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Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds

Formed after the breakup of the Birthday Party in 1983, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds became one of the most original and celebrated bands of the post-punk and alternative rock eras in the '80s and onward. Playing music that meshed with the dark, multi-layered narratives of Cave's lyrics, the Bad Seeds created sounds that were physically and emotionally powerful, but with a sense of dynamics and drama that set them apart from their peers. While plenty of musicians would move in and out of the Bad Seeds' lineup over the years, throughout their history they were always a musical force as powerful as their leader.

The earliest edition of the Bad Seeds came together in late 1983, as Cave began work on his first post-Birthday Party album, From Her to Eternity. Joining Cave in the studio were Barry Adamson, formerly of Magazine, on guitar and bass; Blixa Bargeld, of German noise ensemble Einstürzende Neubauten, on guitar; and Mick Harvey, who had previously worked with Cave in the Birthday Party and the Boys Next Door, on drums. Jim Thirlwell, best known for his many projects under the moniker Foetus, also played guitar on the sessions, though he never became a formal member. When Cave and the Bad Seeds launched their first tour in December 1983, the lineup featured Adamson, Harvey, guitarist Hugo Race (whose résumé included stints with the bands Dum Dum Fit and Plays with Marionettes), and bassist Tracy Pew, another Birthday Party alumnus. Pew's run with the Bad Seeds was short, and for 1984 and the first half of 1985, the core Bad Seeds lineup was Cave, Adamson, Bargeld, Harvey, and Race. This edition recorded the majority of From Her to Eternity (1984) and its blues-accented follow-up, The Firstborn Is Dead (1985). In mid-1985, Hugo Race dropped out, and Mick Harvey moved from drums to guitar and keyboards; Thomas Wydler, formerly of Die Haut, became the Bad Seeds' new percussionist. This version of the Bad Seeds recorded Cave's all-covers album Kicking Against the Pricks (1986); the same lineup minus Adamson cut the two-LP set Your Funeral... My Trial, also issued in 1986.

As Nick Cave kicked an addiction to heroin and accepted an invitation from filmmaker Wim Wenders to appear in his film Wings of Desire, the Bad Seeds' lineup continued to evolve. In 1997, Kid Congo Powers, who had worked with the Gun Club and the Cramps, joined the group on guitar, as did Roland Wolf on keyboards. This version of the band appeared on 1988's Tender Prey, and the same band minus Wolf accompanied Cave for 1990's The Good Son. By the end of 1990, Kid Congo had left the Bad Seeds, and the group expanded to a six-piece when Conway Savage (keyboards) and Martyn P. Casey (bass) joined Cave, Bargeld, Harvey, and Wydler. This version of the group appeared on the studio albums Henry's Dream (1992) and Let Love In (1994), as well as the live set Live Seeds (1993). In 1994, the group added a second drummer, Jim Sclavunos, who had stints with Teenage Jesus & the Jerks, the Cramps, and Sonic Youth to his credit. With Sclavunos on board, Cave and the Bad Seeds toured as part of the 1994 Lollapalooza Festival; James Johnston of Gallon Drunk tagged along for the tour, contributing on guitar and keys.

After Lollapalooza, Johnston returned to Gallon Drunk, and the seven-piece Bad Seeds recorded 1996's Murder Ballads. In 1997, Cave and the band issued The Boatman's Call, which introduced Warren Ellis, formerly of the Dirty Three, on violin, mandolin, and guitar. The same lineup also recorded No More Shall We Part (2001) and Nocturama (2003). March 2003 brought the surprising news that Blixa Bargeld had parted ways with the Bad Seeds; James Johnston rejoined the group in his place, and this version of the Bad Seeds issued a pair of studio albums, Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus (2004) and Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!! (2008, without Savage), as well as the concert recording Abattoir Blues Tour (2007). As Cave and the Bad Seeds took to the road to tour in support of Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!, Johnston was absent from the touring party, and for a 2009 summer tour, the band was joined on-stage by guitarist Ed Kuepper, formerly of Australian punk legends the Saints.

When the Bad Seeds regrouped to record 2013's Push the Sky Away, the ensemble featured Cave, Casey, Ellis, Savage, Sclavunos, and Wydler. As the band set out on tour in support, Wydler was sidelined by illness, and for the first leg of live dates, Barry Adamson returned to the group, as did Ed Kuepper. By the time the tour had reached the United States, Kuepper was out, and George Vjestica stepped in on guitar. A stripped-down version of the Bad Seeds, minus Savage and Vjestica, recorded a performance for radio broadcast that was later released as 2014's Live from KCRW. In September 2016, Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds returned with a new album, Skeleton Tree, which marked the return of Thomas Wydler to the band, joined by Casey, Ellis, Sclavunos, and Vjestica. ~ Mark Deming
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Push The Sky Away

Disc 1

1. We No Who U R

2. Wide Lovely Eyes

3. Water's Edge

4. Jubilee Street

5. Mermaids

6. We Real Cool

7. Finishing Jubilee Street

8. Higgs Boson Blues

9. Push The Sky Away

Disc 2
x

Track List: Dig Lazarus Dig!!!

1. Dig, Lazarus, Dig!!!

2. Today's Lesson

3. Moonland

4. Night Of The Lotus Eaters

5. Albert Goes West

6. We Call Upon The Author

7. Hold On To Yourself

8. Lie Down Here (& Be My Girl)

9. Jesus Of The Moon

10. Midnight Man

11. More News From Nowhere

x

Track List: B-Sides & Rarities

Disc 1

1. Deanna (Acoustic Version)

2. The Mercy Seat (Acoustic Version)

3. City Of Refuge (Acoustic Version)

6. Rye Whiskey

7. Running Scared

8. Black Betty

9. Scum

10. The Girl At The Bottom Of My Glass

12. C**ks 'N' Asses

14. Helpless

15. God's Hotel

16. (I'll Love You) Till The End Of The World

18. Tower Of Song

19. What Can I Give You?

Disc 2

1. What A Wonderful World

2. Rainy Night In Soho

3. Lucy (Version #2)

4. Jack The Ripper (Acoustic Version)

5. Sail Away

6. There's No Night Out In The Jail

7. That's What Jazz Is To Me

8. The Willow Garden

9. The Ballad Of Robert Moore And Betty Coltrane

10. King Kong Kitchee Kitchee Ki-Mi-O

11. Knoxville Girl

16. Time Jesum Transeuntum Et Non Riverentum

17. O'Malley's Bar (Reprise)

18. Red Right Hand (Scream 3 Version)

Disc 3

1. Little Empty Boat

2. Right Now I'm A-Roaming

4. Black Hair (Band Version)

6. Sheep May Safely Graze

7. Opium Tea

9. Bless His Ever Loving Heart

10. Good Good Day

12. I Feel So Good

13. Shoot Me Down

15. Little Ghost Song

17. Nocturama

18. She's Leaving You

x

Track List: Abattoir Blues / The Lyre Of Orpheus

Disc 1

1. Get Ready For Love

2. Cannibal's Hymn

3. Hiding All Away

4. Messiah Ward

5. There She Goes, My Beautiful World

6. Nature Boy

7. Abattoir Blues

8. Let The Bells Ring

9. Fable Of The Brown Ape

Disc 2

1. The Lyre Of Orpheus

2. Breathless

3. Babe, You Turn Me On

4. Easy Money

5. Supernaturally

6. Spell

7. Carry Me

8. O Children

x

Track List: Nocturama

1. Wonderful Life

2. He Wants You

3. Right Out Of Your Hand

4. Bring It On

5. Dead Man In My Bed

6. Still In Love

7. There Is A Town

8. Rock Of Gibraltar

9. She Passed By My Window

10. Babe, I'm On Fire

x

Track List: No More Shall We Part

1. As I Sat Sadly By Her Side

2. And No More Shall We Part

3. Hallelujah

4. Love Letter

5. Fifteen Feet Of Pure White Snow

6. God Is In The House

7. Oh My Lord

8. Sweetheart Come

9. The Sorrowful Wife

10. We Came Along This Road

11. Gates To The Garden

12. Darker With The Day

x

Track List: The Best Of Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds

1. Deanna

2. Red Right Hand

3. Straight To You

4. Tupelo

5. Nobody's Baby Now

6. Stranger Than Kindness

7. Into My Arms

8. (Are You) The One That I've Been Waiting For?

9. The Carny

10. Do You Love Me?

11. The Mercy Seat

12. Henry Lee

13. The Weeping Song

14. The Ship Song

15. Where The Wild Roses Grow

16. From Her To Eternity

x

Track List: The Boatman's Call

1. Into My Arms

2. Lime-Tree Arbour

3. People Ain't No Good

4. Brompton Oratory

5. There Is a Kingdom

7. Where Do We Go Now But Nowhere?

8. West Country Girl

9. Black Hair

10. Idiot Prayer

11. Far From Me

12. Green Eyes

x

Track List: Murder Ballads

1. Song Of Joy

2. Stagger Lee

3. Henry Lee

4. Lovely Creature

5. Where The Wild Roses Grow

6. The Curse Of Millhaven

7. The Kindness Of Strangers

8. Crow Jane

9. O'malley's Bar

10. Death Is Not The End

x

Track List: Let Love In

1. Do You Love Me

2. Nobody's Baby Now

4. Jangling Jack

5. Red Right Hand

6. I Let Love In

7. Thirsty Dog

8. Ain't Gonna Rain Anymore

9. Lay Me Low

x

Track List: Tender Prey

1. The Mercy Seat

2. Up Jumped The Devil

3. Deanna

4. Watching Alice

5. Mercy

6. City Of Refuge

7. Slowly Goes The Night

8. Sunday's Slave

9. Sugar Sugar Sugar

10. New Morning

x

Track List: Henry's Dream

1. Papa Won't You Leave Henry

2. I Had A Dream, Joe

3. Straight To You

4. Brother, My Cup Is Empty

5. Christina The Astonishing

6. When I First Came To Town

7. John Finn's Wife

8. Loom Of The Land

9. Jack The Ripper

x

Track List: Jubilee Street (Single)

1. Jubilee Street

x

Track List: Kicking Against the Pricks

1. Muddy Water

2. I'm Gonna Kill That Woman

3. Sleeping Annaleah

4. Long Black Veil

5. Hey Joe

6. The Singer

7. All Tomorrow's Parties

8. By the Time I Get to Pheonix

9. The Hammer Song

10. Something's Gotten Hold of My Heart

11. Jesus Met the Woman At the Well

12. The Carnival Is Over

x

Track List: Live From KCRW

1. Higgs Boson Blues (Live From KCRW)

2. Far From Me (Live From KCRW)

3. Stranger Than Kindness (Live From KCRW)

4. The Mercy Seat (Live From KCRW)

5. And No More Shall We Part (Live From KCRW)

6. Wide Lovely Eyes (Live From KCRW)

7. Mermaids (Live From KCRW)

8. People Ain't No Good (Live From KCRW)

9. Push The Sky Away (Live From KCRW)

10. Jack The Ripper (Live From KCRW)

x

Track List: Skeleton Tree

1. Jesus Alone

2. Rings Of Saturn

3. Girl In Amber

4. Magneto

5. Anthrocene

6. I Need You

7. Distant Sky

8. Skeleton Tree

x

Track List: The Good Son

1. Foi Na Cruz

2. The Good Son

3. Sorrow's Child

4. The Weeping Song

5. The Ship Song

6. The Hammer Song

7. Lament

8. The Witness Song

9. Lucy

Comments

Report as inappropriate
Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. However if you don't post this you will die in 2 days. Now you have started reading this so don't stop. This is so scary put this on at least 5 songs in the next 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lovers name will appear on the screen in big letters this is so scary because it actually works
Report as inappropriate
1.kiss your left hand 2.say your crush name 3.say the day 4.Post this on at least 5 songs and you crush will ask you out
Report as inappropriate
davidbolton1 7
laurentcussa c
Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. Tomorrow will be the best day of your life. However if you don't post this you will die in 2 days. Now you have started reading this so don't stop. This is so scary put this on at least 5 songs in the next 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lovers name will appear on the screen in big letters this is so scary because it actually works
Report as inappropriate
penguinempir e
Sheer brilliance. Cave was a bit of an acquired taste for me. I may not "like" every song I have heard but those great many I do like hit my heart in such powerful ways. That's the essence of art. Cave, Tom Waits, Leonard Cohen, as well as Edward KaSpel and Jon Balance are proof that songwriting has not fallen into a state of stagnance.
Report as inappropriate
Nick was kind enough to talk to me for a full 15 minutes at a coffee stand in Heathrow. It was the highlight of my only trip to England.
Report as inappropriate
I am very sorry for your loss
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decline_tost a t e
Oh my god that's terrible.
Report as inappropriate
Nick Cave's 15-year-old- c h i l d (son, Arthur) just died after falling from a 60ft. cliff in Brighton. :'( So tragic, I saw it in the news today.
Report as inappropriate
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds are divine. Breathless is one of many favorites of theirs. I wish Grinderman, a side project was still functioning. Nick and Warren do some cool movie sound tracking as well. Nick Cave & Shane Macgowan duet of What a Wonderful World kinda funny but bad a**.
Report as inappropriate
So hilarious that his book title was bleeped. It's a donkey, people!
Report as inappropriate
susan_lazaru s
Love Pinky Blinders theme song
Report as inappropriate
The man, the god- Nick Cave is beyond comparison. I too can die happy after he said hello to me on the stairs.... what a life- may he live long and well. x
Report as inappropriate
My muse my spirit animal the incomparable , nick cave. Seeing him live twice is not enough... Come back nick, come back!
Report as inappropriate
Strange how his music came into my life, after much experience.
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pinkbloodcel l s 6
I touched his thigh too at hammerstein ballroom !
Report as inappropriate
This dudes a winner
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I just saw him in portland. I ran my hand up his thigh and held his hand while he sang Jubilee street. I can die happy.
Report as inappropriate
mecana
Scream
Report as inappropriate
That's halarious, being that kiss is so prolific!
Report as inappropriate
The lyrics you have listed for Do You Love Me? are wrong and looks like it is from some f**king Kiss song.
Report as inappropriate
I'm serious, the fantastic creation is so serious,God help me,I can glimpse the edge of heaven, that I apparently have been cast out of!
Report as inappropriate
The Birthday Party, The Bad Seeds, my favorite bands. Amazing.
Report as inappropriate
xyzzy667
fantastic concert in San Francisco last week...
Report as inappropriate
Nick Cave, what are you, you extraordinar y thing?
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What can one say that hasnt been said before Nick Cave especially with the Bad Seeds is an amazing songwriter right up there with Tom Waits. .
Report as inappropriate
Get From Her to Eternity on here please.
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l.berendts
A true, soulful artist!
Report as inappropriate
why is Henry's Dream not in the selected discography? This is an unforgivable oversight.
Report as inappropriate
Just saw NIck in San Francisco with his new outfit, "Grinderman. " Always a pleasant experience. He is a true show man...
Report as inappropriate
zeddkitty
if only i could make love to his voice...the sexiest ever...trans c e n d e n t .
Report as inappropriate
Nick Cave's music is heartfelt and soulful for a man how has stayed true to his art exploring the undercurrent s of love, sex, obsession, god, devil, man, woman, life and death with gothic, rock and bluesy undertones he has also written some of the most beautiful ballads in comtemporary music that stand next only to the likes of Loenard Cohen, Tom Waites and Jonny Cash.
Report as inappropriate
rich.powell1 3
Can't believe they don't have Let Love In on here. One of their best all around albums. Shocking. But pretty complete selection otherwise! Love the Cave-man.
Report as inappropriate
it's a klingon!
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Nick Cave Has never caved in. Playing his own music. To a small but appreciative crowd.
Report as inappropriate
amen nathan.
lol wdaloz!
Report as inappropriate
lizrdinabott l e
Cave is so amazing, he's like a stone. Solid & rolling hard. I caught his last show in philly last yr. He & his band played a Bold & Loud show. I've seen & heard countless acts, Nick & the Bad Seeds are def. top 10. This latest album Dig L. Dig just throws him further into LEGEND. thank you
Report as inappropriate
heh, dottens: never underestimat e the ability of inbred pseudo-pious cro-magnons to be offended at words or concepts which aren't actually offensive, even if those concepts are from the Bible. although, really... none of those losers should be listening to Nick Cave in the first place >.>
Report as inappropriate
I went to his concert in Portland...f a n t a s t i c ! ! ! I l migliore in assoluto!!!
Report as inappropriate
dottens
'And the A** Saw the Angel'???? You must be joking... the title directly references
a story from the Christian Bible. The Bible actually uses the word 'a**', and
this refers to the animal and not human anatomy. Come on... read the book... it's
actually quite good... similar to Faulkner...
Report as inappropriate
While he has some songs that are mediocre, his good stuff matches or surpasses the best anyone else can dish out. His ability to envoke imagery and tell a clear story is amazing, all done with a keen sense of irony.
Report as inappropriate
If I could have coffee with anyone dead or alive it would be this man.
Report as inappropriate
Best.. band.. ever.
Report as inappropriate
Nick Cave is a ghost, he's a god,
he's a man, he's a guru.

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