Icelandic singers always sound like the tape is playing backward, even if they are singing in perfect English. It must be those weird diacriticals in the language. This collection of dreamy pop tunes rolls over green meadows and up to safe precipices, showing the world all the nice vibes that pop music still offers.
The singing is comforting and reassuring, odd nylon guitar strings pop in with a chorus of Bering Sea seals and Madagascar lemurs when “Sea Bear” pauses to breathe in the atmosphere. There’s an odd naming convention here, “Sin Fang” is a project of “Sindri Már Sigfusson” who goes by “Sea Bear,” or its Old Norse equivalent. Read the liner notes, I’m sure they will clear up any confusion.
Meanwhile, I’m grooving to “Ritual” with its tribal beats, backward masked guitars, and driving bass. It’s not as exciting as the volcanoes up there, but you can go back again and again and never fear a pyroclastic flow. By the time “Nineteen” slides across my vacuum tube-based mp3 player, the music picks up an old Roxy Music beat before slowing down to let more squeaks escape.
Part folk singer, part ambassador to the trolls of the mountains, Sin Fang is another outstanding Icelandic album, and it sounds not quite like anything else in my collection.