AOTY 2021
Sigur Rós - Kveikur
Critic Score
Based on 32 reviews
2013 Ratings: #92 / 1080
User Score
Based on 452 ratings
2013 Ratings: #29
Liked by 24 people
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CRITIC REVIEWS

90
The 405

It's unsettling, chaotic, vengeful, astounding, invigorating and forces you to feel a plethora of cacophonous emotions concurrently. It's their loudest record. It's their darkest record. It's their best record in a long, long time.

90
The Line of Best Fit

This is dark, progressive music for dark, adult emotions. There’s little that’s whimsical or playful to it, and yet it’s still, somehow, pop music – despite being quite unlike anything else currently in the global mainstream.

90
Drowned in Sound

Kveikur is as melodic and, in places, as fragile as anything the band have released before. 

90
musicOMH

On Kveikur, even the tracks that start off poppy end up dark, a trait that comes across as honest and dynamic rather than relentlessly morbid.

90
Paste

Though Kveikur is more anxious and busy than a lot of their past output, it still possesses the heavenly quality all their other records so admirably held on to as well. 

84
Beats Per Minute

The variety of experience it offers not just from Valtari, but from the band’s entire catalogue, means that it stands among their best.

83
A.V. Club

It’s breathtaking as well as bloodcurdling.

83
Pretty Much Amazing

For Sigur Rós, Kveikur is their most gloves-off release to date and they land the punch.

81
Pitchfork

A collection that works as effectively as a spiritual experience and pop music, the essence of their overwhelming, widescreen grandeur conveyed with the immediacy of a 50-minute rock record.

80
DIY

The reinvention of Sigur Rós as clandestine creatures of the night, thunderous and full of chest-out bluster is a development that carries an intrinsic visceral thrill their output could never lay claim to.

80
Under The Radar

For those whose faith might have been temporarily tested by Valtari, Kveikur is a vibrant and much-needed reminder that the band's creative well is far from running dry. 

80
AllMusic

While Kveikur isn't a complete reinvention of their sound, it's the kind of palette shift that shows just how versatile and creative Sigur Rós can be. 

80
NME

On seventh album ‘Kveikur’, Sigur Rós are at their blackest and most sinister, sounding not so much reborn as in the ferocious throes of an almighty exorcism.

80
PopMatters

What Kveikur finds these musicians doing is expanding their sound with a sort of Goldilocks principle: not too much or to little change—especially considering how the latter has plagued them before—but just exactly the right amount.

70
Consequence of Sound

Those who have followed the band down the same trails for years will happily be able to do so again. But those who are still hungry for the thickets of Ágætis byrjun or the haunted tundra of Von won’t find many new landmarks here. 

70
No Ripcord

It’s a startling album, at once declaring the band’s total independence, their adoration for the music they have made, and their desire to break free, as if somehow trapped.

60
FACT Magazine

Kveikur is by no means a bad record: beautifully arranged, it does a good job of avoiding the twee sugariness of Sigur Rós’ last couple of albums. That said, its elements of darkness feel incidental to the overall triumphal blueprint.

Dombot
94
One of the many things I adore about Sigur Ros' discography is how alive their music sounds. It sounds almost alien at times, in a good way- I sometimes find it really hard to believe actual humans were behind this rather than some peaceful otherworldly species from another galaxy. This album, though... Kveikur is really different. Yes, it's grandiose, ethereal, and shockingly well-performed and crafted... but this record is NOT peaceful. This album is alive, but not as a peaceful alien ... read more
Plats
98
"Kveikur" is Sigur Rós at their most "aggressive". They ditch the ambiance of "Valtari" in favor of adding industrial elements to their post-rock sound, with more complex drum sections and thunderous bass throughout. I love the atmosphere here, it's daunting, cold and punchy while never losing sight of their classic sound. That's not to say that it's entirely dark, the choruses are catchy and Jónsi's aching falsetto (which NEVER gets old) still ensure ... read more
MasterCrackfox
83
When considering the two full length projects Sigur Rós released during the 2010's, there is no doubt that Kveikur is the yin to Valtari's yang - two highly contrasting albums that inevitably compliment one another, even if drastically lopsided toward the follow-up release. Having just released a relatively middling album only a year earlier of bright and warm tones that never seem to gain necessary momentum, Sigur Rós make yet another major transition into their heaviest ... read more
JayCrackers
83
Another great album by Sigur Ros and although doesn't quite come up to par with their best work such as () and Aegis Byrjun, it still contains some of their most powerful, ethereal and epic work with some amazing songs such as Stormur, Brennisteinn and my personal favorite fsjaki, there is nothing but excellence in this dense 48 minute record even if it starts to lose some steam but the last 2 tracks.

Track Review

Brennisteinn 9.5/10
Hrafntinna 8.5/10.
Ísjaki 9.5/10
Yfirborð ... read more
joewindlebrox
98
Listening to this album is like seeing the beauty in a thunderstorm. A dark and compelling experience, this album is definitely worth putting the time into listening to it.
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Added on: March 22, 2013