Hollowverse

Gotye's wiki by Caitlin Frye

Gotye, also known as Wouter “Wally” De Backer, was born in Bruges, Belgium and was raised mostly in Montmorency, Melbourne, Australia.

Gotye seems to be non-religious in a Christian sort of way. He celebrates Christmas–probably the most secular of all Christian holidays.[1]

His song, “In Your Light” is often interpreted as a religious song,[2] and Gotye himself described it as “vaguely Christian pop.”[3] But he also called the song “a piece of shit,”[4] so Christian rockers should be wary of putting him on their top ten list.

And that’s about it for Gotye. There doesn’t seem to be another shred of evidence that he’s religious, spiritual, agnostic, atheist, or anything in between. It seems to me that if Gotye’s religious about anything, it’s making music.

Inadvertent Democrat and Anti-Consumerist

Gotye has, however inadvertently, become a vehicle for political statement. His popular song, “Somebody That I Used To Know” was parodied to death on YouTube, including the video “Obama That I Used To Know” that has at last check a million and a half views.[5]

Gotye himself is on the liberal end of things, and seems like he might be a good fit for Australia’s Green Party, even though he hasn’t outright endorsed them. His song “Eyes Wide Open” imagines a post-apocalyptic world destroyed by over-consumption and environmental abuse:

But it was like to stop consuming’s to stop being human,/ And why would I make a change if you won’t?/ We’re all in the same boat, staying afloat for the moment.[6]

He says the feeling of helplessness that he is contributing to the destruction of the world as we know it is defeating:

How do my actions today make me complicit in all the mining Australia is doing to be an affluent society that allows me to buy this product at this price? . . . The song reflects on that nihilist sense I have sometimes that no matter what I try to do, the balance of humans and matter will eventually walk off a cliff.[7]

Meanwhile, Gotye is burrowing into his studio and making music to make the rest of us reflect on our role in the impending apocalypse.


  1. Gotye: ‘I Like A Lot Of Time To Myself.’ ↩︎

  2. Gotye – In Your Light. ↩︎

  3. Gotye: ‘I Like A Lot Of Time To Myself.’ ↩︎

  4. Gotye interview. ↩︎

  5. Obama That I Used To Know. ↩︎

  6. GOTYE LYRCIS – Eyes Wide Open. ↩︎

  7. Gotye interview. ↩︎