Monster Music & Movies

PJ Harvey - 4-Track Demos [Import]


Format: CD
Catalog: 73145184502
Rel. Date: 10/19/1993
UPC: 731451845024

4-Track Demos [Import]
Artist: PJ Harvey
Format: CD

Formats and Editions


''4-Track Demos'' is a 1993 (see 1993 in music) album by British singer-songwriter PJ Harvey. It consists of 8 demos of songs from her previous album, ''Rid of Me'', along with 6 demos of some unreleased tracks which never made it to being recorded with the three-piece PJ Harvey line-up. According to interviews with Harvey, all fourteen of these songs were written and demoed at her home between mid 1991 and autumn 1992.

Some PJ Harvey fans preferred this version to the finished album, which tended to bury some of her vocal range and sonic experimentations under its noisy, in-your-face dynamics. For a side project, ''4-Track Demos'' received remarkably high praise: ''Entertainment Weekly'' called it "a chillingly intimate peek into the fierce musical ethic of an independent and compelling voice", ''Melody Maker'' hailed it as "viciously aggressive music with no numbing narcotic qualities", while ''Rolling Stone'' said in its four-star review that "its depth, range and conceptual completeness make you wonder why Harvey even bothered with such conventions as a band or a producer in the first place".

Harvey explained the reason for releasing this record to ''Filter'' magazine in a 2004 interview: "''4-Track Demos''... was partly encouraged by Steve Albini [producer of ''Rid of Me'']. He loved the demos for that album so much he thought they should be out there and I tended to agree with him. It seemed like showing another side of what I do and introducing new songs that I hadn't recorded on a record. It was a lovely thing to do and it felt like the right time because my three-piece band had fallen apart and I was kind of in limbo before deciding where I was gonna be going again. So, it was just like a small interjection piece of me before I knew where I was going to be next."

The photo on the album's cover was shot by Maria Mochnacz in June of 1993 while Harvey was touring to support the album ''Rid of Me''. It shows Harvey in lingerie and sunglasses, raising her arm and exposing her unshaven underarm. The picture was taken at the Watergate in Washington, D.C. The black and white photo that appears on the back of the album (also by Mochnacz) depicts Harvey naked and wrapped in plastic sheeting. When speaking about the picture, Mochnacz remarked "I suggested Polly was now a product so we wrapped her up like one".

As of 2005, (according to AskBillboard) "4-Track Demos" has sold 120,000 copies in the US.

In 1994, Island Records gave away the original Yamaha MT 2X 4-track recorder Harvey used to record 4-Track Demos as a promotion in issue 67 of Alternative Press magazine. The winner was announced the weekend of March 19, 1994 on JBTV as seen on FOX NET and CHANNEL AMERICA. The winner, Thomas Wells of Vinton, Virginia, was picked out of over 500 entries. In conjunction with being announced on TV, Thomas' name and photo were published in the April 1994 extra edition (number 71) issue of AP Wiretapping Newsletter.

"Hardly Wait" is one of two PJ Harvey songs used in Kathryn Bigelow's 1995 film ''Strange Days'' (the other song used is "Rid of Me"). In the film it is sung by Juliette Lewis. - Wikipedia

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