Bjork - Utopia
(One Little Indian)
Bjork continues to make vital, boundary pushing and spiritually deep music 30+ years into her career with the spacious, broad and therapeutic Utopia. Her latest effort is essentially a collaboration with the shape-shifting producer Arca, who helped produce her 2015 LP Vulnicura and was part of her touring band in recent years. Utopia is also one of the most personal records Bjork has ever conceived.
Bjork is no stranger to creating hermetic music however Utopia is increasingly insular and secure but quite necessary in this moment. It’s the sound of warmth and comfort with her weighty voice lofting above sparse and organic arrangements that lean more towards avant chamber folk than some of the warped electronica she’s favored recently. The other aspect of the record is the heavy use of flute which is mostly performed by the Icelandic Hamrahlid Choir. It beautifully suits the record and enhances Bjork’s fragile but assured lyrics which transform from self-introspection following heartbreak, to wonderment upon the discovery of vigorous love.
Utopia, like most of Bjork’s discography, is an LP to get lost in. It’s an acceptance into an alien, yet welcoming atmosphere that is simply unattainable in these unstable days. When you feel the need to resort to the safe place of your hands-covered face, perhaps try turning to the soft embrace of the transcendent Utopia. Great record to close out a dark year. (Dom)
Check out a track here.