Single of the Week: PJ Harvey – ‘The Community of Hope’

pj harvey the community of hope
Image source: piquitosfestivaleros

Who doesn’t like a juxtaposition? No one, that’s who. Which is why everyone except no one will thoroughly enjoy our Single of the Week from PJ Harvey. It’s juxtaposed with you. All of you.

Following on from ‘The Wheel’, the first track to be released from her upcoming ninth album The Hope Six Demolition Project (her first since 2011’s critically acclaimed and Mercury Prize winning Let England Shake), Harvey has released ‘The Community of Hope’ which contrasts itself nicely. Sounding like classic PJ Harvey on a bit of a Patti Smith kick, and pumped up with an anthemic chorus and a kind of lo-fi slacker vibe to the whole, the track is a pretty bright and upbeat track in all.

However, the lyrics paint an altogether different slant as they paint a vivid picture of an area of Washington, DC that’s found itself in some significant disrepair. Harvey’s evocative imagery setting the scene quite strikingly, singing of ‘the pathway of death’, ‘the one sit-down restaurant’, ‘the old mental hospital’, ‘the school that looks like a shithole’, and ‘drugtown’ with its’ zombie’ inhabitants.

As you’ll note, it’s an incredibly cheery portrayal, not at all at odds with the upbeat drive of the track. That is, until the uplifting message of hope that the song’s outro refrain brings with it, ‘they’re gonna build a Walmart here’. Yup, things are getting better…

Anyhow, have a listen to the song, it’s a great and another promising sign that PJ Harvey’s latest is going to be have been well worth the wait by the time it arrives.

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