By all accounts Valtari, the new album by Sigur Rós,was a difficult birth but on first listen you wouldn’t think so.

There’s such a delicate serenity about the eight tracks that it’s the closest I’ll come to having a religious experience.

It’s been four years since their last studio album (Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust) and Jonsi’s successful solo album made me fear this could be the end of the road. Thankfully the band have rediscovered their spiritual karma.

The strings and a girls’ choir mean that this will be a difficult record to pull off live but I have every hope they’ll have some surprises in store when they tour later this year (I’m seeing them at the Perfect Day Festival in Verona).

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