Bad Seeds bloom

With the Birthday Party, Nick Cave emerged as goth's most literary frontman. Since that Aussie cult band's split in 1984, Cave has cornered the market in eerie intensity with his surreal preacher persona — half Tom Waits, half David Byrne, and all Beelzebub. Earlier this year on Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!, Cave returned with his longtime backing band the Bad Seeds to resurrect the dead — or, at least, raise the low garage-rock bar set by last year's Grinderman side project. Dig is the band's 14th album and — light electronics and Eastern mysticism aside — its most ferocious.

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