The mournful shuffle of A Line In The Sand makes its imagery more explicit. In its opening line Harvey asks, "How to stop the murdering? By now we should have learned," while later she recalls seeing "a displaced family eating a cold horse's hoof" and "people kill each other just to get [to aid] first". The Ministry Of Defence details the aftermath of a strike ("Stairs and walls are all that left/Mortar holes let through the air") on an old MOD building, now covered in Arabic graffiti. It ends on a foreboding note after building up a barren landscape strewn with "fizzy drinks cans" and "broken glass": "This is how the world will end".
Like Let England Shake, The Hope Six Demolition Project is rarely demanding. It doesn't force itself or any particular message on you, targeting your sub-conscious more than anything. A large number of the songs are upbeat and catchy, like when Harvey sings, "They're gonna put a Walmart here" in nursery rhyme melody on The Community Of Hope. It feels like a concerted tactic to subtly and slowly get her points across – burrow into people's psyches via earworm tunes rather than by earnest preaching.
Dollar Dollar is the biggest attempt to veer away from that approach. It's the rawest, most emotionally connected track on the record, a sombre piece that begins with sounds from a street and men and children crying out. Musically, it's sparse – just some variophon and mellotron floating in, letting Harvey's rich voice lead with no distractions. She sings of a boy staring through a car window "saying dollar, dollar" and the guilt of either not helping or being able to help. "In the mirror glass/A face pock-marked and hollow," goes the final verse. "I can't look through or past/The face saying dollar, dollar".
It's one of the simplest songs on the album, but also one of the most harrowing because of the feeling in Harvey's voice and the music, and the striking imagery of the lyrics. There's a sense you're finally getting something, only for the song's end to mark that of the album too. While The Hope Six Demolition Project is another admirable attempt from Harvey to switch the world on to the destruction and devastation we're causing, it feels lacking and clunky and less refined than its predecessor.
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