Exclaim!'s Staff Picks:​ PJ Harvey Spins a Delicate Darkness on 'I Inside the Old Year Dying'

BY Sydney BrasilPublished Jul 27, 2023

Decades on, the shadows that have always existed within PJ Harvey have evolved. Instead of the throaty growls that marked her seminal works, her later output is more in tune with a delicate darkness. I Inside the Old Year Dying wears its heart on its sleeve, obvious in its bubbling out of a book-long poem — it's a romanticized walk in a rainy ravine, with whimsical falsettos matching its witchy prose. 

Forgive me for this, but I Inside's instrumentation almost evokes some of Radiohead's most devastating tracks. The sparse piano lines and wispy drumming allocate room for warped synths and just a bit of edge from the electric guitar. It's not that Harvey has let go of everything that made her what she once was, it's that she's unrolled alongside it.


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