CD review: Let England Shake - PJ Harvey

TOM CARDY
Last updated 05:00 17/03/2011
shake
SHAKING THINGS UP: Let England Shake is PJ Harvey's best effort yet.

Relevant offers

Music

'No problems anticipated' for fans outside Bruce Springsteen concert Grammy-winning audio engineer Guy Massey takes a trip down memory road Lydia Cole: 'I like it when people do their thing, on their terms' The teenager who stole Bruce Springsteen's Brisbane show Treat Her Right campaign kicks off: Equal Pay? It's about time! The xx: The shyest band in England Guns N' Roses' Wellington guitar picks on Trade Me Ed Sheeran confirms he'll be in New Zealand 'soon' Midnight Oil to play New Zealand during world tour Justin Bieber 'facing investigation for battery'

As a long time PJ Harvey fan, I've sometimes had to take it on the chin defending her. Not everything she has done is as good as Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea or To Bring You My Love.

I remember a former editor being flummoxed by my praise of her last release White Chalk, returning the copy with a sigh and a disapproving look.

But, hand on heart, Let England Shake is her most accessible, while also being her least predictable release of the past 10 years.

It's also her jolliest - and followers know that "jolly" is not a word normally associated with most of Harvey's output.

Just listen to The Glorious Land, a lovely amalgam of folk and Harvey's trademark sparse indie rock, the hook-filled The Words That Maketh Murder or the otherworldly Written on the Forehead.

Harvey, who wrote many of the songs on the little-known autoharp, focuses on the world around her, including Gallipoli and Afghanistan, rather than her usual inspiration from the personal.

With producer Flood, John Parish and former Bad Seed Mick Harvey in tow, the result is a triumph.

* What do you think of Let England Shake? Post your comments below.

Ad Feedback

- The Dominion Post

Comments

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content