Nick Cave has confirmed that he plans to begin writing a new album at the end of this year.
After a busy summer of festival dates and the release of his new book Faith, Hope and Carnage, Cave and his frequent collaborator Warren Ellis will head home to Australia next month for a headline tour, which wraps up on December 17 in Sydney.
At a Q&A at London’s Southbank Centre last night (October 27), where he spoke with journalist Sean O’Hagan about their new book as part of the London Literature Festival, Cave confirmed that, after the tour ends, he will begin writing a new album.
“The thing is, that’s coming, and I know what that involves,” he told the crowd. “It’s about a man sitting down in his space and confronting a complete lack of ideas about things. I don’t collect ideas, I don’t write things down or get a cool title or whatever. I don’t do that stuff. I just make a date and sit down and start to write a record.”
Cave added: “The initial sitting down comes from a complete absence of ideas, and every line I write seems to affirm the fact that I am not very good at what I do! It’s a very slow process of just collecting a line together and putting it next to another one… it’s micro-managing these words to get something going, and it just grows. That initial thing, it’s not very nice. I wish it wasn’t so.
“I’ve read Neil Young wrote the whole of ‘Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere’ in bed one day when he had the flu. Is that true? And I’m like, ‘Fuck you, man!’ – I never liked that record anyway.”
Cave’s last album with The Bad Seeds, ‘Ghosteen’, came out in 2019. In 2021, he and Ellis released the LP ‘Carnage’ as a duo, which they toured around the UK last year, and will bring to Australia from next month.
Elsewhere in the Southbank Q&A, Cave discussed Kanye West‘s recent antisemitic comments, calling them “deeply disappointing” and “disgraceful”.
“There’s Kanye at the moment, making antisemitic remarks,” he said. “Kanye, for me, controversially, is, in my opinion, the greatest artist of our generation. I love his music. ‘Yeezus’ and those gospel records… those gospel records are like nothing I’ve ever heard before.
“But for me, for him to pull out these antisemitic tropes, I think it’s, personally, disgraceful. Does this person need to descend from such great heights down to such tedious shit we’ve heard so much so often? It’s deeply disappointing to me, and for some time it might be difficult for me personally to listen to a Kanye record, but at the same time I value the output more, on some level.”
Cave added: “Ultimately, I value the output more, and I know that in time I will be able to get over that and just feel free to be able to listen to Kanye’s music again. That he won’t forever be trapped in the worst aspect of his character, and the music that he makes is a journey away from the worst aspect of his character, like all our music is.”