Excellent Quietus interview with the fantastically talented Mick Harvey…
Mick Harvey laughs a lot. Like, an awful lot. Mostly at the end of his own sentences, like an exclamation mark punctuating his thoughts. His laugh bursts out at unexpected moments, much louder than his speaking voice does, over the phone from his studio in Melbourne. It’s late evening there and early morning here when we speak and Harvey has just laughed off the fact that I missed the interview we had initially scheduled for 48 hours earlier. Having read classic interviews with Harvey and the rest of his former gang, The Bad Seeds, conducted when they weren’t interested in communicating anything but disdain for journalists, I had been a little worried about the impact my own tardiness would have on our conversation.
I need not have been. The dark, driven angst and sometimes outright nihilism that marked his early career in The Birthday Party and The Bad Seeds is long gone. These days Harvey is a family man, living in Melbourne, the same city where he grew up in the 60s and 70s. Having left The Bad Seeds and ended his 36-year working relationship with Nick Cave in 2009, Harvey has been free to concentrate on the solo work he began a decade or more earlier, as well as producing and collaborating with friends.
He’s just released his sixth solo record, FOUR (Acts Of Love), a collection that sees him performing songs by Van Morrison, Roy Orbison, The Saints and a previously unreleased track from his frequent collaborator, PJ Harvey, alongside short interludes penned by Harvey himself.
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