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Ghost Canyon

Title - 'Nocturama' (Mute)
Artist - Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
OK, granted, this is not an album that's in the same league as either Firstborn Is Dead, Tender Prey, Henry's Dream or even Let Love In, but that said, it is an album that contains several songs worthy of those fine albums. Even if the whole ain't quite the sum of it's parts. "Bring It On" works surprisingly well, as does "Dead Man In My Bed". These are two of the most raucous songs Nick has done since "Jangling Jack". The swagger is back, and it's evident in the love songs also. The excellent "Wonderful Life" has a fast beat and a booming bass line that would have felt right at home on Let Love In. Sure, he can write wonderful, poetic lyrics, but that doesn't mean the music has to be dull and saccharine as most of the songs on the last two records were (especially NMSWP), and maybe this album is evidence to the fact that Nick has realized this himself. There are a couple other good songs here (tracks 2 & 3), and the rest (6-9) are, admittedly, decent at best, but the closer "Babe, I'm On Fire" is just simply fantastic. Fifteen minutes of lunacy, delivered in classic Bad Seeds style. In short, this album may not be great, but it's a darn sight better than his last three. A sign of things to come? This fan sure hopes so.
Nick Gurney