Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Prolix. Prolix.

Nothing a pair of earplugs wouldn't have fixed.

I intend no insult via my twist on Nick Cave's lyrics. It's just that the Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds show at the Electric Factory last night was insanely, achingly loud. So much so that some of the finer points of the music were lost. So much so that my ears are still ringing, leaving me feeling oddly disoriented even now, the following day.

Aside from the aggressive aural assault, the show was pretty good if not great. I missed the sparer, jagged edges of the band's sonic approach when led by Blixa Bargeld in years past. Last night, it was more of a wall of sound, more straightforward. And I've never seen Nick play it up for the crowds so much.

This post's title and subsequent misquote are taken from "We Call Upon the Author," one of the tunes from the band's latest (and really solid) release, Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!. It was one of the highlights of last night's show and clearly one of the songs the band most enjoyed playing. The video above is from a performance recorded and aired by BBC-4 earlier this year. And no, multi-instrumentalist and composer Warren Ellis (the guy with the beard and the arsenal of effect pedals) was not just hamming it up for the camera.

(Subscribers may need to click through to the blog to view the video.)


Anonymous said...

Great song in the video. I haven't heard much of Nick Cave's output since the first couple of Bad Seeds albums, but perhaps I should be paying attention. Makes me feel old though - my one and only Bad Seeds live experience was nearly a quarter century ago at the long gone Danceteria in NYC. I'm guessing 1984 or 1985. Nick and band have gotten a lot more animated in middle age.

David McDuff said...

It's worth paying attention, Nick. For starters, check out Henry's Dream, Murder Ballads and the new disc, Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! And don't feel old, feel experienced. I saw them for the first time on the same tour in 1984, supporting the release of From Her to Eternity. Their style, both on disc and on stage, has changed but the music still moves me.

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