Maranda Pleasant: I just saw you play in New York at Radio City Music Hall.
Gotye: Oh, cool!
MP: I think your music resonates deeply and emotionally with so many people. You have an incredible body of work. What is it that inspires you the most?
G: Okay! [laughing] I guess it’s going to sound very New Age but, it’s different life energies. I don’t know if it’s necessarily competing tensions or inspirations that come together that end up sort of resulting in songs for me.
With this project in particular, lyrics came to be triggered by life experiences, whether personal experiences with friends and family or things I’m observing friends and family go through. Sometimes it’s books or movies or reading other people’s stories. and extending and extrapolating for them. But then, just playing, tinkering with sound, manipulating, capturing sound, and how combinations of it can go together. That can somehow conjure up stories, conjure up memories, and relate to experiences in life that lead to songs. If I could put that in some way more eloquently—I wish I could just say, you know, “macaroni and cheese!”
MP: What is it that makes you deeply vulnerable?
MP: [laughing] You’re like, what the f*ck interview is this?!
G: No, it’s good. Although I’m sure I’ll be failing horribly to respond, on the spot, with anything very well-considered. But what makes me vulnerable? Well, my ego, probably. I kind of like to try to let go of it. Or feeling out of my depth. In various aspects of my life, whether it’s musical or personal. Emotionally,
I feel mostly out-of-depth, like I will never quite learn how to be what I should be. And that makes me feel pretty vulnerable a lot of the time.