PJ Harvey has spent the bulk of 2017 hoisting a golden saxophone over Australia and North America, touring in support of her ninth LP The Hope Six Demolition Project. The spring 2016 release followed years of research conducted by Harvey and war photographer Seamus Murphy, using ambiguous conclusions on unilateralism, genocide and social friction for the spine of a haunting, grooving album. The Grammy-nominated record funneled those labyrinth issues into a taut collection of thick, bluesy rock narratives whose hooks sharpen with each listen. That intensity has translated directly to the live stage, wrapped around setlists that reach back to the artist’s mid-90s gems (“Down By the Water”). After visiting Harvey at Pitchfork and Forecastle, Paste photographer Julia Drummond documented a full two-hour set at Manhattan’s SummerStage last week, including a cameo from the Anacostia Union Temple Baptist Church Choir.
“The Ministry of Defence”
“Highway 61 Revisited” (Bob Dylan cover)
“Down by the Water”