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How to grow old disgracefully!
on 6 March 2007
Absolutely electrifying!!!! Nick Cave thankfully shows no sign of growing old gracefully. The newly renamed Bad Seeds show what they're made of here and its nothing remotely sweet. This CD just breathes aggression from the word go. If this was made by any up and coming band this would be talked about till the cows come home.
What a start we get. Nick Cave at his obscene best kicks off the album with "Get it On". This is just totally nuts! It has one of the best lyrics I think I've ever heard - (forgive the stars but this is a family site!) "He drank panther p**s and f****d the girls you're probably married to". Yes don't buy this one for the kids!!! Please! Yes the first time I played this I was rather taken aback even though I'm used to Cave's lyrics (check out "O'Malley's Bar" and "Stagger Lee" on 'Murder Ballads'). Great song though with a buzzing, primitive guitar riff running through it. Next comes the current single "No Pussy Blues", the hilarious tale of an ageing lech trying to....well you don't need me to spell it out do you! Brilliant lyrics which perfectly encapsulate what Cave is all about, he must be the best storyteller through song around.
"Electric Alice" is another good one, but then comes for me one of the highlights of the album. The title track "Grinderman" is one of the best things Cave's come out with in years. This is just about the most primaeval song I've heard in a long time. This song positively sounds like it has just crawled out of the gutter. Fantastic. "Depth Charge Ethel" is another Cave storysong, great stomping start to this, though I'm not sure about the backing vocals. Great riff though.
"Go Tell the Woman" is another good track but it's eclipsed by the next highlight of the album "(I Don't Need You) To Set Me Free", great bassline in this one which shows off the playing prowess of the rest of the band. For some reason this reminds me of something done by The Doors. Great song. The pace then rips up a notch or two for "Honey Bee" before ironically coming back down to earth for "Man In The Moon". This is Nick Cave at his subtlest, reminiscent of 'The Boatman's Call'. The album closes with two more stomping tracks. Phew!
This, if anything, perfectly illustrates Nick Cave's ability to keep metamorphosing throughout his long career. I got introduced to him by listening to 'The Boatman's Call', all piano and vocals and hardly any backing on some tracks, but fantastic songwriting. Here he goes back to his roots by giving us some stomping rock music. There are very few other artists around with the same range as this guy (Tom Waits for sure and I guess Neil Young as well).
Its quite ironic that this came out the same week as Arcade Fire's 'Neon Bible'. That's a terrific album, though as like to this as chalk is to cheese. But it seems that two of the candidates for album of the year have come out simultaneously. Great buy, this one'll last for ages. (9/10)