NICK CAVE, "THE SECRET LIFE OF THE LOVE SONG"
This disc on the King Mob label couples two spoken word lectures written by Cave: "The Secret Life of the Love Song" and "The Flesh Made Word", the former originally for the 1998 Vienna Poetry Festival and the latter for a 1996 BBC Radio broadcast.
"The Secret Life.." is 48 and 1/2 minutes of Cave casually explaining the inspirations and minutiae of his proudest achievement: the love song. Cave deftly describes how the void left by the death of his father and the influence of the Bible drive him to write his love songs ... "my gloomy, violent, dark-eyed children. They sit grimly on their own and they do not play with the other songs." For Cave the love song is by definition sad, has a life of it's own and is ultimately a search for God: "the love song exists to fill, with language, the silence between ourselves and God."To help illustrate his points, music is interspersed with the spoken passages: the brief new song "West Country Girl" and beautifully sparse (vocal/piano/violin/bass/drums) new recordings of "People Ain't No Good", "Sad Waters", "Love Letter" and "Far From Me" with Susan Stenger of Band of Susans and Warren Ellis and Jim White, both of Dirty Three. The entire piece is indexed as 1 track. "The Flesh Made Word" is 17 minutes of just spoken word. Here Cave goes into great detail about his relationships with the Bible and his father and his growth as a writer and as a person. The disc comes packaged in a cd sized hardback book that contains 6 in studio b/w pictures and printed excerpts from the lectures. Nick Cave is a truly learned and brilliant artist ... this is a very interesting and insightful work that bears repeated listenings. It is absolutely essential for Cave fans and anyone else interested in passionate songwriting and the genius behind it.