Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Glitchy Musicality: Bjork and Emika

Bjork: Each song is a star in the galaxy…

‘Cosmogony’ is my next focus from the biggest musical project of the decade so far; Bjork’s starry eyed awe of the origins of the solar system while aboard her ‘mother’ ship.

For weeks now, I’ve felt like I’ve been trying to wade through quicksand when reading about the ideas behind the creation and distribution of Biophilia.  I took delight in the old fashioned I still like a CD’ way when hearing it will be released in a physical sense in autumn. I also kept the mantra in my head ‘She’s at Bestival, I’m at Bestival so stick this app nonsense where the stars/crystals blah di blah really won’t twinkle’. I stubbornly chose the quicksand over embracing Bjork’s ‘brave new world’ however; I take it all back having listened to this interview on XFM.

Very simply, an overdose of kooky, yes, but also a visual and tactile demonstration and interactive musicality to show the movement of music via nature... Have a listen on the link above (look for the purple) , it does make sense when she charmingly explains it. She also makes a really good point about the defeatist self pitying attitude of the music industry regarding online distribution of music and the need for artists to come up with creative solutions.

So listen below to the full version of ‘Cosmogony’, signature Bjork strangeness with her quite lovely melodic vocals. There’s a shift towards the end in this track too, but unlike the claustrophobic machine of Crystalline, it’s a soothing, eerie wonderment.

Bjork has the iconic status that some cynics would say she could dress as a buttercup and play a tune through a blade of grass backed by Borrowers and people would still ‘cry’ over her art. Well, yes I say; she’s still brilliant all these years later.

Emika: Just for tonight, we can pretend…

And now to revisit the rich imaginations of Emika. I fell in love with her immediately with Count Backwards and Double Edge.

This new release on Ninja is super lovely, the techno dub electronic goddess is throwing a big piece of her classical training, her Bristol dub inspiration and Berlin ‘cool’ into a melting pot of bass and glitchy synths  with the double A side ‘Pretend/Professional Loving.

She has produced something that sounds cold in its portrayal of pretense, yet her humanity simmers under the starkness of the music through her unique and atmospherically varied vocals. Emika’s sophisticated and fearless approach to electronic music is outside of the mainstream but very listenable.

Really looking forward to her self titled album in October so listen and watch this fabulous live clip; polka dotted, bobbed hair gorgeousness included...lovelovelove.

Related Links:

XFM Interview with Bjork
Music Making Me Smile This Week
Count Backwards with Emika


  1. I always find inspiration here - in this case Emika. I discovered her a few days ago and constantly listen to the few songs she has recorded so far. I can't wait for the full album.

    I also feel similar regarding Björk - I used to be a huge fan, but she lost me a bit after Vespertine. The quicksand analogy fits well for Biophila and I hope that listening to the interview clears it up for me too.

  2. Thank you for the lovely comment. Emika really is fab and do listen to the Bjork interview, she explains it in her wonderfully quirky way.

  3. I can't stop watching the Emika video. I don't know if it is the music, the hair cut, or the polka dots. It is great. Thanks for posting.

  4. You're welcome Siouxsie. Emika is great and I'm looking forward to hearing the album.