Iceland's Seabear returns in March with lovely second album, 'We Built a Fire'

With all due respect to Rolling Stone’s David Fricke, calling Seabear leader Sindri Már Sigfússon the “Icelandic Beck” isn’t particularly helpful. Not only are such descriptions reductive, they are dismissive, even when they’re meant as compliments.

Also, in this case, the comparison doesn’t really fit: Sigfússon has none of the arch slacker sentiment that characterizes Beck’s best work. Rather, the Icelandic musician sings in hushed, thoughtful tones on Seabear’s sophomore album, “We Built a Fire.”

The record, due March 5 on Morr Music, was a collaborative effort among all seven band members. The songs are open and airy, layering guitar, piano, strings and horns over steady drum beats for a sound that is warm and a little rustic — like a cheerful fire in a cabin at dusk on a snowy winter day. It’s a lovely album, and it sounds nothing like Beck.

Lion Face Boy/Cold Summer (stream)

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