Another set of melancholy music tonight. Nick Cave is one of Australia’s undisputed icons and giants of the arts. From his days as a goth punk in the early 80s to the present when he is one of a handful of Australian rock ‘n rollers who sit head and shoulders above the vast cultural landscape as guardians and heralds.
What got me hooked on his music is his fascination with salvation and God. Like Johnny Cash, Nick’s approach to religion seems to be a combination of fear and trembling, longing and haughtiness. Even in the deepest depths of his doubt Nick is able to touch upon the light and ephemeral non-real reality of the divine. And like the music of Cash, Nick’s melancholy is of a hopeful variety.
The other thing Nick is able to do better than anyone is get a musicality and tenor to his songs that conjure up the dark of night. I don’t want to say ‘gothic’ for the disastrous connotations that word elicits and so perhaps melancholy is the better description. His tunes have a sort of Edgar Allan Poe weird ancientness to them. They are not sparsely populated but rather strewn with layers of strings, piano and glorious moaning choruses. The melodies are rich and the sound as lush and heavy as velvet.
All of which is doing nothing but injustice to his great music. Tonight’s episode is the 2000 album No More Shall We Part, a collection of mournful love songs which for my money is one of his best efforts.
01 As I Sat Sadly By Her Side
02 And No More Shall We Part
04 Love Letter
05 Fifteen Feet Of Pure White Snow
06 God Is In The House
07 Oh My Lord
08 Sweetheart Come
09 The Sorrowful Wife
10 We Came Along This Road
11 Gates To The Garden
12 Darker With The Day