Counterbalance No. 147

Björk's 'Debut'

by Jason Mendelsohn and Eric Klinger

11 October 2013

cover art



(One Little Indian)
US: 5 Jul 1993
UK: 5 Jul 1993

Klinger: Back in the 1990s, I had a job working in a record store. Really more of a CD store by that time, of course, but I did buy pretty heavily into the myth of the record store employee. Possibly a little obscurantist, certainly a little condescending, painfully aware that the people I was serving were generally more interested in Dave Matthews than I cared to admit. So you’d think I would have been all over the solo works of Icelandic singer-songwriter Björk Guðmundsdóttir, with her accessibly avant-garde sensibilities and her pixilated, pan-musical approach.

Unfortunately, back in the 1990s I was also completely insufferable, and given to certain rockist tendencies that I’m still working through. So I was immediately bothered by anything that sounded like dance music, whatever that means, and I wrote off this album as vaguely annoying and not worth the bother. Now that we’ve begun this Counterbalance project and are forcing ourselves to sit down and actually listen to the Most Acclaimed Albums of All Time, as compiled by the mathemagician over at the Acclaimed Music website, I get the distinct impression that I may have missed out on something. Mendelsohn, you seem to pay more attention to this sort of thing that I do—is this accurate?

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