At the least we all know Nick Cave hasn’t been letting himself go in lockdown. No gray roots, stubble or tracksuit bottoms for the dapper goth singer-songwriter. With jet black dyed hair and people lugubrious, snub-nosed gargoyle options, he nonetheless appears like a cross between Shrek and Johnny Money in a Gucci go well with.
Cave’s imaginative try to beat pandemic restrictions on dwell leisure with a solo dwell stream gig proves a wierd, solitary affair, much less a communion with an imagined viewers than a non-public meditation between one man and his personal songs. Shot in a gorgeously empty Alexandra Palace with Cave taking part in 21 songs from throughout his profession solo on the piano, it appears icily stunning however extra artwork film than gig.
It has been created to be broadcast as a single by no means to be repeated dwell occasion, with out recourse to pause, rewind, quick ahead or repeat. But the efficiency was filmed upfront by award-winning cinematographer Robbie Ryan (The Favorite, Marriage Story), whose small crew had been sometimes caught within the background of his elegantly composed photographs. It was edited by Nick Emerson (Girl Macbeth, Emma).
Cave has an extended and fascinating historical past of adapting his work to movie, but the easy consciousness that you’re successfully watching a film inevitably strips the live performance expertise of pressure, that crackle of immediacy the place something would possibly occur.
Cave doesn’t communicate, look into the digital camera or do something to interrupt his personal non-public spell. Aside from his entrance and exit, he stays seated at a black Fazioli grand piano in the midst of an enormous empty corridor, leafing via handwritten songbooks and pages of lyrics, discarding them on the ground round him as he completes every quantity.