'When Violent Hot Pitch Words Hurt’ is Polly Paulusma’s latest sister-album, the title an anagram of ‘The Pivot On Which The World Turns’, which was released in September via One Little Independent folk subsidiary Wild Sound. Possibly her most vulnerable accompanying piece yet, it reveals early demos, lyric changes, musical alterations, draftings, and even spoken-word origin poems that proceeded the final recordings.
What is a sister-album? In 2004, Paulusma released ‘Scissors In My Pocket’ to international critical acclaim. Like many first albums, it was the product of many years of writing and recording, produced largely in her garden shed, and there was a plethora of overflow material, and a clamouring of fan interest for more.
In 2005 Paulusma released her first sister-album for ‘Scissors’, an album of alternative versions of the songs. She took a live recording made at one of her shows supporting Jamie Cullum and nestled it between four tracks recorded acapella with a string quartet, to create ‘Cosmic Rosy Spine Kites’. The unusual title was forged from ‘Scissors’ to demonstrate the relationship between them - and a tradition was born.
Because ‘Pivot’ contains material spanning a decade, there was a lot of work from behind the scenes. In fact, there were more than 50 pieces written to go on the album, and many remaining unreleased. This alterno-album doesn’t include them,but explores the songs that did make it in more detail.
‘When Violent Hot Pitch Words Hurt’ joins ‘Cosmic Rosy Spine Kites’, ‘Fights and Numbers’ (sister-album to ‘Fingers and Thumbs’), and ‘The Small Feat Of My Reverie’ (to ‘Leaves from the Family Tree’) to shine a light on the journey these songs make to the final product.
Polly is also a producer and label founder — her own label Wild Sound released records from nine other artists between 2012-2016 before becoming a folk imprint at OLI. She self-produced and recorded ‘Pivot’ once again from her shed, with the exception of three days in studio for bass, drums, and strings, and she has directed and filmed all her own music videos for the project. Her academic book ‘Angela Carter and Folk Song: ‘Invisible Music’, prose, and the art of canorography’ was released in December via Bloomsbury Academic.
Have a listen via Bandcamp .. The album is released 0n 10th February 2023