PJ Harvey - Let England Shake

PJ Harvey - Let England Shake

Has been read
The dynamic comeback of PJ Harvey stirs the waters!
PJ Harvey - Let England Shake

Addictive, intoxicating, delectable, chaotic, eccentric, passionate, revolutionary are only a few of the adjectives that could describe the new album of PJ Harvey "Let England Shake" which was released in the United Kingdom on February 14 and is anything but erotic. It is the eighth consecutive album, following the White Chalk in 2007, but with a little patience I think throughout the years it would be described as her best of all times.

Carrying a twenty years experience in her assets, she retires at Dorset, climbs up on a rock and under the mystic light of church candles she writes twelve amazing songs. By selecting the site she manages to capture the acoustics of the 19th century, completing thereby the chosen musical theme: the impact of the deadliest campaign in Kallipoli in the year 1915 during the First World War. The failure to occupy the former capital of Byzantium, Constantinople, as well as hundreds of thousands of British dead compatriots, did not leave the artist unaffected.


PJHarvey Therefore it is a record with a given theme and route. This is also one of the key factors for which one should not hear it  fragmentary, and indeed it does not deserve it. All the pieces are tied together so harmoniously and so carefully arranged in a row, which is unfair to be isolated from one another. Is it worth already? Once you press on PLAY and it begins, you listen to Let England Shake it it sucks you in it like you do with every little zip of drink after a tiring day. You can't realize how time passes and how one song succeeds another. There you are stuck and you can;t do without hearing The Colour Of The Earth. Although it consists of quite a few disparate elements, which at first sound strange and cause some kind of discomfort, all combined give another perspective, that decisive which eventually becomes necessary.

On the other hand PJ Harvey embodies perfectly a two-dimensional ego at its prime: the pure passion and the youthful audacity that gives you the feeling of an emerging artist is completed successfully by many years of experience giving her the opportunity to have stable, self-confident melodic steps. The lyricism is delicately altered with vocal outbursts, which are culminated by harmonic anachronisms and ripe vocals. It holds you like a magnet and nails you down without leaving you any room ˙ you can not choose to stop the album, it is impossible. I could not do it not even once.

PJHarvey Listening and observing more and more this work, I began to notice details and to degrade a bit its basic forms. Frankly I do not know how many of the below apply, I do not even know if they are of any importance, but I was impressed by them. Besides, isn't art all about that? to allow everyone to interpret and explain it as they wish?

Reading more carefully the titles of songs, originally silent and then aloud, I discovered that all the titles, without exception, contain letters such as the "L" and "R" which are a bit liquid. This may not be so coincidental, considering the place chosen for the recordings (the endless sea view), but at the same time the number of lexical mapping Lyrics: words such as fountain, shores, swim, splash, sea-captains, river, ocean, water, beach, sea, washed, wave, mist, crying are not negligible. England is certainly an island and water is at the fundamental characteristics of it. It is property and family heritage. Small concise remarks on each song individually:


1. Let England Shake


Dynamic rhythmic tone to begin with which leads you inevitably to shake the first foot, then your fingers and then finally your whole body. In a push to dance (dancing days) leaving those who have not listen to it yet, to live in ignorance, left asleep (west 's asleep). PJ Harvey having the confidence of knowledge, she blinks at you facetiously, thereby bringing to the movements forgetting for a moment the inconsistency of strong offensive lyrics rate. The four words fountain, shores, splash, swim to deliver conclusively the perpetual motion of liquid melody. The song has samples from the known single "Istanbul (Not Constantinople)" by Four Lads.

PJHarvey 2. The Last Living Rose

With the derisory, if could be described as such, and suing tone she keeps on having you on board with the rhythmic sounds of the last living rose. The initial drumming imposes her presence  giving her the right to shake her finger like a teacher who strongly increases her power, as the track goes on.

3. The Glorious Land


This creates a desperate start of anticipation and anxiety that something bad will happen. The War march disturbing though is fundamentally heterogeneous, results uniquely appropriate. The lengthy introduction that covers almost one third of the piece accentuate this feeling of malaise. The petite with fearful connotation vocal combined with an unusually musical intervals, while the thin notes are transformed into war cries.

4. The Words That Maketh Murder


The intense pace of the beginning comes back, this time with the imposing presence of the bands most military instruments, giving the sensation of rapid military gait. The vocals are monotonous and stable are more like slogans soldiers use during the battle. The voices become stronger, but can not cover her words: soldiers fell like lumps of meat. But in the end she gives up and they all rank together to unify their cries.


PJHarvey 5 . All and everyone

The rapid pace now becomes a slow and mournful. Bring to a sequence of funeral procession, accompanied by heartbreaking laments the lyricism of PJ Harvey (death was everywhere). The wind in the downstream melodic lines enhances this feeling with the image of a mournful band.

6. On Battleship Hill


Could otherwise be called S "> beatleship hill, since one of the great British melodic element is diffused. Instead, her voice moves in hymnological Scandinavian style, which echoes in the walls of the church embracing harmoniously the result. The strong alliteration of liquid "L" and "R" restores the fluid element completing the picture.

7. England


Like water returns to the pattern of disparate elements, while the oriental sounds bring a smell of Istanbul. Her voice now is more mature and leaves behind the earlier Scandinavian school to catch Byzantine tonal scales. The background music is reminiscent of the battle and it creates a heartbreaking portrayal of women over corpses.

8. In The Dark Places


After a brief European trip returns to British waters to bathe and wash (washed) the
failure of war. The drums come back and are accompanied by distorted guitar in order to stand stature after the failure. The full brit rhythm and evocative accompany enriched vocals that capture the clustering of the people.

9. Bitter Branches

The English scene continues to be present in rhythm, and melody is mainly based on voice rather than on musical instruments. Revolution! A slight punk illusion
but synchronized with the sounds of 2011.

PJHarvey 10. Hanging In The Wire

The music subsides, the tonnes drop, as the fog drops (mist) in the first verse. The peace and harmony in voice resembles the image of a veil covering the place after the storm. The innocence of childhood of the singer is brought about by the harmony of the piano. The absence may eventually be captured and music.

11. Written On The Forehead

The belly-dancers and the Mediterranean fruit (orange and tangerine), this time in different musical contextual redefine the eastern element and combined with the tambourine exotic chorus, but, while creating memories of dark church, however with the oriental hues give this heterogeneous, but so strongly tied result, something that can be seen throughout the album.

12. The Colour Of The Earth

Such a record could not be deprived of the ending it deserves. Mick Harvey in confessional tone with simple recounts, and somewhere in the middle PJ joins him and enriches the color of land. The song ends with the participation of the choir to show global unity and alliance. A visual display would want them all lined in a row with constant additions of color on the land even with this red of the blood.

Is it random that both concerts in Berlin on 21 and 22 of February were sold out? I do not think so! I hope that sometime soon I could sneak in one and enjoy this unique musical journey. If not anything else, the album will claim a place in the albums of the year in December.






Posts for you
  • 07/06/19 14:30
    Λεωνίδας Καλμούκος
  • 04/11/18 09:00
    Παρασκευή Τόμα
  • 14/09/17 09:35
    Ξενοφών Καράμπαλης
  • 04/01/17 19:00
    Ελένη Πεφάνη
  • 16/12/16 11:35
    Γιώργος Μπαλιώτης, Ελένη Πεφάνη
  • 09/11/16 12:55
    Ελένη Πεφάνη, Ορέστης Καζασίδης
×

×
×
×
e-mail
Username
First name
Last name
Nickname
A few words
×
Current password
New password
Verify new password
×
e-mail
Username
Password
Verify password
First name
Last name
Nickname
A few words