227. Bjork – ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ (1995)


Taken from the album Post

UK #4, AUS #6

Far and away the most commercially successful and well-known Bjork song, ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ is a very retro take on her overblown weirdo schtick, and with the frantic vocal, punchy instrumental and classic video, everything fell into place, giving Bjork her second UK top ten and being her biggest Australian single by a huge margin – her second most successful, ‘Hyperballad’, peaked at number 31.

The Betty Hutton original version of ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ is brilliant, but Bjork’s cover brings something new to the table. While Betty plays the wise informer, Bjork has a wide-eyed innocence and infectious excitement, and she injects a newfound into the song. It’s a shame she avoids the song these days (apparently bitter that her biggest hit was a cover), because on the Post Live album you can tell she loves performing it – that weird descending throat noise she does in the middle there being a particular highlight.

The video was one of the most popular of the nineties. As a precursor to the bits of Dancer In The Dark that don’t make me want to commit suicide, Bjork roams the street singing and dancing, causing everything around her to come alive in a glorious burst of old-style musical silliness. The dancing mailbox is probably among the all-time best music video moments, along with the dancing pillars and the multitudes of dancing people. As Bjork flies up into the air at the end, you feel as if you’re flying with her.

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