Jonsi (J?n _?r Birgisson) and Alex (Somers) worked on the album that became RICEBOY SLEEPS on and off for almost five years. After taking a month to finish and mix it, the result is an album that sounds remarkably like the band Jonsi fronts, Sigur Ros. A lot of times side projects serve as outlets for music that the band would never attempt; Riceboy Sleeps sounds like it's made of stray Sigur Ros moments the group spent tuning orchestras, warming up vocal choirs or checking levels. Fortunately even stray moments by Sigur Ros prove to be lovely and transcendent. The songs on the album drift on shifting waves of strings (provided by longtime SR collaborators Amiina), children's choirs, treated pianos and underwater soundscapes. The music Jonsi and Alex create is ambient but not boring, quiet but not sleepy (despite the name); the combination of sounds and the way the duo manipulate them manages to hold interest even though the songs are lengthy and have a very consistent tone. It's really less of a tone and more of a spell, the introspective, meditative songs take hold quickly and leave you feeling the album long after it stops spinning.
Rolling Stone (p.86) - 3.5 stars out of 5 -- "It is unhurried but enticing music, especially when a distinctly human element like Birgisson's falsetto in 'Indian Summer' pokes through the hum and crackle."
Spin (p.91) - "The duo's debut plays like SKETCHES FOR SIGUR, with whispering strings and synths floating calmly for long stretches, sometimes decorated with nonverbal vocalizing."
Alternative Press (p.116) - 3.5 stars out of 5 -- "[A] collection of songs that capture the grandiosity of Sigur Ros but revel in more subtleties than crescendos."
Q (Magazine) (p.103) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[T]here are echoes of Sigur Ros in the softly shifting textures of 'Atlas Song,' while the calm beauty of 'Indian Summer' evokes Brian Eno's classic ambient works."
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