Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea
In these reactionary times, it’s become a cliché to acknowledge the differences between men and women. However, the truth is that deep down inside, we all suffer from the same wound, the jagged cut that separates reality from our own perceptions of it. There are those among us who relish in the touching of this wound, for much the same reason as the man in the joke continually hitting himself on the thumb with a hammer—it feels good when they stop. More than any other contemporary artist I’ve listened to lately, P.J. Harvey touches this wound within us all. Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea may be the most introspective album ever made, and despite the melancholy music and lugubrious lyrics, there’s something uplifting about Harvey’s acknowledgement that we all feel the same pain. I won’t be missing that hammer at all.