There’s no denying that we all go through musical phases, Reader. Be us a casual listener or the most serious of audiophiles; be us fair-wether dabblers in music-making or seasoned musicians selling out stadiums; our tastes change. It’s a good thing.
I personally tend—both as a listener and as the occasional music-maker—to find a new sound or genre and then latch on to it, sinking my claws fully in and pulling as much as I possibly can from it. Then I move on to a new thing that I’m utterly excited about, keeping what I found earlier as part of this new appreciation. When I was in high school, it went from Brit pop to shoegaze. In college, early emo + hardcore. Then after college + a short stint in the Peace Corps, I got really really into glitchy electronic pop. I doubt that’s a cause-result correlation, but who knows.
I think my ‘gateway drug’ for this excitingly weird but still very much accessible genre was the ever-odd Björk. But, through what was a then religious reading of the Other Music newsletter (which still exists and is still highly recommended), I soon came across Morr Music. Morr Music is a small, Berlin-based independent label that was started by Thomas Morr right around that time—1999—and very much reflects his personal musical tastes, being “intelligent” dance music, the occasional shoegazing, dreampopping type, and beautifully glitchy electronic music—or “Plinkerpop” as he called it.
Through Morr I found such amazing groups as múm, Styrofoam, The Notwist, and the superb Lali Puna, among others; groups that entirely changed the way I approached music.
Fitting then that Sin Fang‘s Flowers—an album that has me entirely floored right now—is being put out by Thomas Morr + co.
Sin Fang is the moniker used by Iceland’s Sindri Már Sigfússon, founder of the indie folk group, Seabear, and maker of DIY beards. Oddly. Flowers—Mr. Sigfússon’s third solo full-length—is an album full of deep, lush layers of glitched out electronic melodies, choral chanting, sweeping orchestral movements, driving tribal rhythms, and beautifully approachable vocal hooks. Some songs build to dramatically epic peaks and then suddenly break into tiny, quietly elegant moments while others have you chasing after them in head-nodding, foot-tapping bliss as crunching, plinking electronic tones surround you.
Honestly, we write about a lot of music in this space, and I’ve never posted anything that I didn’t like, but it’s difficult to communicate how excited I am by this album without coming across like a gushing schoolboy. By all rights, if there is any artisctic justice left in the world—which I’ve been assured there is not—this album and, with it, Sin Fang, should be known and loved in every household in America.
Listen to the album opener, “Young Boys”, below—a catchy, chorus-driven number that sounds like a Gotye song making out with a Sigur Rós song while the Animal Collective back catalog watches. Or something. Then listen to the truly sublime “Look at the Light” via the official music video, also below.
Though the US iTunes store shows an expected release date of tomorrow for the digital version of Flowers, we’re told it won’t be state-side until the following Tuesday, February 16, when you’ll be able to order domestic CD + Vinyl as well. In the meantime, you can listen to song samples via iTunes or the German distro site, ANOST. We’re told a European tour is in the works and they hope to bring Sin Fang stateside later this year.
Photos by fellow Seabear member and artist, Ingibjörg Birgisdóttir.
2.5.13 Update: You can indeed now buy the digital album on iTunes and via Amazon. It seems the physical versions of the album are hitting our shores on the 19th. You can also pre-order those at Amazon.