Jonah Bayer (writer)
Jón “Jónsi” Þór Birgisson gained fame as the frontman for Icelandic post-rock act Sigur Rós, but his solo release sees him transposing his gift for orchestral explosions into a pop-friendly context (mostly because he’s singing in English). Jónsi’s voice is so distinctive that the songs sound similar to Sigur Rós’s in many ways, but sweetly syncopated tracks like “Boy Lilikoi” manage to evoke Peter Gabriel rather than Mogwai, and melancholy meditations like “Kolniður” display a vulnerability that’s sometimes obscured by the grandiosity of his full-time act. The final result? An album that shows a new side to Jónsi without abandoning the sonic subtleties that have endeared him to countless fans all over the world.