buttonBjörk @ Nippon Budokan (19th Feb '08)

Diva in Town

      It's Thursday night in Tokyo, unusually; I leave the office at exactly 6pm. Not even one minute of extra time for me today. "osakini shitsurei shimasu!" In the subway, as usual the school kids and salary man are mixing together in a homogenous way. Most of them are going back home. But getting off at Kudanshita station it's the chaos where eclectic youngsters are meeting each other with cheerfulness gathering next to the Imperial Palace Park. I'm racing with them for a quick beer and yaki soba fix on my way to the Nippon Budokan. I'm a good 20 minutes early so I think that I might have little time to stop by and have a look at the promotional T-shirt stands before to get inside. But it's Japan, the lines are already endless and I can't even get close to see what the goods look like. Never mind I keep my money and get directly inside the famous concert hall where once the Beatle performed for the first time in Japan. Tonight, for the fifth leg of her Volta tour, Björk is in town.
Björk       Once within the arena, I'm welcomed with some gentle Okinawa style traditional music setting a pleasant mood to wait the charming Icelandic singer. In addition to some laptops, a set of drums, speakers and other music equipments, the stage is already occupied by three giant plasma screens and topped by large and colorful banners with animal prints. Notorious for her eccentric costumes and fashion, when Björk finally appears, she is wearing very chic and colorful hippie dress with matching headband. A pianist, a drummer, two electronic music artists and an all female brass section accompany her. The brass girls are equally from Iceland and amusingly named the Wonderbrass. They are dressed in outfits echoing the lead singer's rainbow dress and some black lights and neon stage lighting enhance their colored costumes. I can identify one of the laptop guys as Mark Bell, a British electronic musician known as LFO and a long time collaborator on many albums of Björk.

      For the first part of the performance, the rhythm and intensity of the show is rather calm and hypnotic. Long time fans have the chance to hear plenty of good old songs such as Hunter, Aurora, All Is Full of Love or Joga mixed with some new tracks from the last album Volta like Earth Intruders, Vertebrae By Vertebrae and Wanderlust. Between each song, Björk says little but frequently takes time to thank the audience alternating between "thank you" and "arigato" for the pleasure of everyone. But knowing the expressive vocals singer's passion and interest for many kinds of music, I know that it's a simple matter of time before this quiet introduction leave place to some more frenetic beats... As the songs follow each other, we can observe the work of the 2 electronic artists on the plasma screens. Their hands are moving along some fancy Daft Punk style Lemure interactive touch screens and a sonar-like Reactable. These are some of the finest cutting edge electronic instruments and sure enough, the beats is now getting stronger and, true signal that it's party time, a green laser beam join the visual in choreography of abstract drawings. While Björk and the Wonderbrass are dancing frenetically on Hyper-Ballad (mixed to my pleasure with a bit of LFO's excellent track Freak) and Pluto the show culminate in an orgy of confetti that slowly fill-up the entire Budokan. Amazing experience, everyone is standing-up to praise the artists now leaving the stage.

Björk       After few minutes of rest, the diva is back on stage with the support girls around her. She starts the anchor with Oceania, the opening song of the 2004 Summer Olympics Games in Athens. Finally she says good-bye and dedicates the last song, Declare Independence, to the people of Kosovo who declare their own independence only 3 days ago.

-- setlist --

Brennið þið Vitar / Earth Intruders / Hunter / Aurora / All Is Full of Love / Pagan Poetry / Unravel / Vertebrae By Vertebrae / Joga / Desired Constellation / Army of Me / I Miss You / 5 Years / Vokuro / Wanderlust / Hyper-Ballad / Pluto encore Oceania / Declare Independence


report by seb and photos by izumikuma

==>top page : JPN / ENG

buttonmag files : Björk

buttonDiva in Town : (08/02/19 @ Nippon Budokan) : review by seb, photos by izumikuma
button完璧とは何か? : (08/02/19 @ Nippon Budokan) : review by nob, photos by izumikuma
buttonphoto report : (08/02/19 @ Nippon Budokan) : photos by izumikuma
buttonOut Of This World : (08/02/16 @ Olympic Hall, Seoul) : review by shawn,photos by hanasan
buttonビョークがビョークである所以 : (07/06/22 @ Glastonbury Festival, Pilton) : review by kaori, photos by yusuke
buttonphoto report : (07/06/22 @ Glastonbury Festival, Pilton) : photos by ryota
buttonphoto report : (07/06/22 @ Glastonbury Festival, Pilton) : photos by yusuke
button21世紀の発明家か : (01/12/02 @ meiwajyoshi university) : report by nishioka , photos by hanasan

The official site



Local label site

check 'em? --> MySpace / iTunes

the latest album

Björk - Volta

(国内盤 / US import / iTunes)

previous works

"Medula" (国内盤/ UK import / iTunes)
"iTunes Originals" (iTunes)
"Drawing Restraint No.9" (国内盤/UK import / iTunes)
"Selmasongs" (国内盤 / UK import)
"Homogenic" (国内盤 / UK import / iTunes)
"Greatest Hits" (国内盤 / UK import / iTunes)
"Vespertine" (国内盤 / US import / iTunes)
"Dancer In the Dark" (iTunes)
"Post" (国内盤 / UK import / iTunes)
"Debute" (国内盤 / UK import / iTunes)
The Latest DVD


"Medula DVD"

previous works

"Trace of Björk Artiset Legend" (国内盤)
"Live In Cambridge 1998" (国内盤 期間限定生産)
"MTV Unplugged and Live" (国内盤 期間限定生産)
"Vessel" (国内盤 期間限定生産)
"Minuscule" (国内盤 期間限定生産)
"Inside" (国内盤 期間限定生産)
"Greatest Hits - Volumen 1993-2003" (国内盤 期間限定生産)
"Live At Shepherds Bush Empire" (国内盤 期間限定生産)
"Live At Royal Opera House" (国内盤 期間限定生産)
"Later With Jools Holland" (国内盤 期間限定生産)

check the albums?

seb's works

mail to


buttonDiva in Town : Björk (19th Feb. @ Nippon Budokan)


buttonover all view on Asagiri Jam (06 to 07/10/07 @ Asagiri Arena)

無断転載を禁じます。The copyright of the article belongs to and the same of the photos belongs to . They may not be reproduced in any form whatsoever.counter
==>Back To The Top Page : JPN / ENG.