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Iceland’s Seabear started out as singer Sindri Már Sigfússon’s solo project but quickly morphed into a seven-strong collective of multi-instrumentalists.
Their music is an easy-on-the-ear mix of ethereal folk and country with touches of rock ’n’ roll, which has led Rolling Stone to dub Sigfússon the “Icelandic Beck.” Although Seabear isn’t on a par with Mr. Hansen just yet, their sophomore album is very lovely indeed. Full of theremins, fiddles, and shimmering, hushed vocals (almost too hushed—it’s often hard to make out the lyrics), the album marries the sky-reaching dreaminess of Arcade Fire to the melancholy of Elliott Smith. While some songs, like “Cold Summer,” drift by on a cloud of nothingness, others fare much better, like the romantic country-folk of “Leafmask” and the sweet, propulsive “In Winter’s Eyes,” which is eerily reminiscent of Bob Dylan’s “Lay Lady Lay.” Seabear might not break any new ground, but they might just break a few hearts.