Stripe's Song of the Day: Björk - It's Oh So Quiet

Björk may be an icon of 90s dance pop, but this brassy, big band jazz number remains one of her best songs

Fabian Hasan Khan
Published : 1 March 2023, 10:30 AM
Updated : 1 March 2023, 10:30 AM

The 90s were a fantastic time for music, seeing the emergence of artists like Mariah Carey, Alanis Morisette, and Fiona Apple and future legends of the industry making their debuts. 

One of them was Björk, the Icelandic pop star who came out with her first solo record, aptly titled Debut, in 1993. Widely regarded as the start of a robust and influential career, the album introduced the world to one of the most contrarian of artists, showing off her contrarian taste in production and lyrical style. But it was her next record, Post, which saw Björk enter the mainstream with a fusion of pop, jazz, and industrial with an experimental take on the emerging techno, trip-hop, and house scenes. 

And, amid all that eccentric and exciting play with the cutting edge of modern music is a big band jazz number. 

Betty Hutton’s 1951 take on a German song is delightfully playful and dynamic as the orchestra backs up Hutton’s brassy vocals. It is, somewhat counter-intuitively, a perfect fit for Björk. She takes the original and broadens the range, slowing the pace slightly and making the quiet bits quieter and the loud bits even louder. Her intonation and phrasing add something to it, too, giving it an almost childlike tone distinct from Hutton’s.

While it may be quite different to most of Björk’s catalogue, it is among her most popular songs and has, in some ways, become one of her most iconic tracks. And it’s for good reason!

This article is part of Stripe,'s special publication focusing on culture and society from a youth perspective.