PJ Harvey wins the 2011 Mercury Award

PJ Harvey has won the Mercury Music Prize, becoming the first artist to win the coveted award twice.

Her album Let England Shake snared the prize ahead of contenders from Adele, Elbow, James Blake and Anna Calvi and managed to repeat the success of her Stories from the City, Stories from the Sea record from 2001.

Harvey is also one of only two acts to be nominated for the award four times, with her 1993 album Rid of Me and 1995’s To Bring You My Love also shortlisted for the award. The other act to receive four nominations for the Mercury, Radiohead, has never actually won the prize.

When Let England Shake was released in February FL’s review declared that it “is as important an album anyone will make this year, maybe this decade. PJ Harvey marries starkly affecting poetry with some of the finest song writing of her career. War is futile and tragic. Let England Shake is not.”

While Harvey told FL earlier this year that with this record “I felt that I had more experience as a writer and more experience with language in what I could express through song – actually more coherent and more lucid ideas. And I needed to have that quality if I was going to begin to speak about such huge subject matter.”