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Sigur Ros Odin's Raven Magic

Take a bleak midwinter flight across the frozen lands of ancient mythology with this previously unreleased live recording of the band's classical collaboration.

Released: 4 December 2020
Odin's Raven Magic

To experience awe is to feel simultaneously exhilarated and calmed by one's insignificance in the face of the epic, to be transported to the skies and anchored to the rock. Conceived in a land where earth boils and ice groans, Odin’s Raven Magic is music that evokes and honours this tension between the transience of the human condition and our need to be part of a bigger story.

This is the scarcely performed and long buried collaboration between the band and Icelandic music legend and allsherjargoði Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson, fisherman and chanter of the Rimur Steindór Andersen, and composer Maria Huld Markan Sigfúsdóttir of Amiina. Having languished in storage for 18 years, a live recording of the 2002 performance at Paris’ La Grande Halle de la Villette is now being released. It tells the tale of the ravens Hugin and Munin (sometimes translated as ‘Thought and Memory’) who fly the world at night to bring news to whisper in Odin’s ear, often foretelling the destruction of gods and men.

Released as a classical album, it is characterised by tectonic baritone chanting woven with mesmeric choral and string arrangements , but there are also moments of mischievous melody and twinkling brilliance that fans of the band will find familiar.

As we overwinter our weary souls this is music to remind us that we are sparks carried along by forces beyond our reckoning, and if we choose to work with those forces, rather than against them, we can create something truly beautiful.

Filed under: Sigur Ros