Named in part after a sister of one of the bandmembers, Reykjavik, Iceland’s Sigur Rós (Victory Rose) was formed by guitarist and vocalist Jon Thor Birgisson, bassist Georg Holm, and drummer Agust. Formed in early 1994 while the members were teenagers, the trio’s first recorded song earned them a deal with Iceland’s Bad Taste label. Their sprawling debut LP, Von (Hope), was released in 1997, followed the next year by a collection of remixes from that album, Recycle Bin. Kjartan Sveinsson joined the band on keyboards and the band recorded 1999’s strings-heavy Ágætis Byrjun (Good Start), earning themselves numerous accolades in their homeland and achieving platinum status in sales. Agust then departed and was quickly replaced by Orri Páll DýRason.
Svefn-G-Englar, their first release to be distributed outside of their native country, was hailed as NME’s Single of the Week during September of 1999, launching a press hype steamroller in the U.K. and — to a lesser extent — in the U… read more