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Thread: PJ Harvey - The Hope Six Demolition Project (new album! 15 April 2016)

  1. #46
    I'm pretty sure he said "Killdren". Stone's Avatar
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    I highly doubt it's a gimmick to make money or sell the album. AS IF she needed that.
    I think it's something she wanted to do with merely artistic purpose. Maybe to add dynamic to the process? Only she knows how this influences and affects her artistically. And, if previous work is any indication, the album may have yet a long way to go before it's released.

    ETA: doesn't she love a challenge, too? This sure sounds challenging. Especially as pointed out, she is usually very private.
    Last edited by Stone; 01-20-2015 at 06:32 PM.

  2. #47
    Alt Universe CliqueMember Spikey's Avatar
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    Also, we do not know the full extent of the work just yet.
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  3. #48
    condemned to wires and hammers ebby's Avatar
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    Perhaps because it's a very un-PJ Harvery thing to do She always says she tries to do the exact opposite what she previous did. so perhaps this is one facet of that - going from a private songwriting, and quick private recording sessions for LES, to this open book art piece thing she's doing?

  4. #49
    Gone Andromeda grapefruit_is_winning's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stone View Post
    I highly doubt it's a gimmick to make money or sell the album. AS IF she needed that.
    I'm not suggesting that it's a gimmick to sell records, but I doubt seriously that PJ Harvey is super rich and money is of no concern. She doesn't sell a ton of albums (and artists hardly make money from album sales anyway, literally cents per album) and she doesn't tour much (and touring requires a ton of out of pocket expense for the artist, often times is not or barely profitable). She also sold her publishing rights to EMI which reduces the future value she will personally extract from her catalog, even if her music is widely published: http://www.billboard.com/biz/article...bum-on-vagrant

    Granted, I hope she is super rich, because she is so talented, and because she never compromises her art for commercial gain, and I just plain love her! It just seems unlikely. Frankly I hope the press this is creating does result in increased album sales!

  5. #50
    Alt Universe CliqueMember Spikey's Avatar
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    The poor artist story is a myth I think. Record sales of Rid of me must have brought up over a million pounds, To Bring You My Love must have realized something around 10 million pounds mid '90s. That is 11 million pounds for two albums. She must have seen something of that money, either at that time or for her next album.
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  6. #51
    Gone Andromeda grapefruit_is_winning's Avatar
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    According to this post: http://www.unforumzed.com/showthread...-Chart-History PJ Harvey has sold 1.5 million albums in the US. Let's say that translates to 3 million albums sold globally (it probably doesn't, btw).

    Now, it doesn't matter what her record company makes from the sale of her albums. All that matters is her cut. This article describes in thorough detail how artists get paid for album sales: http://entertainment.howstuffworks.c...royalties6.htm. It is very complicated, but $.50/album is a reasonable variable for this. So 3,000,000 x .50 = $1.5M. PJ Harvey is British and lives in England, so she pays income tax. That 1.5M just became something like $750,000.

    I'm not saying 750K isn't a boat load of cash, but considering this represents 22 years of record making, it's $35,000 per year.

    I'm sure she's doing better than that! But she's not a bajillionaire.

  7. #52
    ANUSTART Lathan's Avatar
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    She and John do have that ice dancing routine.



    That's got to bring in some money.

  8. #53
    Alt Universe CliqueMember Spikey's Avatar
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    Of course, it has gotten much harder to sell in a download world in the past 15 years, but.....

    ...what makes you think that some countries don't sell more PJ than the US, I wonder? Are you underestimating the global population as compared to the US or just her general popularity in the 90s? Stories for example, sold 300.000 copies in the UK and 100.000 in France, compared to 285.000 in the US and 70.000 in Australia. This small spectrum of the global market is already almost 750.000 copies for Stories alone, not even counting the largest market of Europe (Germany). By this account, worldwide, Stories could be well nearing or passed a million by itself. Also, by counting only France and the UK, she was more popular in Europe than in the US around that time by means of sales figures, so it maybe is kind of non-information to estimate worldwide figures based on US sales. To Bring You My Love sold well over a 1.000.000 in the first few months of its release worldwide, according to an article in the Guardian at that time; sinces its release it has been continously on the shelves, so I estimate that those figures must have grown at least to 1,5m over the course of 20 years, but may be much more. So a part of the market of Stories, and the first few months of TBYML already account for a lot of sales.

    The $0,50 rule may not even be applicable to the albums of old, since she retains a lot of rights to her work. That she is British doesn't say anything about her income tax, because you don't know what kind of methods were used in paying her. Also, it was a different world. People paid a lot more for albums, and record deals were not always directly dependant on sales figures, when she was contracted before Rid of Me by Island Records, she had a lot of offers - some up to $400.000,-.
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  9. #54
    'If you existed, I'd divorce you.' spyk_'s Avatar
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    She's a highly successful, established artist who has toured fairly frequently and won dozens of awards. Album sales aside, I think she's got enough moolah to be getting on with for now.

  10. #55
    Gone Andromeda grapefruit_is_winning's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spikey View Post
    ...what makes you think that some countries don't sell more PJ than the US, I wonder?
    Purely guessing, I have no idea. But even if you say she has sold 10,000,000 albums, that's $5M for her cut, then reduce that by taxes, then spread that over 22 years. (The English DO pay income taxes, I assure you.) And actually this calculation for artist earnings on album sales is *not* new -- it's how it's worked since the dawn of time. There are two types of rights that pertain to album sales: Recording rights and Publishing rights. PJ does NOT retain her publishing rights, she sold them to EMI, as stated in the article (for which she earned a probably significant big fat check). And she never owned her recording rights -- record companies own those, always have. Hence why they are "record companies". (Note that ownership in this sense does not refer to use of her music -- she has veto power over that.)

    I know from what I speak. I have professional experience in the music rights industry.

    As spyk says, I am sure she is doing just fine. The entirety of my point is just that artists do not get mega rich from album sales! And never have.

  11. #56
    Alt Universe CliqueMember Spikey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grapefruit_is_winning View Post
    Purely guessing, I have no idea.
    Yeah that much was clear; also, if the figures I presented are correct you are totally wrong / off. Hopefully you are not american yourself, because this would look like a stereotypical severe case of ethnocentrism. That is, to think that a cool eccentric british artist would sell well only in the US, while sales figures show that she is proportionally way more popular in the europes.

    Quote Originally Posted by grapefruit_is_winning View Post
    But even if you say she has sold 10,000,000 albums
    Never said that though, so what is your point. I said that To Bring You My Love must have made about 10m quid (gross, and not just for her), and before that she probably had a record contract worth about 0,5m quid.

    Quote Originally Posted by grapefruit_is_winning View Post
    (The English DO pay income taxes, I assure you.)
    I am well aware how economic systems in europe work, as a european myself (goddamn europeans!!) But..... can you also assure me how british taxes work for an album with a contract worth most likely more than $400.000 recorded in Minnesota and paid by Island US to a person temporarily working in the states? Like Rid of Me?? Throw in a swiss bank account of the 90s, and there you have it.

    Quote Originally Posted by grapefruit_is_winning View Post
    I know from what I speak. I have professional experience in the music rights industry.
    ...you KNOW? Very strong argument right there. You are poor, so PJ must be as well?

    Quote Originally Posted by grapefruit_is_winning View Post
    As spyk says, I am sure she is doing just fine.
    To be clear: that is what I also meant to say. Spikeys are rarely incorrect, you must agree. Look into my eyes. Agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by grapefruit_is_winning View Post
    The entirety of my point is just that artists do not get mega rich from album sales! And never have.
    The entirety of my point is that you have no idea how rich she is, as you are not even interested in looking up sales figures. You just seem to cling to the poor artist myth because of personal experience. Because you KNOW. Good luck with that though.
    Last edited by Spikey; 01-22-2015 at 11:28 PM. Reason: strawberries and smileys
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  12. #57
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    Just came back from Somerset House.

    When I arrived, they were recording the bass line for "A Line In The Sand". Polly was dressed in black and stood very quiet in the first 10 minutes. I was surprised that Polly gives Flood a lot of freedom. I was surprised because I always assumed that she'd be super bossy and quite a control freak about her projects, but that is not the important thing here.

    After the bass line, they started recording the backing vocals. For 30 minutes all you could hear was all the blokes singing "oh, oh oh oh oh, ohhh, oh oh oh oh ohhhhh" which is the chorus for that song. In the end they were singing the backing vocals for lyrics like: "enough is enough, a line in the sand, 7 or 8 thousand people killed by hand" and "I saw people kill each other just to get there first".

    The subject is quite the same as LES. I feel this time things will be more "Universal" and even more ambiguous. The song was catchy but I was not hugely surprised or amused by it, tbh. It is as catchy as TWTMM but with a jazzie, slightly heavier sound and the song ends in an abrupt way. Her voice was in her upper range again and I am convinced that she has been working in her upper register quite a lot. Her voice sounds much stronger in the high notes and, despite not being a fan of her "church-singing-voice", I reckon that what I heard, vocally, sounds better than LES.

    Another thing from LES are the male backing vocals, a trick to give the songs that sense of community that we got in the last record. Polly must be completely allergic now to low voices. The blokes tried to sing the stuff in a lower register, as suggested by Flood. That was the only time I saw Polly interfering with the process: "No, stop, it's just too low" . I thought it sounded way better that way, but, she's the one in charge!

    I'll be back there on the 4th of Feb.
    Last edited by El_Natos; 01-24-2015 at 05:30 PM.

  13. #58
    worth a million in prizes .chris's Avatar
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    Whats the experience of watching like? How long are you there for? Are you just standing around watching her through a window? Can she see the spectators? (Sorry if these questions were already answered)

  14. #59
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    I liked the experience. You are there for 45 minutes, you can stand and sit in a L shaped room that has windows that enable you to witness what is happening in the studio. They can't see/hear you. The studio itself looked very sterile, completely white with all the instruments lying around and two white cheap Ikea sofas. Mick Harvey and Jean Marc Butty were not there. Seamus was taking photos of everything.

    The experience is a bit weird, especially when you seem to think that Polly is actually looking AT YOU (although she's not). I felt quite sick of so much excitement whenever that happened, really. It is amazing how quiet people remained, even though they guys inside the studio can't hear your, really. Everyone was just paying attention to every single detail of the song and the session, how they behave, etc.

    Watching Polly so close was very weird. She was actually 10 cm away from me for a few seconds. OMG. She is a weird mix between a very stern, cold, old woman with a relaxed, happy girl. Her facial expressions changed so quickly and her gaze is intense but delicate at the same time. She is really a weird mix. The moments that we enjoyed the most, I guess, were those when Polly made a joke, smiled, cracked up or made fun of John Parish and his voice towards the end of the session. Another funny moment was when an Italian guy from the band (Enrico Gabrielli) was singing "Haven't" instead of "have not" all the time. John Parish told him "It is have not, that's what we are singing, not haven't". We were all giggling in the room. We got to see two different PJs there in such a small amount of time. It was fun.

    I was also happy to see that she looks healthier now than what we saw in the photos last year. I did not think she was that thin, to be honest this time. And her hair is curly again

  15. #60
    worth a million in prizes .chris's Avatar
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    Thanks so much for the report! Sounds like an amazing experience.

    This thread inspired me to put on Let England Shake.

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