Twenty years ago today, Björk made her Debut, which landed at #29 on our list of the Best Albums of the 1990s in 2011. While American critics, perhaps still beating off to the U.S.’s exalted alt-rock movement, were divided on the album at the time of its release, it’s aged remarkably well. And even if Björk hadn’t gone on to record her masterpieces Post and Homogenic, Debut was enough to cement her legacy as one of pop’s most forward-thinking performers. And that includes her contributions to the music video form.
Vespertine (#1–10 of 2)
Björk’s been promoting her forthcoming Biophilia app/album/thing with the kind of dodgy auteur shenanigans that may not translate directly into hype (which, thanks to Twitter, is now more or less objectively quantifiable), but which do have the minimal advantage of preempting any kind of parody. Her website’s been rejiggered into a trippy, interactive mobile, her upcoming concerts will apparently feature, among other Seussian contraptions, a “30-foot pendulum that harnesses the planet’s gravitational pull to create musical patterns,” and in recent interviews she’s been throwing the word “app” around in a fashion equally suggestive of futurism and senility. Fine by me. Björk’s most esoteric album to date, 2004’s Medúlla, is also among her best, and so my policy is to indulge Mrs. Matthew Barney in all pretensions so long as the music works.