Grace recently checked out Sigur Rós at the Fox Theater in Pomona. She may or may not have cried throughout the performance (that’s for you to guess.)
Post-rock giants Sigur Rós graced the Fox Theatre with two back-to-back sets earlier this month. The group, often known for their elaborate performances and use of backing musicians, performed as a bare-bones trio, giving both newcomers (myself) and lifelong fans (my good friend and concert-mate) a moving and intimate experience. Through their two hours of performance, the group weaved in and out of a multitude of intricately textured sonic landscapes, integrating warm synths with harsh bowed guitar and booming percussion. There were moments where this 2000 person venue had the level of intimacy of a much smaller space.
Paired with the group’s atmospheric music was a series of visuals that could have easily been a folder of corrupted files off of one of Stanley Donwood’s hard drives. Wispy digital projections of CGI songbirds mingled with glitched out lichen spots and mountain ranges while LED towers blasted icy blues and grays over the crowd. Foggy morning light continually engulfed the stage.
Frontman Jónsi rarely spoke over the course of the show, only pausing occasionally to thank the audience. Nobody seemed to mind. It was clear that this event was a special evening for ticket holders: while the three were performing, there was a noticeable lack of drunken chatter and hushed whispers.
While I wasn’t ultra-familiar with Sigur Rós prior to their performance, I learned why they continue to remain such a beloved group: their ability to cultivate intimate spaces through musical and visual textures allowed all of us to immerse ourselves in a different world for an evening.