Digesting Björk's "Biophilia" App

[caption id="attachment_7693" align="alignnone" width="630" caption="Bjork plays the Big Day Out Festival, near Sydney, Australia, February 2008. Photo: Jamie McDonald/WireImage"][/caption]

Now free from her major label obligations, Björk's undertaken one of the most complex musical experiences ever conceived. With a ten-track album as its centerpiece, Biophilia, includes a unique live show, educational seminars, a documentary and an iOS app built for the gamut of mobile Apple products.

Today, the free iPad/iPhone app Biophilia was released, serving as the home base for access to all subsequent single launches on the way. The application largely mimics the aesthetic of her current website, placing the user at the godly helm of a system of constellations, swerving, zooming and sliding, using familiar finger controls iPhone users are already familiar with.

Each song from the album is represented through a constellation; as of a right now, only one of the ten constellations is lit, her first single “Crystalline.” As she releases new singles, new constellations will light up, opening a portal to purchase the song and its accompanied multimedia experience. In Björk’s mind, these singular interactive encounters emphasize intertwining themes of nature, music, technology and education – each manifested in different ways as new songs become available. For now, the app for “Crystalline” is a game “which provides novel ways to experience music’s spatial relationship,” accompanied with an essay that “traces the relationship between musical and crystal structures.”

Bjork’s flowery hyperbole aside, the app both reflects and helps creates an inflection point in how we consume music and media. In a world of iTunes singles, playlists, and DVR’s, gone is the romantic notion of patiently exploring something from front to back, but rather we can dive into the tiny parts that most attract us and do something unique involving the concept of play. Some might think Bjork's crazy, but her innovative iPad/iPhone app is a (well thought out) sign of the times. [Download the Biophilia App here.]