Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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PJ Harvey: Dry [Indigo, 1992]
Since she doesn't fancy comparisons to Sinead or Kate Bush--"I'm like anyone as long as they're female. If they've got dark hair it's even better"--perhaps she'd prefer Cream or the Doors. Island Records sure would, but in a sexist world she's unlikely to achieve such heights of rockist catalogue stuffing--I just meant a band that sounds great until you listen to the words when you're not stoned and decide they're self-indulgent blather. This fate she's spared by the cloudy but essential feminist distinction between egoist bullroar and honest irrational outpouring--and of course by her postrockist guitar, where she starts to reinvent her instrument the way grrrl-punks reinvent their form. A-