The Hope Six Demolition Project

PJ Harvey - The Hope Six Demolition Project
Critic Score
Based on 34 reviews
2016 Ratings: #239 / 775
Year End Rank: #35
User Score
Based on 308 ratings
2016 Ratings: #347
April 15, 2016 / Release Date
LP / Format
Island / Label
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Pretty Much Amazing

For those seeking guidance with regard to broken governments, armed conflict, and debilitating poverty—maybe reach for a book, not a pop album. If it’s solace you’re after, The Hope Six Demolition Project has a few remarkable tunes you might want to hear.


The Hope Six Demolition Project implicates all of the Western world's complacency, making for a complex and challenging, though gorgeous, listen.


The Hope Six Demolition Project has plenty of harsh, ugly moments; this isn’t Harvey crafting beautiful vignettes. Instead, she’s often reflecting the ugliness she sees around her, conceding that the world ain’t always pretty.

American Songwriter

Not all of Hope Six is mired in dissonance. Harvey frequently returns to the well of pop music, but the irony of wrapping a grim lyrical message in upbeat music is that those uncomfortable truths become that much harder to overlook.

Under The Radar

The magic of The Hope Six Demolition Project is the glimmer of hope that in a war-torn, inequality-ridden, and ultimately unpleasant world, things might somehow change.

Drowned in Sound

It makes you puzzle its meaning, ponder on it, burrow nagging ideas into your head. And it is another stupendous record, of the sort nobody else is making, or probably could make.

Loud and Quiet

It’s a disorienting album, but written by someone trying to make sense of something alien and repulsive when at the same time compelling and mesmeric.

The Line of Best Fit

There’s definitely a verve, a thrust, a touch of real purpose about The Hope Six Demolition Project that elevates it beyond just being a vehicle for another clutch of PJ Harvey songs.

Time Out London

Harvey’s voice is extraordinary, soaring like a surface-to-air missile. But it’s telling that her muse sometimes feels a little too tethered to the album’s concept and her collaborator’s pictures.

NOW Magazine

Harvey sings with unshakeable poise, and her melodies are as sticky as ever - to the point where you can imagine some songs working as barroom singalongs.

The Guardian

A hugely enjoyable album, potent-sounding, stuffed with tunes great enough to drown out the occasional lyrical shortcomings.

No Ripcord

While the music remains as invigorating as ever, the subject matter has the most direct through line of her discography. If Let England Shake looks at conflicts both past and present from an afar, journalistic view, then this album is up-close and personal. The result mostly succeeds, though it's not without problems.


Harvey would suggest that passivity wreaks nothing but death and destruction. But, in this particular case, the result is something like a clarion call.


Whatever her geopolitical intentions, The Hope Six Demolition Project is her most exhilarating rock album in years.

A.V. Club

It’s another fascinating and uncompromising career achievement, though one that’s necessarily a bit too detached. There’s no snarling, no howls of rage—just dutiful reportage. 


The Hope Six Demolition Project is just like PJ Harvey – always thinking, always moving. Even if it may capture her in a moment between masterpieces, it doesn’t make her music any less enthralling or her cause any less compelling.


Project is prime second-tier Polly, opening melodic and textural doors unlike much else you’ll hear in 2016, and it amounts to a lean, compulsively listenable 41 minutes that makes a conscientious effort to do something larger with her gifts.

Rolling Stone

One of her most challenging albums, and one of her most urgent.


Her commitment to her role as observer on The Hope Six Demolition Project -- as well-intended as it is -- robs it of her best work's potency. While it's just one piece of a bigger work, on its own the album isn't as satisfying as its predecessor.


Whatever your feelings around the words, and they are certainly a little clunky at times, this is a musically rich collection that is partly a logical step on from the rattle of 2011’s beautiful ‘Let England Shake’ and also as melodic a rock record as Harvey has released in some time.

Consequence of Sound

By orchestrating an album meant to embody the difficult experience of the advantaged world talking about the atrocities that surround us, the majority of the project lacks a clear stance beyond what has been readily called “poverty tourism.”


Without the factual, informative aspect of journalism, or a clear stance, the purpose of these songs feels muddied.


This isn’t the best or the bravest music of her career, but Harvey continues to pave new ground. This time, she takes that responsibility very literally, exploring new places and inviting listeners into her strange universe.

Slant Magazine

This amorphous vocal presence, her lyrical acuity and ear for instrumentation remain essential throughout, assuring that, despite its faults, The Hope Six Demolition Project is still a bountiful album loaded with complex songs and equivalently intricate ideas.


The album just sometimes sounds flat uncomfortable with its focus. And that, finally, is what drags the record down. When it fails, Harvey isn’t living in a world. She’s just a tourist.

The Skinny

PJ Harvey's least beautiful record by some distance, The Hope Six Demolition Project's intentions are admirable and inarguable. But weighed against the expectations raised by the overwhelming invention of her stout back catalogue, it falls uncomfortably short.

PJ Harvey demolishes your sould with this new politically raw record. The production and vocals are top-notch, there’s a weird catchiness to it that shouldn’t be there, but still you can’t resist letting the tracks get into your head. My favorite thing, probably, is the emotion she gives with every new verse that comes and drops a huge bomb on you, it’s beautiful and shocking. The writing is spectacular, she knows how to transport you to what she felt in a particular ... read more
PJ returns with a dense and conceptually rich album, The Hope Six Demolition Project. Even though the ideals behind these narratives leave it out of the 'political' aspect, there is an undeniable sense of social criticism and a pseudo-jounalist aspect to this work. The lyrics and themes here are pretty much descriptive and lyric-focused, making up for a very interesting experience, informatively-speaking. Musically, though, it sounds quite undeveloped, with most of the tracks struggling to ... read more
When an artist's worst album is around a 73, you truly realize their artistic value.
indie roack album, tremendous tracks from start to finish, superb vocals, heavy emotional political lyrics, great melodies, excellent stuff from the undisputed queen of indie
It is defintely not the strongest PJ Harvey record. Some songs just aren't as well drawn out or don't have that poignancy as previous Harvey records. However, it is still one solid record with a strong core message. At the end of it all, it makes for a fulfilling listen.
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Track List

  1. The Community of Hope 
  2. The Ministry of Defence 
  3. A Line in the Sand 
  4. Chain of Keys 
  5. River Anacostia 
  6. Near the Memorials to Vietnam and Lincoln 
  7. The Orange Monkey 
  8. Medicinals 
  9. The Ministry of Social Affairs 
  10. The Wheel 
  11. Dollar, Dollar
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Added on: January 21, 2016