Electric Light
PJ Harvey Lyrics


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The beauty of her, under electric light
The beauty of her, under electric light
Tears my heart out every time

Dawn there waiting, right outside
Dawn there waiting, right outside
She tears my heart out every time
Siren rising across the sky




Sirens rising across the sky
Tears my heart out every time

Overall Meaning

PJ Harvey’s song “Electric Light” is a three-stanza, six-line verse that describes a woman’s beauty under the electric light. It is an intensely emotional and visceral description of the impact this woman has on the singer. The first two lines of each stanza repeat the theme of the woman’s beauty under electric light, while the third line describes how it tears at the singer’s heart every time.


The use of the phrase “electric light” in the song carries multiple connotations. On one level, it refers to the actual physical light that comes from lamps, while on another level, it can signify energy, vitality, and power. The repetition of the phrase highlights its importance and emphasizes the transformative nature of the woman’s beauty.


The repeated lines in each stanza function as a powerful refrain, amplifying the emotions expressed. The singer's heart is "torn out" every time he sees this woman under the electric light, and the final stanza has an added sense of urgency with the rising sirens. It creates a sense of a chaotic environment, a woman under intense pressure, and the singer’s overwhelming passion.


Line by Line Meaning

The beauty of her, under electric light
Her stunning appearance under the artificial light source overwhelms me with emotion each time I see her


Tears my heart out every time
It causes me intense emotional pain every instance I witness her beauty


Dawn there waiting, right outside
Daybreak is imminent and approaching, and that thought coupled with her beauty only increases the aching I feel inside


She tears my heart out every time
Her presence exacerbates my heartache with each encounter


Sirens rising across the sky
The wailing emergency vehicles passing overhead serve as a metaphor for the agony I feel when I see her


Tears my heart out every time
Each moment spent in her presence magnifies my emotional distress




Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC
Written by: POLLY HARVEY

Lyrics Licensed & Provided by LyricFind
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