Making ethereal, ambient soundcapes that seem to grow from the stark, icy, volcanic landscapes that they inherit, Sigur Ros have steadily built a loyal cult following, gaining huge respect from critics and peers. Named after Jonsi's younger sister, the teenage friends formed in 1994 signing with the Sugacubes-owned label Bad Taste and releasing debut album Von (1997) in their native Iceland. The international release of Ageatus Byrjun (1999) brought the lads to worldwide attention, winning them the prestigious Shortlist Music Prize for albums that have sold less than 500,000 copies in the US. Constantly beguiling and equally baffling, vocalist Jonsi is known for his falsetto voice, playing guitar with a cello bow and his unique lyrics of made-up, gobbledegook words referred to as Vonlenska or Hopelandic. After the success of fifth studio album Meo Suo I Eyrum Vio Spilum Endalaust (2008), which peaked at Number 5 in the UK and Number 15 in the US, the band took an indefinite hiatus in January 2010.