Last week, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds announced a new double album, Ghosteen, which was released today on Oct. 4.
In preparing the album, Cave characterized its material as follows:
The songs on the first album are the children.
The songs on the second album are their parents.
Ghosteen is a migrating spirit.
Ghosteen is the 17th studio album from Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, and the first since 2016’s Skeleton Tree. Ghosteen also serves as the final installment in a trilogy of albums that began with 2013’s Push the Sky Away and Skeleton Tree.
Cave has always brought intense emotions to his music, but Ghosteen is on another level entirely — its songs are breathtaking, its impact immense. From spoken-word compositions to the elegant arrangement of other songs, which frequently feature simply Cave’s vocals set to gentle pianos, the whole experience of listening to this record is crushing in its weight.
In 2015, Cave’s son, Arthur, died after falling off a cliff in Brighton, and as Cave told the Guardian, the passing of his son greatly impacted him on a deep level:
The accidental death of his son Arthur in 2015, he said, has led him to “see people in a different way”, giving him “a deep feeling toward other people and an absolute understanding of their suffering”.
In that sense, Ghosteen feels like a reaction to and method of dealing with the grief and emotional spectrum of feelings that can come about after losing a loved one, and the result is a captivating group of songs that will leave listeners overwhelmed — in an all-encompassing and meaningful way.
Stream Ghosteen below, via Spotify.