The Guardian

Drawing Restraint 9 ★★★★☆

**** out of 5 (One Little Indian)

A world away from the self-parodic creative lowpoint that was Selmasongs, the music for Lars Von Trier’s tacky Björksploitation melodrama Dancer in the Dark, Björk’s second foray into film music soundtracks the new work by her partner Matthew Barney. Barney and Björk are a perfect coupling : his unsettling phantasmagorias and her erotic meditations on love that chafe against the strictures of what constitutes a song.

A return to instrumentation after her last, vocals-only album, Medúlla, Drawing Restraint 9 nonetheless glistens with strange textures—throat singing, Noh vocal performance and sho, a Japanese instrument with 17 reeds and 15 pipes (the film is set on a Japanese whaling vessel). The most conventional piece is opening track Gratitude, in which Will Oldham sings the text of a letter to General MacArthur in thanks for the lifting of the US moratorium on whaling over shimmers of harp and celeste.

This isn’t always an easy record—it demands stillness and patience from the listener, but it is never less than fascinating and frequently breathtakingly beautiful.

publié dans The Guardian - 15.07.2005

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