Nick Cave shares ‘Idiot Prayer’ concert film trailer, discusses protest music he likes
Nick Cave's Idiot Prayer, a filmed solo performance shot at London's Alexandra Palace, will be streamed on July 23 and he's just shared the trailer for it. It might even be better described as a prelude: we see him walking alone through the empty palace, as he recites the lyrics from Ghosteen's "Spinning Song" in voiceover. Watch that below.
Nick has also shared a lengthy statement about Idiot Prayer, and how it was made. "Surrounded by Covid officers with tape measures and thermometers, masked-up gaffers and camera operators, nervous looking technicians and buckets of hand gel, together we created something very strange and very beautiful that spoke into this uncertain moment, but was in no way bowed by it." He also says he considers it the final film in the trilogy that began with 20,000 Days on Earth and One More Time with Feeling. Read the whole thing below.
Although it's a film, Idiot Prayer is being treated like a livestream with three global screening times: Australia & Asia: 8 PM AEST, UK & Europe: 8 PM BST / 9pm CEST, and North & South America: 7 PM PDT / 10 PM EDT. Tickets are on sale.
Meanwhile, Nick has a new entry in his Red Hand Files site where he answers fans questions. In a follow-up to a recent entry talking about why he doesn't write protest songs, he was asked about political and protest songs by others he admires. He offers up Nina Simone's 1972 live album Emergency Ward!: "In 1972 Nina Simone released a live album entitled Emergency Ward! that was, by her own admission, her oppositional response to the Vietnam War. This record begins with an eighteen-minute rendition of ‘My Sweet Lord’, that could well be her greatest musical achievement. Nina Simone’s interpretation of George Harrison’s gentle cosmic entreaty ends up, in her hands, as a howl of spiritual abandonment and accusation." Read Cave's whole entry over at The Red Hand Files.
If you need more Nick Cave, his YouTube channel Bad Seed TeeVee streams 24/7 with new content added regularly.
Still no word on new 2021 dates for Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds North American tour which was supposed to have happened in in the fall. Stay tuned.
“Idiot Prayer’ evolved from my ‘Conversations With...’ events, performed over the last year or so. I loved playing deconstructed versions of my songs at these shows, distilling them to their essential forms—with an emphasis on the delivery of the words. I felt I was rediscovering the songs all over again, and started to think about going into a studio and recording these reimagined versions at some stage—whenever I could find the time.
Then, of course, the world went into lockdown. The Bad Seeds’ global 2020 tour was postponed. Studios shut down. Venues shut down. And the world fell into an eerie, self-reflective silence.
It was within this silence that I began to think about the idea of not only recording the songs, but also filming them - and so we started to assemble a small team, including the great cinematographer, Robbie Ryan, sound man, Dom Monks, and editor, Nick Emerson, with the intention to film as soon as it became feasible to get back to business in some way.
Meanwhile, I sat at home working out how to play more songs in the ‘Conversations’ format—new songs and songs from the Ghosteen album, Grinderman songs and early Bad Seeds stuff, and everything in between.
We worked with the team at Alexandra Palace - a venue I have played and love - on securing a date to film just as soon as they were allowed to re-open the building to us. We had an amazing production team and crew, and what they did within this extraordinary situation was a marvel. Surrounded by Covid officers with tape measures and thermometers, masked-up gaffers and camera operators, nervous looking technicians and buckets of hand gel, together we created something very strange and very beautiful that spoke into this uncertain moment, but was in no way bowed by it.
‘Idiot Prayer’ serves as the final film in a trilogy— along with ’20,000 Days on Earth’ and ‘One More Time with Feeling’—and is its luminous and heartfelt climax. ‘Idiot Prayer’ is a prayer into the void—alone at Alexander Palace. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed making it.”