Bon Iver - Bon Iver, Bon Iver
Record Label: Jagjaguwar
Release Date: June 21, 2011
The lost art of the ďalbum."
In todayís music world, itís not the talent thatís lacking; itís not the creativity or songwriting. What's lacking is the construction of an album. There are far too many releases that feature only a handful of good songs while the rest act as fillers. But every so often you come across a release that acts more like an album and less like a two-or-three-song showcase. Bon Iverís Bon Iver is that album - and a beautiful album. Itís a tour de force of this bandís musical talent and singer Justin Vernonís haunting, beautiful, eclectic songwriting. This is music.
From the very beginning, you will notice that this isnít like Bon Iverís previous release, For Emma, Forever Ago. Itís far more complex musically and emotionally, but itís never too much to swallow. Just when you think a portion of a song may be starting to drag, the dynamic of the song evolves into something different, and the results are beyond wonderful.
The musicianship is top notch, featuring multiple layers that blend to create a delicious strawberry smoothie, while the pristine production adds the whipped cream and a cherry on top. Yes, just like a strawberry smoothie, this album is quite refreshing. It's poetic and tells a story, just like an album should; not once does this journey dull.
There are less than a handful of complaints, and they arenít even major. The first thing I noticed is that the production on the vocals, while adding a great effect for the album overall, are somewhat difficult to decipher. But that only provides more incentive to look up the lyrics and fully enjoy them. The other small complaint I have is that the song structures are all pretty similar. Most of them build the same way. Even then, they all build with different layers, keeping things more than interesting. Iíll state it again: these complaints arenít a big deal and they most certainly should not deter anyone from listening to this incredible album.
I liked Bon Iverís For Emma, Forever Ago, but I didnít love it. Being a first release for a new band, it was refreshing to hear something different, and it certainly intrigued high hopes. I honestly didnít know what to expect from this release. With the somewhat-mainstream success of songs like ďSkinny Love,Ē one could argue that this band could have gone down that path where they wanted to - maybe extending their sound towards poppier landscapes. Iím glad they didnít, and the fact that they didnít means Vernon is true to his music; the only thing that influences his work is his heart.
Bon Iver is an early contender for album of the year, and this release should gain the band the recognition they so greatly deserve. If youíre a fan of solid albums, then this is most definitely for you.
I've only listened to the first three songs, but I can tell this record's going to be something special. For Emma still spins very frequently and I consider it a case for why modern music doesn't entirely suck. It's a brilliant record and I think you should definitely go back and give a second chance.
Review is okay though; describing some of the songs would've helped and you seemed to meander and just kind of go in circles.
no offense, but this review is sort of bland. i mean, you didn't even get the album title right. and "complaining" that it's difficult to decipher the lyrics is ridiculous when justin uses his voice as an instrument, only he's capable of manipulating it to his advantage on every level, thus the words aren't as significant as one may think, especially since a majority of the album is written in code anyway. then you contradict yourself by saying, just when you think a song starts to drag, you say, it's never not once a dull journey. which one is it? i could go on, but i won't. although, i do agree that the blood bank ep has hardly anything to do with bon iver, bon iver. thank you for saying that in the comments. so true imo.