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current competitions

ljóspappír fan art competition

sigur rós light sensitive paper competition

included in the limited special edition of inni was a pack of light sensitive paper sheets (ljóspappír). in the ljóspappír competition we would like to invite fans who have purchased the special edition to upload and share their experimentations with this paper for the rest of us to see. the public can vote on all submissions and the top images will be submitted to the band, who will pick the winner. the winner will have their design used in a piece of sigur ró 2012 merchandise, as well as a 100,000 icelandic krónur (apx. £500 / $800) prize. head over to the competition page to upload/vote on submissions:

previous competitions:

september 2011: klippa & inni special edition coompetition

as part of the "inni" special edition, there is a unique concert artefact included in the package and for our september 2011 competition we've set the following question: if you can guess how many pieces of cloth we were able to generate from kjartan, orri, georg and jonsi’s outfits as worn at alexandra palace you can win your choice of either the first or last numbered limited edition, signed by the band, as well as the unique light-sensitive t-shirt in a size of your choice. (clue, whilst it’s an inexact science, we tried to keep the pieces around 2-inches square).

there were two winners who guessed the correct amount: 6996. the first person to answer correctly chose to go for the first edition, so the second winner got the last numbered edition.

june / july 2009: ágætis byrjun competition

to celebrate the 10 year anniversary of ágætis byrjun's release in iceland, we've set up a competition where you can win a special copy of ágætis byrjun. the winner of the competition will receive a numbered limited edition double LP heavyweight vinyl from the band's label in iceland, smekkleysa.

the question was: what does the title 'viðrar vel til loftárása' refer to? - the answer is: "the band named the song after a quote sarcastically spoken by an icelandic weatherman during the war in Kosovo: "viðrar vel til loftárása" (meaning "today is good weather for an airstrike")

the winner has been notified

june 2009: depeche mode vinyl single competition

as we mentioned last month, jónsi has remixed the song “come back” for the latest depeche mode single “peace”. its only available on the 7″ vinyl version - and to celebrate the release we’re running a competition - we have five copies of the vinyl to give away.

the five winners have been notified.

may 2009: split sides dvd competition

the question was: in what year was “split sides” premiered?

this competition is now over and the correct answer was: 2003. the two winners have been notified. thanks to the 700+ people who entered!.

(many thanks to microcinema for supplying us with the prizes)

april 2009: von vinyl competition

in spring 2009, little indian will release a heavyweight vinyl pressing of the bands first album, von. we have one copy to give away to a person who answers this question correctly: “what is the longest song on “von” ?.

(this competition is now closed, thanks to everyone who entered - the answer was ‘hafssól’)

autumn 2008: gobbledigook remix competition

sigur rós set up a gobbledigook remix competition on youtube in september 2008. an instrumental mp3 of gobbledigook and the icelandic and english lyrics were provided to use in the remix in any way the remixers pleased. the "most gratifying" entry as judged by the band received a signed copy of the deluxe edition of með suð í eyrum við spilum endalaust. head over here to see the winning entries.

2008 competition: artist in residence promotion

we are pleased to announce the details of our new competition. as mentioned on our news page, a new book, 'in a frozen sea - a year with sigur rós', will be released on june 1st. in conjunction with this book, a fantastic new website has been created which will, amongst other things, showcase some of the photography from the book. we are offering sigur rós fans the opportunity to have their own photography, music or art showcased on the new website during a special week long collaboration with eighteen seconds before sunrise.

there are no restrictions on the type of art or photography and they do not necessarily have to have any connection to sigur rós or iceland. once all the entries have been submitted, we will choose 10 finalists for the photography and art category and 6 finalists for music. there will then be a one week showcase of these works on the artists in residence website. following this, the final winning entry will be chosen in each category. the winners will be chosen by a panel including sigur rós. the prizes will be as follows:

- 16 finalists (10 photo/art & 6 music) will receive a copy of the book signed by sigur rós
- 2 overall winners (1 photo/art & 1 music) will receive a copy of the limited edition version of the book signed by sigur rós.

the competition will be open from may 1st to june 15th and the winners will have their work showcased during the week beginning july 1st. entries should be submitted to this email address and be in either jpg or mp3 format. if you have any queries, please use this same email address.

summer 2005 giveaway

for this competition, we gave away ten official 'takk...' t-shirts made by the toothfaeries, alex somers and lukka sigurðardóttir. fans were simply asked to email their name and address and winners were randomly selected on the week of takk's release date. the lucky winners were sent one of these t-shirt designs:
design one | design two | design three | design four | design five | design six

autumn 2004 competition

this competition ended september 30th 2004. winners were given tickets to the dance piece split sides by merce cunningham, which features original music written by sigur rós and radiohead.

spring 2004 competition

this competition was put up on april 1st 2004, where fans were asked to send in a recording of themselves singing a part from flugufrelsarinn. the first prize was a copy of the new sigur rós album (minus packaging) three months before its release. this turned out to be an april fool's day joke but we ended up getting a good amount of heartfelt and interesting submissions which we enjoyed listening to.

spring 2003 competition

the prizes for this 5 week competition during april and may were 50 artwork stencils designed by the band, 20 sigur rós balaclava hats, 25 copies of the vaka (untitled #1) single in 3" cd, 25 copies of the single in 5" cd accompanied by a dvd containing the band's three music videos, and 20 copies of the hlemmur soundtrack. the question required to be answered to become eligible was 'what was the first song jónsi learned to play on guitar?', which was wrathchild by iron maiden.

winter 2002 competitions

these competitions went on in october-december 2002. prizes for these competitions: jónsi's bow, signed copy of ( ), 1-track promos, international press kits, badge packs, postcards, stickers.

summer 2002 competition

the object of this competition was to transcribe, translate and interpret jónsi's vocals in the new song njósnavélin (a.k.a. the nothing song). the tricky part about this task is that njósnavélin, like all other new songs, has no actual lyrics. jónsi just sings gibberish that fits with the music so it's up to the contestants to literalize the sounds and interpret exactly what jónsi is singing about, sound by sound. the contestants were asked to analyze the first verse of the song, amounting to 40 seconds. [you can download a clip of this part of the song here.]

in the numerous entries we received, it's interesting that the majority of them seemed to interpret the song as something emotional and dramatic, such as the end of a relationship or alike (many entries shared a common theme of some sort of loss). some entries were highly profound and poetic, with analytical explanations of the songs in which the level of detail was almost frightening. others chose to interpret the song visually and drew a sketch of what they though the song is about.

we've put together a collection of some of the more interesting entries we received, which you can read here.

the winner of this competition was, with the following astounding entry.
[note that this entry is completely ficticious.]


A recent study of mine concludes that the Hopelandic language Sigur Rós uses is derived from a little known ancient language, Essil (roughly translated as "light"). Though its speakers are long dead and their country long forgotten, I have learned about its culture through its surviving art and poetry. "Njósnavélin," a new song by Sigur Rós, uses a piece of Essilian poetry for its lyrics. Unfortunately, literal or even poetic translation fails to fully explain the concepts behind the words, so an explanation will follow the transliteration and translation. (Although Essil uses its own alphabet, there is as of now no font to type it. A catalogue of the alphabet's characters and the culture's artwork might be available in the future.)

Njósnavélin in Essil

(original title: "ete tas Essilev" = "Light's traveller")

Essil on
Essil on erifet al
Essil on
Essil on eriftel al
Essil on

(Pronunciation: ee-sile on [long "i," as in "hi" and long "o" as in "throw"], er-o-fet all)

Literal Translation:

I travelled through light
I travelled through light; I am not afraid


In Essilian mythology, light was the source of everything. People were born of light and remained immortal as long as they upheld nature and light. The preferred communication of scholars and monks was thought and telepathy, which they understood as the pathway of light that bound the minds of all. But for the sake of posterity, they recorded their thoughts in Essil, the language named for light itself.

Their belief was that water preserved light, and from this preservation of light they came into being. This song, "ete tas Essilev," is an account of their sort of birth... instead of reproduction and natural child-birth, the people of this culture claimed to come into existence from the water and light. The verb "essil" is a concept of both birth and thought. The speaker is talking about swimming in the water before birth, a collection of light and souls (or, arguably, a single soul shared by all). The form "E(e)ssil on" is a first person perfect form of the verb. Our understanding of the perfect form has changed over time. Instead of a single action in the past, the perfect tense here is understood to mean a continuous action... this soul was floating and travelling from the beginning of time, and is still a part of their "essil."

The alternate line's "erifet al" is a first person negative present of the verb "rifet," which means not simply to fear, but to be incredibly fearful, to be terrified. Why would one consider birth fearful in the first place? Surely with such a languid tone and the lazy repetition of phrases and lines, this is not a song of fear, nor is it a song of the abscence of fear... it speaks of a peaceful ignorance. The present here, too, is not to be taken in its true form. Rather, it means the person was not afraid at birth, nor are they now. The explanation of this is the Essilian culture considered coming into existence and existence as the same thing, a continuing and never-ending process. So where does fear come in? The Essilians are doing two things: first, they are praising light, Essil, for its comfort and power, but secondly, the speaker is asserting his belief in Essil... therefore he is speaking of his trust that he will continue existence and not be revoked his life (a thought expressed in the noun/infinitive "ocente").

Taking all this in mind, a poetic translation becomes more possible. But, for the sake of the original scheme, it is necessary that its simple repetition and ideology be preserved. Thus the poetic translation:

In this lake of souls
In this lake of souls, I lose all fear


jonsi's broken bow

the winner was awarded jónsi's recently-broken bow, signed by everyone in the band. here is a photo of the magnificent piece (click on it for a closer look).

summer 2001 competition

the object of this competition was to create a mathematical equation of sigur rós' sound, without using the words 'glacial', 'elves', 'whales', 'volcanic', 'landscape' or 'angels'. the winner of the last competition was amadeep chana, with the following magnificently pretentious entry:

state of mind [desire + expectation] in which 1 believes 1's desires = realised * [imperceptible, darkly romantic drops of aural power + tinted radiance + unadulterated purity]² / [delicate, transcendent swim - slow-burning sincere melancholic edge] + vivid soundscapes that = outer reaches of their collective imaginations + expansive, voluminous meisterwork bristling with beauty/intensity = 10minute opiums = innovative art = sonic masterpieces = 100% sigur rós.

orri's old floor tom

amadeep was awarded orri's floor tom drum which he had stopped using. the skin is signed by everyone in the band. (tiles not included.)

summer 2000 competition

the object of this competition was to name as many instruments as you could recognise on ágûtis byrjun. the winner of this competition was ola szkudlapska, who managed to name a whopping 24 legitimite instruments, and received a signed copy of ágûtis byrjun on lovely 12" vinyl. the runner up prize of some signed posters was won by 'jon'.