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Tuesday, September 25, 2007

BJORK Transcends Madison Square Garden

BJORK amazed last night, bringing her stunning live show to Madison Square Garden. Complete with fire, confetti, lasers, flags, special guests and a brass section dressed as a tribal army, this was a global circus of stimulation that only Bjork could pull off. The setlist (which you can find at the bottom of this post) was crowd-pleasing, highlights of which were 'I Miss You', 'Hyperballad', 'Army of Me', and the electrifying 'Pluto'. Another highlight was 'Dull Flame of Desire' of which Bjork brought out special guest Antony of ANTONY & THE JOHNSONS for a gorgeous and flawlessly executed duet.

Also on the bill were SANTOGOLD and KLAXONS. It was Santogold's birthday and you could feel her genuine excitement about the show from a mile away. Playing to a half empty stadium, Santogold gave a highly energetic performance that easily overcame the 8:00 opening slot obstacles. Santogold is an artist to watch in the future. She will be big. In between songs, Santogold introduced herself to the crowd by saying something to the effect of, "I don't have any music that you can buy. Bjork just picked us up and she's making it all happen." It also doesn't hurt that she had DIPLO onstage with her, providing the electronic beats.

Faring not so well were the recent Mercury Music Prize winners Klaxons, who got off to a rocky start with sound issues. Their set was lost on the crowd, as they seemed to just move through the motions, without any charisma or energy whatsoever. This doesn't close the door on Klaxons for me, as I love the album and will continue listening to it. But I think Klaxons haven't evolved into an arena-sized band yet. I would much rather see them in a small venue like Studio B. Some sort of light show would have hugely made a difference as well.

Check out this short clip of Bjork's closing encore 'Declare Independence'. This was truly a spectacular finale...

Bjork - Declare Independence (live at MSG) (partial)


01. Intro - Brennið Þið Vitar
02. Earth Intruders
03. Hunter
04. Pagan Poetry
05. I See Who You Are w/ Min Xiao-Fen
06. Unravel
07. The Pleasure Is All Mine
08. Dull Flame Of Desire w/ Antony (of Antony & the Johnsons)
09. Jóga
10. Desired Constellation
11. Army Of Me
12. Innocence
13. I Miss You
14. Cover Me
15. Wanderlust
16. Hyperballad
17. Pluto
18. Oceania
19. Declare Independence

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