ISSUE #8 FEB 06

Andy Ervik

Sěgur Rós
"Agćtis Byrjun"

10th June 2005
reviewer: Andy Ervik
rating: 5 out of 5
published by: Fat Cat
released: 14th August 2000
  1. Intro
  2. Svefn-G-Englar
  3. Starálfur
  4. Flugufrelsarinn
  5. Ný Batterí
  6. Hjartađ Hamast (bamm bamm bamm)
  7. Viđrar Vel Til Loftárása
  8. Olsen Olsen
  9. Ágćtis Byrjun
  10. Avalon

"Tad besta sem Gud hefur skapad"

Jónsi, the singer of Sěgur Rós says this in one of the songs on this album. And I ‘m quite sure that most of you who heard it didn’t understand what it meant. Well thankfully I know some Icelandic and I’ll be the translator for you. “Tad besta sem Gud hefur skapad er nyr dagur” simply means “the best God has ever created are new days” The expression “best ever created” isn’t such a bad description of Sěgur Rós’ music either.

The music reminds you of your childhood, all the silly little amusing things you said and did. The songs make you think of a cold winter day, the snow lying in thick already, but it continues to fall from the sky as small diamonds that prickle the tip of your tongue. You are thundering down a hillside faster than the speed of light, at least as fast as you’ve ever gone before. The sledge is a spaceship sending you off into eternity. Then you reach the bottom of the hill (or the end of the track, if you like) and look back at your mates with a big grin going from one side of your face to another and you run as if the devil was chasing you back up the hill (the next track starts).

Sěgur Rós is one of the few bands that will make you grin like a fool without knowing why. It’s infantile naivety takes you back to the days where everything was so much easier. Every day saw you living out your dream, the world at your feet for you too explore. But now you are growing up. Life is getting harder and more confusing. And very little seems as exciting as it did when you could run in circles for hours without getting tired, when a trip into the forest was a trip into the unknown. Back then there were always new sounds to hear, new things to see, new feelings to experience.

What I’m trying to explain here is the feeling that Sěgur Rós so effortlessly manage to create. Jónsi’s odd voice, which sounds like a bizarre mix between a little (newborn angel) child and an alien, makes this a listen you won’t soon forget. The fact that you don’t understand half of what he is singing just enhances the feeling of being a child again. You hear something so utterly wonderful, something so lovely you want to cry. Which means that you are back where you started, back with your first thoughts and questions about what things are and how they work. Feeling a bit confused and a bit startled, but equally amazed and awed by everything new you observe.