In April 2013, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds were booked to play the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival, and with the same lineup of acts appearing two consecutive weekends, Cave and his bandmates had a few days to kill in California. During their downtime in the Golden State, Cave and the Bad Seeds cut a live-in-the-studio session for Santa Monica's public radio station KCRW-FM, and the recordings have been released under the straightforward (if less than imaginative) title Live from KCRW.
Continuing the creative roll of Tender Prey and The Good Son, Henry's Dream showed the band in fierce and fine fettle once more. The biggest change was with the choice of producer – David Briggs, famed for his work on some of Neil Young's strongest albums. While Cave later thought the experiment didn't work as well as he might have hoped, Briggs does a fine enough job, perhaps not letting the group's full intensity through but still capturing a live feel nonetheless. Cave himself offers up another series of striking, compelling lyrics again exploring love, lust and death. Here, though, some of his images are the strongest he's yet delivered, especially with the near apocalyptic "Papa Won't Leave You, Henry," which begins the album brilliantly as the narrator lurches through a landscape of storms, brothels and urban decay. Equally powerful, if slower and calmer, is Dream's lead single, "Straight to You," with Cave delivering a forceful declaration of love.
Reduced to a quartet for the most part, with Barry Adamson joining Nick Cave, Blixa Bargeld, Mick Harvey and Thomas Wydler on only a couple of tracks, the Bad Seeds turn from the interpretive triumph of Kicking Against the Pricks to another strong high, the mostly-original Your Funeral…My Trial. The one cover is a sharp, unsurprisingly dramatic version of Tim Rose's "Long Time Man." As for the rest of the album, Trial shows the Seeds working as, again, a remarkably accomplished and varied act, ever available and ready to explore a wide range of musics distilled into Cave's often dark, always passionate vision. Arguably Cave and company have by now so clearly established their overall style that Your Funeral…My Trial is much more a refinement of the past than anything else, but so good is their work that resistance is near impossible. If anything, the brooding power of the Seeds is more restrained than ever, suggesting destructive endings and overwhelming love without directly playing it.
Besides being noteworthy as an astonishingly good all-covers album, Kicking Against the Pricks is notable for the arrival of a new key member for the Seeds, drummer Thomas Wydler. Besides being a fine percussionist, able to perform at both the explosive and restrained levels Cave requires, Wydler also allowed Harvey to concentrate on adding guitar and keyboards live as well as in the studio, a notable bonus. Race reappears briefly to add some guitar while former Birthday Party cohorts Rowland Howard and Tracy Pew guest as well, the latter on some of his last tracks before his untimely death. The selection of songs is quite impressive, ranging from old standards like "Long Black Veil" to everything from John Lee Hooker's "I'm Gonna Kill That Woman" and Gene Pitney's pop aria "Something's Gotten Hold of My Heart." Matching the range of material, the Seeds are well on their way to becoming the rock/cabaret/blues showband of Cave's dreams, able to conjure up haunting, winsome atmospheres ("Sleeping Annaleah") as much as higher-volume takes (Roy Orbison's "Running Scared," the Velvet Underground's "All Tomorrow's Parties").
Live Seeds is the first official live album by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. The album was recorded live from 1992 to 1993, at various concerts throughout Europe and Australia, at the touring stage promoting their previous studio album, Henry's Dream. Nick Cave wanted to give the songs a raw feeling as originally intended before production problems occurred. Live Seeds includes a not previously studio-recorded track, "Plain Gold Ring", which is a cover of a song performed by Nina Simone.
The Best of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds is a compilation album by Australian alternative rock band Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, released on May 11, 1998.In order to decide the track listing, Cave asked each of the Bad Seeds, past and present, to choose their favourite tracks from the ten albums—their lists would then be discussed until a final list was produced. In the end, only guitarist and founding Bad Seed Mick Harvey bothered, and it is his listing, unchanged, that makes up The Best Of.
Nick Cave has always seemed misplaced, of another era. An Australian whose ‘60s-retro skinny suits and 19th century face have lived all over Europe, Cave looks and sings like an old soul. His macabre rock ballads of murder and sorrow might be sung by an Edgar Allen Poe narrator stuck in a Flannery O’Connor story. Where his contemporaries have plowed the ruts left by the Beatles and the Stones, Cave has always been more interested in the American blues and country/folk traditions of John Lee Hooker and Johnny Cash: religion, sorrow, murder, insanity, alcohol, lust, and depression. I’ve often wondered what kind of personality the author of such lyrics as “this is a weeping song/ a song in which to weep” (“The Weeping Song”) exudes in day-to-day life.