Album review: Kveikur - Sigur Ros
Iceland; the country formed by unpronounceable volcanoes that can shut down a hemisphere's flight paths and carved by epoch-ageing glaciers.
And home to similarly contradictory musical styles. Sigus Ros may be a quarter lighter since last year's departure of keyboardist Kjartan Sveinsson, but the remaining trio seem to have gained weightiness for the composition of this seventh studio album.
Sure, that ethereal drapery and Jon Thor Birgisson's elfin vocals is still the most obvious sales pitch, but the minimalism of the past couple of albums has been replaced by more commonplace structure.
Opener Brennisteinnand title track Kveikur are downright heavy - almost darkly metallic - and the whole offering is peppered with poppy hooks and anthemic crowd-pleasers to create the most accessible Sigur Ros album since the early days of 1999's majestic Agaetis byrjun.