I've Seen It All

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"I've Seen It All"
Promotional single by Björk featuring Thom Yorke
from the album Selmasongs: Music from the Motion Picture Soundtrack 'Dancer in the Dark'
Released 2000
Format Promo CD
Recorded 2000
Genre
Length 5:29
Label One Little Indian
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) Björk
Selmasongs: Music from the Motion Picture Soundtrack 'Dancer in the Dark' track listing
"Cvalda"
(2)
"I've Seen It All"
(3)
"Scatterheart"
(4)

"I've Seen It All" is a song by Icelandic singer Björk, with lyrics by Sjón and Lars von Trier. It was released as the first promotional single from the Dancer in the Dark soundtrack, Selmasongs. The song features vocals from Radiohead frontman Thom Yorke. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Song. Lyrically, it speaks of one coming to terms with the fact that they are going blind.[1]

The album version from the soundtrack album Selmasongs is a duet with Thom Yorke and Björk,[2] whilst the version performed in the film Dancer in the Dark is a duet with actor Peter Stormare and Björk.

Reception[edit]

Alexandra Flood from MTV gave a positive review, saying "The centerpiece of the record is, "I've Seen It All", her duet with Radiohead's Thom Yorke. Björk describes the song as Selma's manifesto. It's a beautiful and eerie track, the pair's vocals careening over a techno beat, but just under a lovely set of strings. It's a minor masterpiece".[3]

Music videos[edit]

There are three music videos for this single. The main version of the video is an excerpt from the film Dancer in the Dark in which Björk, Peter Stormare and others sing the song on a train. The second version was directed by Floria Sigismondi and was an interactive "webeo" (a web animation) for an MTV promotion. Björk appeared with her face painted and the viewer could change the scenes and special effects by clicking on the video.[4] A third version was going to be directed by M/M Paris, but there were several problems with the distribution of the song, and finally the video was cancelled. Later, the idea for this video was used for the "Hidden Place" video.[5]

Live performances[edit]

"I've Seen It All" was performed by Björk and Brodsky Quartet for the very first time on December 1999 at Union Chapel, Islington, almost one year before Selmasongs was released. Björk performed "I've Seen It All" at the 73rd Academy Awards, where "I've Seen It All" was nominated for Best Original Song, with a 55-piece orchestra wearing her swan dress. She said before performing on the show, "I'm really excited [to perform]. I won many awards [and] I've been to a lot of [award] shows. This is the most exciting one for me. I'm not just gonna go and grab a fancy frock. It's about singing, so it's a completely different headspace, which is sort of why I'm doing it. I'm really excited. Really, really excited".[6] Billboard ranked it as the ninth "most awesome" Oscar performance of all time, saying that Björk's "outfit may have cemented her place in Oscar lore, but Bjork's performance was just as memorable, and refreshingly unconventional".[7]

Cover versions[edit]

"I've Seen It All" has been performed by Bonnie 'Prince' Billy in Ask Forgiveness. The song was sampled by Specii in the song Vezi.

"I've Seen It All" was covered by the jazz organ trio Karl Orgeltríó and the singers Ragnar Bjarnason and Salka Sól Eyfeld in 2017.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Morehead, Jason. "Selmasongs by Björk (Review) - Opus". Opus. Retrieved 23 June 2017. 
  2. ^ "Bjork, 'Almost Famous' Nominated For Golden Globes". mtv.com. Retrieved 23 June 2017. 
  3. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20020804225423/http://www2.mtv.com/bands/az/bjork/260469/album.jhtml
  4. ^ "bjork.com / grapewire". Archived from the original on 29 November 2005. Retrieved 3 May 2016. 
  5. ^ "Hidden Place". bjork.fr. Retrieved 24 February 2012. 
  6. ^ http://www.mtv.com/bands/archive/b/bjork01/index2.jhtml#oscar
  7. ^ Staff, Billboard (24 February 2012). "10 Awesome Oscar Live Performances". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved 31 August 2012. 

External links[edit]