This is the show I have been waiting over 20 years to see again. And with mum in town to look after the boys, I even got Amy to come along. We got to Asheville with enough time to have a quick bite at Southern Kitchen & Bar, after scoring an amazing parking space in front of the restaurant, around the corner from the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium.
I was told the show started at 8, so of course I was in my seat 10 minutes early, which therefore lead to the Bad Seeds coming on stage 20 minutes late. While the band started with 3 tracks from the unknown-to-me Skeleton Tree, it was clear that Nick Cave owned the stage. He has that "it" factor, that won't let you take your eyes off him. The crowd (yea, I'm not the oldest) erupted when the inevitable "I wanna tell you about a girl..." line preceded From Her to Eternity. I was hooked! Tupelo followed, the Jubilee Street, a song I was not familiar with, delivered the greatest line of the night (and one I'll use from now on) "And a ten ton catastrophe on a sixty pound chain" The Bad Seeds then played the stunning 1-2 of Ship Song and the ever-beautiful Into My Arms. Oh!, then it got better. From the first chime of Red Right Hand I got chills all over. Such an awesome song. Between his smooth voice and the cacophony of instruments, Cave stalked the stage. And his improvised Trump lyrics - spot on.
"You'll see him in your nightmares
You'll see him in your dreams
You'll see him on the internet
You'll read his angry little tweets"
The Mercy Seat was also out of this world. And the encore....Oh My God! Starting with the fact that everyone was craving more, Cave started with The Weeping Song, straight into Jack The Ripper, and then sent the crowd and band into a frenzy with Stagger Lee. It was phenomenal! He then finished with the quieter Push The Sky Away, but in accordance with his repoire with the crowd throughout the show, he sung the song while climbing through the crowd, ending up about 5 rows in front of us.
And absolute marvel of a night. I thought Flaming Lips would be hard to beat for a show, but Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds blew them away. It was easy to drive back to Charlotte after the concert, I was so pumped. I will make it a mission not to wait 21 1/2 years to see the Bad Seeds again. I think we even turned Amy into a fan. She said it well, saying while it's not usually the music she'd listen to, there is no denying Nick Cave is a mastery of the English language. A modern day poet!
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds "Push The Sky Away"
The Crap Facts:
This is my 426th concert.
This is my 2nd concert at Thomas Wolfe Auditorium
This is my 5th concert in Asheville.
This is my 68th concert in North Carolina.
This is my 231st concert in the USA.
This is my 3rd Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds concert.