For Emma, Forever Ago

( 14 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Tim Sendra
Bon Iver is the work of Justin Vernon. He isolated himself in a remote cabin in Wisconsin for almost four months, writing, and recording the songs on For Emma, Forever Ago, his haunting debut album. A few parts horns, drums, and backing vocals were added in a North Carolina studio, but for the majority of the time it's just Vernon, his utterly disarming voice, and his enchanting songs. The voice is the first thing you notice. Vernon's falsetto soars like a hawk and when he adds harmonies and massed backing vocals, it can truly be breathtaking. "The Wolves Acts I & II" truly shows what Vernon can do as he croons, swoops, and cajoles his way through an erratic and ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Tim Sendra
Bon Iver is the work of Justin Vernon. He isolated himself in a remote cabin in Wisconsin for almost four months, writing, and recording the songs on For Emma, Forever Ago, his haunting debut album. A few parts horns, drums, and backing vocals were added in a North Carolina studio, but for the majority of the time it's just Vernon, his utterly disarming voice, and his enchanting songs. The voice is the first thing you notice. Vernon's falsetto soars like a hawk and when he adds harmonies and massed backing vocals, it can truly be breathtaking. "The Wolves Acts I & II" truly shows what Vernon can do as he croons, swoops, and cajoles his way through an erratic and enchanting melody like Marvin Gaye after a couple trips to the backyard still. "Skinny Love" shows more of his range as he climbs down from the heights of falsetto and shouts out the angry and heartachey words quite convincingly. Framing his voice are suitably subdued arrangements built around acoustic guitars and filled out with subtle electric guitars, the occasional light drums, and slide guitar. Vernon has a steady grasp of dynamics too; the ebb and flow of "Creature Fear" is powerfully dramatic and when the chorus hits it's hard not to be swept away by the flood of tattered emotion. Almost every song has a moment where the emotion peaks and hearts begin to weaken and bend: the beauty of that voice is what pulls you through every time. For Emma captures the sound of broken and quiet isolation, wraps it in a beautiful package, and delivers it to your door with a beating, bruised heart. It's quite an achievement for a debut and the promise of greatness in the future is high. Oh, and because you have to mention it, Iron & Wine. Also, Little Wings. Most of all, though, Bon Iver.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/19/2008
  • Label: Jagjaguwar
  • UPC: 656605211510
  • Catalog Number: 115
  • Sales rank: 7,011

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Flume (3:39)
  2. 2 Lump Sum (3:21)
  3. 3 Skinny Love (3:58)
  4. 4 The Wolves (Act I and II) (5:22)
  5. 5 Blindsided (5:29)
  6. 6 Creature Fear (3:06)
  7. 7 Team (1:56)
  8. 8 For Emma (3:40)
  9. 9 Re: Stacks (6:41)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Bon Iver Primary Artist
Christy Smith Drums, Vocals
Randy Pingrey Trombone, Trumpet
Technical Credits
Nick Petersen Mastering
Justin Vernon Engineer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 14 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(13)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 14 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Achingly gorgeous and evocative

    The more I listen to this, the more certain I am that it will continue to be one of my all-time-favorite releases that i will return to over and over.
    It really fit the gray winter atmoshpere I was in when I first discovered "Emma" on a "decade's best" list, but listening to it today as spring was starting to emerge I realized that the atmosphere of this record is not as cold and isolated as I had initially thought.
    While intimate and mournful at times, there is something hopeful and contemplative about it as well. Today I realized that I wasn't just co-miserating with Bon Iver, I was actually being soothed and comforted with a new found sense of well-being.
    Anyway's enough armchair therapy, if you just want some ethereal, yet soulful and rootsy music as a backdrop to your life, I highly recommend this. If you are a fan of My Morning Jacket, Band of Horses and/or Eliott Smith this one is a no-brainer for you.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Tear-Jerkingly Beautiful

    This album always makes me sob. I can't stop listening to it, which is kind of bad, because I hate crying. Still, you should buy it. And cry.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    First Rate Bon

    Absolutely loved it! It was my first Bon Iver CD and I couldn't be more happy... absolutely loved it!!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 6, 2010

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    Posted January 21, 2012

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    Posted January 18, 2009

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    Posted July 22, 2009

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    Posted December 4, 2008

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    Posted December 10, 2008

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    Posted October 25, 2008

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    Posted November 14, 2008

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    Posted August 17, 2009

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    Posted March 27, 2009

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    Posted January 1, 2010

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Sort by: Showing all of 14 Customer Reviews