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'Grinderman 2,' Grinderman 

With Grinderman, Nick Cave exposes his subconscious.

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The thing that gets me every time — be it on a Bad Seeds album, in his fiction or with Grinderman — is how human Nick Cave is. He is a flawed, soft-fleshed mortal creature, just like the rest of us. His humanity comes out in the way he sings like he’s speaking in tongues, repeating a word or a phrase over and over again until he’s wrung all the blood and fluids from it. The way he growls and hums lyrics. And the way he talks of the nightmares in his head: of eating inchworms, of swearing off God, of black unicorns, slave dwarves and Steve McQueen.

Grinderman pulls off all the jarring stuff it did on its debut, but this time around, it bares its soul. The band makes tough, eerie noises into beautiful rock-and-roll songs. Grinderman 2 is not for a listener in any phase of denial: This album is for those who aren’t afraid to listen to the symphonic, clashing sounds of the underbelly.

DOWNLOAD: “Bellringer Blues”

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