Listing Detail Tabs

Now available on vinyl. Recorded in a cold, isolated cabin in Wisconsin, this
debut by Justin Vernon's Bon Iver is rich in wintry intimacy and frosty
atmospherics, charting the solitary sounds of a writer in quiet self-reflection.
Much has been made of the circumstances that led to this album's composition
and recording, and it's inevitable that the imagery of isolation should feed
into how the album is digested - even the name Bon Iver is a corruption of
the French for 'good winter', further compounding the album's snowy
pedigree. Although in essence opener 'Flume' is a simple acoustic ballad,
the song is bolstered greatly by layers of echoing texture and bristling guitar
string overtones, and it's these kinds of textures that elevate the album
beyond the normality of singer/songwriter-dom. There's a comparison to be made
between the multitracked vocal compositions that illuminated last
year's Phospho­resc­ent album, Pride, and pieces like 'Lump Sum', which
opens with a reverberant canyon of choral layering. Funnily enough, just as with
that Phosphorescent album, one of the finest tracks here is called 'Wolves'
(clearly these two are kindred spirits) although the Bon Iver song is rather
more rambunctious than its counterpart, featuring a clattery, out of time drum
kit, building up to an outright dirge. Back to those vocals: for an otherwise
conventional troubadour type setup Justin Vernon's delivery is quite unusual;
he has more in common with TV On The Radio or crikey - even the Bee Gees,
such is his polyphonic falsetto. It really instils a sense of character in the
record, and most of

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  • Store location: North Shore, Auckland, NZ

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