[My Gang] Recos Of The Week : 14 Nov 07 : PJ Harvey - The Piano (White Chalk)


14 Nov 2007, 4:15


The new video for The Piano, directed by Maria Mochnacz, doesn't really work, in my opinion. An awful lot of effort has gone into it, for sure, but it brings nothing to the song, nor does it work as piece of imagery.

View it here.

Instead, I kind of prefer the fan video below. In the track, PJ Harvey uses a style of piano playing similar to that used to accompany films before they became 'talkies'. The fan, uhhuhhim, picked up on this and created a video to illustrate what goes through his head when he listens to the track.

For him, every time he heard the song, he thought of Lizzie Borden, who was famously accused of murdering her father and stepmother with an axe in America in 1892 (later acquitted).

The video isn't perfect, it definitely looks homemade, but it does bring the song to life.


The official version, with its gratuitous sexual imagery, brings seedier connotations to "Daddy's in the corner / Rattling his keys / Mummy's in the doorway / Trying to leave". Apart from that and "Ghostly fingers / Moving my limbs", I could see no other connection between the song and the video.

The unofficial version changes the meaning of those lines entirely, this time with suggestions of gratuitous violence. At times, granted, visuals are a little bit clumsy and literal, but as a whole, it brings out the sinisterness of the song.

Babs My Gang

Admin - Stats as of today:

Official Version:

Comments: 8, Favorited: 13 times, Honors: 3, Links: 5, 11 ratings, Views: 1,413
Date Added to YouTube: November 10, 2007

Unofficial Version:

Comments: 2, Favorited: 1 time, Honors: 0, Links: 0, 4 ratings, Views: 235
Date Added to YouTube: November 05, 2007

Additional Stats:

Last.fm plays last Week - 2,389
Last.fm plays last 6 months - 6,793
Last.fm listeners of this track - 14,916

Stats after 7 days: (to be added)

Official Version:

Comments: 12, Favorited: 37 times, Honors: 1, Links: 5, 21 ratings, Views: 7,186

Unofficial Version:

Comments: 3, Favorited: 1 time, Honors: 0, Links: 4, 5 ratings, Views: 333

Additional stats:

Last.fm plays last Week - 2,314
Last.fm plays last 6 months - 6,793
Last.fm listeners of this track - 15,480

No. of page views of this journal after 7 days: 1,026

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  • steerpike

    I agree that that the fan video is much better and more in tune with the mood of the song. I don't get what the 'official' video is trying to say at all. Polly could have saved her money.

    15 Nov 2007, 13:56
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