Nick Cave Idiot Prayer Alone at Alexandra Palace

REVIEW: Idiot Prayer: Alone at Alexandra Palace, Nick Cave

“These are still dark and gloomy songs, and Cave’s apocalyptic crooning has lost none of its power.”

Nick Cave, Idiot Prayer: Alone at Alexandra Palace (Bad Seed Ltd.)

Pared-down “acoustic” records by iconoclastic musicians can sometimes, in a post-American Recordings world, be seen as a bit of a bid for the mainstream — or at the very least, as a bid for the ear of a new audience. Nick Cave’s work in recent years has already grown starker and further removed from the tenets of alternative rock, so Idiot Prayer: Alone at Alexandra Palace feels like a logical next step rather than a stylistic stunt. Idiot Prayer finds Cave alone at an acoustic piano, delivering impassioned but extremely pared-down versions of songs usually augmented by the Bad Seeds. Don’t go expecting a crossover hit, though — these are still dark and gloomy songs, and Cave’s apocalyptic crooning, while a little less aggressive, has lost none of its power. At nearly 84 minutes, it’s quite an exhausting listen, and it’s still shorter than the filmed version! 8/10 Trial Track: “Higgs Boson Blues”

“Higgs Boson Blues” by Nick Cave from Idiot Prayer: Alone at Alexandra Palace

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