Tuesday, 15 April 2008
Bjork live at Hammersmith Apollo 14/04/2008
Ladies holding brass instruments and flags attached to their heads, dressed top to toe in neon clothing, march on stage to the thumping drums of ‘Earth Intruders’ whilst 10 foot flames fire up behind them. This marks the start of one of the most spectacular audio and visual experiences any person can wish to observe. The tiny Bjork follows her marching brass band, dressed in the most ridiculous piece of headgear ever, consisting of lots of mini pompoms attached randomly together. Google it. She somehow pulls it off though, in the inimical way that only she can, in front off a crowd of devoted fans. As the opening number ends, and Bjork eases the tribal drums into the more spacious ‘Hunter’, the momentum is not lost. Bjork dances round the stage like a pixie, throwing her whole body left and right and shaking to the offbeat drums. Toumani Diabate joined Bjork for a spellbinding rendition of ‘Hope’ and Antony Hegarty (of the Johnsons fame) shared the stage for ‘Dull Flame of Desire’, which the crowd can’t quite believe. It’s her 1996 hit ‘Army of Me’ though, that really tears the roof down. Heavy drums, bass, synths and an overload of lasers turn the crowd into a pit of frenzied dancers. By the time Bjork ends the show with the simply superb ‘Hyperballad’, which sees the crowd singing the first verse louder than she can, so she just leaves it to them before promptly turning the last half of the song into a rave, and the equally relentless but just as beautiful ‘Pluto’, the crowd are in total awe of the tiny Icelandic lady. After a long break of constant cheering, Bjork returns with her Wonderbrass (honestly) and plays the beautiful ‘Anchor Song’ before closing the night with the frenetic ‘Declare Independence’, which she sings with just as much commitment as ever before, despite the huge amount of trouble the song has landed her in recently. Masses of golden confetti falls from the ceiling, making the Apollo seem more like a golden snow globe, which all adds to the spectacle. The man next to me sums up the whole evening perfectly as we turn to leave, just simply saying that that was “out of this world”. Bjork is an absolute must-see.
The computer still isn't working properly, so I am listening to the same three as before. Though just had some Drive Like Jehu on Last.fm which was fun.