There is a view
And the spine
Straight and erect
Hungry and curious
Looking forward to

…the air is thinner here…

She came here to lose face
Got down on her knees
The beast is back
On 4 legs
Set her clock to the moon
Raises her spine

Vertebrae by vertebrae


I have been filled with
Steam for months, for years
Same old cloud
Claustrophobic in me

Let it burst
Like old train sounds
Make them leave me, nature

By vertebrae
By vertebrae
By vertebrae
By vertebrae

 ! My arms ooze out of my shoulders !
And the arms ooze out of my shoulders

I curl my tail
Inwards, inwards
Set my clock on the moon

Vertebrae by vertebrae

Please release
This pressure off me

Please release
This pressure off me

Please release
This pressure off me

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Vertebrae By Vertebrae


Ecriture : Björk
Production, programmation et édition : Damian Taylor & Björk
Beats : Mark Bell
Ingénieurs du son : Damian Taylor & Michael Pärt
Cuivres : sample de Drawing Restraint 9

A propos du titre

« The Beast Is Back », where did that come from ?
It’s a long story. I hope I can squash it into a radio show, it’s a really long story. But part of it for me was having a daughter, because I had had a son before, and I heard from a lot of my friends that when you have a child the same sex as you suddenly a gate opens. Like I had a daughter, and suddenly I understood my mom better, and her mom, and her mom, and her mom. You get this kind of line. I’ve heard fathers say that about the first son they have, and they suddenly realize the relationship between them and their fathers, and back back back back. And suddenly you get this gate opening way to the beginning of mankind. And I started reading a lot of books sort of about that stuff, and again being slightly influenced the Iraq war, how organized religion is not a very good idea, for me at least. Like with what was happening before this organized religion thing happened, when we were more in touch with the right side of our brain, more intuitive and impulsive. Things like natural medicine, and wasn’t like you were a witch, and you weren’t burned. And this came into the fact of how I’m going to explain to my daughter stuff about women and their position in the world, and things that are pretty female. I mean, at the end of the day I still think we’re all both male and female, but...
But it sort of became this joke-song, kind of like a b-movie soundtrack to, "the Earth Mother, RISES back from the mud !" Like the earth goddess as a zombie. [laughs] And she’s going to go Vertebrae by Vertebrae, back on her hind legs, the beast is back ! Also taking a little piss on how scared organized religion is of nature, they’re just terrified. And I just find it so hilarious, I mean what’s so scary about it ? For example : the fact that in the year you have thirteen full moons, and women thirteen times a year become red. And they made the months into twelve months, and every year everybody’s still like, "Oh, is there 28 days in February, or 29, or... ?" Everyday you have to calculate instead of just having it 28 days and thirteen months, I mean come on. It’s kind of stubborn with organized religion how it’s like, "No, we control, and we’re not part of nature, and we’re Christians !" Or whatever, Muslims, Jews, all that stuff. "We’re gonna act outside of all that, and we’re not gonna take part of all that." And I live in a flat in New York that happens to be on the twelfth floor, and there’s no thirteenth floor. There’s no thirteenth floor in all of the skyscrapers in Manhattan, and I’m like, "You’re not THAT scared of nature ? !" You know, ’Friday the 13th’ and nature is just like some horror movie. So basically this song is sort of the earth goddess rising up on her hind legs, grabbing a crayon, and crossing out all the fourteens in Manhattan and writing thirteen. The beast is back ! [laughs]

Volta Interview, XFM, 05/04/2007


Les cuivres tombent en grappes, et frappent à grands coups pour faire pénétrer leur dissonance anxiogène. « The beast is back » chante, puis crie, puis hurle, la diva. On prend peur, le sourire aux lèvres. L’intensité monte, toute carton-pâte qu’elle soit, réminiscente des talents de conteuse de Björk, et les boucles à suspens (tirées de la B.O. de Drawing Restraint 9) donnent la chaire de poule jusqu’à Bernard Herrmann.

Vibration music, avril 2007