Tuesday, 13 July 2010

Dirty Projectors + Bjork - Mount Wittenberg Orca

Dirty Projectors + Bj
örk - Mount Wittenberg Orca (***)
album review for the skinny

Dave Longstreth is a man with great ideas: his breakthrough album as leader of Dirty Projectors, Rise Above, was an attempt to reinterpret Black Flag’s Damaged despite not having heard it in 15 years. By the sounds of it, Mount Wittenberg Orca could be a similar attempt at a from-memory version of Björk’s Medúlla, only with Björk on hand, and not enough time to finish.

In fact it’s a 21 minute suite, available to download in exchange for a charitable donation, about a family of frolicking whales spotted by vocalist Amber Coffman last year. As with Medúlla, it’s almost entirely vocal, with Coffman, Angel Deradoorian and Haley Dekle providing percussive chanting and precise harmonising to support the gymnastic lead roles of Longstreth and Björk. On And Ever Onward is the keeper, featuring Björk as the mommy whale celebrating the pleasures of a lifetime in the sea, with her calves cutely singing the title back to her.


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