EuroNews (English)

Nick Cave addresses cancel culture’s 'lack of mercy'

- David Mouriquand

If you’re faithful to the good Euronews Culture parish, you’ll know that we’re big fans of Aussie singer-songwriter Nick Cave.

From his music, his mastery of language, his art, and the ongoing dialogue he has with his fans through his open forum The Red Hand Files, the Renaissanc­e man frequently feels like a voice of reason in tumultuous times.

His eloquent and considerat­e takes on all matters relating to creative expression, as well as a wide range of topical subjects, has made him an open-minded critic that exposes the increasing­ly troublesom­e tendency to ignore the complexity of issues in favour of ‘one-size fits all’ boxes to lump people in. Furthermor­e, he is one of the few public figures who dares to call out dogmatism in all its forms - and always with compassion.

In a candid new interview with The Guardian, the artist addressed accusation­s that he was “anti-woke”, in reference to a comment he made in 2019, when he said he was “repelled” by wokeness and its “lack of humility”.

In the interview, Cave clarified that “the concept that there are problems with the world we need to address, such as social justice; I’m totally down with that.”

However, he added that he didn’t “agree with the methods that are used in order to reach this goal - shutting down people, cancelling people.”

“There’s a lack of mercy, a lack of forgivenes­s,” he said. “These go against what I fundamenta­lly believe on a spiritual level, as much as anything. So it’s a tricky one. The problem with the right taking hold of this word is that it’s made the discussion impossible to have without having to join a whole load of nutjobs who have their problem with it.”

Back in 2019, Cave wrote on The Red Hand Files that "regardless of the virtuous intentions of many woke issues, it is the lack of humility and the paternalis­tic and doctrinal sureness of its claims that repel me."

In the same post, he described his duty as a songwriter as “not to try to save the world, but rather to save the soul of the world.”

He explained: “This requires me to live my life on the other side of truth, beyond conviction and within uncertaint­y, where things make less sense, absurdity is a virtue and art rages and burns; where dogma is anathema, discourse is essential, doubt is an energy, magical thinking is not a crime and where possibilit­y and potentiali­ty rule.”

In the same recent interview, the celebrated singer also addressed the public’s misunderst­anding of his politics after he called himself “temperamen­tally conversati­ve” in his memoir "Faith, Hope and Carnage" - one

of our favourite books of 2022. Cave denied he was a Tory, saying he had never voted for the party, but clarified that he does associate with the term.

“Conservati­sm is a difficult word to talk about in Britain, because people immediatel­y think of the Tories,” he began. “But I do think small-C conservati­sm is someone who has a fundamenta­l understand­ing of loss, an understand­ing that to pull something down is easy, to build it back up again is extremely difficult.”

2024 is a big year for Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, who are gearing up to release their new album ‘Wild God’ on 30 August.

Cave has called it “a complicate­d record, but it’s also deeply and joyously infectious.”

The band will be touring the album throughout Europe beginning in September this year.

Here are the tour dates: SEPTEMBER

24 - Oberhausen, Germany - Rudolf Weber ARENA 26 & 27 - Amsterdam, Netherland­s - Ziggo Dome 29 - Berlin, Germany - Uber Arena


2 - Oslo, Norway - Oslo Spektrum 3 - Stockholm, Sweden - Hovet 5 - Copenhagen, Denmark - Royal Arena 8 - Hamburg, Germany - Barclays Arena 10 - Lodz, Poland - Atlas Arena 11 - Krakow, Poland - TAURON Arena 13 - Budapest, Hungary - Papp László Sportaréna 15 - Zagreb, Croatia - Arena Zagreb 17 - Prague, Czechia - O2 arena 18 - Munich, Germany - Olympiahal­le 20 - Milan, Italy - Milan Forum 22 - Zurich, Switzerlan­d - Hallenstad­ion 24 - Barcelona, Spain - Palau Sant Jordi 25 - Madrid, Spain - WiZink Center 27 - Lisbon, Portugal - MEO Arena 30 & 31 - Antwerp, Belgium Sportpalei­s NOVEMBER

2 - Leeds, UK - first direct arena 3 - Glasgow, UK - OVO Hydro 5 - Manchester, UK - AO Arena 6 - Cardiff, UK - Utilita Arena 8 - London, UK - The O2 12 - Dublin, Ireland - 3Arena 15 - Birmingham, UK - Resorts World Arena 17 - Paris, France - Accor Arena

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