TAS Rated 4/5 Music, 4/5 Sonics in the January 2023 Issue of The Absolute Sound!
10th Studio Album on Double LP!
Follow-Up to 2017's Grammy-Nominated Utopia!
2023 Grammy Award Nominee:
• Best Alternative Music Album: Fossora
Pitchfork 50 Best Albums of 2022 - Rated 12/50!
Paste The 50 Best Albums of 2022 - Rated 50/50!
Rated One of the Best Independent Albums of 2022 by The Absolute Sound!
Bjork's 2022 album Fossora was inspired by the COVID-19 global pandemic, and features collaborations with serpentwithfeet and Gabber Modus Operandi plus backing vocals from her son, Sindri, and daughter, Isadora.
each album always starts with a feeling
that i try to shape into sound
this time around
the feeling was landing
on the earth and digging my feet into the ground
( after my last album utopia which was all island in the
clouds element air and no bass )
it was also woven into how i experienced the "now"
this time around 7 billion of us did it together
nesting in our homes quarantining
being long enough in one place that we shot down roots
my new album "fossora" is about that
it is a word i made up
it is the feminine of fossore ( digger, delver, ditcher )
so in short it means "she who digs" ( into the ground )
so sonically it is about bass , heavy bottom-end ,
we have 6 bass clarinets and punchy sub
Compared with the cloudy electronics of 2017's Utopia, it is organic and spacious, earthbound rather than dreamy, and filled with warmth and breath. It is also a world of contrasts: the album's two lodestones are bass clarinet and violent outbursts of gabber. There are moments of astonishing virtuosity and bewildering complexity and, like much of her recent music, a resistance to easy melody. Between the gabber eruptions, Fossora offers tender songs written for Björk's mother, a poem by the 18th-century fisherwoman and drifter Látra-Björg, the buttery voice of Serpentwithfeet and backing vocals from Sindri, her son, and Doa, who lends a pristine, folky tone to Her Mother's House.
Björk's tenth album is one of her best blends of the conceptual and the personal. Initially inspired by clarinets, gabba techno (her favorite to play at home during the COVID-19 global pandemic lockdown), and the communal nature of fungal networks, it grew to embrace her new love, her children leaving home, and her mother's 2018 death. Björk weaves these huge emotional milestones together into earthy, organic illustrations of the many kinds of love and how they're expressed...Whether Björk presents a magical world on Fossora or just reminds listeners of the magic within everyday life and relationships, it's more proof that she can still forge a remarkable connection with her audience. On this soul-nourishing tour de force, her one-of-a-kind mix of innovation and emotion is as inspiring as it's ever been over her decades-long career.
Like a mushroom, Fossora arrives with an outer layer of dirt worth scrubbing away to get to the delights inside. The album's often-baritone sound at first veils it in a muddy shroud: Modulated vocals sometimes substitute for percussion or bass, which can make for a disorienting listen. At other times, bass clarinet—a first-time instrument for Björk, known for building albums from new instruments—appears where you might expect higher-pitched orchestration. It sounds stern and miry, which is surprising since Björk has described the album's music and mushroom imagery as fun, introducing a disconnect. But the handful of songs that detour from this palette and incorporate the hard techno subgenre gabber—courtesy of contributions from Indonesian duo Gabber Modus Operandi—are immediately a huge joy.
Once again, Bjork shows how she can manifest an exhilarating, utterly unique sound. The record maintains a simultaneously playful and dark atmosphere with her signature mixture of orchestral arrangements and electronic textures... Throughout the album, Fossora is a consistently gripping musical work that doesn't fail to surprise or inspire awe. Bjork shows time and again how an artist can continue to reinvent herself, while also remaining steadfast to what has drawn fans to her work for decades.
- Double LP
- Gatefold Jacket
- Sorrowful Soil
- Fagurt Er í Fjörðum
- Fungal City
- Her Mother's House