The song's imagery about an idyllic swimming trip are from John Bayley's memoir of his wife Iris Murdoch, Elegy for Iris. The passage recounts a happy time together before the late author's sad slide into dementia.
Iris Murdoch (1909-1999) was diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease in 1997 and died two years later in Oxford.
The sunrise ballad came from the writing sessions Alt-J did for British indie film Leave To Remain.
Bright Eyes' Conor Oberst, Lianne La Havas, Marika Hackman and Sivu were recruited to add vocals and whistling which were then spliced to fit between those sung by Joe Newman.
AnonymousThis is an incredible song that I have used on my annual Black Friday radio show in Chattanooga 2 or 3 times. I absolutely love the harmonies and had no idea what the lyrics were about. Now I know; f--king incredible!
"Friends In Low Places" by Garth Brooks was written by two Nashville songwriters after a meal in a local restaurant. One of them forgot his money, but said not to worry, "I have friends in low places. I know the cook."