Nick Cave and Warren Ellis have announced details of a new live album, created from their three performances at the Sydney Opera House last year.

Titled ‘Australian Carnage’, the collection features audio taken from the pair’s performances in the Australian city, held as part of their 16-stop tour in the country at the end of 2022. The tour celebrated the release of the 2021 lockdown album, ‘Carnage’, which saw Cave and longtime Bad Seeds member Ellis come together for a new introspective side project.

The live album will be released in two different formats: an 18-track digital version, which will be released this Friday (August 25), and an eight-track vinyl edition, which will arrive on December 1 via Goliath – pre-order here.

To celebrate the announcement, Cave and Ellis have also shared the live version of ‘Balcony Man’, taken from the forthcoming album. Find it below.

“Touring Australia with Warren after so much time away was one of the highlights of recent years,” Cave said, explaining the reason behind the live album.

“Every show was moving and unforgettable, from the intimacy of playing in theatres and arts centres, to the vast and uplifting nights at Hanging Rock, through to our final three nights at the inimitable Sydney Opera House.”

He added: “We are excited to share these recordings, made at the Sydney Opera House, and hope they capture even a tenth of the collective elation we felt at those shows. We’ll never forget them.”

The shows at Sydney’s iconic Opera House on December 16, 17 and 18 saw the duo joined by Radiohead’s Colin Greenwood and regular Bad Seed Larry Mullins, plus backing vocalists Wendi Rose, Janet Ramus and T Jae Cole.

Check out the album cover for ‘Australian Carnage – Live At The Sydney Opera House’ below, as well as both track listings.

‘Australian Carnage - Live At The Sydney Opera House’ artwork
‘Australian Carnage – Live At The Sydney Opera House’ artwork. CREDIT: Press

The ‘Australian Carnage’ tracklist is:

Digital Album:

1. ‘Spinning Song’
2. ‘Bright Horses’
3. ‘Night Raid’
4. ‘Carnage’
5. ‘White Elephant’
6. ‘Ghosteen’
7. ‘Lavender Fields’
8. ‘Waiting For You’
9. ‘I Need You’
10. ‘Cosmic Dancer’
11. ‘Breathless’
12. ‘Hand Of God’
13. ‘Shattered Ground’
14. ‘Galleon Ship’
15. ‘Leviathan’
16. ‘Balcony Man’
17. ‘Hollywood’
18. ‘Ghosteen Speaks’

Vinyl Album:

Side 1:
1. ‘Bright Horses’
2. ‘Carnage’
3. ‘White Elephant’
4. ‘Leviathan’

Side 2:
1. ‘Ghosteen’
2. ‘Waiting For You’
3. ‘Breathless’
4. ‘Balcony Man’

Released back in February 2021, Cave and Ellis’ ‘Carnage’ album received a five-star review from NME, with Andrew Trendell describing it as the band reaching “the peak of their powers”.

Additionally, when the duo brought the live show to the UK later that year, the London performance earned them another five-star review, with the set combining tracks from ‘Carnage’, as well as ‘Ghosteen’ and ‘Skeleton Tree’. This, the review read, transformed the show into a “modestly ambitious new live spectacle”, which honed in on a feeling of “intimacy”.

Nick Cave
Credit: Andreas Rentz/Getty Images.

In other Nick Cave news, earlier this year the artist spoke to NME about what to expect from the next Bad Seeds album, and if there’s a chance of more music from Grinderman any time soon.

“We could do a Grinderman record, because Grinderman is essentially improv. It’s musically challenging and you don’t really know what you’re going to get, but I don’t think we could make a four-on-the-floor rock’n’roll record any more,” he said.

Elsewhere, just last month, he also submitted an entry on his Red Hand Files website, telling fans that he is currently “finishing” work on his new album with the Bad Seeds.


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