NICK CAVE – ” I Need You “

Posted: December 30, 2016 in CLASSIC ALBUMS, MUSIC
Tags: ,

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Outside of David Bowie, there was probably no more discussed and analysed album this year than Nick Cave’s  Skeleton Tree. You surely know the story by now, mid-way through recording Skeleton Tree, Nick Cave was struck by personal tragedy with the death of his son Arthur. Exactly how much of the album preceded or followed the event, it was almost impossible to not hear the spectre of grief hanging heavy over the entirety of Skeleton Key.

In some lesser writer’s hands Skeleton Key could have been a painful mess, but if there was one person you’d back to perfectly tread the line between sentimentality and anger, it was Nick Cave. His entire career has been spent writing in the darker echelons of the human mind, but here he seemed to walk amongst the darkness he previously narrated – this darkness, this pain, this was reality. What Skeleton Key does so well is steer clear of being a tribute, this isn’t an album about death, this is an album about grief, and a brutally honest one at that; when in Magneto Nick sang, “the urge to kill somebody was basically overwhelming“, you could tell he meant it. Skeleton Key is quite possibly the finest album ever written about the process of grieving, and its ability to cripple and shape every aspect of your life; it offeres no resolution, no light at the end of the tunnel, just an all-encompassing monolith to loss – it is also, almost coincidentally, a masterpiece for sure.

Skeleton Tree is an emotionally challenging listen and you’d have to have a heart of stone not to be moved by this beautifully, raw, bleak yet inspiring album. It’s been said much of the album was written before tragic events enveloped Mr Cave and his family, but for the listener, it remains impossible not to link the two when contemplating such an astonishingly intimate dark collection of songs.

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