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Ágætis Byrjun, Sigur Rós

Pias America, January 1, 1999

Track Listing: 1.  Intro, 2. Svefn-G-Englar, 3. Starálfur, 4. Flugufrelsarinn, 5. Ny Batteri, 6. Hjartaõ Hamast (Bamm Bamm Bamm), 7. Viõrar Vel Til Loftárasa, 8. Olsen Olsen, 9. Ágaetis Byrjun, 10. Avalon

You don’t need to know what he is saying in order to know what he is saying. You don’t need to understand the language to grasp its meaning.

There is a link that joins listener to source. It is a hook. This time, like so many times before, it is a feeling that comes first. This time, the feeling is warm and enveloping.

His words may be foreign—he sounds like he is speaking (singing) in tongues—but that doesn’t obstruct the path to communication. It’s like the way you get turned on by the sound of an instrument, or hone in on a melody. Music is a universal language. 

A feeling metastasizes, here expanding from a soulful sadness that rises into a soaring epiphany before trailing off into a resolute tranquility.

It isn’t always easily identifiable, especially when it happens deeper inside, when the reaction is incredibly personal. We all have our own triggers that elicit our own unique intimate responses. It can call to mind a memory or maybe outline a path that is merely instinctive—inherent—like a mood mapping a state of mind.

It is a dance of foreplay that is the beginning of the bond that provides physical tingly evidence of an awakening. It doesn’t matter what it is exactly that grants admission or whether you can readily define it. It only matters that you are able to recognize the attraction. That you can feel it.

You then listen more intently, absorbing the sound in the entirety of a moment. This is where the journey really takes off, where the music penetrates, where intercourse begins.

Is it like birth? I cannot say. I don’t remember coming into the world any more than I can remember exactly how it came to be that this beautiful music washed over me, baptizing me in its hymnal serenity.

I only know that the music and I are now linked. It summoned, reverberating, calling out, calling you back to the beginning when it first hit, when you knew that it would stay.