Interesting record. Lots of great stuff here, if not totally satisfying. The music written by long time foil/collaborator/benefactor John Parish. The lyrics written by PJ. PJ has said she loved this record because it challenged her writing skills and she felt she grew quite a bit from the experience, as she was working differently than she had in the past.
There are a few PJ Harvey records I would recommend before getting this one. While there are those who think it is among her best work and love it the most, I think the "typical" fan prefers some of her other titles more. Plus, given the fact that much of the music was beyond her influence, listening to this album first fails to give you a sense of her own musical perspective.
Next to '4-Track Demos', I think this album is her most challenging work and is probably best to explore a little later on. That being said, highlights for me include 'Heela', 'Civil War Correspondent', 'Taut' (though I much prefer live versions from '98 era), 'That Was My Veil'.. well, there are a few more good ones here too. So, I guess I like this album even more than I thought. Lol!