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Live Review – PJ Harvey at Barrowland Ballroom

"A gig shining with artistry, many were delighted to catch Polly at her most bounteous."

Despite very few words shared between Mercury Prize award-winner PJ Harvey and the audience (aside from a few occasional ‘POLLY’s’), this beguiling performance at Glasgow’s Barrowlands felt as intimate as it gets with this artist. The set list spanned her vast career as an acclaimed songwriter and musician with influential and accomplished LPs such as Let England Shake and Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea. The crowd were indulged. Her intimate cover of Bob Dylan’s ‘Dark Eyes’ was where it felt special, with her declaration of love for that track, and admission of never having played it. 

Photo Credit: Lewis Porteous

PJ Harvey took to the stage in the Barrowlands for two nights, a generous offering for her fans. A gig with no support and an early stage time of 8pm, it was inevitable that the fans were in for an exhaustive treat for the evening.

Anticipatingly, Harvey fell straight into her latest album, I Inside The Old Year Dying, offering ethereal and sensual performances, running consecutively through the tracklist. We were greeted with stunning offerings of ‘A Child’s Question, July’ and ‘A Child’s Question, August’ as well as the sumptuous ‘I Inside the Old I Dying.’ Respectfully, the audience was quiet and refrained in a venue that was made for raucous crowds.

Photo Credit: Lewis Porteous

It was only once we hit the older albums that we began to see a change in this behaviour. Tracks such as ‘The Garden’, ‘The Desperate Kingdom of Love’ and ‘Angelene’ were received with warmth from a crowd keen for Harvey’s full discography. But with a set list of twenty-four tracks, she was nothing shy of generous. A gig shining with artistry, many were delighted to catch Polly at her most bounteous.

More from Harvey here

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