Tomorrow, Bon Iver will release his highly anticipated album 22, A Million, the enigmatic follow up to 2007’s For Emma, Forever Ago and 2011’s Bon Iver. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t intimidated by the new album just from the song titles alone, considering the already shared singles “22 (OVER S∞∞N),” ““10 d E A T h b R E a s T ⊠ ⊠” and “33 ‘GOD'” aren’t exactly what I picture for Bon Iver anything (my mind still plays “Holocene” and simulates being in a cabin any time I see Justin Vernon’s face). These singles also hinted at a change in aesthetics, swapping out some of the acoustics for heavily synthesized and manipulated vocal effects. The newest track, “8 (circle),” has brought the old persona back for just a little while, with an ethereal, atmospheric sound and clear, deep vocals. I have a feeling the new album will be overwhelming on first listen, and a lot to get used to, but will slowly find its place within Vernon’s spectacular repertoire.
Vernon recently performed the new track at the Eaux Claires Festival, but you can now find the studio version, which debuted on Annie Mac’s BBC show here.
photo by Cameron Wittig & Crystal Quinn