The reviews are in for Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!. Most are overwhelmingly positive; some call this album “exemplary.” Yes, Nick and his fellow Bad Seeds are nothing, if not exemplary. They set the bar as high as it can go, into the stratosphere, with prodigious effort, originality, and audacity.
Reviewers seem surprised by Grinderman’s influences on the current Bad Seeds sound. This is no surprise to fans. Grinderman’s sound erupted from its creators like a seminal font, and the band’s impact on future Bad Seeds albums was inevitable.
Indeed, Cave’s outrageously successful, midlife-crisis driven, garage band experiment (with Warren Ellis, Jim Sclavunos, and Martyn Casey) is the reason why Nick Cave moved notches above the status of ordinary rock legend.
It is precisely because he had the guts, tenacity, and vision necessary to reinvent himself and his music on the cusp of 50 – a phemomenon akin to a miracle in the music biz – that Cave inspires such worshipful awe.
Like Lazarus, Nick Cave has risen. Not that he was ever dead. However, as a musical miracle, he can expect the multitudes to fall on their knees, and dig.
~ Morgan Wolf, 2-29-08
Here are some sample review snips and URLs to follow.
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Dig!!! Lazarus Dig!!!
Alexis Petridis, The Guardian, Friday February 29, 2008
The shadow of the Grinderman project hangs over Dig!!! Lazarus Dig!!! There are a couple of beautiful ballads on offer, notably Jesus of the Moon, but its default setting is churning garage rock, two- or three-note riffs, scourging bursts of feedback in place of guitar licks and Sister Ray-ish organ solos. The closing More News from Nowhere seems like a more genteel relation of Grinderman’s No Pussy Blues. While the latter song found Cave vainly attempting to woo a young lady by sucking his gut in and quoting poetry, here he’s confronted by distaff spectres from his past: the eponymous heroine of his 1985 single Deanna reappears, while fans of The Boatman’s Call and its attendant sheila will be intrigued to find a “Miss Polly” among their number. He approaches them with suitably flowery entreaties, and gets the brush-off every time: “She ain’t down with any of that, she’s heard that shit before.”
Life as a bad seed, chapter and verse
Bernard Zuel, Sydney Morning Herald – February 28, 2008
Nick Cave is a connoisseur of words, a collector of arcane and delicious language. In his songs, his essays and film scripts he rolls them out lovingly: delighting in their weight, their feel and their effect on listeners and readers.
An Aladdin’s Cave
Fiona Shepherd, The Scotsman – February 29, 2008
Never mind the punctuation, here’s the story: Aussie rocker returns from side project re-energised and dives into new collaboration with Bad Seeds, resulting in a fabulous, dark and twisted assault on the ears.
Cave’s lyrics over the moon
Courier.com.au – February 27, 2008
GIGWISE: “a staggering album” – February 27, 2008
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds free London show
Undercover.com.au – February 27, 2008
Nick Cave: Hear it for the caveman
Independent.ie – February 21 2008
The Light Within: The 21st Century Love Songs of Nick Cave
by Jillian Burt, PopMatters – February 4, 2008