Mick Harvey Two of Diamonds

Mick Harvey Two of Diamonds

This compatriot of Nick Cave, former PJ Harvey (no relation) backing band member and supremely accomplished film scorer lashes out on his own again, and the results, luckily, are quite compelling. Starting off the album with the very Cave-esque "Photograph,” Harvey has a growl that is actually quite suggestive, always giving a sinister shade to his songs. The album starts off a little staid but with the awesome "Sad Dark Eyes” it seems Harvey has a flair for atmospherics. The song starts off normally but when the vocal harmonies and charging chorus come in this is pretty exciting stuff, as it actually has a whiff of danger. Another stroke of genius is found on the catchy "Slow-Motion-Movie-Star,” where the repeating guitar chords, tasteful feedback and Harvey’s rough, pining voice make this a beautifully dark ballad. The other songs are also surprisingly strong and this effort will please those who like Nick Cave and even recent Aussie exports Devastations. Dark, cool and collected, Two of Diamonds anchors a surprisingly strong hand. (Mute)