Sigur Rós don’t generally take on outside work, have turned down offers for commercial use of their songs and usually avoid looking “backwards” when it comes to recording, but they were only too happy to record a new version of their best-known track ‘Hoppípolla’ for the BBC’s Planet Earth II.
The track was first used in the Planet Earth series in 2006, and given how much the world has changed in 10 years, the BBC felt it was fitting that the song does too.
The band apparently ‘felt very strongly about Planet Earth II and working with Sir David Attenborough,’ tracking down the original stems for ‘Hoppípolla’ to create the re-worked version, which isn’t hugely different but a little heavier on drums.
“In Iceland we are blessed with a seemingly inexhaustible supply of wild and untamed places,” Sigur Rós told the BBC, “but even here, in the very furthest flung corners of Europe’s largest wilderness, the scars of human industry are visible, the plans for future encroachments, by dam and smelter, legion.
“If lost, the Icelandic highlands are not recoverable. Around the world the story is the same; the traffic, literally, going in one direction.
“Sigur Rós are proud to be associated with Planet Earth II and its all-important mission to hold us rapt in understanding of, and respect for, this endlessly fascinating, utterly surprising and ultimately fragile place we are lucky enough to call home for a short while.”