"Crystalline," Björk (dir.: Michel Gondry)

Video Link: the new Björk video, via Dangerous Minds. Directed by Michel Gondry. Includes elements from her "Biophilia" iPhone app. The album, Crystalline, on Amazon.


  1. Awesome, thanks Xeni. So good to see these two working together again, such well-matched sensibilities. Their music videos are among the very few that I watch more than once. Many more times than once.

  2. That was just awful.  Bjork is the Stephen King of song writers – plop some different words into the same old song, add some 1980-esque cheesy CGI and call it new.  At one time, Bjork was cool, new, interesting, neat, with her quirky sound and look.  Like a cracked cork bottle of wine, she hasn’t aged very well.

  3. Bjork hasn’t made anything I want to listen to in 10 years, and I used to be a fan of her. Vespertine may have lacked the energy and techno-pop songs of her previous albums, but at least there were still interesting melodies and vocals. Then she released Medulla, which had songs that sounded like walruses mating and such. That’s when I gave up.

  4. Not such a fan of the Vespertine-lite bit, but you can’t really argue with a bit of junglism (so very nearly veers into dubstep though… careful now!)

  5. I agree with millie fink. That was spectacular. Thanks, Xeni.

    I don’t know if it would be as good without the video. I agree that her sound has become less inventive to my ears over the years. But the audio-visual synergy makes up for that and then some. I’d rather artists risk strike out into fresh phase space than lapse into a formula. I’m always amazed how some artists, even good ones, can stand stand going decades without changing their sound and trying a new voice. The same goes for writers.

    Should be required viewing for all Phys Chem students :)

  6. Well, she’s only been publishing music for 32 years, she’s bound to repeat herself a little bit during her career.

  7. I adore some of her work, but I’m finding her music doesn’t “age well” for me?  As in I haven’t been inclined to put on a Bjork CD in ages. 

    Anyone else?

    1.  Very much similar to what I was thinking/feeling. I used to be quite a fan. Even though some of her older efforts required repeated listenings before I settled in to the rythmics and melodics of what she was doing. I just don’t have that patience any more, I guess.

  8. That was pretty to watch but as a huge fan of Gondry’s videos it was pretty disappointing.  Each individual component of the animation was cool or beautiful or trippy but the different media juxtoposed together very poorly.  Also agree with the above posters that this isn’t as good a track as Bjork’s earlier stuff.  Now I’m off to rewatch the videos of Bachelorette and Hyperballad to remind myself what these two have been capable of in the past.

  9. Bespoke combination gamelan/ceneste “gameleste” and a Squarepusher-style breakbeat freakout ending, and people complain there’s nothing new going on? Some people are hard to please.
    Watch the video on the making of the gameleste:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J0uXL1E5qn8PS Xeni, the album, which is not released yet, will be called Biophilia. It will be available in traditional forms and as an iPad/iPhone app. The Amazon link is just the single.

  10. takagi masakatsu much? the song really picks up during the last minute, as does the video, but otherwise both are quite poor. the last thing I ever liked by her was her collab with bogdan raczynski, the “who is it” remixes or whatnot… cheers


  11. Man, who invited all the Björk haters? I think she’s one of the most continuously inventive performers, and I love how she isn’t content to sit on one sound and repeat that for a career. I find each of her new albums to be fascinating and she has some fantastic songs. Volta was her best album since the all-time classic Homogenic. All that being said, I’m fairly neutral on this song based on my first listen; it does harken back to Vespertine, which isn’t a favorite of mine. But songs of hers have grown on me in the past, and the video for this is nothing short of fantastic.

  12. ummmm… ok. this is a rare time that i’ll dis a bjork song. dunno if it’s the remix or what but it has no beat and lacks something. maybe it’s coherence. the video was kinda cool and obviously influenced by lsd… but it doesn’t go with the song. i’m not a fan of micheal gondry i think he’s been so lucky to do music vids for the most talented artists on the planet and sometimes he barley seems to put effort into it with wierdness for the sake of being weird but no true meaning… yeah. but i did like this video. peace i’m not a bjork hater. i used to really like her and radiohead. the only music i ever needed in high school.

  13. Unfortunately it does sound like it was created using an iPhone app.
    And I was half-expecting Morph to stroll into the video.

  14. If I were to create even one artistic work that was remembered long past my lifetime, I would be  happy (if i’m anywhere to observe). If I am able to do even one thing extremely well and do iterations of it over and over again, that would be pretty special.

    Our culture has become so trendy. We expect artists to continually produce and continually produce radically new things. Harper Lee is well loved for her one book To Kill a Mockingbird. Can you do as well as she? Will you judge her for not putting out more? Japanese culture does not toss people aside and look askance at them for not continually feeding our greed for stimulation. Traditionally, they have honored people for their meaningful contribution(s) for the whole of their lives. Perhaps it is understood that even one bright spark is more than most can produce.

    Perhaps we should slow down and honor all people of insight,artistry, and skill. Perhaps we should stop making it a competition or exercise in intellectual domination. It’s all right to have preferences. Constant judgement kills creativity.

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