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Let England Shake Image
Metascore
86

Universal acclaim - based on 42 Critic Reviews What's this?

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8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 214 Ratings

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  • Summary: Polly Jean Harvey takes a political approach on her latest album, as a singer-songwriter speaking on the casualties of war, the cruelty of life and the condition of being human.
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Top Track

Let England Shake
The West's asleep. Let England shake, weighted down with silent dead. I fear our blood won't rise again. England's dancing days are done. Another... See the rest of the song lyrics
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 38 out of 42
  2. Negative: 0 out of 42
  1. Feb 18, 2011
    100
    This is the best album for 2011, and not just the last two months.
  2. 100
    Let England Shake is an album that only the Polly Harvey of today could have written.
  3. Mar 23, 2011
    90
    A dimly lit, lo-fi hybrid, Shake takes its cue from some of Harvey's most successful past works, but has its own uniquely brash textures.
  4. Feb 15, 2011
    85
    Harvey's singing delivers the material by juggling unwieldy emotions with care and empathy. And she makes the experience sound natural -- like a true no-brainer.
  5. Feb 16, 2011
    80
    This is war poetry at its finest and will keep you coming back for many repeat listens. Its influence on any listener, impressionable or otherwise, should be a positive one.
  6. Feb 14, 2011
    80
    Authoritatively potent, bitterly bleak and beautiful, this record is an unexpected but essential punch in the face.
  7. Feb 15, 2011
    60
    Always an underrated guitarist, Harvey makes use of the jaunty rhythms of British folk music, but takes no comfort in the past. And you don't have to care about English history--or England in general--to fall under Harvey's spell.

See all 42 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 42 out of 44
  2. Negative: 1 out of 44
  1. Mar 1, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. A breathtaking beauty both in lyrics and music. Simplicity rules. Pete Doherty and Beck might have wished to clean her shoes. Me too. Even my dog seems to loose his regular interest in fresh veal... Jokes aside, just try it, will not get dissapointed. Expand
  2. TAE
    Feb 20, 2011
    10
    well this album is so different from anything else she's done it's hard to compare to anything else in her discography but the sound of thewell this album is so different from anything else she's done it's hard to compare to anything else in her discography but the sound of the album is so unique and at 41 who'd ever think she'd be in peak form so late into her career? This album really does sound like it was made by an actual band and not just Polly solo. So that actual band should also get some credit for making such a quirky classic. With all the British females dominating the music industry it's about time the queen (with all due respect to Kate Bush) shows the amateurs how it's done. Congrats on your incredible rise back to the top Polly. I hope this is your best selling record ever. I'll never doubt her again. Expand
  3. Feb 22, 2011
    10
    She proves it again and again that you can be creative and relevant without the need of starting all over again, from scratch and withoutShe proves it again and again that you can be creative and relevant without the need of starting all over again, from scratch and without necessarily breaking all musical conventions, but by just doing what you do the best and adding on top of it a little by little as you go along. No nonsense, indeed, with PJ Harvey. Radiohead, take a note! Expand
  4. Feb 17, 2011
    10
    This album should be talked about all year!! This album should inspire all musicians to write/be inspired by lyrics that force you to listenThis album should be talked about all year!! This album should inspire all musicians to write/be inspired by lyrics that force you to listen to them along with the music, and the voice singing them. Poetry yes, but what I love is the fact that PJ writes about England's march into the ground with passion, and that there is no mention of hope or prayer yet the album is recorded in an old church. Also, her lyrics frame many scenes of battle and death and the only time the word 'blood' is sung, is in the last line of the last song. Haunting and dark, yet soothing and peaceful use of her voice and choice of weapons (instruments). PJ should definitely incorporate the saxophone more in the future, but, again, I am sure what she plays and what she sings will surprise again. Expand
  5. Mar 3, 2011
    9
    A change of pace for Ms. Harvey. Poetic, haunting lyrics as always, but coming less from sexualized angst as her early work did. Here sheA change of pace for Ms. Harvey. Poetic, haunting lyrics as always, but coming less from sexualized angst as her early work did. Here she addresses the trauma suffered by England after WWI, however you get the sense this is larger than just that war. Regardless of the dark vision, these songs are catchy and enjoyable. This work will stand as one of her best. I for one, am thankful such a great artist continues to make music for us. Expand
  6. Aug 9, 2011
    9
    So far the best PJ album. 'On Battleship Hill' comes up as her finest track and the vocals are absolutely haunting. It's been a while since ISo far the best PJ album. 'On Battleship Hill' comes up as her finest track and the vocals are absolutely haunting. It's been a while since I really felt like buying an album again. Expand
  7. Nov 12, 2021
    6
    A great return to form from the prolific indie rock singer songwriter Polly Jean Harvey . I thought this album had a very cohesive and darkA great return to form from the prolific indie rock singer songwriter Polly Jean Harvey . I thought this album had a very cohesive and dark narrative and her vocals were very archaic as if sung by some1 dead looking at humanity with their newfound wisdom .i enjoyed the title track and the "the words that maketh murder " Expand

See all 44 User Reviews

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