Mute; March 2008

Having jump-started a re-assimilation of his Birthday Party roots with last year’s garage-rocking Grinderman side-project, Nick Cave and his Bad Seeds triumphantly return with an exhilarating 14th studio album replete with three-note riffs, feedback, and Cave’s trademarked verbal fecundity. The title track envisions a post-modern incarnation of the biblical figure Lazarus reawakened inand attempting to flee fromthe nightmare that has become New York City. The prodigious use of sitars, tape loops, tablas, backing chants, violin, and organ accompaniment all help Cave’s maniac rants flower in a funky yet funny fashion. The best of the lot include “We Call Upon the Author,” which name-checks Bukowski and Berryman, and “Today’s Lesson,” while “More News from Nowhere” seems redundant of Grinderman’s “No Pussy Blues.” Always droll, never dull, Cave continues to be the intellectual rock star of choice.


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