Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

The Slow, Glacial Rise of Icelandic Band Sigur Ros

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

The Slow, Glacial Rise of Icelandic Band Sigur Ros

Article excerpt

FOR a band that have sold millions of records across the world and headlined the Hollywood Bowl, they don't get as much attention as you'd expect in their home, Iceland.

"Whenever I walk around Reykjavik and see people I know, they normally ask me if the band is still going," says Georg Holm, one third of Sigur Ros, a band who enjoyed a slow start.

"There are quite a lot of bands here who are big outside of the country. We seem to have done well in the UK and the US."

The band's first album, Von, was released 20 years ago and sold a less-than-whopping 300 copies. Two years later though, things started to change. Agaetis Byrun topped the Icelandic chart - but it also started to catch on in the UK, touching the top 50.

The band's atmospheric soundscapes - sung either in Icelandic or a language entirely of their own making - added to the mysterious track names and albums with no title meant Sigur Ros became a band like no other.

Now they're back at Manchester Apollo for three nights - tomorrow and Sunday are sold out but a handful of tickets remain for Monday. They last played there in 2013, post Valtari and just before Kveikur - and produced one of the loudest, most enthralling musical spectacles I've ever seen. That year, the band also headlined Bluedot at Jodrell Bank.

"When we started the tour we knew we wanted to play more intimate venues, rather than the big arenas," says Holm. "We like the smaller venues. People can get closer to you. You can connect with them more. Hopefully there'll be a bigger connection to the music. We're a three piece now, so it makes a different kind of show."

Sigur Ros have become well known even outside the band's fanbase - thanks largely to TV and film. …

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