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Agaetis Byrjun

Sigur Ros Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (217 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

RSD. Limited edition German double vinyl LP pressing of the Icelandic experimental/alternative act's international debut (their third album overall). Originally released in 1999, 'Agaetis Bryjun' is multi-platinum in their homeland. Includes the singles, 'Svefn-G-Englar' and 'Ny Batteri'. PIAS. 2008.


Reykjavík-based noise quartet Sigur Rós are the biggest band in their native Iceland, which should say much, much more about the collective insanity of that earthquake-ridden, blizzard-beaten crag of an island than anything to do with Sigur Rós's sound. But in their music, Sigur Rós reflect all the breathtaking glory of the Icelandic wastes--a fairy-tale explosion of unhinged elemental majesty that's finally crystallized here, their debut European release. Poised somewhere between the haunting soundscapes of Labradford and the lilting Celtic falsetto of Enya, Agaetis Byrjun is a truly breathtaking listen. Frontman Jon Por Birgisson sings in a language that Sigur Rós dub "Hopelandic"--an otherworldly mutation of Icelandic, sung in the falsetto cadence of angels; similarly, he plays his guitar with a violin bow, opening the floodgates for brilliant waves of feedback. And while it's the opening "Svefn-G-Englar" that's Sigur Rós' moment to date, there's far more that they have to offer; listen to the pomp and flourish of a full orchestra on "Flugufrelsarinn," or the awe-inspiring near-religious mantra of "Ny Batteri." --Amazon.co.uk --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Most helpful customer reviews
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Danger: This CD will change you forever June 10 2004
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Wow, what can I say. If you have any inkling to expose yourself to beautiful music, then this CD is for you. Sigur Ros has quickly become a staple in my CD player, and I am sure it will for you.
This is what RadioHead has been trying to achieve, and Tom Yorkes invite to have Sigur Ros open for them only solidified my decision to purchase this disc.
Agaetis Byrjun , and () - another phenomenal piece of music, have the potential to change your music habits forever. The haunting vocals (which are not in any language I recognize) will stay in your head long after the CD has stopped.
The first time I listened to this it was like a whole new world of music was opened to me. I can only imagine this is exactly how people felt when first exposed to Dark Side of the Moon. The arrangement of instruments is simply stunning, and will have your emotions dancing all over the place.
Please do not let this CD get away from you. Ask your friends, and anyone else who has a broad view on music, they will likely agree.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best place to start. Dec 29 2005
By Manuel
Format:Audio CD
If you heard a song or two from Sigur Ros -downloaded or from a friend- and haven't bought anything from them you must start here first.
to agree with Krist and Neil it did invoke Pink Floyd; Svefn-G-Englar starts almost exactly as "Echoes" did of Pink Floyd's 1971 album "Meddle".
This album Invokes all the groups strengths and weaknesses. If you examine one track on this album go straight to Ny Batteri, they are excellent mood makers and build up the tension only to let it explode in a great big clash of noise. This track is a great cut away of the album. The explosions of noise are MIA on ( ) and they are too prevelent on Takk... which may give the listener the wrong impression of the band. Without these burst of emotion the album would be completely boring in my opinion.
however their perennial weakness rears its ugly head -in my opinion- they take too god damn long to get rolling sometimes making their songs and albums long just for the sake of taking up my time. But alas it is art after all.

If you are not a fan, because you hate the way the singer sounds or some other stubborn reason like that, then avoid at all costs it will not win you over. However for the curious -like I was- and the patient, this is an album of sometimes overwhelming beauty -it gave me chills at some points- and I highly recommend it.
5 full stars for being their best work so far, and one of my favorite albums.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Innate, pure beauty. Jan. 11 2004
Format:Audio CD
'Agaetis Byrjun' is pure art, unlike most music released these days. Its innate beauty stuns at first listen and purely delights and sooths every listen thereafter. This album is unlike what most people have never considered possible, much less listened to. This, however, shouldn't daunt a prospective listener. Even if one does not enjoy this music (which I think is possible yet not common), one can appreciate the subtlety of Sigur Rós and their musical abilities.
My favorite song on 'Agaetis Byrjun' is 'Vidrar Vil tel Loftarasa' which is Icelandic (as is sung the album) for 'nice dau for an air raid'. It's mood is unlike any other I've felt in my large and diverse collection of music. Its corresponding video is touching, for both obvious and personal reasons.
On that note, I also recommend the Sigur 1/Sigur 9 single, not so much for the music CD than for the included DVD containing the breathtaking videos for 'Svefn-G-Englar', the abovementioned 'Vidrar Vil tel Loftarasa' from 'Agaetis Byrjun' and 'Untitled #1' from Sigur Rós' untitled following to 'Agaetis Burjun'

This album is definately a necessity for music-lovers young and old.
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5.0 out of 5 stars I'VE FOUND NEAR PERFECTION July 16 2004
Format:Audio CD
Anyone who appreciates beautiful music would love this album. It's not something you listen to when you're drunk in the club, or jamming in your car down the boardwalk on the beach, but its something to listen to and enjoy by yourself. These songs make you think of life, of past relationships, of God, and of the world. The only problem with this is, if you are mainly for lyrics, and you don't speak the language of this band, you will not understand a word, let alone spell a song's name. Do not listen to this album to find meaning in the words. Let the singer's voice and sounds be part of the music instead of focusing on what he is saying. I believe this is an album where you will either REALLY love it or it just won't be for you. If you are strictly into American pop music, hiphop/R&B, metal or hard rock, or close-minded to a certain hardcore sound, this album might not be for you. If you are open-minded to music that isn't just screaming and hardcore riffs, and isn't filled with hot beats with someone yappin about ridin on dubs and 24's, this might catch your ear. This is what music is supposed to be. I'm not saying this is what all music should be. I am saying that all music, whatever genre, should be on this level. If that were possible, the world would be a much more enjoyable place. If you have time to listen to this album, I strongly strongly strongly recommend it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and sweeping April 22 2004
Format:Audio CD
Experimental Icelandic band Sigur Rós reached exceptional heights with "Agaetis Byrjun," a fluidly mellow album. Music both cool and beautiful is warmed by Jon Por Birgisson's falsetto vocals and some majestic instrumentation -- and the result is staggeringly lovely.
The peak of the album is the slow, sparkling, sweeping "Svefn-G-Englar." When listening to the eerie mixture of organ, strings and chimes, think about the northern lights over a glacier. But Sigur Rós has more than just soundscapes: the orchestral majesty of "Staralfur," the ethereal music-box acoustics of "Agaetis Byrjun," and the gentle piano and swelling strings of "Vidrar vel til loftarasa."
It's hardly surprising that Sigur Rós is the biggest band in Ireland -- their music is ethereal, accessible, and so atmospheric that it's hard not to be swept away. There's a certain epic quality to their songs; what's more, they can can slowly switch from spine-tinglingly eerie to angelic ethereality.
It takes real effort to pick apart the seamless music at times. It almost feels wrong to do so. But the sweeping strings, organ and electric piano are standouts in "Agaetis Byrjun." Most uniquely, there are music-scapes created without synths. Instead, there is an electric guitar played by a cello bow -- a unique bit of brilliance.
Icelandic singers are going to sing in Icelandic, right? Wrong. Frontman Jon Por Birgisson sings in a sort of made-up language the band calls "Hopelandic." There's no discernable meaning, but Birgisson's high-pitched, melodious crooning banishes any real need for lyrics that mean something. His voice is just another instrument, like the piano or violin.
Imagine a cool, starry night with a cold breeze blowing through the trees -- that's Sigur Rós. Angelic and ethereal, "Agaetis Byrjun" is a rare musical experience without a single dud song.
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Most recent customer reviews
I recommend this CD to every single pregnant mother I know. This CD is what got me through my labour. I laboured for 43 hours, and this CD was my life-saver. Read more
Published on Nov. 14 2006 by MudFlap's Momma
3.0 out of 5 stars Have a listen
Now this is emotional stuff quite like the "Angels of the Universe" sound track from Hillmarsson who is also Icelandic. The album is beautiful and often child like. Read more
Published on May 3 2005 by Elise
5.0 out of 5 stars Yay! The dreamy vein continues!
Emotional, electric, symphonic, at times harsh, but vastly beautiful, modern, artistic music from Iceland. Read more
Published on Aug. 22 2004 by krista
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb
This is my number one desert island CD. Orgasmic and haunting are the best ways I can describe this album. Read more
Published on July 6 2004 by R. Salomon
5.0 out of 5 stars Mind bending, influencial recordings
I can only describe this album in few words, since there is so much to describe it with, it's amazing. Absolutely stunning. Read more
Published on June 23 2004 by ryan
5.0 out of 5 stars Yeah, what they said
I'm not one to go bonkers over instrumental soundscapes - give me three minutes and a good riff, and that's all I really need to get revved up - but this music is some potent... Read more
Published on June 22 2004 by M. D. Lewis
5.0 out of 5 stars Astonishing
This is, without any doubt, some of the best music I have ever heard. It is a quantum leap above any of the music produced by bands in this genre; even such brilliant one's as... Read more
Published on June 16 2004 by "zekecake"
5.0 out of 5 stars The most beautiful I've heard
Sigur Ros has never failed to impress me. This is the most relaxing, elegant kind of music I have ever heard. Read more
Published on June 11 2004 by Rachel
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning and sad
Imagine that you're at sea, and a great thunderstorm has passed. The air is crystal clear and the dark clouds heavy with rain all around. Read more
Published on May 28 2004 by Josh R.
5.0 out of 5 stars I feel like an idiot
After listening to this album, i nearly cried, because i was so touched. Once its over you can see things so differently in the world. This is one of my favourite albums ever!!!!! Read more
Published on May 27 2004
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