For her fifth studio album, Björk returns with a stripped back and intricate album that drops all of the bombastical elements of previous album, Homegenic. She replaces her more dance oriented collaborators with the experimental electronic musicians Matmos and harpist Zeena Parkins (amongst others), and these collaborators combine to create a glorious and restrained soundscape, that perfectly accompanies the emotionally open tone that Björk infuses into her lyrics and vocal performances. The compositions gather the sometimes unnecessarily esoteric Matmos sound into a thing of exquisite brilliance, and the subtle use of choirs and chamber orchestras add depth that keep the sound from becoming too bare. Vespertine is an album that deserves to be listened to properly, preferably somewhere safe and warm, with the lights down low. In my eyes, it is simply one of the most intimate and beautiful albums ever made.