Metro uk

Volta review

Fourteen years after her sparky Debut, Björk goes pop again. On her own terms, obviously.

Teaming up for a few tracks with powerhouse producer Timbaland might be de rigueur nowadays but in the presence of an Icelandic diva, he’s compelled to unleash his experimental flair – the twitchy, new wave groove of lead single Earth Intruders, featuring Congo instrumentalists Konono No.1, and the uneasy beauty of Hope, a rumination on a female suicide bomber, including kora melodies from Malian superstar Toumani Diabaté.

Typically, Tim’s input would be the main event ; here, it competes for the spotlight.

Funky rhythms emerge from random noises ; foghorns harmonise, a military march turns punk on Declare Independence (’Damn colonists/Ignore their patronising’).

It’s all underpinned by Björk’s unmistakable vocals ; when she cuts loose, the effect is still jaw-dropping.

It takes a distinctive partner to duet with that voice – and Antony Hegarty’s androgynous, sensual tones are a perfect foil on Dull Flame Of Desire and Juvenile.

Densely packed yet sharply catchy, this is arguably Björk’s strongest album yet.

She makes hyperbole sound entirely reasonable – extraordinary, unpredictable, sublime.

Arwa Haider

publié dans Metro uk - 30.04.2007

 

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