Monday, April 07, 2008


Chances are you already heard about that Stereogum Bjork tribute album? Well, as a blogger, I do appreciate them taking time and effort to gather artists and release the whole thing for free, which is a very noble gesture, however, as a cover enthusiast, there's only about 2-3 tracks that managed to convince me to import them to my library. If anything, this, along with the groundbreaking visual masterpiece that is 'Wanderlust' (seriously, don't watch it on YouTube - buy the dvd single when it comes out - best video of 2008 so far!), have inspired me to check the album tracks from Post, because to be fair, I'm no vivid fan of Bjork, as I'm only familiar with a majority of her singles only. Then I came across 'Hyperballad'. It didn't have much of an impact on me, until now. I then decided that it's one of Bjork's best songs, musically, lyrically, and visually. The next step is inevitable: me setting on a quest to find all cover versions of it. I harvested this lot, and ended up feeling a little more proud of my nimble fingers and my honed googling skills. The re-interpretations, below.

Yeah Yeah Yeahs - Hyperballad
(Live, 2004)
Evidence that Karen O can also sound pretty when she doesn't growl.

Blanket Music - Hyperballad
(Read: Interpreting Bjork, 2004)
Boy/girl vocals backed by a bossa nova beat. Shouldn't work, but it did. From a tribute album by the Portland-based Hush Records. There's a Ben Gibbard take on Joga on that album, FYI.

Big Heavy Stuff - Hyperballad

(Like A Version, 2005)
Whitley - Hyperballad
(No Man's Woman, 2007)
Two acoustic versions from down under. Both is sung by men, both involves a guitar, and both is available exclusively on cover compilations. What are the odds, huh? Which one is better, well that's up to you.

The Twilight Singers - Hyperballad
(She Loves You, 2004)
The band's a side-project of The Afghan Whigs frontman Greg Dulli. They're also labelmates with Bjork.

Mocca - Hyperballad
(Colours, 2007)
A piano-based one by an Indonesian indie band which I've never heard of before "researching" for this post. To be honest, the same can be applied to all of the bands featured in this post (bar YYYs, of course). There is a nice bit of horns at the end, but this version is just too easy listening for a Bjork song.

For good measure, I conclude this post with a strings version of Hyperballad performed by the Icelandic herself. My favorites among the bunch are of YYYs, Blanket Music and Big Heavy Stuff, by the way. Enjoy.
Björk - Hyperballad (Brodsky Quartet Version)

Watch the Michel-Gondry-directed video

Learn more about the song

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