Björk plays well with others.
For her sixth studio album, “Volta” (due May 8 via Elektra/Atlantic, one day earlier internationally), the Icelandic artist collaborated with longtime partner-in-music Mark Bell, Congolese outfit Konono No. 1, Antony Hegarty (of Antony & the Johnsons), Malian musician Toumani Diabate, hip-hip guru Timbaland, Chinese pipa player Min Xiao-Fen and others.
“Since I was a child, singing and writing melodies have always been quite a solitary process,” Björk says. “More and more, since I’ve become savvier on the computer, I spend perhaps 90% of the time working on the album alone. So, collaborations are the treat at the end of the stick.
“With every collaborator, there is a completely different method,” she continues. “It is probably part of my philosophy, a little romantic, I know, that one of the main targets is to communicate, to merge. Then magic happens—when one plus one becomes three. It is easy to do solo albums where you play absolutely every noise, but merging is tricky. It takes courage to let go like that.”
Click here to read more on Bjork’s take on “Volta,” Atlantic’s strategy behind the release, how the artist has licensed her catalog, and more.