Volta - Björk

Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. It finds the perfect balance between the vibrancy of her poppier work in the '90s and her experiments in the 2000s.
  2. By no measure is Volta a great album, but it is quite good. And, the deeper you delve, the more it has to offer.
  3. Where even her most divisive albums have managed to push her artistic boundaries, Volta feels limp and strangely empty-- almost unfinished.
  4. 80
    She's rarely sounded more alive. [Jun 2007, p.92]
  5. 80
    Volta bristles with life. [Jun 2007, p.102]
  6. Volta is arguably Bjork's loosest and most ruminative record, and though it touches on everything she's ever done, it's not as gripping or coherent as her best stuff.
  7. 'Volta' is another amazing statement of intent - full of hope, eccentricity and wonderfulness.
  8. Volta is a weird mess of an album, but it's also Björk's most approachable and immediate since Homogenic.
  9. While Bjork's past sounds are arguably better than most, Volta is perhaps the first Bjork effort that looks backwards instead of forward into the future. [Summer 2007, p.79]
  10. Björk's mind remains artistically open to just about anything, and on this album she sounds like she's enjoying recharging it with another tranche of skewed new ideas.
  11. Initial listens leave the impression that Volta is a top-heavy release, but as with Vespertine repeat visitations see the record smoothing and flattening out, with consistency becoming apparent over a shorter period of time than with many a Bjork LP before it.
  12. 70
    Her vision is worth the price of submission. [Jun 2007, p.90]
  13. Volta lacks the unity of vision and enveloping sensuality of Vespertine and Medulla, but no one else could have made this record, voracious in its synthesis of world music.
  14. Volta isn't nearly as groovy as it sounds on paper.
  15. Volta is Björk’s best album yet.
  16. Fans might find it a fascinating revelation, and Madonna will likely swipe a few ideas, while everyone else is left wondering what happened to the tunes.
  17. Every song on Volta sounds like it was birthed in no fewer than 10 months, if not five years. "Fun" hardly has an opportunity to enter the picture when Björk's now seemingly permanent fastidiousness remains her métier.
  18. As she sets her sights on bigger targets, namely war and terrorism, it's hard not to wish she'd remained as narrowly focused on the politics of personal freedom.
  19. As rich as this stuff sounds (it’s hard to think of a working musician with classier production values) or how much she emotes on the mic, it’s calculated, cerebral and a little bit cold.
  20. 70
    Even if nobody's made a record that sounds much like this before, she's given her performance here too many times already. [Jun 2007, p.106]
  21. 90
    You have not only a Bjork that's fun again, but an album that is simultaneously politically charged, esoteric and glossy with mainstream appeal. [#25, p.88]
  22. An album of pasty songs, severe missteps and bizarre overreaches, but an album nevertheless shimmering occasionally with the inherent sometime-genius of its creator, Volta is one of those pretty-bad records that may stick around, may sound better in a few years.
  23. Even Björk's misses are more exciting than most of what we currently call hits. [12 May 2007]
  24. "Volta," much like "Medulla," is an appealing series of collaborations and musical ideas that do not quite jell in their final, recorded versions.
  25. Beyond the interstellar electro-club vibe, it's still distinctively Björk on the ballads.
  26. It's probably Bjork's most succinct and inventive statement yet.
  27. As with much of her past work, it’s almost embarrassingly human, sometimes sounding too close to you to believe it’s not your own.
  28. Volta is her most accessible album in years, even if it is sometimes at the expense of its own best interest.
  29. Volta is a strong album with memorable, remarkable tracks that have great variety, so much that the album loses cohesion.
  30. Even as the music settles into some of the visionary Icelandic artist's familiar contours, she stirs in enough new ingredients to keep things moving.
  31. It's in the vein of 'Debut' in terms of songwriting but there are a lot more samples of foghorns on this record.
  32. Listen intently, repeatedly, and you'll hear much to widen your consciousness... But listen for, you know, enjoyment and you'll be left wanting.
  33. An album so confident in its experimental spirit that its eclecticism seems nothing short of captivating, even though its charms are subtle enough to require a little time before they become apparent.
  34. Nothing Bjork does is ever less than provocative... Just don’t expect to it to force you out of your seat.
  35. The result is less cohesive than Vespertine or Medulla but the fun’s in the exuberance, the jolting between musical styles.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 151 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 53 out of 73
  2. Negative: 8 out of 73
  1. Jun 24, 2011
    Fantastic, massive, true, limitless, full of hope, full of energy... Volta has a beauty in not a normal way, it lives not in you ,but, through you, all around you... It`s eternal like energy itself. Full Review »
  2. OlegV.
    Feb 2, 2009
    Dull Flame Of Desire is an incredibly amazing and touching tune - my favourite in last 5 years. It brings me to tears every time I listen to it (ok, now - not but first 20 listens it did :). I See Who Your Are is another tune here which brings to tears. Declare Independence is an amazing electroindustrial energetic, but Pheumonia is one of her most beautiful "quiet" songs. The whole album is as good as her other work, here are only two songs which did not work for me: Wanderlust and My Juvenile. Interesting a lot of fans claim Wandelust as on the the best :) And I think Innocence is too poppy and has too much of Timbaland but it's fine. Earth Intruders shows a perfect balance betweet Timbaland's and Bjork's producing. Full Review »
  3. ChrisK
    Oct 2, 2007
    Bjork is my favorite singer of all time. The only problem with her is that she is soo ahead of her time it is ridiculous and that is why alot of people(including myself when i first heard her) don't get her music.... but after seeing her live performing volta i was blown away..... if you want to hear volta at its best download the mp3 of her at coachella 2007. Full Review »