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When Björk Met Attenborough

When Björk Met Attenborough

Sat Jul 27, 7-8pm, C4

By Phil Harrison
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Björk’s music has often been described in terms of nature: volcanic, stormy, oceanic. So she and David Attenborough feel like a natural fit – they both seem likely to take genuine delight in the vision of the other. The front for this meeting of minds is the conception and performance of Björk’s 2011 ‘Biophilia’ album, an attempt to explore the relationship between music and nature and plug listeners into the most elemental emotions.

The album is, of course, Björk’s baby, with Attenborough very much an accompaniment; in this film he has to jostle for space with Oliver Sacks, the Tesla coil and a man who has made a ‘Sharpsichord’, a bizarre and beautiful instrument on which a minute of music takes a day to programme. But Björk is a wonderfully passionate guide – as enthusiastic about touchscreens as she is about tectonic plates – and together, the pair make a seductive case for the centrality of music to the better, more constructive aspects of humanity. Stirring stuff.
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