Keep your ears open to the unexpected present, the unpredictable future. To new musicians – when they say, ‘It’s all been done before’, tell them they haven’t heard what you’re going to do next weekend.
Nils Frykdahl, The Prog Rock Website, 2002
Formed: 1999, Oakland, California, USA
Featured album: Of Natural History (2004)
SLEEPYTIME GORILLA MUSEUM’s first performance ‘was done for the benefit of a single banana-slug in an abandoned Newberry’s department store in downtown Oakland.’ At least that’s what the liner notes to their first album claim. As far as origin stories go, it’s ridiculous and, obviously, utter bullshit. But playful mystification and highly detailed nonsense are what this band is all about.
Label: One Little Indian
Producer: Björk, Mark Bell
Cover art: M/M Paris (design), Inez and Vinoodh (photography)
‘DID OUR LANGUAGE commence with singing?’ Charles Darwin asked in his collected notebooks from 1836-1841. ‘Is this the origin of our pleasure in music?’ While cognitive psychologists, neurologists, anthropologists, and even animal psychologists are still asking this question, there is no doubt that singing is one of humanity’s oldest activities. On Medúlla, Björk taps into the elemental power of the voice to say something about what it means to be human.
I have this utopian view that the common person – like your gran, or the guy who works in the sandwich shop – actually wants an adventure, to hear something they’ve never heard before. I might seem leftfield, but I’m really not trying to be weird, you know.
Björk, Daily Telegraph, 2005
Born: 1965, Reykjavík, Iceland
Featured album: Medúlla (2004)