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Bon Iver - Bon Iver, Bon Iver
on June 27, 2011
Well damn, this is a changeup. Vernon has taken a huge (and very ballsy) step in releasing this record under the same name as 2008's brilliant For Emma, Forever Ago, which is more or less the polar opposite of this year's self-titled record. Where For Emma was a hushed set of crystalline dirges, Bon Iver is absolutely exploding with sounds and instrumentation and ideas. For Emma was the sound of a man and his guitar, pouring out his heart and purging the demons that haunt him, but Bon Iver is the logical follow-up: the purge was successful and now Vernon has a fresh heart and soul to express more than just the idea of pain and hurt. I get why For Emma fans are not necessarily huge fans of this record, but just as Burst Apart was the logical step forward from Hospice, so too is Bon Iver the progression from the cocoon of For Emma. You absolutely have to come into this record with an open mind and not expect for it to sound like For Emma, but if you can do that, you'll find Vernon's aggressive use of instrumentation and melody to be compelling and, ultimately, stellar. On Bon Iver, Vernon has shown us that he can do far more than make us cry, and he does it all so well it's almost hard to believe.