Nick Cave

New Musical Express
6 May 1998

by John Robinson
Sent by Anna

As a taster, and for those Goodsonners who can't get hold of the NME, here are some highlights... -Anna

On Mick Harvey and the Formation of the Bad Seeds:
"I don't have any ambition. I never had any great desire to be anything: it was very much Mick who suggested I formed another group. And I was quite suprised by that, quite surprised he wanted to continue to work with me. I would have done something eventually, though I don't know if it would have been in music, but it was Mick who suggested I get things in my own life rolling creatively. Whereas that hadn't really entered my head....I mean, things have changed now.....I can get things done on my own. But in those days I couldn't, and that [organisation] was very much up to Mick..."

On Blixa Bargeld & his Guitar Sound:
"Blixa was in some way trying to describe what the lyrics were about. He'd played on Mutiny In Heaven and came up with this tremendous bell-like chord which he produced....and continues to produce! But he was always more concerned with making his guitar sound like a dying horse, more than anything else."

On the Relationship Between the Bad Seeds:
"Hardly any of us has hit each other. Much."

On his Back Catalogue & the compilation of "The Best Of...":
"I don't listen to my own records. Some of them are 15 years old, so it was a terrifying thing to do. This is my life and making records to me has always been about drawing towards some state with my music where I feel comfortable with it, and a lot of it is about rectifying mistakes that were made on the last record... so that was quite worrying. That I would listen to all this sort of stuff and find it was all a pile of crap, and be left with that....Happily, that wasn't so. Some things grate. I mean, lyrically, very often I find I've over-stepped the mark..."

On Berlin:
"These were creative people, who were generous with their ideas and wouldn't hoard them away, and that always impressed me. When I first arrived in London, bands always had their little thing going, and it all seemed very selfish and mean, but when we were in Berlin, we always had other people in our studio, we were constantly in other people's painting studios... it was very much an arts scene. I loved the generosity of spirit that existed in Berlin."

On Drugs:
"I get a chattering voice in my head when I'm straight that never lets up. I hardly sleep at all, and I work a lot, and I'm very, very capable. Very focused about things. But there's voices...well *a* voice, actually, that kind of chatters away the whole time about things, that looks at everything I'm doing and kind of observes, and it's very creative, but it never...shuts up. And taking drugs shuts it up. And it's kind of like...taking a breath. But what it does is shut everything down, and other people can't get in, and I can't really tolerate that for any length of time. Having life robbed of its detail."

On What Would Make Him Happy:
"A lot of things I long for. I long for companionship, for a better, more solid, spiritual life, which is very frustrating to me. These are things I work towards, and I hope I'll achieve some kind of better understanding about, eventually. And yeah, I would hope for some kind of satisfactory relationship with somebody, when there's some kind of mutual comfort that exists..Yeah, I have [experienced that] But I'm not experiencing it as we speak."

"Ten Essential Nick Cave Traits":
The Bible, Songs About Murdering Women, Elvis Presley, Berlin, Suits, Eurogoths/Grainy Black & White Photos, South America, Cover Versions, The American South, & Donkeys.

"Gets through a lot of them, due to rapidity and violence of onstage genuflection putting them out at the knees. Can 'do' up to 500 pounds on one at a go. Most importantly, they are the reason why the Bad Seeds look like travelling oboe salesmen from Weimar Germany and not like an accidental meeting of chain smoking experts. Suits are a minefield: less skilled exponents (Tindersticks, Gallon Drunk) are often left looking like provincial bingo callers."


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