‘Vulnicura’ reveals Björk’s bleeding-heart strings
Björk’s ninth album, “Vulnicura,” unintentionally made headlines when it leaked on the Internet last week, bumping the album’s release up from mid-spring, though the album’s quality is unblemished by this hiccup.
Björk’s previous album “Biophilia” was her strongest attempt at revolving around a theme between nature and music. In “Vulnicura,” she’s back to her free-form music structure, which doesn’t follow the conventional looping formula, but weaves a compelling story in its own right.
The tracks are full of string music, setting up for an emotional ride like the interior of Björk’s personal diary as she takes listeners on a journey through the unity of love and the dark separation beyond it.
Another crucial element to the album is time. Two songs run for less than four minutes, and “History of Touches” — the last joyful track in the album — reminisces the physical contact with a significant other, with its duration reflecting the short-termed nature of the feeling.
“Mouth Mantra” possesses an intensity of strings that rivals those in horror movies as Björk’s lyrics talk about living in a nightmare: “my mouth was so numb, banned from making noise.”
The album’s downfall is the necessity of listening to the songs in order. In spite of that, Björk’s music production allows her lyrics and music to work in tandem, creating the most heartfelt album she has produced.