Volta

Studio Album by released in 2007

Volta review

Bjork claimed that Volta is going to be rhythmic and fun

Bjork's songs are the most ambiguous subjects for disputes, especially in the context of different periods of her career. It is amazing but staying one of the weirdest of well-known performers Bjork is constantly inventing something new as if the boarders of the style she has created herself are too narrow. Her artistic path can be divided into three parts at the minimum. In the very beginning she started with few bright pop electronic albums that made her recognizable not only as an unusual singer but as an original songwriter who loves mixing digital sounds and analog instruments. And though her first records sounded quite original and progressive she proved that there are new peaks to conquer. She managed to raise the avant-garde bar even higher with such albums as Homogenic and Vespertine, which sounded more confident and carried a really serious artistic approach. Eventually, Bjork reached a culmination of her creative peculiarity on her almost purely a cappella album Medulla and exorbitantly complex for understanding soundtrack for the film called Drowning Restraint 9. In fact, Bjork was always moving in the direction of complexity so it is not hard to imagine what kind of enthusiasm among Bjork's fans was caused by her statements that her new album Volta is going to be rhythmic and fun.    

At times Volta reminds Bjork's early records

This is what Bjork said about Volta in one of her interviews: "All I wanted to do for this album was just to have fun and do something that was full-bodied and really up”. You must admit that this intrigues, the more so because besides numerous guest stars who took part in the record sessions Bjork invited Timbaland. The fact that Bjork allowed the main person of pop industry to get into her mystic songwriting process evokes the most unexpected thoughts right up to a supposition that she decided to make some pop music. But everything is not that easy. Volta has turned out to be much more accessible and simpler than her recent records but it is still a serious and sufficiently tough album. At least one can't call it a pop album. Volta recalls Bjork's records of middle 90's in many respects. This can be obviously heard on such songs as Bjork/Timbaland's Earth Intruders, which is a reminiscent of Army Of Me and probably Human Behavior but played with a more straightforward tempo or Pluto inspired and the album's heaviest Declare Independence. The brightest moments are mostly concentrated in the first part of the album. Wanderlust and The Dull Flame Of Desire are quite slow pieces enshrouded in floating orchestral and brass sounds mixed with soft beats. Innocence is another Timbaland's track, its loud and jagged beats sound quite aggressive among other songs but Bjork delivers a weird contrast to the overall power with her delicate vocals.

Volta: a new page in Bjork's career

Volta fits in with Bjork's discography quite naturally. Having reached the avant-garde apogee on Drowning Restraint 9 she has exhausted this side of her experimental nature, brought the complexity to the boil. Volta in its turn plays the role of a certain relaxation and simply gives Bjork's fans a chance to enjoy her new songs. There are quite many elements that sound familiar, one can draw an analogy with some of her previous songs, that's why a listener can be easy on his mind - the record sounds recognizable and therefore comes in simply. However, novelty and freshness of the ideas are the main traits of the album. Bjork keeps on trying new things, the difference here is that the sphere of experiments passed from the inner content of songs to their external capsule. New people brought new colors; each track is different from the rest in the sense of material, mood and sounding. Volta is a hotchpotch of strange, emotional and anxious ingredients joined onto one whole by a performer who sounds like no one else even after 15 years of persistent activities on a big scene.