PJ Harvey Wins the 2011 Mercury Prize! iTunes Session EP To Be Released Sept. 12th

Harvey is also the only artist in history of the prize to win it twice. Check out her performance of “The Words that Maketh Murder” and accepting the award below.




Beginning Sept. 12th Vagrant Records and iTunes will release a special session with Harvey featuring 7 live recordings and an interview. Be on the look out for our review and pre-order this special EP via iTunes today.

Track Listing :

  1. Let England Shake
  2. The Words That Maketh Murder
  3. The Last Living Rose
  4. Written On The Forehead
  5. Angelene
  6. C’Mon Billy
  7. Down By The Water
  8. Interview

P J Harvey/ Seamus Murphy, “The Colour of the Earth,” “England,” & “Written on the Forehead”

Three more video treatments by Seamus Murphy are now live. Check them out below. “The Colour of the Earth” is incredible. “Written on the Forehead” is also timely and haunting. This album still holds my “best album of 2011… so far” prize.


“The Colour of the Earth”




“Written on the Forehead”


The Glorious Land


The 4th short film in a 12 part series which accompanies PJ Harvey’s album, Let England Shake, has now been released.

Here are a few words from director Seamus Murphy:

As with the other films, I wanted to avoid too literal an interpretation of Polly’s lyrics, but to try to remain true to the spirit and feel of the track. The Glorious Land was the third film we edited and completed in Berlin in the cycle of the 12 films, the first was The Words That Maketh Murder and the second was The Last Living Rose. Both editor, Sebastian, and I loved this track, and for me the bugle blast and where it sits is truly a glorious thing. It has the courage to be discordant, out of place and yet perfect on its own terms, surely the quality of great Art? At the first London show at the Troxy last week, when the bugle came in as they played The Glorious Land it was like experiencing the music floating high above the band and audience and hovering over all of us like a massive Jackson Pollack. And it swung.

I had noticed interesting things coming through the trees when driving around Dorset in October. Autumn colours, the sunlight streaming through the trees, the effect of movement during driving, how things changed if I speeded up or slowed down. How the angle at which the camera was held changed things so I started experimenting with shooting and driving. Some of this was shot through the car sunroof straight up into the sky, some deliberately overexposed and out of focus, to increase the abstraction. I particularly liked the white, washed-out look of the sky and how at times there are stretches of pure white. I originally had All And Everyone in my head for these images, but knew visually it could work elsewhere. But when we started editing The Glorious Land it became obvious it was made for it.

Let England Shake

PJ Harvey’s eighth studio album, Let England Shake, was released this past Tuesday. The album has received amazingly positive reviews including one perfect ten from NME. NME critic, Mike Williams writes, “Francis Ford Coppola can lay claim to the war movie. Ernest Hemingway the war novel. Polly Jean Harvey, a 41-year-old from Dorset, has claimed the war album.”

Photographer Seamus Murphy, whose work on Afghanistan is included on his website, A Darkness Visible, created short video pieces inspired by each song. So far we have seen videos for “The Last Living Rose” and “The Words that Maketh Murder.” Below you will see the video treatment for “Let England Shake.”


PJ Harvey “Let England Shake”

PJ Harvey

Let England Shake

Vagrant Records

Release Date : February 15, 2011

**Stream the album on NPR **

PJ Harvey’s eighth studio album, Let England Shake, is a work of art. She recorded the album in a 19th century church in Dorset, located on the South West coast of England. Joining her in the studio were longtime friends and collaborators Mick Harvey (no relation) and John Parish and producer Flood.

In numerous interviews Polly Jean Harvey states that her goal with each album is for it to be different than the previous, and in that she is far more successful than her peers. The goth-electro foreboding of 1998’s Is This Desire? gave way to 2000’s pure rock Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea, an album for which she won the Mercury Prize. 2007’s White Chalk was also critically lauded and for this album Harvey ditched her Gretsch Broadkaster for the piano. While the instruments and the overall sound of each album differs from one to the next you could say that each of these albums dealt with the inner world and subjects ranged from subjects like unrequited love to death to sex; the personal politics and torments and joys that make us human. On Let England Shake, Harvey places the personal politics aside and focuses on the outside world. Images of war and its impact on the land are a common subject matter here with allusion to both Afghanistan and World War I, however, the music shifts the overall tone of the song so that the album does not feel heavy handed. To put it bluntly, Harvey does not preach to her listeners, which is unique for such a political album.

Continue reading