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Green Light in the City

CD Reviews October 2004

1 October 04 words: CD Reviews
Reviews of Nick Cave, 22-20's, Blues Explosion, Fried and more from the LeftLion crew

Blues Explosion - Damage

Blues Explosion - Damage
(Mute Records)

 

John Spencer and his Blues Explosion have been plying their noisy trade for over a decade now. Formed from the wreckage of John Spencer's previous collective Pussy Galore, they are postmodern to the core. Despite the name, little of what they play actually resembles standard blues. Instead they bang and shout and create a rather endearing frenzy of noise.
 

 

Put simply this album is absolutely mental, as are their previous efforts. First single Burn It Off is a tour de force of rock and roll. It's unlikely to make number one, but it might split your speakers wide open. This album rocks!!
  Roger Mean



22-20's22-20's (EMI)

The 22-20's are one of the latest pretenders on the indie rock scene. Darlings of the music press they recently headlined the NME Brat Awards tour and are building up quite a reputation fro themselves, particularly in terms of their live performances. This self-titled album starts with a bang with the scorching bluesy notes of `Devil In Me'. It goes on to showcase all their big singles so far such as 22 Days and Shoot Your Gun and has enough other tracks on it to keep your interest a long time after the radio play has finished. Not a bad effort for a bunch of guys from Lincoln!
  Kowalski

Nick Cave and the Bad SeedsNick Cave and the Bad Seeds
Abattoire Blues / The Lyre of Orpheus
(Mute)

I've always been slightly fascinated by Nick Cave and the emotional power he seems to hold. Those who admire his music seem to get fiercely protective against the usual `suicide music' criticism that it invariably receives from the general populace, in a way that no-one else except perhaps Leonard Cohen fans can really understand.


When you occasionally catch one of his new songs you can't really fail to notice it as Cave, even though you may never have heard that particular song before. His voice is as distinctive as singing voices get.

There are in fact two albums included in this newest release. One is called `Abattoir Blues' and the other `The Lyre of Orpheous'. Cave has stated that the reason for doing this was partly to avoid a `double album' ("When I buy a double album it's often just kind of overwhelming and I don't listen to half of it").

The two albums do have slightly different styles. Abattoir Blues is a much heavier record, perhaps due in part to the incessant drumming of Jim Sclavunos throughout it. The Lyre of Orpheous, however, is much lighter and jazzier and a more beautiful record for it.

It's hard to pick out individual tracks though. Having listened to them through a few times, I still remain fascinated, but also slightly bewildered by them. They're beautiful, but quietly frighteningly intense. Perhaps it takes a slightly morbid fascination to truly appreciate them. Maybe if I give it another dozen listens...
  Jared Wilson

Still want more? Check out our CD single reviews

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