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  • Björk Albums From Worst To Best
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6. Volta (2007)

The inclusion of Razhel, Shlomo and Dokaka on Medúlla was, perhaps, Björk's sly suggestion that she was ready to foreground beats again. One of the people to help her? Timbaland, who gets three production credits on Volta. It makes some sort of sense; if Björk had debuted in 2007, it's possible that she would have turned to the likes of Timbo -- who was in the midst of his production Silver Age -- instead of electronic musicians.

While Volta was refreshing in its redbloodedness, it's remarkably flabby for a running length of just 51 minutes. The album was released in different configurations -- some outros became intros -- which meant that for some releases, each of the first three cuts are over five-and-a-half minutes long. It's an eclectic mix of sounds, to be sure: four continents contributed players, helping Volta run the gamut from American to Zombo. And it's not as if Björk had been saving up all her instrumental ideas since Vespertine, either: in 2005 she released Drawing Restraint 9, the soundtrack to the feature-length film by visual artist Matthew Barney, her current partner. Though more formless than Volta, it similarly employs an extended cast (Will Oldham, Vespertine harpist Zeena Parkins, shō master Mayumi Miyata) and far-reaching arrangements.

The result of this cultural smash-and-grab is a record that smacks of curation, rather than collaboration. Konono Nº1's electric likembés are overpowered by Danja's synthbass and Timbaland's distorted "whoas". While the return of the long-dormant coy vocal flavor was a welcome thing, the references to voodoo and muddy bodies are beneath Bow Wow Wow, let alone Björk. "Hope" is a fine showcase for Malian kora player Toumani Diabaté, but Timbaland's contribution to the pattering throwback is difficult to suss out. Antony Hegarty's second album appearance (on "My Juvenile") is one too many; he does acquit himself well on "The Dull Flame of Desire," a brass-fortified duet of ominous triumph. (Oddly enough, the stirring horn arrangement of "Wanderlust" evokes, in retrospect, Hercules and Love Affair.)

Volta is certainly not bad -- how could it be, with a cover that stepped straight out of Pepperland? -- just overstuffed. Its simpler tracks tend to be the better ones. "Vertebrae by Vertebrae" focuses on pneumatic drum programming and horn honks suited to a film noir low-speed chase scene. Returnee Mark Bell, back in the fold for three tracks, provides the album's highlight: "Drawing Independence," an electro-punk fusion that goon-stomps into the red with claustrophobic bass and and carelessly triggered cymbals. There is fun to be had on Volta, but it must be extracted.

We like to talk about artists’ contradictory impulses, but with Björk, it’s more apt to talk about unities. In a career that’s nearing its fourth decade, she’s coupled many of the major dualities: intellect and body, auditory and visual, nature and technology. A map of her stylistic forays reads like a condensation of Rip It Up And Start Again: a very early folk start, then stints in post- and anarcho-punk outfits, followed by a series of idiosyncratic dance broadsides pasted onto pop’s center pole. She could have made a career of issuing albums in the vein of her first two: textured, au courant electronic-pop. Instead, she invested her capital into a series of ambitious, sprawling sonic expeditions.

Björk is frequently described as a “pop star,” which makes sense as component concepts. She’s placed 20 singles in the top 40 of the enviably omnivorous UK charts. No one has used the medium of short-form music videos to display so much wonder; in doing so, she collaborated with a staggering number of film, design, and fashion heavies: Michel Gondry, Sophie Muller, Chris Cunningham, Alexander McQueen, Eiko Ishiokam, Spike Jonze — even Ren & Stimpy creator John Kricfalusi. She’s sold millions of records, has a legion of dedicated fans, and the financial freedom to attempt nearly every project she can imagine. And still, she is not quite a pop star, at least not Stateside. To most Americans, the mention of her name conjures visions of swans and assault charges. She can headline Bonnaroo — as she is doing this year, alongside Paul McCartney, Mumford & Sons, and Tom Petty — but she’s never placed a single higher than No. 84 on the Hot 100.

Still, Björk exists in that rarified air of commercial success, critical adoration, and creative freedom. She’s a saint in the indie-rock community — an amusing happenstance, considering the major-label resources that have been at her disposal since her Sugarcubes days, to say nothing of the genres (electronic, dance-pop, jazz) she investigated. But the reason she’s beloved are obvious: She has made a career out of succeeding on her own terms, ever since her Crass-associated days with KUKL. The stereotype of her as an aloof Icelandic sprite may persist, but Björk remains a restless, collaborative artist, capable of effortlessly expressing her humanity through whatever raw material interests her. Discussing Kate Winslet’s performance in Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind (directed by frequent collaborator Gondry), Björk noted to the Guardian’s Liz Hoggard that “[u]sually when you see females in movies, they feel like they have these metallic structures around them, they are caged in by male energy. But she could be at her full volume without restrictions.” And so it has been for Björk in a career that shows no sign of creative regression.

What follows is a ranking of Björk’s seven studio albums, with her soundtracks for Lars von Trier and Matthew Barney omitted. Let the music-video ranking debate commence in the comments. Start the Countdown here.

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Comments (110)
  1. woozefa  |   Posted on Feb 22nd, 2013 +5

    this loop i’m stuck in is freaking me out, man.

  2. I’d switch Debut and Vespertine but otherwise pretty good. I don’t think I’d be able to choose between Post and Homogenic, but the very first time I heard Bjork Post had just come out and I bought it on a whim due to a small bit in Rolling Stone describing her as an icelandic pixie or something weird like that.

    When I put that CD in my portable player and that fucking explosion blasted my ears cause the volume was at max (accidentally) at the start of Army of Me I was forever changed.

    I guess that makes Post my #1.

  3. While I can’t really argue with Homogenic as #1, I’m always saddened at how underrated Vespertine still seems to be. The rest of this list is pretty spot on to me (I might actually switch out Volta and Biophilia), but Vespertine is always the album I go to when I need some Bjork. That one hit me right as Kid A was blowing my mind, and I’ve always thought of Vespertine as the bride to Kid A’s groom. Because of that album, I will always be interested in what Bjork is doing.

    • Amen. Vespertine is my favorite too. I’m actually surprised Homogenic is #1. It’s a great album for sure but I feel like it has not aged as well. What I love abour Vespertine (and many of my favorite albums) is that it has a consistent unique mood that feels like another place. The Kid A comparison is a good one actualy. Otherworldly.

      • Agreed. I love Homogenic, but Vespertine is timeless. Probably her only truly timeless album. And one of the most intimate albums I’ve ever heard.

        • I happen to believe that, what happens to Björk fans with Vespertine and Homogenic it’s pretty similar to what happens to Radiohead fans with Kid A and Ok Computer.
          For most people (I’d dare to say that the majority of people) Ok Computer is Radiohead’s masterpiece, the same thing happens to Homogenic (actually, it’s a perfect record, I think almost no one can deny that) However Kid A it’s very often left apart by some fans, when for some other fans (like me) it’s considered the greatest Radiohead record. The same thing goest for Vepsertine, for some Björk fans (like me) Vespertine truly is her greatest work while is left apart for some others.

          But that’s just matter of taste and opinion.

    • I really like your Bjork/Radiohead bride/groom imagery.

    • To me there is no question that Vespertine is her greatest album, by some margin. I’ve never understood why that isn’t a more prevalent view. That album is awe-inspiring, and in a totally different category from the rest of her stuff, even classics like Homogenic and Post.

  4. One time, while obsessed with my iTunes playcount several several years ago, I was determined to rack up an insanely high amount of listens to Medulla. I think I got to somewhere around 300 or so. That one’s my favorite, especially the song Mouth’s Cradle. Homogenic is right there with it and Vespertine, too. Those three albums are untouchable.

    I don’t get the dislike for Biophilia; I still put it on occasionally. The only one I truly pass over is Volta, and even it has its moments.

    • This whole racking up playcounts thing needs a little more explanation…

      • A bored habit of mine back about ten years ago or whenever iTunes came out was to “really make my playcounts reflect the times I’d listen,” so I’d obsessively click a song to the end if I’d listened to it for a little while to make sure the playcount went up by one. When Medulla came out, I was really determined for that one to be untouchably high.

        It has since been passed by all of my Sigur Ros albums, though, since I listen to those when I go to sleep.

  5. I was a little disappointed that this didn’t include her 1977 self titled album she released when she was eleven. Never heard it, interested to though.

    • By the way how highly should I rank Bjork on my “must see” list at Bonnaroo. I have not really given her catalog that much time, is she still worth seeing over another big name or would I only really appreciate her show if I was a true fan?

      • Yes, she is worth seeing. And since she doesn’t have a new album out I would imagine she’ll alter the most recent set she’s been doing (if not just create a new one) to include a lot of songs people will recognize. Also, unless something goes horribly wrong, it will be a happy crowd, something that’s always fun at show with that many people.

    • The 1977 ST has the world’s most adorable song on it aka. an 11 year old Bjork singing Fool on the Hill in Icelandic. Look it up.

  6. In my mind, Vespertine has become inseparable from its supporting tour. I’ve always been a fan of Björk and Matmos individually, but their joint performances were totally symbiotic, adding depth and new character to her back catalog in a way that was magical to me. If you didn’t get a chance to catch them on that tour, I highly recommend the “Live at Royal Opera House” DVD (where Björk performs sans swan dress—the comment that she wore it at every tour stop isn’t accurate).

    I would want to rank Vespertine higher, but that’s only because it figures more personally in my life. This is a pretty uncontroversial list (compared to most on this site); I am mostly in agreement with the rationale for each pick.

    • The Vespertine Live album is arguably better than the studio version.
      And, contrary to the reviewer’s opinion, I don’t believe Frosti or any part of Vespertine to be superfluous.

  7. Surely Vespertine is ranked too low, and I’m shocked at the hate it’s received in the write-up. It seems to neglect the fact that Björk set out to make an adult, unashamedly all-out erotic, intimate album so anyone looking for epic beats and dance tracks would be bound to be disappointed.
    And seriously, how can anyone not get “With a beard and a pipe/And a parrot on each side”!? SPOILER IT’S ABOUT HER MAN’S PRIVATE PARTS

    Overall, though, I’ve always loved Björk for growing with me as my own musical tastes change. Pretty much the only one constant in her music is the voice, and no two albums are too similar. Huge beats + cinematic strings in Homogenic, microbeats in Vespertine, all sort of vocal exploration in Medulla, a dominance of brass in Volta and so on. Compare Debut (with its cutesiness) and Biophilia (with all the irregular time signatures and almost deliberate focus on texture as opposed to melody), it’s impressive how far she’s pushed herself.

    • As I said below, Vespertine took me three years to get. It was just such a departure from the course she had been on over her first three albums. But once I did get it, it really stuck hard. It’s an intensely beautiful album, and by far the most confessional thing she’s ever done. And yes, definitely erotic, or at least sensual.

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  9. great list but where is “Selmasongs”?

    • It doesn’t count because it’s a soundtrack. Just like ‘Purple Rain’ and ‘SuperFly’ _obviously_ wouldn’t be included on their respective lists.

    • YES! Who cares if it is a soundtrack and not an album? it’s still a body of her work, a collection of songs she wrote that forms a cohesive whole. it’s INCREDIBLE. and it got her on stage at the oscars. a big moment for bjork and how i discovered her!

  10. Björk remains my favorite artist to this day, even if her latest offerings have seemed hit-or-miss to me. The list order is just about right to me, except I’d switch Vespertine and Medulla. I might even put Vespertine at #2, since I see it as a more consistent album than Post. Post has mostly flat-out great songs (“Army of Me,” “Hyperballad,” “Isobel,” “Enjoy,” and “Headphones” being my favorites). But I’ve always found “It’s Oh So Quiet” to be an annoying song, since I’m just not that into Broadway musicals or that style of music. Vespertine works better as an album, at least in the sense that there’s nothing I want to skip.

    I also agree that Homogenic is as good as Kid A, and not just as a “deconstructive document.” Not that there’s any reason the two have to compete with each other. “Hunter” is the first Björk song I ever heard, back in 2006. After one listen to that one song I immediately decided that Björk was my favorite artist ever. It was a sudden conversion, but it still holds true seven years later.

    • Whoa, that’s cool that you came to Bjork so late and still have such a fondness for her. I still have two Sugarcubes tapes that I bought in the 80s. lol

      • Well, I was born in 1986, and didn’t start getting into many of the Pitchfork-approved (for lack of a better term) artists until I was in college. The three main things that probably most changed my musical preferences were Interpol’s Turn On the Bright Lights, the Lost in Translation soundtrack, and Kazaa. One time when I was 17 or 18 I was bored and wanted to find some good electronic music, so I simply typed “DJ” into the search bar of Kazaa, and one of the songs that came up was DJ Shadow’s “Midnight in a Perfect World.” Talk about a lucky search. That song alone opened me up to a whole bunch of great ’90s trip-hop and electronic music over the next few years. So I experienced a lot of ’90s music in 2005-07.

      • I discovered Björk through Vespertine! Along with Kid A at the same time. Still two of my absolute favourite albums. (and solo artist and band too, probably)

  11. 1. Homogenic
    2. Post
    3. Vespertine
    4. Telegram
    5. Debut
    6. Volta
    7. Biophilia
    8. Medulla

    Huge, nutty Bjork fan from Debut through Homogenic. I’m one of those people who bought all the different CD and twelve inch singles, including nearly all of the white labels. Everything after that has taken some time to grab me. Vespertine eventually ended up being one of my favorites, but it took about three years (also the last album I bought all the singles for). Medulla, for some reason, really put me off. It just didn’t work for me, and most of it still doesn’t. ‘Who Is It’ is an incredibly great song, but I prefer the version in the video to the one on the album.

    Also, I find it impossible to not include any of the b-sides or remixes when discussing Bjork’s body of work. That’s why I included Telegram in my list. There’s also an album of b-sides out there that I would put in 4th place if she released them as a collection. And probably another remix collection, too.

    • When you include Telegram, you shouldn’t forget last year’s other remix albumBastards either. In for a penny, in for a pound.

      • Honestly, I haven’t heard it. I may have heard all the mixes on it, but I’m not sure about that, either. So rather than include it and rank it lower than deserved I just left it off.

    • If we’re talking remixes and b-sides, the Soft Pink Truth (Drew Daniel) mix of “It’s In Our Hands” is my favorite remix of my favorite b-side.

  12. I really liked some of the thoughts on Homogenic like ”As a deconstructive document, it’s every bit the equal of Radiohead’s Kid A. But Homogenic reclaims identity; Kid A laments its loss.” and ‘It is here that Björk moved from idiosyncratic dance savant to full-on sonic explorer. There would be no going back. ‘
    I’m kind of sad that Biophilia is so underrated i really liked it it sounds like ‘the’ Björk album. But i’m glad that Homogenic reached #1 here and you guys gave Medúlla a lot of credit too :D

    • Biophilia could move ahead of Volta for me over time, I still need to live with it for a while before I decide. I was slightly disappointed by the feeling of being left out if you didn’t take part in the apps. I agree that the songs are good, but as Brad alludes to in his write-up, they’ll feel slightly skeletal, unfinished, even pieced together.

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        • okay all kidding aside, stereogum’s lists are always controversial to hardcore fans of the bands they are ranking (my feelings on the morrissey list are best kept to myself). My opinion here is: Vespertine truly deserves to be her best, after that album, i just stopped listening or caring about Bjork BECAUSE Vespertine actually touched me so much and i never fully understood her subsequent material. I do on one hand strangely like the 1977 album, just for it’s pure innocent weirdness. I mean, disco and a cover of “the fool on the hill” In Icelandic? what’s not to like. also, yeah, where is “Glin-glo” and the Selma song’s (noteworthy for a duet with Thom Yorke).. I’ve seen her live twice, once around the time of “Post” and again in support of “Volta” and both times, her ensemble carried her, and she went on and on in the press about her voice being fucked up. still, it was cool.

  14. I agree with everything but Vespertine lower than Post in that order.

  15. Very old school Bjork fan here, from the first time I heard COLD SWEAT by the Sugarcubes I was hooked on her.
    I’m glad most of the comments are in agreement with me that Vespertine deserves more love.
    It’s definitely a grower, but when it finally clicks it’s heavenly. for quite a while I thought nothing she could do after Homogenic could compare.
    My favorite album by a mile. UNDO actually makes me cry with joy sometimes.

  16. This just might be the first one these that I agree with entirely.

  17. I saw Bjork on my 21st birthday in Chicago. I listened to Medulla a lot during college, and I have fond memories of using it as a soundtrack for my Drawing homework during freshman year. I put Cocoon on a lot of mix cds for potential boyfriends. My mom and I once listened to most of her discography on a drive to Florida.

    I love Bjork.

  18. “Unison” elicits that response from me a lot, and often the end of “Pagan Poetry” does too. Alright, I’ll try a songs list:

    1. All is Full of Love (video version)
    2. Joga
    3. Hyperballad
    4. Unison
    5. Bachelorette
    6. Pagan Poetry
    7. Hunter
    8. Army of Me
    9. It’s in Our Hands
    10. Who Is It

    Come to think of it, all these are on her Greatest Hits compilation, except for “Unison” and “Who Is It”. “Dull Flame of Desire” is a great song too, but I’d like it even more without Antony. He’s a great singer, but I guess I’m just that much of a Björk purist that I still don’t want him or anyone else on there. Though I’ll take him over Einar Örn any day.

  19. Bjork is amazing, no doubt. But I’ve only consumed maybe three-fourths of her music. How do some of you people have the time to have an opinion about every single album every artist that gets an article on here has produced? I haven’t even gotten to Pablo Honey yet. I haven’t heard any Flaming Lips before Hit to Death in the Future Head. Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr., REM, Swans, MF Doom. Some of these bands have massive discographies. Are some of you 80 years old?

    I have a job that allows me to listen to music all day, and I’m constantly ingesting new stuff, but I can’t keep up with you guys.

    • I’ve never listened to Biophilia. There, I said it.

      I’ve only heard “Crystalline” and “Cosmogony,” and feel pretty guilty that I still haven’t faithfully bought Biophilia, even though I suspect that it won’t be any better than Volta on the whole. So even though Bjork’s my favorite artist, there’s a lot of good new music competing for my listening time these days. And I certainly haven’t heard every album that gets an article here. I’ve never heard anything by Morrissey. I’ve heard one Tegan and Sara song. I’ve never sat down and listened to anything by the Clash, Dinosaur Jr., Swans, MF Doom, or Dr. Dre. I’ve never sought out music by the Beach Boys, the Rolling Stones, or the Beatles, for that matter. I guess I’ve saved time that way. But at what cost? I often wonder. . .

      • Never sought out music by the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, or the Beach Boys? Stop wondering and do your homework. Start with Abbey Road and Beggars Banquet. Then onto the White Album, Revolver, Exile on Main St., and Pet Sounds. I also highly recommend the other artists you mentioned. Except Tegan and Sarah, I know nothing about them.

        • By Jove, I’m going to do just that! This is the age of Spotify, after all. Although I think I’ll arbitrarily start with Revolver instead of your suggestion. I had a teacher in a music class who put on “Eleanor Rigby” once, and I recall liking that one. I’ll probably focus on the Beatles at first. Then the Beach Boys after that.

          • Whoops, the Beatles don’t seem to be on Spotify. Youtube it is!

          • All the lonely people, where do they all come from? All the lonely people, where do they all belong?

          • I am excited for you!

          • After a first couple of listens, Revolver’s pretty good. A lot of short songs, some that I would have liked to be developed more, especially the end of “Love To You.” As a whole, though, the album actually doesn’t feel too short, but rather just right. Aside from “Eleanor Rigby,” “Love To You” and “Tomorrow Never Knows” are the ones that immediately make me want to hit replay, especially the latter which is an awesome song. Other songs, such as “Yellow Submarine” and “Good Day Sunshine,” are well done but not my cup of tea, to borrow a phrase from Joe from Breakfast at Sulimay’s.

            Nothing to change the fact that Girl Unit’s “Double Take Part 2″ will still be the song that I listen to before I go to sleep tonight (or this morning, I should say). Although “Tomorrow Never Knows” comes damn close. But going through the Beatles’ discography will obviously be a more-than-one-night process, and I’ll be able to give a more well thought out opinion on them by the time there’s a Beatles article on Stereogum.

    • If by 80 you mean in our thirties, then yes :).

    • Haha I’m with you on that. I’ve wondered the same thing. I’m 30 now and have digested quite a bit of music, but it blows my mind how some of these people seem to have digested everything that’s mentioned. Either that, or they’re just pretending to. The latter wouldn’t actually make a lot more sense to me.

      • I think you meant “would”? Not that I’m accusing anyone of anything.

      • I think it depends largely on what music was in your house while growing up and whether or not your friends listened to the same music as you during your formative years. Both sides or my separated home were filled with VAST amounts of different kinds of music. Also, I moved back and forth through several different groups of musical tastes within my regular and occasional groups of friends. Add to that the kinds of music I discovered and chose to listen to on my own and I think I got pretty lucky with my overall “musical education”.

    • Smush, it just takes time. Not 80 years, but time. There is also a s***load of jazz and classical to get to as well so don’t dally. Take it to the hole, big man!

      • I’m a guard, and although I’m large for my position, this is the first time I’ve ever been referred to as “big man”. I do appreciate the encouragement. I’m big on jazz, but classical is still pretty intimidating. Tchaikovsky is pretty awesome though.

        • You’re still a basketball player, which makes you much taller than the rest of us.

        • Usually, when I discover an artist I like, I go all out and try to absorb their entire discography. I was in design in college, so I had a lot of headphone time while drawing. I would bring giant CD wallets to studio, pick an artist, and play their albums from newest to oldest until I had a good feel for the variations from album to album. I spent a couple digesting Bjork, Sigur Ros, Do Make Say Think, and Tortoise during that time.

          Coincidentally, I’ve been revisiting Bjork this past week, and Vespertine is hands down my favorite.

          • I’m a designer too but I’ve always found it so hard to just plug into headphones. I feel like I get interrupted way too much. Especially at my job when my boss calls me every 10 minutes for something.

          • I feel ya. My current situation allows nothing better than a low volume spotify stream.

    • you should try harder.

  20. It took me a while to get into Bjork. I used to watch her videos from her first three albums when I was a little kid, just saw them as entertaining. As a teen I though she was one of those artists that people made fun of. It wasn’t until Medulla when I decided to actually check out her music and forget about her persona and antics. I have listened to and enjoyed many of her albums. I wouldn’t say I’m a fan, but I do have a higher appreciation for her work.

    Here is my order:

    Enjoy a lot, maybe even a little love

    01 Homogenic
    02 Post
    03 Medulla
    —–

    Haven’t given this much of a chance but enjoyed my handful of listens

    04 Vespertine
    —–

    Would just pick a couple tracks from these albums to listen to

    05 Biophilia
    06 Volta
    —–

    Sorry everyone but this album just doesn’t do it for me

    07 Debut

    As for the soundtracks, I can’t remember them, but Dancer in the Dark is a fantastic movie.

  21. Denis Schröder  |   Posted on Feb 23rd, 2013 +1

    This list is spot on.

  22. kind of hoping for mount wittenburg orca with the dirty projetors i love that man!

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    • Personal taste aside, which I respect but can’t even begin to agree with, there is no possible way to explain the three latest albums as being better than Vespertine. Vespertine has better songwriting, production, instrumentation and subject matter.

  24. Debut is still the Bjork album I find myself listening too the most often.

  25. Whereas, I don’t dislike Biophilia, I never find myself with a craving to listen to it. The most recent setlists I’ve come across have shown a high percentage of Biophilia songs. I do hope there is a bit more variety in the set when she reaches Bonnaroo. Not that I am complaining. i’m stoked for a chance to finally see her live!

  26. LOVE the idea of some die-hards listing their top 20 songs! Found POST almost 2 years ago now–my life has been a blur since then! Talk about getting lost in a storm of emotion, brilliance and depth. Love it all… Was so excited for Biophilia but agree that it just doesn’t have a soul to it… ANYWHO:

    20.) Karvel
    19.) Immature
    18.) Cocoon
    17.) Desired Constellation
    16.) Crystalline
    15.) Oceania
    14.) Pluto
    13.) Human Behaviour
    12.) It’s Not Up To You
    11.) Hyperballad
    10.) Declare Independence
    9.) 5 Years
    8.) Army Of Me
    7.) Joga
    6.) Unravel
    5.) Heirloom
    4.) Big Tim Sensuality
    3.) Possibly Maybe
    2.) Who Is It?
    1.) Hunter

  27. I’m going to have to agree with many other commenters here and say that I think Vespertine is her best record and is strangely underrated by music critics. At the time that it came out it blew everyone’s mind and was as much the next logical step from Homogenic as Kid A was from OK Computer. Similarly it’s difficult to choose between the two records. Homogenic being #1 is understandable. Again, it is difficult to choose between Homogenic and Vespertine. But take a moment to listen to Vespertine. Once you get past Hidden Place which is not a great song, the album is pure brilliance. I’m also curious why there was no inclusion of her first record as a child star, the Drawing Restraint album, Gling Glo, and even Telegram can stand alone as an album even if it contains mostly remixes/reworkings of songs from post.

    • Agree with everything you said, except that Hidden Place is a genuine masterpiece. Sophisticated harmonies, exquisite melodies clashing with exotic scales chanted by the choir, and a truly mysterious atmosphere.

      And yes, while the Orca album might not be a bona fide Björk album, Selmasongs is definitely an integral part of the canon and part of her development. Scatterheart and New World are exactly the stylistic bridge between Homogenic and Vespertine.

  28. And I almost forgot what about the album with Dirty Projectors ?

  29. And Selmasongs?

  30. “Debut” is no doubt the best…and don’t forget her little jazz trio thing in between Sugarcubes and Bjork … Björk Guðmundsdóttir “Gling Glo” As she’s gotten older the music’s gotten less accessible imop

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  32. I do agree with whats said but here’s my personal list from enjoyment and multiple listens.

    1. Vespertine
    2. Homogenic
    3. Medulla
    4. Biophilia
    5. Post
    6. Debut
    7. Volta

    Now, there are many songs from Post and Debut I like, this is souly based on an album as a whole and what I’d put in and listen too. Some emotions I feel more strongly with the albums above.

  33. Swap Post with Medulla and I would completely agree with this order.

  34. I agree with Zedd Pratt’s list, except I’d actually swap Medulla with Homogenic. I can get my fill of Homogenic a little faster than I can of Medulla. Plus, I’d have to call “Who Is It?” my favorite Bjork song. “Triumph of a Heart” is pretty extraordinary too.

    My top 10 songs:

    1. Who Is It?
    2. Heirloom
    3. Mutual Core
    4. Hyperballad
    5. Unison
    6. Joga
    7. Wanderlust
    8. It’s In Our Hands
    9. All the Modern Things
    10. Pagen Poetry

    Ah, but then I have to leave out Possibly Maybe… and Hidden Place… and Generous Palmstroke… and It’s Not Up to You… and Thunderbolt… and Unravel… and… and… and… I don’t wanna.

  35. Didn’t include Triumph of a Heart in the list. Silly goose. It’s in there somewhere! ;) Maybe between Hyperballad and Unison.

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