Hear PJ Harvey’s Harrowing New Song ‘The Crowded Cell’Rolling Stone — Althea Legaspi
PJ Harvey has unveiled her new song, “The Crowded Cell.” The song is from the score the singer penned for all four-parts of Shane Meadows’ new drama series, The Virtues, which is currently airing on the UK’s Channel 4.
On the harrowing song, Harvey sings over an unrelenting rhythm and melody that drive the harrowing themes of inescapable imprisonment, whether physical or the kind that perpetually haunt the mind. “You will see us again/You will remember this,” she forebodingly sings before detailing physical abuse. “They tied me up with ropes/They beat my legs with sticks/I cannot use my legs.”
The song closes out each of the four episodes. Harvey said that the demos for the songs she culled for the series are what appear in the show.
“I am so happy to have provided the original music for this extraordinary and powerful new drama by a director I have admired and followed all my life,” she said in a statement. “Shane has a unique directness and sensitivity to his work, which I am drawn to and aspire to in my own work, so our collaboration was open and trusting. I sent Shane ideas as demos for him to try out as he edited and let him choose what he used and where to the greatest effect. In the end, we both loved how the demos worked so left them as they were, adding to the raw beauty of the piece.”
Harvey also recently penned the score to Ivo van Hove’s stage production of All About Eve. All About Eve—The Original Soundtrack was released last month via Lakeshore/Invada.