Heads Up: Biophilia
Apps, crackles and pop – Björk presents the science of sound
Sunday 22 May 2011
What are we talking about?
Björk's three-week residency at the Manchester International Festival, which sees her exploring music, science and technology.
The series of six multimedia live shows – the premiere of material from her new studio album – will be accompanied by digital content, including the world's first app album.
The Science of Sound: Björk blasts off.
Alex Poots is the festival's director; he's reportedly been trying to tempt Björk to the festival for a decade.
Björk, the Icelandic singer-songwriter, will be joined by a "unique group of musical collaborators" – no news on who exactly yet – and an Icelandic female choir. Filmmaker Michel Gondry also seems to be involved...
The Early Buzz
A first Biophilia song, with a video by Gondry, has been released already; it's an instrumental piece to accompany the iPad Solar System app. Their collaboration was blogged about over a year ago, and film website The Playlist managed to winkle out of Gondry that it was "a very ambitious project, a sort of scientific musical". Björk herself has said on her new website that it's about "both zooming out, like the planets, but also zooming into the atoms. And in that way, aesthetically sympathising with sound and how sounds move and the physics of sound, and how notes in a room behave ... it's kind of more similar to how planets and microscopic things work."
The show will feature a selection of weird and wonderful bespoke instruments: a digitally controlled pipe organ, a gamelan-celeste hybrid, a pin barrel harp and even a 30-ft pendulum that will, apparently, create musical patterns by harnessing the earth's gravitational pull, no less.
It's great that...
The show will also feature fan-pleasing hits from her back catalogue.
It's a shame that...
While obviously inventive with form and ambitious in scope, all the apps and techno-wizardry run the risk of being simply a faddy distraction.
Impossible to tell, but it's certain to be interesting at the very least. It's her first show in the UK in over three years, so fans are likely to have quite the appetite for some live music.
Biophilia is at Campfield Market Hall, Manchester, M3 4FH, (mif.co.uk; björk.com), 30 June to 16 Jul.
There’s revolution in the air, but one lady’s not for turningTV
Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'music
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 All Blacks Aaron Cruden misses New Zealand flight after drinking session, has brilliant excuse
- 2 Kim Kardashian 'nude photos' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence scandal
- 3 'F*ck it, I quit': TV reporter Charlo Greene quits live on air in spectacular fashion
- 4 Clothes store Joy angers mental health campaigners with Twitter exchange on bipolar disorders
- 5 Scotland could still declare independence – even without referendum, says Alex Salmond
Downton Abbey series 5 opening episode attracts lowest ratings since drama began
Friends 20th anniversary: The highs and lows of the cast's careers since TV series ended in 2004
Downton Abbey series 5, episode 1, ITV, review: There’s revolution in the air, but one lady’s not for turning
Friends 20th anniversary: Six things we wouldn't have without influential comedy series
New Tricks: Dennis Waterman to leave drama after a decade of crime-solving
Scotland could still declare independence – even without referendum, says Alex Salmond
Scottish independence referendum: A nation divided against itself
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Hilary Mantel 'should be investigated by police' over Margaret Thatcher assassination story, says Lord Bell
Plebgate MP Andrew Mitchell called officer a 'little s**t', claim court documents 'exposing ex-Chief Whip's 'record of abusing police'