For Emma, For Iver

January 2, 2009

(Photo by Jefferson Gaddis; Editing by Yours Truly)

Bon Iver (pronounced bohn eevair) is an artist I’ve wanted to tell you faithful/fleeting readers about for a long time.

After being hit with a serious sickness, as well as the breakup of a band and a relationship, Iver, whose birth name is Justin Vernon, retreated to his father’s cabin in northern Wisconsin to live in isolation. For three months.

Out of this Thoreauic experience came For Emma, Forever. Appearing on critics’ “Best of ’08” lists everywhere, this nine-track gem has more layers than the finest kosher deli sandwich. Recorded on a very basic setup, Vernon relies on these earthy, naturalistic layers to combat the extreme digitalization of today’s music. The only exception to this would be “The Wolves (Act I and II)”, in which he utilizes a vocoder, a tool more rampant in the rap circuit than bitches, hoes, and purple drank.

It is a rare occasion when every track on a CD is worth listening to — over and over and over again. Emma is one of those. Below are two songs from Emma and one from the Blood Bank EP, distributed on his most recent tour. The latter, “Woods”, is a vo-gasm if I’ve ever heard one.

Yeezy’s jealous.

Skinny Love

Flume

Woods

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