I've critically listened to all the cuts and there are only six would I say I would want to re-visit. At this juncture I'm not ready to 'jump on the Harvey bus' and add more of her repertoire to my collection. I decided to add Rid Of Me to my collection after owning and listening to repeated plays of her Stories from the City/Sea album that I have and continue to enjoy hearing every few months. How many of those six on 'Rid of Me' will sound fresh and interesting after a year or two? Maybe two, three or four? Unfortunately not enough to make this CD a keeper. Still, PJ is an interesting talent and I will be sure to sample other works by her, although I think I'll do some song sampling on the net before I order anything else. PJ has become 'my female David Byrne'.
Never Rid Of PJ
James V. Shrode | Philly | 09/30/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"PJ Harvey's most compelling and classic album ever. Every song is a work of art including the obsessive "Rid Of Me", the male dominance of "50 Foot Queenie" and "Man Size" to the comeuppance of "Dry." My only frustration is with Steve Albini's production style which always seems the same with his quiet then loud approach. Sometimes it feels like he is squelching some of the power that the songs contain. Still, PJ always manages to never let you down with her rawness."
You're Not Rid Of Me....
J. Albright | 10/22/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Rid Of Me 5/5, I heard a live version first. It was compelling, at first I was dissapointed with this, but after listening to it, I was very happy with it 'Lick My Legs, I'm On Fire, Lick My Legs, I'm Desire."
Missed 5+/5 This song is really good, nice mid-tempo song, different, but I love it.
Legs 5+/5 This song is frigging awesome. I really love as much as Missed.
Rub 'Till It Bleeds 5+/5 This is a really good song, sounds kind of dirty and mean (in a good way).
Hook 4.5/5 This song is nice, not quite up to par with the first four, but still a good song.
Man-Size Sextet 2/5 Ehhh...just doesn't do it for me.
Highway '61 Revisited 4.5/5 Nice song, like the music and words (note: Cover song, orginiated from Bob Dylan).
50ft Queenie 5/5 Fast-Paced Rocking Song!!! Love it (I believe it was also the first single).
Yuri-G 5/5 Another Fast Paced Rocker.
Man-Size 4/5 Now this is a much better version of the song. Screeching vilons in the other one just don't work.
Dry 5+/5 Possibly my favorite on this CD. Its a freaking awesome song with the lyric 'You leave me dry'.
Me-Jane 5/5 Yet another fast paced rocker...
Snake 5/5 It is a song that I assume is based from the bible (about Adam and Eve), short punky, in-your-face song.
Ecstacy 4/5 Nice song, a pretty good closer to a freaking awesome album.
This was my first PJ Harvey album, it is simply brilliant. Just a great heavy rocking album. When Stories From The City, Stories From The Sea is in the mail, I'll be very excited. Then I'm buying Dry next!!!
exploding_pool | middle-of-nowhere, PA USA | 08/15/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I usually listen to male-fronted metal, but PJ Harvey is the exception. This was my first album of hers and it just blew me away. Her vocals are the exact opposite of everything I usually hate about female vocals. Her voice sounds imperfect, cracking with emotion and strain. Her lyrics are intelligent and just hit me so hard with their relevancy. I'd suggest this album to anyone even remotely interested in her music, because it's probably my favorite album of hers."
J. Roso | 09/24/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I'll never forget hearing the lyric "You leave me dry" for the very first time. I was a seventeen-year old boy who had a thing for bitter women. Polly lured me in with her unique vocals and I enjoyed every moment of it regardless of how uncomfortable I felt. The erotic, raw cover (which goes hand-in-hand with the erotic, raw material found on the record) stuck in my mind and haunted me. It wasn't a new feeling for me: I was in love--again. I seriously have no idea what I've been doing my whole life before I found out about Polly: the stark lyricism, the marvelous guitar playing, the demanding performance and that deep feminine vocal delivery made her my artist of choice.
I consider this to be Polly's first masterpiece (she upped the ante two years later with "Joan Crawford on acid" extravaganza To Bring You My Love) and certainly one of her most striking albums. Dry was raw in its own way too, but this time around, Polly worked with sound engineering marvel, Steve Albini. The two masterminds worked together in late 1992 and produced this everlasting piece of art. In Utero picked Albini the acclaim (regardless of the fact that Nirvana's stupendous third album was heard by millions in a heavily remixed mode), but Rid Of Me is where it's at: check out the perfectly set dynamics in "Me-Jane"--every drum kick and every note work together in a milisecond of time. The rest of the record is strong as well: "Man-Size" plays like a thriller; the quiet-loud dynamics (popularized by grunge in the early 90s) are most obvious in the album opener which also sports Harvey's most famous lyrics ("lick my legs/I'm on fire") and the album's closest thing to a ballad, "Missed"--all work together in a coherent whole.
A personal favorite and an absolute standout, "Rub 'til It Bleeds" shows what is so special about Peej: she describes sex as a staple of both lust and violence, playing with aggressive notions of sexuality while leaving you in a state of both shock and pleasure. I've adored a lot of women over the course of several years of my experiences with music, but hardly any can compete with Polly's raw moaning. Check her out in "Legs" and "Snake": she's playing longing and pain with such conviction that it's no wonder people have mistaken her for a bitter female she never was. "Hook" sounds like slow death filled with gore, starting with what could only be described as Polly's most menacing riff ever. The sextet version of "Man-Size" brings in the Psycho strings for even more unpleasantness. She covers Dylan's "Highway 61" and it sounds nothing like the original which makes it all the better for it. Polly's most recognizable riff is witnessed in "50 Ft Queenie". Lyrically most bizarre, "Yuri-G" plays in that typical Albini fashion--mighty and punctual. A short noise-rock epic "Snake" manages to rule in just a little over a minute. Polly's most bluesy riff on the record kicks in in "Ecstasy" which just ends things on a high note.
Making a record like Rid Of Me demands a lot of creativity and even more dare. PJ always played by her own rules, and it's what makes her so inimitable. You'll rarely find an artist who thinks it's all a role to slip in and produces something that seems as nothing but. Rid Of Me is the essential record of the early 90s. The reason is simple: only a few more albums can capture the raw, guitar-driven spirit of that decade like Rid Of Me does. Polly didn't stop making music after this chilling masterpiece; she only kept changing her skin. For most of us, her compulsive need for change and not repeating herself only meant more fresh music to explore. Still, this remains her most daring endeavor. Admire it from a safe distance."
Making a splash
IRate | 07/11/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"A recording whose reputation begs influence and historical significance (and not without a handful of flat-out brilliant songs), but a release which nonetheless comes across too ragged and underdeveloped to warrant the kind of perfect reviews "important" records get. Harvey works the bare-bones, Albini-helmed attacks well, but would vastly mature as a songwriter throughout her career."