so tell me, why is Kaputt better or worse than Let England Shake?

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i don't really get people who complain about his singing - do you guys not listen to any music with "difficult" (ie nontraditional) vocals?

pj harvey!

his voice is antithetical to good vibes for me

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 18:55 (2 years ago) Permalink

the songs are very loose in structure and feel but there are little bits that grab you and those become the hooks/choruses

this reminds me of what tori amos did on boys for pele

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 18:56 (2 years ago) Permalink

iatee are you just trolling lex or do i have to destroy you >:[

mostly trolling lex, I don't hate pj harvey but I think it's funny that lex can be so vocal about something that's ultimately a concept rock album

iatee, Thursday, 9 February 2012 18:57 (2 years ago) Permalink

sure you can! why not?

I am thinking of how "hook" and "chorus" are used interchangeably in pop/rock/hip-hop/r&b

I spend a lot of time thinking about apricots (DJP), Thursday, 9 February 2012 18:57 (2 years ago) Permalink

Yeah as I said upthread Kaputt is like tori x aaliyah

Tim F, Thursday, 9 February 2012 18:58 (2 years ago) Permalink

Ha lex was so fun to work up abt this, but now iatee has me switching sides, pj has always been amazing

Truth is, these are both really good albums and I bet a lot of the same audience like them both, only on bizarre old ilm where we constantly have to triangulate where stuff falls on the rockist/popist spectrum and remain vigilant against indie cooties would these two albums even be presented as adversaries

dave coolier (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Thursday, 9 February 2012 18:58 (2 years ago) Permalink

kmt tim you are too obvious in your trolling

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 18:59 (2 years ago) Permalink

And here i thought I was being subtle.

Tim F, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:02 (2 years ago) Permalink

w/r/t bejar's songwriting on kaputt, one thing i think he does extremely well is the ability to make mostly meandering and mostly formless tunes very catchy. in lieu of the traditional and predictable verse/chorus/verse/chorus structure, many of the songs have 2 or 3 catchy hooks which end up being bejar simply repeating a phrase or singing a line in an unexpected and pleasant way. for an album mostly considered an 'indie "rock"' record, this is one way it stands apart and makes it special

― radiant silverfish (diamonddave85), Thursday, February 9, 2012 10:47 AM (7 minutes ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

don't really get this, and it's what keeps me at some distance from destroyer (and why i was sort of cool on john maus' pitiless censors, mentioned upthread): for me, the songs just aren't there. the vibe is certainly pleasant, but nothing really moves me or stays with me. this makes it hard to really respect bejar as a songwriter. it's not like there aren't a few hooks there, but not enough to really work as pop, and the arrangements/song structures aren't interesting enough to make up for the lack. perhaps this only demonstrates my shallowness as a listener, but if so then so.

Little GTFO (contenderizer), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:02 (2 years ago) Permalink

the old-fashioned direct expression of les

i'm not sure i'd describe LES like this - direct yeah, but perhaps observation is more accurate than expression - harvey takes on a journalistic role and the narrator's voice is outside the action at all times - it's not about her self-expression at all

― first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, February 9, 2012 1:49 PM (13 minutes ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

yeah i'm good w/all that. i was thinking more about directness of language. i was sort of responding to iatee's summary of the lyrical content and in a way he is right because lyrically she just kind of lays it all out there! it's very old-fashioned in that way. but that allows her to do lots of other, weirder things.

call all destroyer, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:06 (2 years ago) Permalink

Though the big thing I well remember from this poll is lex liking tom waits! which was awesome and strange to me

dave coolier (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:07 (2 years ago) Permalink

I think it's funny that lex can be so vocal about something that's ultimately a concept rock album

eh, lex dug the swans last year, tom waits this year, your "darker" trad singer/songwriters like laura marling and nina nastasia. PJ harvey slots right in w that stuff.

xp

Little GTFO (contenderizer), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:08 (2 years ago) Permalink

it's ok to just say you don't like something or that it's just not for you without having to come up with some grand reason why it's a failure of an album or what's deficient about it. sometimes certain albums just don't click for certain people. i listened to LES and it didn't grab me but i respect PJH and i'm sure it's a good, worthwhile album.

congratulations (n/a), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:09 (2 years ago) Permalink

pj harvey was one of my big three teenage acts! i thought this was widely known

LES was prob the album i most enjoyed writing about last year

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:10 (2 years ago) Permalink

Congratulations otm - the first part (I like let England shake)

Tim F, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:11 (2 years ago) Permalink

did you write about white chalk, lex? did anyone? i am finally hearing it and i need to read something good about it!

horseshoe, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:12 (2 years ago) Permalink

ha i reviewed white chalk at the time - only a capsule review though, weird to think PJH didn't merit a lead review back then - her canonical status has been very entrenched with LES but it's pretty overstated re: pre-LES, she's always been kind of on the fringe, lots of people dismissing her as some weird mad woman.

um here it is. v weird to read stuff you wrote 5 years ago http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2007/sep/21/popandrock.shopping2

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:15 (2 years ago) Permalink

tim i haven't seen you write about LES much anywhere

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:15 (2 years ago) Permalink

it was w/delight that i saw pj harvey open for U2 and weird out the (unfortunately overwhelmingly) musically conservative U2 fanbase. i love pj harvey. LES was certainly one of the top albums of 2011.

omar little, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:16 (2 years ago) Permalink

Man, White Chalk is probably my least favorite PJH album. But I can also imagine coming around to it at some point -- I haven't listened to it since it came out, probably. (Except for "When Under Ether," which I put on my best-of-'07 mix.)

jaymc, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:17 (2 years ago) Permalink

it was w/delight that i saw pj harvey open for U2 and weird out the (unfortunately overwhelmingly) musically conservative U2 fanbase. i love pj harvey. LES was certainly one of the top albums of 2011.

― omar little, Thursday, February 9, 2012 2:16 PM (23 seconds ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

i saw this tour, too, Omar! omg she KILLED. also she is so beautiful and tiny this is apropos of nothing but i just love her.

horseshoe, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:18 (2 years ago) Permalink

p.j. harvey weirding people out (see: jay leno) is one of my absolute favorite things to witness

horseshoe, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:18 (2 years ago) Permalink

white chalk is awesome

pfunkboy (Algerian Goalkeeper), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:19 (2 years ago) Permalink

I actually didn't realize that Let England Shake was so ~widely~ lauded. Maybe b/c it got negative reviews from a couple of local critics. But honestly, until the EOY lists came rolling in, I thought its reputation was more mixed, an ambitious album that doesn't always succeed.

jaymc, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:20 (2 years ago) Permalink

yeah i was just gonna mention that leno performance!

i've only seen PJH live four times but she was amazing each time - i keep ending up seeing her in "event" venues (first ever rock gig at the tate modern during the stories era - her worst album but she killed it live; at the troxy to kick off the LES tour, and at the royal albert hall to conclude it)

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:20 (2 years ago) Permalink

i saw her on the uh huh her tour, and that's probably the album of hers that means the least to me, but she decided to play all the loudest songs in her catalogue and it was delightful.

horseshoe, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:22 (2 years ago) Permalink

I haven't felt anything I might say about it would be better or more interesting than what others have already said. I try (mostly unsuccessfully) to watch out for those situations.

Destroyer is a case where lots of people say rong things, so it motivates me to say more than I normally would about such a p4k feted album. Whereas if a critic likes Let England Shake they're usually in the ballpark of capturing why it's such a compelling album and then the key variable is how good a writer they are, with nuance vs grandstanding being a vector. If it needs more work from a critical perspective it's probably in lyrical analysis but as I normally let it wash over me I'm certainly not the person for it.

Tim F, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:25 (2 years ago) Permalink

PJ Harvey : weird :: Salvador Dali : trippy

Clarke B., Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:25 (2 years ago) Permalink

i think pj was the last time U2 had someone 'challenging' open for them. they had a good run of those for awhile (public enemy, for one), but the last several times i saw them it was black eyed peas, no doubt, damian marley, kings of leon.... : /

maybe they should corral destroyer for a show?

omar little, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:25 (2 years ago) Permalink

Man, White Chalk is probably my least favorite PJH album. But I can also imagine coming around to it at some point

Mine too – the monotony of mood.

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:25 (2 years ago) Permalink

I like LES but I don't love it the way I love some of PJ Harvey's other albums - there are a few songs I'm not crazy about and the production seems kind of thin at times. Sonically, White Chalk evokes ghostliness and dread far more effectively for me (though I realise the two are very different records).

Gavin, Leeds, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:26 (2 years ago) Permalink

white chalk is a perfect album to listen to when you're ill.

Destroyer is a case where lots of people say rong things

oh it really really is

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:26 (2 years ago) Permalink

I loved Uh Huh Her at the time but now it sounds like she compiled castoffs for the sake of clearing out one phase of her career to begin another (and it looks more like the case now).

Exile in lolville (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:27 (2 years ago) Permalink

I was looking forward to seeing PJ in Manchester on the Is This Desire? tour, but she got laryngitis the day of the show. :/

I then saw her in Chicago two days after 9/11, and she was awesome.

jaymc, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:27 (2 years ago) Permalink

what PJH era did she open for U2 in?

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:27 (2 years ago) Permalink

right after stories from the city, i want to say?

horseshoe, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:28 (2 years ago) Permalink

ha! weirding U2 fans out in what was probably the least weird phase of her own career

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:29 (2 years ago) Permalink

The pj album I actually feel moved to write about is a woman a man walked by - which is both very underrated and also prefigured a lot of let England shake (moreso than white chalk despite the shared sense of brittleness with that album).

Tim F, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:30 (2 years ago) Permalink

spring 2001, yeah

omar little, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:30 (2 years ago) Permalink

yeah that album even sounds a little u2-y to me. tbf, people didn't seem weirded out at the show i saw.

xxp

horseshoe, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:30 (2 years ago) Permalink

tim, please write abuot it!

horseshoe, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:30 (2 years ago) Permalink

other opening acts on the tour included stereophonics, garbage, no doubt, nelly furtado, jj72...

omar little, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:31 (2 years ago) Permalink

not sure people were "weirded out" per se, but more like "lol well this is different i guess!!!!"

omar little, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:31 (2 years ago) Permalink

yes, write about it! AWAMWB is the only PJH album that means, like...nothing to me. i don't have any antipathy towards it, but i listened to it like twice and never felt compelled to return, which for someone i love as much as PJH is deeply anomalous.

first period don't give a fuck, second period gon get cut (lex pretend), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:32 (2 years ago) Permalink

it's ok to just say you don't like something or that it's just not for you without having to come up with some grand reason why it's a failure of an album or what's deficient about it

otm, the lack of recognition of this is wearying. how many billions of words/minutes are wasted on this?

I'm going to allow this! (LocalGarda), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:32 (2 years ago) Permalink

AWAMWB is the only PJH album that means, like...nothing to me. i don't have any antipathy towards it, but i listened to it like twice and never felt compelled to return, which for someone i love as much as PJH is deeply anomalous.

Same here, I liked it more than I liked Uh Huh Her or 4 Track Demos but I can't really think of anything to say about it so yeah I'd be interested to read Tim's take.

Gavin, Leeds, Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:33 (2 years ago) Permalink

LES and kaputt both got 8.8 BNM on p4k o_O

radiant silverfish (diamonddave85), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:37 (2 years ago) Permalink

also LES was #4 on p4k countdown to kaputt's #2, which isn't that huge of a difference. i don't understand how kaputt ends up being so much more lauded but p4k than LES. aside from the fact that you know destroyer and p4k are both indie fuxx

radiant silverfish (diamonddave85), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:39 (2 years ago) Permalink

lauded by*

radiant silverfish (diamonddave85), Thursday, 9 February 2012 19:40 (2 years ago) Permalink


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