From the Lost Interview:
I’m clearly a hippie. All the people I worked with were clearly in that category too. Ask yourself, what is a hippie? This is an old word that has a lot of connotations. Remember that the Sixties happened in the early Seventies. That’s sort of when I came of age. So I saw a lot of the this. A lot of it happened in our backyard here.
To me, the spark of that was that there was something beyond what you see every day. There’s something going on here in life beyond just a job and a family and two cars and a garage and a career. There’s something more going on, another side of the coin, that we don’t talk about much. We experience it when there’s gaps, when everything’s not ordered and perfect, when there’s kind of a gap you experience this inrush of something. And a lot of people have set out all throughout history to find out what that was. Whether it’s Thoreau or the Indian mystics or whomever it might be. And the hippie movement got a little bit of that and they wanted to find out what that was about; and that life wasn’t about what they saw their parents were doing. And of course the pendulum swung too far the other way and it was crazy. But there was a germ of something there.
It’s the same thing that causes people to want to be poets instead of bankers, you know? And I think that’s a wonderful thing. And I think that that same spirit can be put into products and those products can be manufactured and given to people and they can sense that spirit. If you talk to people who use the Macintosh, they love it. You don’t hear people saying they love products very often, really. But you could feel it in there. There was something really wonderful there.
So I don’t think that most of the really best people that I’ve worked with have worked with computers for the sake of working with computers; they work with computers because it is the medium that is best capable of transmitting some feeling that you have that you wanna share with other people. Does that make any sense to you? Before they invented these things all these people would have done other things. But computers were invented and they did come along and all these people did get interested in school or before school and said, “this is the medium that I can say something in.” You know?
Bill Holm’s poetic description of Icelandic confirms my love for Sigur Rós:
In this language, no industrial revolution;
no pasteurized milk; no oxygen, no telephone;
only sheep, fish, horses, water falling.
The middle class can hardly speak it.
In this language, no flush toilet; you stumble
through dark and rain with a handful of rags.
The door groans; the old smell comes
up from under the earth to meet you.
But this language believes in ghosts;
chairs rock by themselves under the lamp; horses
neigh inside an empty gully, nothing
at the bottom but moonlight and black rocks.
The woman with marble hands whispers
this language to you in your sleep; faces
come to the window and sing rhymes; old ladies
wind long hair, hum, tat, fold jam inside pancakes.
In this language, you can’t chit-chat
holding a highball in your hand, can’t
even be polite. Once the sentence starts its course,
all your grief and failure come clear at last.
Old inflections move from case to case,
gender to gender, softening consonants, darkening
vowels, till they sound like the sea moving
icebergs back and forth in its mouth.