Watch CGI Björk and Rosalía Spar in New "Oral" Video

The long-awaited single aims to combat open-pen salmon farming in Iceland

BY Kaelen BellPublished Nov 21, 2023

Björk and Rosalía have finally shared "Oral," their highly anticipated (and delayed) collaboration that aims to help combat open-pen ocean salmon farming in Björk's native Iceland. A Björk and Rosalía collaboration sounds like something cooked up in the mind of a delusional alt-pop super fan, so it's kinda wild that it actually exists (and is as good as it is). 

As Björk previously explained, "Oral" was originally written between 1997's Homogenic and 2001's Vespertine, though its poppy dancehall beat wasn't a proper fit for an album, and the song fell to the wayside. As she told Pitchfork, Björk would remember the song's melody in the years since but not its title, and was unable to find it in her tape archives. In March of this year, however, the title came to her when she saw the word "oral" in a CNN news chyron while on tour in Australia.

Listening now, "Oral" feels perhaps most linked to Homogenic with its big beat and glacial strings, though its playful sensuality is much more in line with what Björk was doing on Vespertine. Rosalía makes for an excellent duet partner, and the duo's voices sound great together. The song features some updated production from Rosalía, Noah Goldstein and Sega Bodega, who, alongside Shygirl, remixed Björk's "Ovule" last year. It was mixed and mastered by Heba Kadry. 

The song comes attached to a video by Carlota Guerrero that sees CGI versions of Björk and Rosalía sparring in what looks like a train station filled with bright white light. The video's colour palette (and the uncanny valley of the singers' faces being grafted onto stunt double bodies) recalls Björk's '90s music video heyday, equal parts "All Is Full of Love" and "Hunter." 

In a statement accompanying the song, it's explained that "Iceland has the largest untouched natural area in Europe, and the waste and pollution associated with open-pen farming threatens to permanently damage its entire ocean ecology. Lack of regulation and the industry being largely unsupervised has also meant that thousands of these genetically altered, diseased salmon regularly escape the pens and swim upriver to Iceland's highlands, where devastating genetic mixing occurs and endangers the future of Iceland's wild salmon population."

Proceeds from "Oral" will be used to support a legal case against the fisheries, brought forth by residents of the town of Seyðisfjörður on the eastern side of Iceland.

Check out the "Oral" video below. 


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