Björk - Vulnicura
Critic Score
Based on 39 reviews
2015 Ratings: #16 / 1002
Year End Rank: #8
User Score
2015 Ratings: #13
Liked by 282 people
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CRITIC REVIEWS

100
AllMusic

Vulnicura honors her pain and the necessary path through and away from loss with some of her bravest, most challenging, and most engaging music.

100
The 405

Björk has never compromised her sound to anyone, and Vulnicura is a stark reminder of that.

100
Tiny Mix Tapes
This is music that gnaws at your bones. And make no mistake, this is every second Björk’s album. And it is nothing short of breathtaking.
95
The Line of Best Fit

Vulnicura is stark and powerful in a way that Björk has merely danced around for years. Here, in these songs, she has shed all of her skin

91
Consequence of Sound

Vulnicura is smooth and whole, even as its singer lies shattered.

91
Pretty Much Amazing
Her new album wipes from memory all the sterile, intellectual constructions that precede it.
90
musicOMH

Vulnicura feels, overall, as if it is one of Björk’s most successful albums, one where she mostly finds sonic strategies that are well matched with her concepts and themes.

90
Louder Than War
An album of heartbreak and imagination, of stunning musical boundary breaking and raw emotional power – and an album that appeared out of nowhere and in a rush.
90
Uncut

Far greater than the sum of its parts, Vulnicura can be a challenge but, once immersed, it's hard to tear yourself away.

90
FLOOD Magazine

The enormous visceral power of Vulnicura lies perhaps in its utter lack of pity play; rather, Björk transforms every emotion into a monumental sonic peak or valley.

90
Northern Transmissions

Vulnicura is the black mirror reflection of the sensual Vespertine, and like that record, it is one of Björk’s strongest to date.

90
God Is in the TV

Each successive listen, whether focusing on the nakedly personal lyrics or the beautiful if complex music reveals another facet.

90
Crack Magazine

Vulnicura is Björk’s most pronounced, explicit statement of intimacy yet.

90
Exclaim!

In turning to explore themes of human nature, Vulnicura delivers much more on a musical and lyrical level than your archetypal breakup record typically does.

86
Paste

Vulnicura marks a bold return for such a storied singer.

86
Resident Advisor

This narrative thread seems to have focussed Björk's compositional powers, and Vulnicura has a momentum and coherence lacking in her recent efforts.

86
Pitchfork

It’s simultaneously her most mature feat of arranging and almost psychosomatically affecting. 

85
Under The Radar
Here we get a glimpse of Björk at her most vulnerable, and what is most surprising is just how lovely she is when she indulges her basic humanity.
83
A.V. Club

The musical moments that capture Björk’s heartbreak are frequently stunning on Vulnicura, but the whole thing is a little shy on hooks and reasons to take the grueling journey with her often.

80
Mojo

Despite their meticulous craft, these songs don't feel like curated artefacts--they feel raw, unquiet, still moving. Vulnicura might tell an old story, but it still feels new.

80
Evening Standard
Björk's ninth album is more personal, more emotional and more bleak than she has ever sounded
80
Q Magazine
A strange, intoxicating and utterly brave record.
80
Time Out London

Her ninth record ... is the obligatory break-up album, one sung with extraordinarily renewed power. It hardly seems like a conscious uncoupling: the Icelandic diva bleeds utter devastation, drenched in strings and despair.

80
Record Collector

Vulnicura is very clearly a break-up album, perhaps the most unflinching, honest account of the deterioration of a relationship by a major artist in memory.

80
Spectrum Culture

On Björk’s previous albums, her phrasing conveys a joyful and unrestrainable lust for life; on Vulnicura, it instead brings a desperate plea for emotional clarity.

80
NME

It’s not an easy listen, but a brave, beautiful and affecting album – an attempt to find order in chaos that, as she wishes for it, offers a “crutch” to the heartbroken.

80
The Telegraph

After the wild beach party of 2007’s Volta and the shiny wonders of 2011’s Biophilia, Vulnicura is a windswept trek of a record. But one which gradually repays its difficulties with the raw exhilaration of survival.

80
The Needle Drop

Icelandic singer, songwriter, producer Björk is back with another record, and it's one filled with romantic heartbreak and whimsical instrumentation.

80
Rolling Stone

Arranged for voice with orchestral strings and electronic beats, Vulnicura is a unified set of nine dark, swarming, melodically distended songs.

80
PopMatters

Vulnicura is emotionally bare and, as a result, remarkably complex, demanding of an active listener, but it’s also one of Björk’s most poetic records in a long career.

80
NOW Magazine

These nine ballads are stripped to essentials - beats, strings, stirring vocals - full of beautiful and eerie contrasts that highlight Björk's loneliness, anger and fleeting moments of optimism.

80
The Guardian

You could say there’s something gimlet-eyed about a woman who realises her relationship is collapsing and automatically thinks: still, great material. But it’s nothing if not honest. And besides, on the evidence of Vulnicura, she has a point.

80
Clash

‘Vespertine’ is a master-work by my reckoning, an emotionally resonant record that truly articulated the innermost desires of its maker in a way that felt less intrusive, more inclusive.

80
DIY
Does the world need another break-up album? ‘Vulnicura’ dodges cliché and creates its own ground.
80
Spin

Vulnicura doesn't have the reach-out-and-grab-your-attention quality of Björk's more technicolor works, but it possesses a dramatic weight in its own right.

80
Drowned in Sound

If Vulnicura never truly allows us in close, it’s still a beautifully tragic view from the edge of the ‘black hole’.

76
Sputnikmusic

Vulnicura is gruesome because of its trying structure, abandoning accessibility for labyrinthine ideas that casually stumble off-course.

60
The Arts Desk

A belief in music's healing power is the driving force of Vulnicura.

60
Slant Magazine

One listen to Vulnicura confirms what's been evident for a long time, but will still continue to come as a disappointment for many: Björk firmly belongs to the world of the avant-garde.

Scre4meh
94

This is the definition of a breakup album. Where the fuck is Matthew Barney? Prolly hiding with Mario Abusah in the pit of assholes, forgotten by the world. I want to punch him after listening to this. Where is he?

Björk is a legend in the music community, a legend of whose albums i have never listened to, but indeed, a legend. And this proves it. The amount of emotion, of pain and anger that you feel as you sail across this tragic page/story of her life & her breakup with Matthew, ... read more

LukasLima
92

Decidi reouvir essa obra prima que está fazendo 7 anos hoje, e falando de Björk é o mesmo que falar sobre qualidade, talento e originalidade.
"Vulnicura" é um dos álbuns mais pessoais da cantora, ele veio após uma fase difícil em sua vida, o divórcio de seu ex marido Mattew Barney e seus problemas nas cordas vocais que teve durante a "Biophilia Tour" que a fez cancelar alguns shows.
É um álbum bem ... read more

MothaOfMotha12
NR

UNPOPULAR OPINION ALERT;

This probably my favorite Björk period, down to the amazing lyrical content, like the way she writes/expresses her sadness and depressive thoughts is phenomenal.

The production handled by Arca sounds remarkable, the strings, the flutes, the drums, everything.

Black lake honestly might be my favorite Björk song of all time, it might be 10 minutes long, but the time passes very quickly.

The situation that inspired this LP might be horrible, but at least it ... read more

Shblevins
80

Björk reaches some amazing sonic heights on here, some of her best moments since Medulla. The lyrical content is incredibly vivid and blunt, focusing on her breakup that this project followed.
Tracks here are very very long, and develop and untangle in various different ways that is necessary to explore.
Some of the glitchier sounds and drums dont mix too well with the luscious strings in my opinion, and I think I would've preferred this project as being a mix of very string focused tracks ... read more

mediocrereviews
93

This is Björk's mass exodus album and I'm here for it. Definitely a difficult listen and not at all a playlist album but nonetheless absolutely outstanding. Easily one of the best albums conceptually I've ever heard, the first six tracks especially. The idea of laying out an actual timeline of events before and after the breakup is absolutely brilliant and adds so much to the record.

AyeItsJoey
82

73 -> 82

This is a great breakup record that I think didn't really care for as it wasn't a more conventional sound I expect from Bjork, I guess I was expecting more of a Homogenic kind of vibe from here. However, I found myself enjoying a lot of the story telling on here, going through a breakup of a relationship with so much at stake was really shown well on here, as it's quite a lyrical and sonic journey. My biggest complaint however is the mixing isn't the greatest, I know it's trying to ... read more

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Track List

1Stonemilker
6:49
97
2Lionsong
6:08
94
3History of Touches
3:00
89
4Black Lake
10:08
95
5Family
8:02
92
6Notget
6:26
91
7Atom Dance
8:09
feat. ANOHNI
89
8Mouth Mantra
6:09
88
9Quicksand
3:45
90
Total Length: 58 minutes
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Added on: January 18, 2015