Commenting on the gig, Björk said: “Too often battles being fought for nature turn into something negative and into mudslinging. We will not go that way, we are not saying that this and that is forbidden, we are rather asking ‘what about all these other possibilities?‘ The 21st century is not going to be another oil century but rather a century where we need to recycle, think green and design both power plants and our surroundings in harmony with nature.”
The event will raise awareness of the destruction of Iceland’s cherished natural landscape (the largest unspoilt wilderness left in Europe), through increasingly invasive aluminium smelting activity, and a new book by Andri Snær Magnason, Dreamland: a self help manual to a frightened nation, that details the destructive behavior from an intelligent point of view and suggests what can be done to rectify such massive problems.
The book, a best-seller in Iceland, is published in English next month by Citizen Press and has already attracted worldwide attention due to its radical style, in the vein of Naomi Klein, Malcolm Gladwell and Jared Diamond, and critical acclaim from the Icelandic media. It has also won the Icelandic Literary Award and the Icelandic Bookseller Prize.
Held in a large park near the centre of Reykjavik, the concert also features local musician Ólöf Arnalds and will be held between 5pm and 10pm on Saturday 28th June 2008.
Entry is free and all of the performances will be in broad daylight with Iceland’s capital city and dramatic rolling scenery providing a perfect backdrop to what is expected to be one of the biggest concerts the country has seen.
Both headlining artists have recently finished a series of touring commitments, with Sigur Rós releasing their brand new album ‘Með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust’ on June 23 and Björk following 2007’s ‘Volta’ with a huge worldwide tour.
If Dreamland: a self help manual to a frightened nation was an equivalent best seller in America, 20 million people would own a copy. Now translated into English, respected Icelandic author Andri Snær Magnason offers a unique perspective on the environmental problems that two musical superstars have dedicated a whole concert to addressing – that of the dramatic increase in aluminium smelting destroying pristine Icelandic nature.
The book was a runaway hit in Iceland and has inspired a renaissance of environmental consciousness, specifically against the industrial metal processing plants that are ruining vast chunks of Europe’s largest unspoilt wilderness. Andri’s work has been published in twenty countries around the world and he’s collaborated with several musicians, including fellow Icelanders Múm.