Category Archives: PJ Harvey

Albums of 2007 – Number 9: PJ Harvey


PJ Harvey – White Chalk

Haunting…beautiful…ethereal… PJ Harvey’s latest album could be described with many words – all of them good! She has tapped into some inner magic in recording this record – an album that can evoke dreams, feelings and memories, whilst also offering a sinister element underneath.

At times, it can be hard to listen to, as her voice strains over the simple piano backing – the lyrics embracing its own dark imagery; with the music the setting for mystical fantasies.

Not all of the album is set in this tone however, as, for example, first single ‘When Under Ether’, is a much lighter affair, with floating piano melodies, a minimalistic backing and a sweet vocal…a short burst of beauty!

The contrast on this album is perhaps its most defining feature, as you don’t know what you’re going to get next, as, on some tracks, you get the more straight-up, catchy/melodic songs, like ‘While Under Ether’ and ‘Silence’, which are in stark contrast to the weird, adventurous, ‘White Chalk’, ‘Broken Harp’ and ‘To Talk To You’. Polly Jean has thrown the rule-book out the window on this album, and has created a beautiful album, defined by its eccentricities.

Of course, this can be viewed as a negative, as people might be disappointed about the lack of guitars and ‘rock’…and the album can verge on the over-dramatic at points, especially if you listen to it more than 3 times in a row. However, i am just being picky with these negatives, and i must say that i find this album nothing short of brilliant, especially ‘The Piano’ – PJ Harvey’s moans of ‘Oh God i miss you’ resonate deeply – this is an artist who emotes every word, and believes in what she is singing, which is a nice change in these days of fake, ’emotional’ pop and rock.

A gorgeous album then, with some amazing piano playing, which certainly makes this one of the albums of 2007, and rightly so!!! Well done Polly…

No.8 tomorrow…


PJ Harvey Official

PJ Harvey Myspace


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