Back in the early 80s the nihilistic, fright-wigged peperami of early performances by theatrical Melbourne spleen-punkers The Birthday Party appeared on a collision course with destruction, and when hard drugs notoriously entered the mix, there was writing of sorts on the wall. And yet Nick Cave has turned into one of our most consistent artists, evolving new aspects, plumbing new depths and finding more areas of life and love to explore in his unique, grimly wry baritone.
These days, with the man himself long since clean and serene, most years bring new gold from the Cave mine, as his group, The Bad Seeds, have morphed slowly from the savage Weimar avant-bluesmen of 1984 debut From Her To Eternity into something far deeper, wider in scope, surviving potentially crippling line-up upheavals (notably, the departures of Blixa Bargeld and Mick Harvey) as they rage, rage against the dying of the light...
10. Your Funeral... My Trial - Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds
Like a damaged film reel flickering between beauty, melancholy and desperation, this is the record that best captures the Bad Seeds' mid-'80s Berlin period – a time of heroin, a cameo slot in Wim Wenders' And The Ass Saw The Angel. The album's keystone is a rare thing – a Bad Seeds track with no Cave writing credit. Stranger Than Kindness is by Einstürzende Neubauten man Blixa Bargeld and Cave's then on-off partner Anita Lane. Bargeld's marvelously gnomic Teuton-grunt is also there in his vocal on The Carny.