Friday, 2 September 2016

Track: Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds - 'Jesus Alone'

His first new material since 2013's 'Push the Sky Away', Nick Cave's lead single from forthcoming album 'Skeleton Tree' strikes a tone that is both solemn and bewitching. For its 6-minutes it throbs and undulates with an intricately woven mesh of distorted synths, string layering and the twilight howl of a theremin.

The refrain 'with my voice, I am calling you' is intoned with increasing strains of longing, accompanied by spare piano chords that cut through the surrounding drone in a way that is simple yet thoroughly effective. It sounds like the throes of an insomniac night spent sat in feverish grief.

As is to be expected, the lyrics teem with interpretative imagery, but resound with motifs of lost faith, by way of drug addicts in Tijuana hotel rooms and African doctors harvesting tear ducts.

Cave has now firmly adopted his position as one of alt-rock's most eminent and consistently inspired figures, and here's hoping that the new album matches the foreboding heights of this first release.

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