even heard the name before she extended the invite. I do enjoy some weirdly progressive metal/rock and she though that I would dig these guys.
Hoo boy, am I glad that I took her up on the invitation. The term “mind-blowing” is used quite a lot, but it really applies to what took place this past Saturday. These guys are simply not of this earth. Their music and the presentation of their art in a live setting is truly unlike anything other musical act I have ever come across. Let’s start with the music. I think ethereal is the term that is most appropriate. The music starts with a slow build and just keeps elevating the dynamics as it goes along. I’ve never been to Iceland before, but I just get the sense that this group’s music captures the spirit of this isolated island. The combination of the lead vocalist’s unique falsetto and his playing of guitar with a bow leads to some strangely emotional combinations.
In addition to the soundscapes, serious mention and props need to be given to the stage and light show that accompanied the live set. I’ve truly never seen anything this creative pulled off and I’ve seen a shitload of really extravagant concerts. From backdrop screens to light poles and side stage spotlights, they really created an intimate and immersive setting that helped block out all extraneous distractions. It was hard not to get completely subsumed into the entire experience. Many people in the group of friends that I went to the show with described a completely cathartic experience and many shed tears because of the emotions the show brought up.
If you get a chance to see these guys perform live, I cannot recommend strongly enough that you jump at the chance. I can’t see myself listening to these guys on a regular basis, but they really knocked me on my ass. And I’m a jaded asshole. I don’t get this impressed very often.
Sample video courtesy of the punk rock fiancée. I have no idea what the title of this song is. Enjoy.