2017 Discography Review Challenge: BJÖRK GUÐMUNDSDÓTTIR – Björk (1977)

Review by: Dinar Khayrutdinov

Before becoming a household name, Björk Guðmundsdóttir was a young Icelandic prodigy who learned to sing and play the piano and the flute at a young age and was naturally noticed by music producers of that small country when she was just entering her teens. The result was this little curiosity that only Björk completists and hardcore fans would now be interested in. What can I say about this album? It’s cute and totally inoffensive, and it’s precisely what you’d expect from a fairly talented 11-year old girl surrounded by fairly greedy producers, arrangers and managers. Pretty little songs with disco-ish beats and pedestrian instrumentation, three of them composed by Björk herself, the rest by some other (very mediocre) Icelandic composers, neither of these songs being terrible but all pretty unmemorable and performed in a perfectly childish voice. The two covers – Stevie Wonder’s Your Kiss Is Sweet and The Beatles’ The Fool on the Hill add nothing to their respective originals except for the fact that both songs are translated to Icelandic. There is one instrumental track (which is also boring but at least performed by Björk herself on the recorder). And not a single hint at the great things to come, except maybe for a fairly experimental sitar opening of the album. Well… I guess it’s no wonder she named her 1993 album Debut, as if to insist that this ACTUAL first solo effort never happened. But let’s not be too harsh, she was 11 for Chrissake. The good stuff is ahead, so keep following my Björk reviews (in which I’ll also try to review every band she ever was in)!