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Everything We Know About Björk's Next Album 'Vulnicura'

Björk has finally met her perfect collaborator in Arca—a fellow alien creature who often doesn't seem to be from this planet.

by Michelle Lhooq at THUMP
14 January 2015, 11:15pm

This article originally appeared on THUMP. 

Count on Björk to announce her ninth album in the most Björk way possible. Last night, a handwritten note appeared on her social media that revealed the album's title as Vulnicura (also the most Björk name ever). Her excitement is palpable from the get-go—you can practically picture her standing on a rock, squeaking "¡¡ ladies & gentlemen !!" with her hands clasped. She also details the tracklist and release date in March. 

Check out the adorable little note below: 

There's more. Album credits listed on her Facebook page also reveal the following breakdown: 

  • Six songs written by Björk, two songs co-written with Arca, one with John Flynn
  • String arrangements by Björk
  • Six songs produced by Björk and Arca, one by Björk and Arca and the Haxan Cloak, two by Björk
  • Mixed by the Haxan Cloak except two songs mixed by the Haxan Cloak and Chris Elms
  • Mastered by Mandy Parnell

So what does this tell us? First, the full extent that Arca's paws are all over this release. While it had been previously reported that the Venezuelan producer was co-producing Björk's next album, only now do we know that he's producing exactly two-thirds of it. 

Also, that Björk has finally met her perfect collaborator—a fellow alien creature who often doesn't seem to be from this planet. Arca was responsible for the dark, twisted sounds in Kanye West's Yeezus and FKA twigs' LP1, and his debut album Xen came out last year. It even scored #9 in our Best Albums of 2014 rundown. Although his sound is labeled as "experimental hip-hop," it goes far beyond the realm of "weird" and into an entirely unrecognizable space—the clanging metallic sounds, mutant wails, and dissonant textures that exemplify Arca's vibe could come from another planet entirely. 


The Haxan Cloak

As for the Haxan Cloak, his last album Excavation, released on Tria Angle, was about a journey through the after-life, while his eponymous debut album explored mystic and occult spaces through field recordings, scraping violin strings, and disembodied voices. Even his alias comes from a sinister source—the 1922 silent film Häxan, which is about witchcraft and demonic possession. In other words, you'll also find the British producer roaming in the field of sepulchral, experimental electronica. 

But you don't need to know all of this to sense that Vulnicura is already one of the most anticipated albums of 2015, and that it's going to do some groundbreaking shit. Last year, her previous multimedia album Biophilia became the first app acquired by the Museum of Modern Art into its permanent collection. This is what Björk does—exist effortlessly in the avant-garde, pushing the boundaries of music while cracking a mischievous grin as we stare at her wide-eyed, waiting to see what she gets up to next. 

Follow Michelle Lhooq on Twitter.

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