God is in the House – Conversations with Nick Cave

Last night my family and I had a trip out to Birmingham’s Symphony Hall to see Nick Cave. I think the last time I went to the Symphony Hall was for Iron and Wine, so it’s been a while! It’s going to take me some time to recover from last night, partly from it being quite tiring but also, recovering emotionally – he was refreshingly candid and honest in his answers and he even played what is probably my favourite song of all time, certainly my favourite opening line (Into My Arms, obviously)

The basic format was that he would answer people’s questions between playing songs – I was a bit nervous before that it would turn into a ‘this is more of a comment than a question’ thing or a venue for people to show off about how much they know, but fortunately it mostly wasn’t like that at all. Instead, I found myself laughing and crying and sometimes both at the same time. I was particularly impressed with the thought and attention he gave every answer – I would be terrified in that situation, mostly due to the unplannable nature of it! He’s obviously very experienced but it’s a skill that always impresses me. He was particularly interesting when he was talking about the creative process and spirituality – for those unfamiliar with him and his songs, religious themes run through many of them.

I won’t say anything else because otherwise I’ll just gush too much, but it was a fantastic experience preceded by a lovely meal at one of my favourite restaurants in Birmingham. I’ll just close with the lyrics for Into My Arms, which was one of my personal highlights:


I don’t believe in an interventionist God
But I know, darling, that you do
But if I did I would kneel down and ask Him
Not to intervene when it came to you
Not to touch a hair on your head
To leave you as you are
And if He felt He had to direct you
Then direct you into my arms
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms

And I don’t believe in the existence of angels
But looking at you I wonder if that’s true
But if I did I would summon them together
And ask them to watch over you
To each burn a candle for you
To make bright and clear your path
And to walk, like Christ, in grace and love
And guide you into my arms
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms
And I believe in Love
And I know that you do too
And I believe in some kind of path
That we can walk down, me and you
So keep your candlew burning
And make her journey bright and pure
That she will keep returning
Always and evermore
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms, O Lord
Into my arms

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