PJ Harvey "Is This Desire?" LP
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Is This Desire? finds Harvey delivering on the promise of her earlier albums: without losing any of the rage of her earlier, more guitar-driven work, she further refines her psychotic tales of obsession and despair, all the while laying down a sonic groundwork which is always experimental and unexpected, including a heavy dose of electronica. Harvey's trademark whisper-to-a-scream vocal style is present throughout is this desire. "The Sky Lit Up" sees a casual, almost spoken vocal erupt slowly into an otherworldy wail, accented perfectly by wild guitar textures. "Catherine" is a sublime, evocative ballad, whose vitriolic lyrics are juxtaposed against a soft, rolling backing track. "The Garden" skips along at a determined pace, with keyboard textures and swelling strings making it a quintessential PJ Harvey composition: haunting, angry and thoroughly unusual.