“This relentless restlessness liberates me,” Björk declares on "Wanderlust” from her 2007 studio album, Volta, which is also the dramatic concluding track of her new Voltaic live CD. “I feel at home whenever the unknown surrounds me.” Volta had been designed, Björk has said, as a journey, with the sound of fog horns and clanging bells linking individual tracks and artists from around the world making guest appearances, including Congolese band Konono No. 1, Malian kora player Toumani Diabaté, pipa virtuoso Wu Man, beat-master Timbaland, Lightning Bolt drummer Brian Chippendale and sublime chanteur Antony Hegarty.
The New York Times called it “a 21st-century assemblage of the computerized and the handmade, the personal and the global.” Voltaic, then, is a remarkable, multi-media document of what happened after the record was completed, a journey of a different sort as the ever-evolving singer assembled her live band, made a collection of typically amazing videos and one-step-ahead remixes, and toured the world for two years, making headline appearances at diverse venues and large festivals, including Glastonbury, Coachella and even Harlem’s Apollo Theatre.
She recorded the Voltaic live CD in one take at Olympic Studio in London with her new band, prior to her 2007 Glastonbury appearance, presenting the set she would play on tour – songs from Volta and new arrangements of such older material as “Pagan Poetry,” “All Is Full Of Love” and a thunderous version of “Army Of Me.” It’s a stunning performance, featuring cutting-edge computer technology, an old-school horn section and a female, flag-toting Icelandic choir – “bursting with raw life,” to paraphrase The Independent’s description of Volta.