Bon Iver & James Blake: “Fall Creek Boys Choir” Stream

Posted on August 24, 2011


Last week, James Blake alluded to a collaboration with Bon Iver. The track, “Fall Creek Boys Choir”, surfaced earlier. Make your own minds up…

Mainstream press has always had the problem of latching onto an act and then struggling to let go, even when it’s plainly obvious that they have taken a step awry. In fact, the only circumstance in which we tend to see the likes of Pitchfork or NME disown an act is when they encounter some major success (see: Kings of Leon, for example).

As such is the case, I reckon musical circles will be swarming with a plethora of praise for the ambience, chilled-out vibe of what these two have produced. Listen to the stream if you haven’t and see which camp you fall into – the Brooklyn Vegan/We All Want Someone To Shout For/Pitchfork camp swooning over Blake & Vernon’s genius, or the camp in which this writer is firmly embedded that thinks it is a case of two artists, far too in awe of the other to tell them when they’ve gone too far.

The track, coming in at four minutes forty-one seconds, is near unlistenable. It feels drawn out, tired and, quite simply, boring. There is nothing engaging, original or enchanting on offer as was the case with the wonderful body of work these two have put out separately in the past. Vernon’s vocal, capable of creating something breathtaking, is simply a series of inaudible warbling and, on more than one occasion, there is a dog barking…

I am a big fan of both these guys – the albums they have released this year are among my favourites released in 2011 – but this is a major disappointment.