Sigur Ros new song Brennistein

I had the luxury of seeing the Sigur Ros tour last summer when they played a magnificent set on the lake shore just outside of downtown Toronto (see picture above).  With the skyline as their backdrop they played through almost two full hours of absolutely gorgeous music.  If you like even one song from the band I highly recommend that you get out and see their current tour.  You will not be disappointed.

Speaking of their ongoing world tour – the band from Iceland is doing it in support of an upcoming all new album that will be released on June 17th.  They’ve posted their first single from the album and it sounds like it’s going to be another epic album.

mp3 : Sigur Ros – Brennisteinn

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Sigur Ros upcoming album Valtari

On May 28th of this year one of my all time favorite bands will release their long awaited studio album.  After basically dissolving, following their brilliant Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust (amazon) (itunes) in 2008, it seems the Iceland boys have finally come back together.  Over on their website they are currently playing a song from the album which I assume is the second track from Valtari.  If the rest of the album is anything like this song we can all look forward to another sparse, atmospheric, and quietly brilliant album from Sigur Ros.

mp3 : Sigur Ros – Ekki Mukk

On their website Georg had this to say about the upcoming album “i really can’t remember why we started this record, i no longer know what we were trying to do back then. i do know session after session went pear-shaped, we lost focus and almost gave up…did give up for a while. but then something happened and form started to emerge, and now i can honestly say that it’s the only sigur rós record i have listened to for pleasure in my own house after we’ve finished it.”

Preorder the album on Amazon here.

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Wedding Music vol 07 : Reception

Another day and another glimpse into my insanely controlled wedding music playlist.  I don’t mean to brag, but I did just receive compliments on my wedding playlist this past weekend.  It’s always good to know that random people appreciate good music as well.  All of these songs were played as background music during the cocktails and dinner.

mp3 : Louis Armstrong – Sittin In The Sun
mp3 : Gary Jules – Mad World (Tears for Fears Cover)
mp3 : Johnny Cash – Hurt
mp3 : Sigur Ros – Inni mer syngur vitleysingur

Yes, I do still listen to this mix.  And yes, you can see all of the wedding music I’ve posted so far by clicking right here.

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Wedding Music vol 02 : Ceremony

This is volume 02 of the Wedding Music series.  As stated before much of this list was an exercise in compromise between my wife and I.  Ultimately I was very happy with the music we came up with (and that might be because she gave me complete free reign for background music at the reception.  Stay tuned for those posts).

If you’d like to see all of my Wedding Music click here to see this entire series.

Below are the tracks that we used during the actual ceremony.  At one point in time we were going to have a live string quartet play songs during the wedding, but we couldn’t find proper sheet music for the songs we wanted and it became too much of a hassle to have a quartet learn all of this music by ear.  We did have a piano player play a song live during the ceremony, but I don’t have a recording of that.

mp3 : Pride and Prejudice – The Secret Life of Daydreams
mp3 : Pride and Prejudice – Dawn
mp3 : Vitamin String Quartet – Yellow (Coldplay Cover)
mp3 : Vitamin String Quartet – Hoppipolla (Sigur Ros Cover)
mp3 : Coldplay – Lovers In Japan (Osaka Sun Mix)

Lovers in Japan is the track that we used to exit from the church where we were married.  The Vitamin String Quartet songs are from an ever rotating, ever evolving, ever amazing group on the west coast that continues to provide excellent string quartet interpretations of influential modern music.  They claim on their website that they will be offering sheet music in the future, but at the time of our wedding the best we could find was audio tracks (fortunately the church had a great sound system and decent acoustics).

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BOTR vol 15

It’s a good day for BOTR (Best of the Remix).  Why not.  If you’d like to check out past volumes just click here.

mp3 : Calvin Harris – I’m Not Alone (Tom Molloy Remix)
I received an advance copy of Calvin Harris’ debut album awhile back and I didn’t really like anything on it.  This beat heavy remix goes a long way to salvaging my mental image of him.

mp3 : Chris Brown Annie Designer Drugs – Kiss Anthonio (White Panda Remix)
I’m not sure what to call these remixes by White Panda.  They come from the website mochibeats.com and I’m not sure how White Panda becomes involved, but who cares because they’re sick mashups.

mp3 : Crystal Castles – Vietnam (LightsoverLA Remix)
At one point in my life I was fortunate to spend two months wandering the beaches of Thailand.  Remixes like this take me back to nights by the ocean watching fire dancers.  Pure class.

mp3 : Drake & Coldplay – The Fly Scientist ft. Page & Silver Medallion (“October’s Very Cold” Chi Duly Remix)
As I’ve said before in other BOTR volumes I’m a sucker for hip hop vocals laid over the top of a modern pop song.  There is something captivating about spitting venom over a gorgeous Coldplay backdrop.

mp3 : Fatboy Slim vs Outkast – Praise Outkast (White Panda Remix)
I will never grow tired of hip hop and pop (or any other modern musical genre) mixed together in an inventive and seamless way.  Never.

mp3 : Felix Cartal – Skeleton (BbopNRokstedy Remix)
I’m not sure how I feel about this remix.  I am sure that BbopNRokstedy is a great name.

mp3 : Fol Chen – In Ruins (Bath Remix)
I”ve never listend to Fol Chen and if I can recall correctly I’ve never listened to any other remix by Bath.  This combination, however, has me interested enough to do some searching.

mp3 : Lady Gaga – Bad Romance (The Kids are Radioactive Remix)
I’m not sure where I stand on the entire Lady Gaga situation.  I can’t tell if she’s a flash in the pan diva or if she’ll end up being the next version of Madonna.  I’m sure I don’t really care though.

mp3 : Lady Gaga vs Sigur Ros – Just Dance (CJ Milli Remix)
Judging by this remix/mashup if Lady Gaga teamed up with Sigur Ros for her next album it could be absolute genius.

mp3 : Phoenix – 1901 (BbobNRokstedy Remix)
Just when you thought Phoenix fever from last summer was finally gone the cleverly named BbopNRokstedy throw down a loop heavy remix that keeps it fresh.

mp3 : Smashing Pumpkins – 1979 (Spin.Kidd Remix)
Smashing Pumpkins, at one point in time, were my favorite band.  Then they broke up, then Billy Corgan went weird, then they sorta kinda formed another band under the same name.  Regardless 1979 remains one of their greatest songs and this remix does a good job of destroying it.

mp3 : Snoop Dogg and Kid CuDi – That Tree (Vim Cortez Remix)
This is Snoop Dogg and CuDi if their song That Tree existed in the middle of the upcoming Daft Punk scored soundtrack to Tron Legacy.

mp3 : Snoop Dogg – That Tree (Star Guitar Remix)
I cannot get over the opening thirty seconds of this remix.  I simply cannot force my brain to move beyond the dirty bass line that permeates this track.  If you only listen to one remix from this BOTR this should be your choice.

Keep listening to good music.

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Jonsi new album Go

Jonsi Birgisson is most well known for his work as the front man for the Icelandic group Sigur Ros.  On their albums he usually sings in Icelandic or a made up language he coined Hopelandic.  On the rare occasion he switches over to English but those tracks are few and far between.  This is not the case on Jonsi’s debut solo album.  Each track is packed with energy and the album only contains one track not sung in English.  What it boils down to is this album feels like Jonsi has recorded everything he wanted to sing that didn’t quite fit in with his Sigur Ros compatriots.  (And note, this album is head and shoulders above the Jonsi and Alex album from last year).

mp3 : Jonsi – Go Do
mp3 : Jonsi – Boy Lilikoi

Overall this album tends to be more joyous and more pop oriented that Jonsi’s previous efforts with Sigur Ros.  Where his band leans toward atmospheric sparse soundscapes filled with melancholic emotions his solo effort veers toward territory that is undeniably happy.  Melodies are playful and many tracks drive about with the abandon of children of play.  It is undoubtedly a solid solo effort and it proves that Jonsi is a huge part of the Sigur Ros talent pool.  The album, entitled Go (amazon) (itunes), will be released on April 5th.

And because I’m a huge fan of Jonsi’s music I thought I would throw out this cover he performed on BBC 1 during an interview.

mp3 : Jonsi – Time to Pretend (MGMT)

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Vitamin String Quartet cover Sigur Ros

Strange things happen when you’re a music blogger with a passionate stance on what constitutes “good music” and you’re seeking to reconcile those views with what is “wedding appropriate.”  You’ll find yourself watching endless youtube clips and scouring the web for anything that remotely meshes your personal taste with something passable in a formal setting.  Believe me, this is no easy task.

In my intrepid wanderings I stumbled upon a collaborative effort that goes by the name of Vitamin String Quartet.  Chances are you’ve heard of them, but for me it was a new revelation and I’ve been enjoying listening to their compositional renditions of more contemporary artists (check out their wikipedia page for a “partial” discography which is quite ridiculous in the amount of artists they’ve covered).

mp3 : Vitamin String Quartet – Hoppipolla (Sigur Ros Cover)

I love the beautiful simplicity of this track and the string arrangement is divine.  Now if only they sold their sheet music I would be set.  And for those that are wondering the rest of their canon, available largely from either amazon or itunes, is solid as well.

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