Vespertine - Björk
Vespertine Image
Metascore
88

Universal acclaim - based on 28 Critics What's this?

User Score
9.2

Universal acclaim- based on 179 Ratings

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  • Summary: Bjork's follow-up to 1997's 'Homogenic' and last year's soundtrack to Dancer In The Dark is closer in sound and mood to the latter, taking a quieter, more ambient approach. Produced by San Francisco-based electronic artists Matmos, 'Vespertine' utilizes mainly electronic instrumentation,Bjork's follow-up to 1997's 'Homogenic' and last year's soundtrack to Dancer In The Dark is closer in sound and mood to the latter, taking a quieter, more ambient approach. Produced by San Francisco-based electronic artists Matmos, 'Vespertine' utilizes mainly electronic instrumentation, much of which was recorded by Bjork in Iceland. The lead single is "Hidden Place." Expand
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
  1. A beautiful, magical, mystical soundtrack; similar to Homogenic, but in a sense, more light-hearted and full of love.
  2. Her best album to date.... Vespertine is an album of small gestures, one almost challenging in its stillness.... The cumulative effect is an album both timeless and of the moment, an avant-garde electronic-pop exploration of classic themes.
  3. In the end, Vespertine commits its magic by daring to go places more obvious and more human than one would have ever expected. [#210, p.52]
  4. Björk's latest is as delightfully eccentric as her choice in outfits, blending scratchy electronic programming with tinkling music boxes and squeezing her formidable voice into ancient-sounding harmonies or futuristic whispers.
  5. The best solo record of her career... Vespertine is the closest any pop-vocal album has come to the luxuriant Zen of the new minimalist techno, even beating Radiohead's nervy Kid A. Where Kid A sounded like a record of risk, the work of a band on unfamiliar ground, Bjork sings here as if she owns and knows every inch of space and shadow in these songs.
  6. 80
    She uses her voice as well as she ever has, giving the moods light and shade. [Sep 2001, p.104]
  7. The entire LP takes on a sort of plodding sameness even as the overall sonics soar.

See all 28 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 66 out of 68
  2. Negative: 0 out of 68
  1. izata
    Jun 3, 2006
    10
    Pagan Poetry! Pagan Poetry! This is ultimately her best album, yet!!! It's 1000000x times better than the next one, Medulla....
  2. MichaelR
    Jan 9, 2004
    10
    A lot of depth and introversian on this album. Good stuff.
  3. Nov 14, 2012
    10
    Vespertine is her best work to date, as being the most carefully prepared in refined in sound matters, also her voice couldn't be better withVespertine is her best work to date, as being the most carefully prepared in refined in sound matters, also her voice couldn't be better with highlights as "Undo" "Hidden Place" "Unison" and "Pagan Poetry". Expand
  4. Clif
    Jun 12, 2008
    10
    I really don't give easily a 10 for an album (it's extremly rare), but this one even deserves a 11! It surpasses everything we had I really don't give easily a 10 for an album (it's extremly rare), but this one even deserves a 11! It surpasses everything we had heard. For the first time until 2001 (maybe we can consider "Selmasongs" as the tourning point) Björk delivers us minimalist (in a good way), spiritual and introspective parts of her soul. Even if I've always admired what she's done previous to this album (the excellence and lava-ish "Homogenic", the breathtaking "Post", and so and so), she has reached the culminate point of her career with "Vespertine". Maybe because of the facts of 1997 (for example, when she smashed a journalist in Bangkok; one retarded fan who wanted to kill her; ...), paradoxally she gained a certain tranquility (and the best is that she accepted to get that), something she had never explored in her previous albums. Since then, we can consider that she has done (almost) everything in her music career. ... Facts are... Even if she's too modest to accept that, she has released, I think, the greatest album ever, by any artist. Music blessed and embarrassed her! Expand
  5. Dec 3, 2013
    10
    Listening to this album is like listening to the sound of angels, it is really a beautiful trip to the high above. I love all the elements inListening to this album is like listening to the sound of angels, it is really a beautiful trip to the high above. I love all the elements in the songs, while listening to it I feel from calm to passionate and a lot more, that's why I love this album so much, it gives me a lot of feelings. Expand
  6. Aug 1, 2014
    10
    Besides her inaccessibility to mainstream audiences as always -- "Hidden Place" has to be Vespertine's poppiest moment, highlighted byBesides her inaccessibility to mainstream audiences as always -- "Hidden Place" has to be Vespertine's poppiest moment, highlighted by instantaneously memorable melodies, shuffling beats, and sampled choir vocals -- Bjork's 2001 masterpiece has to be one of her weirdest, most sensual, and timeless records to date; it ages as well as her accompanied swan dress she wore on the album cover and at the Academy Awards that very same year. Although it's composed with some of Bjork's most signature sounds, most commonly her use of experimental electronica and scat singing, Vespertine favors more minimal yet ethereal effects to accompany the very, very sexual -- or rather, sensual -- feel in its lyricism and most importantly, Bjork's breathy vocal delivery on every track.

    The highlights: "Pagan Poetry" has one of the most memorable melodies -- and most, ahem, NSFW music videos -- of the '00s, which has Bjork writing some of her most deliciously dark and desperate lyrics to the accompaniment of Asian teahouse-esque melodies, music boxes, harps, and Bjork's extraordinarily emotional and equally powerful vocals. The mood throughout the duration of Vespertine typically remains as melancholy as it is wintery ("Frosti" is a one-minute instrumental interlude that tributes the snowy season through and through to the crossfading sample of footsteps in the snow at the beginning of "Aurora"). "Cocoon" is one of the most minimal moments on the album, choosing suggestive and seductive whispers to lure the listener into a momentary coma, while "An Echo, A Stain" is its darkest; the distorted bleeps, bloops, mumbles, and choir vocals are something you'd expect to hear on an early Evanescence record.

    Bjork might be more memorable for her early-'90s house music and her swan dress in the early-'00s, but Vespertine is a testiment to just how important she truly is in a music industry where "artists" cannibalize on each other's ideas instead of cooking up their own material. I'd go as far as to call Vespertine the greatest album since Bjork started her solo career in music, but I'd call it one of the greatest, most grandiose albums I've ever heard in my life. Then again, I was born in 1993 and grew up on Bjork's '00s material, but that doesn't mean I don't stand by that sentiment.
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  7. ivanl
    Dec 17, 2003
    4
    i love "Post", i just dont get this one

See all 68 User Reviews