As strange as it sounds, this song is based on a J D Salinger short story from 1948 called ‘A Perfect Day for a Bananafish‘. I’m no expert, but I’m guessing a partial reason for the change of ‘bananafish’ to ‘Elise’ is syllable related. But then the girl in the story is called Sybil? Two-syllable Sybil. Sybil is three years old and the main bloke in the story kisses her feet on the beach, retires to his hotel and shoots himself in the head.
Yes, I don’t know either. Nobody called Elise features. The room 509 doesn’t feature. It’s actually room 507 in the book, as well. If you’re anything like me, you’ve immediately thought of ‘The Shining‘ because of this. So it’s all very upbeat.
This is my second PJ Harevy one. After doubling up on the Radioheads, I kind of abandonded the notion of a single design per artist.