Sigur Rós


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When Sigur Rós played the last shows of their 2008 tour, they brought in a filmmaker, Vincent Morisset, to document the shows and also decided to record them as well. (A decision that proved wise as the band’s future was thrown into doubt after the sessions for the next album were started, then shelved, and the band went on hiatus.) Inni is the collated result of two nights of live sets at the Alexandra Palace in London and features songs drawn from the band’s long career and, as with the rest of the tour, is played by just the core quartet with no string section or extra musicians. Sigur Rós hadn’t played such stripped-down (for them) shows for years and the sound just the four of them create is stunning. The guitars crash in waves of color and tone, the keys shimmer like clouds of birds, and the overall dynamics within each song are impressive. Add Jónsi’s otherworldly vocals (which don’t suffer at all from being live) and it’s exactly what you’d expect from a band that had perfected its sound over the years. The interesting thing about Inni is that, not only do the songs capture the hypnotic emotions the band can whip up and then hone in studio, they have an extra drive and passion that is almost revelatory to hear. The only complaint one might have about the set is that at two discs, it can be a long haul to get from beginning to end. That being said, if you’ve stuck with the band this long, you not only don’t fear the long haul, but you relish it. Though Sigur Rós were said to be working on a new album to come out after Inni’s release, if this ends up being their final release, it's a fitting album that sums up and shines a light on all the things that make/made the band so enthralling.

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