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PJ Harvey’s work is something that hits home for a lot of people. In America, many families deal with saying goodbye to those they love. Many soldiers live that nightmare by being the ones to leave their crying families to go out and fight. This is felt by citizens of all countries all over the world, as Harvey shows in her album about England.
P J Harvey’s work takes you into that life of war and its history over the years. Therefore, the album brings to the surface the silent suffering that war creates, and the effects it can have on people and environment. Her eighth album, Let England Shake, is just one of her many solo albums.
“PJ Harvey’s new album was recorded in a 19th Century church in Dorset, on a cliff-top overlooking the sea. It was created with a cast of musicians including such long-standing allies as Flood, John Parish, and Mick Harvey.” All of the tracks are based on both her home country as well as events in Afghanistan and past wars.
Following this theme, she has managed to win a second Mercury prize at the award ceremony at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel. With her amazing ability to bring musical authenticity to the life of the soldier, reflecting the destruction and sadness around them, the win was no surprise.
With Let England Shake her goal was to avoid any lessons, but to simply sing from the perspective of those who experience all the hardship of war. Harvey’s first encounter with the Mercury award was her win in 2001 for her album Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea. This was ten years ago on the night of September 11.
To receive her second win of this 20,000 pound prize around the same time a decade on was a nostalgic experience for her. Interestingly enough, the main focus and inspirational point of the winning album happened to have been the modern wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. She is the first one to ever receive the award twice.
The Mercury prize is given each year to an English or Irish artist, and Harvey has continually made history with her nomination and wins, especially with her many other accomplishments in music including a Grammy. Her first win made her the first woman to every win the prize.
With all the excitement over her victory over many other notable artists such as Adele, J P Harvey was nothing but gracious. She continues work with a new album in the future.
Image Courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/ergates/