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Old 02-17-2008, 04:56 AM   #46
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Thank you for the review ... though, I for one think Mick Harvey is brilliant

I'm soooo looking forward to Wednesday night
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Old 02-20-2008, 08:16 AM   #47
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I posted this in my diary and thought I'd post it here as well:

Just got back from the concert, and what a wonderful concert it was. I've seen PJ five times before and this show was really something special and unique; very different to the sweaty, energetic Festival Hall gig from the previous Uh Huh Her tour. I'm even more in awe of PJ's live powers and vocal versatility, and her ability to reinvent herself. It was also great to see her genuinely relaxed and enjoying herself, she was very chatty throughout the show and her accent was adorable,

I got to the venue a bit late and missed half of Mick Harvey's set; I have to say I enjoyed his music much more than his voice which is, um, hardly a thing of beauty. The music was good though, dark and moody and a bit reminiscent of that Bad Seeds band Mick frequents. The double bass was very cool.

Then I went out for a cup of overpriced capuccino and people-watching, which is always fun especially when the public is more on the arty-quirky side and you can spot some interesting outfits. When I got back to my seat the stage was prepared for PJ and looked very atmospheric, with XMas lights draped over the piano and the amp. Polly came onstage dressed in her fabulous 18th-century white dress that I've already seen in the YouTube clips from the tour. For most of the time it was a one-woman show, with PJ switching between guitars, piano, beatbox (?) and autoharp, except for a few songs when Mick Harvey showed up again and accompanied her on the piano.

The set was quite varied and I was pleased to see "Is This Desire?" feature a lot - those songs connect really well with PJ's new material. I really loved the reworked versions of "Down By The Water" and "Big Exit"; the latter was made much darker and unsettling compared to its joyful album counterpat. I thought though that the concert became truly magical and captivating when PJ played her new "White Chalk" material - it just suited the setting so well and made me feel transported to another time and place. She also played a few of her rockier numbers like "Snake" and "Man-Size", but while they were good for shaking up the pace I didn't think they suited this particular show as well.

Once again, I'm kicking myself for not bringing my camera; I'd have loved to have a memento of the concert because, knowing PJ's reluctance to repeat herself, she's not likely to do a show like this again any time soon. And she's not very keen on live DVDs, damn her.
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Old 02-20-2008, 11:40 AM   #48
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Well, lucky I bought my camera








What an oustanding concert it was this evening ... and ended with my sis and I bumping into the very lovely, talented Mick Harvey in the foyer (he told us he was desperately looking for his mum ) and a very funny photo opportunity
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Old 02-22-2008, 01:50 AM   #49
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Back from Melbourne...

Thanks for putting up those concert pics! Must admit that I avoid carrying a camera especially when there are plenty of willing photographers around the net. When you say that you & your sis bumped into Mick, was there any stalking and cornering involved? And nice to see these performers spending some quality time with their mothers at the gigs. Wouldn't see the Gallagher brothers do that, would you? Probably a good thing?

It was certainly a great concert, am glad that you two (and in fact everyone there) seemed to enjoy it as much as I did. Did you hear the sad sigh at the end when the venue lights came on?

The highlights for me were also the White Chalk songs, and I think that transported is a good word to describe the experience. The album has grown on me quite a bit since my first listen even though I still need to be in a certain mood to fully enjoy it. There's a particular cold haunting quality about it, as much due to PJ's hushed vocals as everything else. In comparison I reckon I could enjoy listening to an album like Stories.. at almost any time and place (eg, desert island).

The other highlight which I must mention was the beautiful Horses in my Dreams, which has been playing in my mind since the Sydney show. I'd already rated it highly but never fully appreciated what a dark, hypnotic, and beautiful song it is until I heard the live version. And then came back to play the album track over and over again.. It's mesmerising. For best effect try listening to it as a late night lullaby..

And yeah you Melburnians sure know how to dress smartly, there was a much bigger change in the dress code than the setlist between Melb & Syd. I felt pretty daggy wearing a silly movie T-shirt of all things but then no-one knows me down that way so there's no harm done, right?

Anyway here are some more links including pics and a video if you're interested, these are from the Brisbane show though:

http://bb01.sov.uk.vvhp.net/pjharvey...opic.php?t=645

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Old 02-22-2008, 07:26 AM   #50
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Oh wow Zihua, thanks so much for posting those links ... I was just thinking as I was reading through how much I need a setlist to jog my memory, and lo and behold, someone has listed one (from Brissy?) Really happy now ... I'm terrible for remembering songs, let alone the order of them! That large photo of PJ posted on that forum is just beautiful!!

The concert on Wednesday night was just ... superb I so wish I could somehow go back in time and relive it! It was an amazing collection of songs ... but like you, I loved hearing the 'White Chalk' songs especially. I can completely relate to being transported to another place .. it was like going to Planet Polly for the evening .. there is something so other-wordly about her performance - and THAT voice. Incredible.

I loved 'Horses in my Dreams' too ... beautiful. I'm so glad that she played it!


Quote:
Originally posted by Zihua

When you say that you & your sis bumped into Mick, was there any stalking and cornering involved?
ha! Well, there was certainly no stalking involved .. but maybe a bit of cornering! We took our time coming out of the theatre, and it was just about empty by the time we left. We were just about to hop on the escalator upstairs and Mick was coming down .. I was so surprised and said to my sis, 'ooh, there's Mick!' and he just stopped and had a brief (and very funny!) chat with us! Great fun
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Old 02-22-2008, 07:54 AM   #51
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The Age gave PJ a glowing review in today's paper, but I had no idea that apparently she had mentioned quitting touring a few years ago, The whole review was written as if about a comeback from the retirement.
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Old 02-24-2008, 12:51 AM   #52
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Aw, that "This is the last show I will ever play" remark was just idle chit-chat between songs. Likewise those playful remarks about playing gigs in Bangkok and Adelaide. As if!

That was news to me as well though. Reading about it now it seems that she may have actually said "This is our last show ever" ie. together with that band lineup, and been misquoted. In any case I'm also surprised that The Age reviewer gave it so much focus. Hasn't she toured since that gig in 2004?

As an aside I wonder how many solo performers of able body and voice have genuinely called it quits before, for good? No wonder The Eagles named their most recent tour the Farewell Tour I.

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ha! Well, there was certainly no stalking involved .. but maybe a bit of cornering! We took our time coming out of the theatre, and it was just about empty by the time we left. We were just about to hop on the escalator upstairs and Mick was coming down .. I was so surprised and said to my sis, 'ooh, there's Mick!' and he just stopped and had a brief (and very funny!) chat with us! Great fun
Lucky devils, and nice of him to stop for a chat. I'd forgotten to mention that since the shows I've been trying to track down the PJ versions (even demos) of those few songs that he played as I've taken a liking to them, especially Slow-Motion-Movie-Star, but no success so far..
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Old 02-24-2008, 04:03 AM   #53
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Quote:
Originally posted by Zihua
Aw, that "This is the last show I will ever play" remark was just idle chit-chat between songs. Likewise those playful remarks about playing gigs in Bangkok and Adelaide. As if!
I've heard about that too, but the retirement comment The Age referred to came from an interview, not from an onstage remark. I googled around and found this excerpt from November 2004 interview:

IT WAS WITH her usual subtle-as-an-A-bomb aplomb, that British singer-songwriter PJ Harvey dropped this bombshell down the phone line from Canada: "I think I might retire".

If that was it, it still doesn't sound like any kind of definite "announcement". Journalism,
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Old 02-24-2008, 05:20 AM   #54
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Oops yeah it does mention an interview. Right there in the first sentence.

You're right, in any case it's a bit of a flakey reference, not worth a "comeback" angle in an article. PJ was probably just wrung out from an exhausting tour at the time.
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