Album Review: Mick Harvey – ‘Sketches From The Book Of The Dead’


A stirring topic that doesn't quite conjure an emotive response

The first solo offering from former Bad Seed man Harvey since he ended his association with Nick Cave (he’s worked with [a]PJ Harvey[/a] on [b]‘Let England Shake’[/b] in the meantime) is – quelle surprise – a death-rattling bit of doomy, country-tinged singer-songwriterdom centred around the theme of absent friends.

Sadly, a lack of focus in melody and structure means it’s not quite as atmospheric as Mick seems to think, and the doleful likes of [b]‘The Ballad Of Jay Givens’[/b], with its “scraggy gum trees”, has neither the drama nor the substance of his work with others.

Duncan Gillespie

Order a copy of Mick Harvey’s ‘Sketches From The Book of The Dead’ from Amazon