SONG OF THE DAY Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Hand of God


“Ultimately, Cave’s message seems to be that only through togetherness and unity in spirit can people rise above the carnage — the depression, the fear, the prejudice, the ugliness — of this grim moment..”.(Rolling Stone)

My post tonight isn’t about the seemingly relentless bad luck Nick Cave has endured over the past few years following the loss of not one, but two of his sons, but when you hear today’s song, it does send a shiver given all that has gone on.

I read somewhere recently that subsequent albums following the death of his 15-year-old, Arthur Cave were geared towards escapism, seeking salvation in the passing of time and managing to exist through the toughest of times. Last year’s album, Carnage, is a collaboration between Cave and Bad Seeds multi-instrumentalist Warren Ellis and, written this side of lockdown, is a reflection on loneliness and spiritual deliverance. The songs on this record takes us into the mind of Cave as he attempts to make sense of his place in the world…a world that is breaking down and one that has separated people in a time when unity is the key.

Hand of God opens the album with the quiet ponderings of Cave as his spoken word utters the first line, “There are some people trying to find out who/There are some people trying to find out why/There’s some people who aren’t trying to find anything/But that kingdom in the sky….”  It’s gentle simplicity cuts deep, and as it reaches out with the subtle chink of a piano and coaxing strings, you don’t instantly expect the edgy direction it suddenly takes. Strings swell and a heady rhythm breaks out like a beating heart as Cave sings of people in search for heaven. It’s stark melodic setting creates the perfect backdrop for Ellis’ falsetto backing vocals as they repeat, Hand of God/Hand of God. 

It’s a stirring and evocative listen!

About The Listening Post Blog

The Listening Post Blog - A place to discover new sounds, where the music speaks for itself..
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