Jonsi Birgisson of Sigur Ros
Sigur Ros release first new music in three years; Pictured: Guitar player and lead singer Jon Thor Birgisson of the Icelandic post-rock band Sigur Ros performs during a concert at the 40th Montreux Jazz Festival in Montreux late July 3, 2006.Reuters

Ibtimes Rating: 4

When Icelandic experimental rock band Sigur Ros announces a comeback, it is almost always followed by an event that leaves a considerable amount of impact on fans. The band's latest attempt to follow the tradition resulted in the debut of their first new song in three years, "Óveður," during a day-long live stream of their ambitious "Route One," a scenic journey through Iceland with the band's music serving as a soundtrack.

"Óveður" was released with a graphic music video directed by Jonas Åkerlund. The video portrays the story of a homeless woman who starts drinking alcohol in a deserted countryside. As the clip progresses, she is shown to drink a whole lot more and ends up in a country bar where she eventually passes out. The crowd at the bar is shown to be placid to her descent into delirium until disturbing images of them start to appear on screen. This justifies the video's NSFW tag.

Although the video features a linear flow in the storyline, it is as abstract as a Sigur Ros music video can get. If the director tried to portray hopelessness, despair and gore through the video, he has evidently succeeded. Its cinematic appeal is also quite effective. But it is a departure from the band's usual depiction of their songs through scenic visuals of Iceland (think "Heima"). The clip's brutal nature might come as a shock to many a fan.

Sonically, "Óveður" sees the band delivering a vivid approach in sound. The track is minimalistic with heavy synth layers, reverberated instrumental sounds and cinematic percussion rhythms. Even though this is a familiar Sigur Ros territory, this song is special due to its dream pop-ish nature.

Since "Óveður" acts as the lead single of the band's upcoming album, it will be interesting to see what the new record sounds like. Sigur Ros might just come out with another aural fantasy like "Ágætis byrjun" or "Takk." Who knows?

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