Somebody That I Used To Know
"Somebody That I Used to Know" is a song written and recorded by Australian-Belgian singer and songwriter Gotye, featuring New Zealand singer/guitarist Kimbra. The song was released in Australia and New Zealand by Eleven Music on 5 July 2011 as the second single from his third studio album, Making Mirrors (2011). It was later released by Universal Music in December 2011 in the United Kingdom, and in January 2012 in the United States and Ireland. "Somebody That I Used to Know" was written and recorded by Gotye at his parent's house on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria and is lyrically related to the experiences he has had with relationships.
"Somebody That I Used to Know" is a mid-tempo indie pop ballad song. It samples Luiz Bonfá's song "Seville" from his 1967 album Luiz Bonfa Plays Great Songs. The song received positive reception from most music critics, which noted the similarities between the song and works by Sting and American folk band Bon Iver, but said that it was crafted "for the music-buying masses". It was also compared with Human League's "Don't You Want Me". The song won the Triple J Hottest 100 poll at the end of 2011, as well as ARIA Awards for song of the year and best video, while Kimbra was voted best female artist and Gotye was named best male artist and producer of the year.
Commercially, "Somebody That I Used to Know" has become Gotye's most successful and signature song. It topped the ARIA Singles Chart, UK Singles Chart and Billboard Hot 100, as well as 23 other national charts, and reached the top 10 in more than 30 countries around the world. As of May 2012, the song has sold more than one million copies in the United Kingdom, becoming the best selling single of the year so far, and over six million in the United States. It is the third-best-selling single of all-time in Australia, having been certified 10× platinum. It is the most downloaded song of all time in Belgium, the Netherlands' most successful chart single ever (although other singles have sold more copies), and the third best-selling digital single in Germany. "Somebody That I Used to Know" has sold more than 10 million copies worldwide, becoming one of the best-selling digital singles of all time.
"Somebody That I Used to Know" has been performed several times live on shows such as The Voice, American Idol and Saturday Night Live. It was covered by Canadian indie rock group Walk off the Earth using a single guitar played simultaneously by all five band members. The original single's accompanying music video was directed by Natasha Pincus. The video premiered on 30 July 2011 and shows Gotye and Kimbra naked against a white backdrop, and while they sing, a pattern of paint gradually covers his skin and the backdrop via stop motion animation.