Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds: Push the Sky Away

Bad Seeds Ltd.

Push the Sky Away marks a noticeable shift in sound for Australian rustic noir hedonists Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - a surprising notion, given it's the band's 15th album in twice as many years. The differences come physically, with the departure of founding Bad Seed (and ex-Birthday Party guitarist) Mick Harvey; contextually, by leaving the Mute label; and aurally, with the quiet nature of these songs. It all adds up to one of the most unique Bad Seeds outings yet. "We No Who U R," "Mermaids," and "Finishing Jubilee Street" exemplify this new aura best, with processed percussive shuffles, frosted piano notes, and ominously lamenting melodies. Don't let the calmness fool you, though; Cave's fury and grim narratives are as engaging as ever. (4 out of 5 stars)