I have been a Nick Cave fan for over 30 years yet I am still not sure about Nick Cave and the Bad Seed’s third LP, comprising entirely of covers, “Kicking Against the Pricks”.
To me there is a cracking EP in there, but too many duds for an LP. As always, YMMV. However, below is an article refelecting on “Kicking Against the Pricks” plus an excellent video clip of Nick Cave improvising Hey Joe on Nightmusic from the mid-eighties.
“And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks”
– Acts 9:5
Kicking Against the Pricks is the third album released by Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. First released in 1986, the album is a collection of cover versions. Like many of our favorite artists (Dylan, Springsteen), Nick Cave dove into “the great songbook from the past” and gave us an album that really stood out in 1986. It wasn’t country, and it most certainly did not fit that new-wave look of Nick Cave and The Bad Seed. They play the songs in a straightforward way, not trying to modernize or make them more rock’n roll. This album was very important in my journey back to traditional folk music and blues standards.
Nick Cave improvising Hey Joe on Nightmusic from the mid-eighties
Nick Cave, Mick Harvey, David Sanborn, Toots Thielemans, Charlie Haden and the Nightmusic Band covering “Hey Joe”.