The Playlist and their expanded membership (four fucking strong!) were lucky enough to check Icelandic sprite Queen Björk last night at Radio City Music Hall (Bjork starred and composed the music to Lars Von Trier’s “Dancer in the Dark,” a film Variety once called, “A 2 1/2 hour demo of auteurist self-importance that’s artistically bankrupt on almost every level;” tenuous connection to blog manifesto made, yessssss!). Despite having koto players, a brass section and a coterie of other esoteric instruments and such, Björk mysteriously did not crawl up her arty ass or go down the Malkovich wormhole of pretentiousness and delivered an incredibly lively show of tracks culled mainly from her new album Volta (a record already up for the highly-coveted ugliest album cover of the year award) Highlights are as thus:
– The self-help rave-tune, “Declare Independence,” with it’s, “fly your freak flag high, you’re gonna be awesome, doooooood,” lyrics. The song is utterly tuneless on record, but live, it’s a welcome visceral experience ( the equally-aggro, “Pluto” from Homogenic worked similarly)
– The cute band introductions of knob twiddler, Mark Bell, piano man, Jónas Sen, synth-man Damien Taylor, drummer Chris Corsano and the lovely players of the Icelandic 10-piece female brass band who, “do not merit individual onstage recognition, tee hee!”
– The remarkable similarities of the aforementioned female brass band and the Looney Tunes Dodo bird.
– Awesomely angelic-voiced transgendered singer, Antony (sans the Johnsons) joyfully jumping around in a muumuu for a duet with Björk on “Dull Flames of Desire.”
– The prosaic inclusion of ingratiating fan-favorites, “Venus of a Boy,” “Army of Me,” and “Joga,” which were only slightly arty-fied beyond recognition.
– The surrounding menagerie of rock-critics by the Times, New Yorker, Rolling Stone and MTV.
– The guy fist-pounding his rave glow-stick into the air. At our last count he had been doing so for 26 minutes straight.
*Picture affectionately stolen from music enthusiasts at Brooklyn Vegan, thanks in advance.