Review The Artist (12)
ONE of the wildest vocalists in all of popular music, Bjork Gudmundsdottir (known popularly simply as Bjork) has spent most of her life creating artful, experimental music that defies classification. Those who know her only by her solo career may be surprised to learn that she released albums with three separate bands prior to going it alone in 1993, and in fact this eccentric and original talent has had some measure of fame since she was sixteen.
When Bjork was born in Reykjavik, Iceland, it was not immediately apparent that she would someday become the world's best-known Icelandic musician, if not the country's most identifiable citizen. As a child, she studied flute, piano, and voice, and by 1979, she had joined her first band. At fifteen, she formed the group Tappi Tikarass, a post-punk outfit influenced strongly by Siouxsie and the Banshees. In 1982, two of the band's songs were included in a documentary on the Icelandic New Wave called Rock in Reykjavik, and as a result, Bjork was soon recognized as one of the area's most promising new talents.
In 1983, Bjork and other stars of the Icelandic New Wave were invited to join together as a sort of supergroup for a special radio program. She and several of the other members ?among them, Einar Orn and Sigtryggur Baldursson ?got along rather well, and by the fall of that year, they had formed a new band, Kukl. By the time Tappi Tikarass's second and final album came out late in 1983, Kukl had become Bjork's main creative outlet. Over the next two years, she and the band put out two albums, toured Europe, and began to develop a jazzy, political post-punk sound. But by mid-1986, Kukl was finished.
Bjork and her husband, guitarist Thor Eldon, had a son, Sindri, born June 8, 1986, and on the same day a new band was founded, featuring the two happy parents, plus several former Kukl members. By the end of the year, they had finalized the group's name: Sykurmolarnir, or, in English, the Sugarcubes. The success of the Icelandic version of the group's dreamy and remarkable first single, "Birthday," in 1987, led to them signing a record deal with Elektra. In spring of 1988, their debut album, Life's Too Good, was released in America to glowing reviews. Besides "Birthday," the jangly, somewhat puzzling "Motorcrash" also received a good bit of airplay. A second CD, Here Today Tomorrow Next Week, didn't fare as well, however. In 1990, Bjork took some time out to record Gling Glo, an album of traditional Icelandic jazz tunes.
Though the Sugarcubes' third album, 1992's Stick Around for Joy, generated the aptly titled single, "Hit," the band broke up later that year. By that time, most of the Sugarcubes' notoriety focused around Bjork anyway; her departure to begin a solo career made sense. The Sugarcubes' swan song, It's It, was released late in 1992; an album of re-mixes, it presaged Bjork's solo work with dance re-mixes.
Having split up with Thor, Bjork and her son moved to London in 1993. The move allowed her to work with producers in the British dance music scene, and it was one of the finest, Nellee Hooper, who helmed Bjork's first solo album, Debut. Highlighted by a tremendous single, the timpani-and-sampled-guitar-fueled "Human Behaviour," Debut received wildly varying reviews, getting trashed by Rolling Stone but lauded by many others. The numbers tell the real story: sales figures for Debut finally established Bjork as a star in America.
In 1995, Bjork followed up with the more melancholy Post. It didn't make the same kind of sales impact as Debut, despite the hugely entertaining, Busby Berkeley-ish video for "Blow a Fuse (It's Oh So Quiet)," a Bjork-does-big-band-jazz extravaganza. Early 1997 saw the release of Telegram, in which nearly every track from Post was either re-mixed or re-recorded by collaborators ranging from Dillinja to Deodato to the Brodsky Quartet. Where Bjork goes from here is anyone's guess. She recently conducted a radio interview with Karlheinz Stockhausen, the classical electronic-music pioneer. Will she next create some sort of experimental ambient recording? A new twist on modern dance music? Either way, it's likely to be another bold step along her utterly unique musical path.
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Unmatchable | Reviewer: Randy | 11/27/12
Since first seeing her with the sugarcubes back in the 80s on Saturday night live I fell in love. When she went solo I made sure to get each album she has released. Debut, post, telegram, homogenic, vespertine, medulla, Volta, voltaic biophillia, the biophillia app, selmasongs, gling glo, several singles and DVDs, family tree. I have yet to get drawing restraint however it is on the list as well as bastard the new biophillia remixes album. In a way I have grown with her music and her albums never fall into a monotonous sound. One can be very electronica oriented while the next made up almost entirely accapella. The remixes are outstanding and there are no words for the videos which compliment the music perfectly. It is understandable that she is not as well known as beyonce or lady gaga. With no disrespect to these artists or there fans in my opinion bjork is more a true artist than many others. Her voice alone distintincty beautiful. When I initially purchased her most recent release biophillia it did not immediately leave me loving it however just like many others such as vespertine and medulla it is growing on me and the videos bring something extra to the songs. She is definately a class act and unmatchable by anyone.
a true talent and role model | Reviewer: melanna | 7/8/12
A true talent who never got corrupted by the music industry. So original. Like shuffling cards and breaking ice and touching everything she makes. Writing her own music and lyrics. And being the first person in the world to make an app album with biophilia. Every album is so beautiful so different . I have listened since 89 and never do you see her acting stupid. I respect that a lot. No one is like bjork . People like madonna don't write most of their music. A young girl can see a real talent who never had to wear slutty clothes to grab everybody's attention.
The Heterodox in Her Cosmos | Reviewer: Zarin Rafiuddin | 5/9/10
To make it simple - Bjork is the heterodox in motion - lush fountains of the poetic subscribed by the axial forces of the universe.
She is birthed in a very different womb - poignant and potently energetic and never so casually speaking - her songs radiate inner wisdom - be it cruelly beautiful or beautifully cruel or in the flanks of a skin bared and pierced to poached eggs turning around like the embryonic forces of desire and lust and love - Bjork tongue is a seasoned organ nurtured by knowledge.
She is an unique masterpiece of the world.
She exudes an original voice - with which her high tones accentuate the whole ambiance of her songs - truly prolific is her categories of musical understanding.
She is an original artist of the world. God Bless her - she radiates as a beautiful empress of sound.
How to inspire love through a song. | Reviewer: Glenn Wolter | 10/18/09
Exceptionally gifted, charismatic, transcending love into power with stunning complexaties. Nothing compares... originality is all about her. One word breathtaking...and those eyes, a nymph of Icelandic hypnotic proportions. You fall in love instantly. Personifies total love and immense depth in her work. A fan since I heard debut. Glenn, Australia.
Phenominal! | Reviewer: Tanya Stewart | 7/28/09
It is very simply for me to say that Bjork is a artist who is the epitome of art through song, and her performances.
When I first was introduced to Bjork's music I was left in a trance of purely being able to reach the depths of my inner self. I am surely grateful for Bjork being such a mezmerizing artist, who is truly a gift to all who experience her and her music.
I love you Bjork, and thank you for just being you.
The Purity Of Soul | Reviewer: Sardar M Kamran Khan Saddozai | 2/6/09
Dancer in the dark made me know Bjork and from that day and onwards I just know onething there is only one Bjork in the world.The way she has performed in the movie is really amazing.I must say she is a pure soul with a pure classical voice in the world as she is unmatchable.I wish her all the best.
bjork is bjork and nothing more! | Reviewer: MAE LOU DELARMA | 11/30/08
bjork- aradical,schizophrenic,& wildest music artist i ever know.the first time i saw her music video "big time sensuality" i was totally amazed on how she carries her song.so fashionable in a crazy way.i love it.hail to u bjork! you really rock!
bjorks voice is wonderful | Reviewer: peter okhuelegbe | 11/21/08
Bjork is a wonderful singer, there is something about her voice i just cant figure out,her songs are different from the common songs i hear, her lyrics are strong and deep in the sense that when you listen to her songs you would find different meanings to the particular thing she is talking about,i also love her sense of style she is so unique i love the way she sings,her voice is strong amazing and it goes with every instrumental in short,she is out of this world i love you bjork.
Bjork ='s God | Reviewer: Shannon | 7/3/08
I remember when I first heard a Bjork song, I was very young about 11 (about 7 years ago). She was performing on TV for a award show and my mom hated it. I made her leave the channel alone and I sat perfectly still through her whole song, as she sang I got chills. I've been in love ever since.
Thank you Bjork.
Bjork song can be enternal. | Reviewer: Chivers | 6/24/07
I have just known Bjork and listen to her song recently in 2007. And the tape that i have is the Post album which was released long time ago when i was a kid.Though it is an old album and the melody are much more to 90's trend of tunes but it really sound like it was a new modern tunes that can bring to any generation to the future and years ahead. i felt so impressed to Bjork work as she is so inteligent to separate all kind of sound to a group with different melody of molecule.To all the people who didn't appreciate her song they might says that Bjork is crazy but for me she is a GENIUS.
bjork | Reviewer: sarah | 10/1/05
Bjork is one of the worlds most outstanding characters that even to this day is selling major records and gaining new fans. i have been a huge fan of bjork for a long time now and absolutely love her, each and every one of her albums are new and fresh yet still have the same input from bjork and each album has been given its equal amount of creativity, wherever its the jazzy debut album or the organic choir-orientated vespertine album. What bjork does is genius and she is a far cry from your hum-drum american singers who sound the same and act the same, her lyrics are fresh and unique and are combined with a magnificent beat that is different in each of her songs. Each album is created with different emotions and style. and as for her music videos, i bow graciously before her as she has pushed the bounderies again but in brilliant style that just makes you want to stand in awe at her. she is a fantastic actress aswell (as portrayed in the amazing yet harrowing dancer in the dark) and as everyone knows a wel established doting mother. Bjork is my idol and i admire her for being different in a world where as being individual is frowned upon. I feel bjork has only scratched the surface on her wonderfully fantastic style of music and thought she is 40 this year, i think she will amaze us once again
one word........wow | Reviewer: nick | 6/9/05
bjork and her music are almost undescribable, it is completly unique and you would be hard pressed to get any one who is anyware near her talent in "popular" music. her first two albums are good but if you really want to see what she is about look in the direction of medulla and vespertine. i think what people most like about her is her amazing voice, looks and zany fashion sence. i hole heartedly reckomend her to anyone who likes their music crazy and yet at the same time passionate.
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