Belfast Telegraph

Review: Nick Cave worshipped in Los Angeles

The Bad Seeds performed classics The Mercy Seat and Tupelo as well as much of Skeleton Tree ahead of a visit to the UK.

Nick Cave was worshipped as an idol as he closed his north American tour with an emotional and energetic set in Los Angeles.

The 59-year-old musician, who is based in Brighton, East Sussex, and his band The Bad Seeds performed classics such as The Mercy Seat and much of their latest album Skeleton Tree.

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Nick Cave and his wife Susie Bick (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

The highly-praised album was recorded at the time of the accidental death of one of Cave’s twin sons Arthur, who was just 15.

Cave’s vocals were raw and unpolished and in a documentary about the album the Australian wondered if he was losing his voice.

But Thursday’s sold-out show at the Greek Theatre proved precisely the opposite as Cave’s voice shifted from ballad to brawl and romance to ruckus often within the same song.

He lithely danced across the stage like the energetic orator of darkness that he is.

Support came from Cat Power’s Chan Marshall who cut a lonely figure on stage as she performed solo in front of the seated crowd who were yet to pack out the outdoor arena in Griffith Park.

Cave and his band entered the stage as darkness took over in the final moments of sunset.

The performance of The Mercy Seat was relentless, as was Red Right Hand, and the dapper and dramatic Cave growled his way through Tupelo, confirming his continued vocal dexterity.

Alongside most other musicians, multi-instrumentalist Warren Ellis would have been the most captivating performer on stage but he was of course with Cave.

The final tracks were performed with more than 100 fans on stage who, like disciples, kneeled around Cave when he commanded them to sit through Push The Sky Away.

Leaving the show, one woman told a friend: “I’ve never had a god before but tonight I think I found one.”

:: Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds will tour the UK starting in Bournemouth on September 24.

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