in early 2001, sigur rós set out to record some songs in their newly-completed álafoss swimming pool studio with their friend steindór andersen. steindór andersen is a fisherman and chairman of the icelandic poetry society, called iðunn. steindór is a chanter/singer of the traditional icelandic epic poetry form called rímur. rímur are narrative poems which generally tell stories of icelandic heroes and epic battles which have been passed down generations in iceland through word-of-mouth since the 14th century. rímur were regarded as a performance art; a good rímur chanter would engage his listeners with his clever rhyming schemes and catchy melodies. rímur were performed on winter nights when inhabitants sat occupied by their work (making clothing from wool, wreathing horsehairs into ropes, cutting tools from wood, etc.) for seven centuries, this was icelanders' only branch of entertainment and it's only recently that this tradition has dissolved.
the steindór andersen ep contains six songs, three of which sigur rós accompany him on. two songs feature steindór alone and the last song on the cd is steindór and his friend sigurður sigurðarson singing the poem lûkurinn (the stream), recorded under the bridge of the stream by sigur rós's studio.
1000 copies of the cd were printed and sold in the spring tour of 2001, where steindór joined the band to perform the songs from the ep. (here is a photo of steindór performing with the band.) the cd was sold in a blank white paper case and the artwork on the cd itself was minimal. there are currently no plans to release this cd.
here you can read what steindór is chanting on all six tracks.
here is a video (quicktime format / 4:07 mins / 3.0 mb) of steindór performing 'hugann seiıa svalli frá' with sigur rós at the small pub across the street from the band's studio in álafoss.
- mansöngur (with sigur rós) [6:18 mins]
- rímur af göngu-hrólfi (solo) [1:00 mins]
- fjöll í austri (with sigur rós) [6:00 mins]
- vorvísur (solo) [1:28 mins]
- á ferð til breiðafjarðar vorið 1922 (with sigur rós) [6:02 mins]
- lækurinn (duet with sigurður sigurðarson) [5:49 mins]