Bitrate: 205kbit av.
Size: 62.30 mb
Rip Date: 2010-03-10
Str Date: 2010-03-23
01. Go Do (04:41)
02. Animal Arithmetic (03:24)
03. Tornado (04:15)
04. Boy Lilikoi (04:30)
05. Sinking Friendships (04:42)
06. Kolniður (03:56)
07. Grow Till Tall (05:18)
08. Around Us (05:21)
09. Hengilás (04:15)
offering to date. The arrangements seemed to strive towards something
that could be loosely termed as "pop". Band leader Jnsi Birgisson even
sang in English on the final track All Alright. This ruffled a few
feathers amongst those who preferred the abstract crooning that came
with the nonsensical lyrics that Sigur Rs had employed down the years.
Some may find the use of English on this, Jnsi's debut solo album,
abhorrent. Others may welcome the opportunity to gain a more direct
insight into the meanings of these songs. Either way, Jnsi 's delivery
is such that it's easy to get lost in what he's doing with his voice
rather than what is being said.
Those with an ear to the ground will have already caught the wonderful
Boy Lilikoi, a song which is nave in its approach to life and succeeds
with a flurry of childlike innocence. It grows and swells with warmth,
imploring those lucky enough to hear it to enjoy life before it is too
late, with "use your life, the world goes and flutters by" being the
key refrain. The vocal harmonies collapse over each other in seemingly
endless fashion, drums thunder and skip in equal measure, and flutes
are playfully light as they flutter around the ever growing strings.
Has 'pop' music ever sounded this wonderful?
Likewise, opening track Go Do features an exquisite vocal and, although
it's possible to grab snatches of sense, it's far easier to get swept
up in the layered tones. The bass drum pounds like the heart of someone
who's just discovered what love at first sight means, while the flutes
and piccolos flit around the central vocal like glittering fairies,
adding a mysterious sparkle.
If there's a theme to be found in the lyrics of Go, it must be that
life is fleeting and is here to be enjoyed. This much is clear in the
joyful percussive stomp of Animal Arithmetic, where the simple
pleasures of combing hair and riding bikes take on an almost sepia
toned charm. Delicate woodwind touches are hidden behind a glut of
pummelling drums and assorted other clunks and whirs, but they colour
the track just enough to ensure that the magical quality remains in
what is otherwise a thunderous track.
Supporting Jnsi on this project is increasingly ubiquitous composer
Nico Muhly. His arrangements are vital in ensuring that these songs
attain spectacular heights. Tornado, to take one example, overflows
with beautiful strings complementing a solitary bass-drum kick, and
transforms a rather sinister song into something approaching that
familiar ethereal Sigur Rs sound. Naturally Jnsi's vocals soar into a
higher register as the song builds to a climax, whereupon he sounds
like an angel in the throws of sinful ecstasy.
Muhly's presence is more keenly felt on Grow Till Tall and Hengilas.
The tearaway percussion that drives Animal Arithmetic and the madly
danceable Around Us is absent, and mournful strings take their place.
Fans of earlier Sigur Rs material will find enough here to keep them
happy, with cellos creating the pulse of the songs while Jnsi's
consonant-free vocal style returns to breathe life into them. If the
likes of Boy Lilikoi are the life of Go's party, then the aching cellos
of Hengilas are its soul.
Go is a phenomenal record with almost every bar bursting with beauty.
It is soulful, fun, nave and sad in its own fantastical world; if only
life really were this good. This is a record that will make you believe
it could be.