HomeUncategorizedNick Cave and the Bad Seeds' "Wild God"

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ “Wild God”

Song of the Week is a weekly column from Consequence that highlights the latest and greatest new tracks each week. Find these new favorites and more on our Spotify Top Songs playlist, and for other great songs from emerging artists, check out our Spotify New Sounds playlist. This week, Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds return with “Wild God.” 

The last fans heard from Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds was 2019’s Ghosteena contemplative, ambient-influenced project that found Cave wading through waters of grief, love, and swirling synth pads. With “Wild God,” Cave and company return surprisingly… joyful?

“It’s a complicated record, but it’s also deeply and joyously infectious,” Cave said of the upcoming release and its eponymous lead single. “There is never a master plan when we make a record. The records rather reflect back the emotional state of the writers and musicians who played them. Listening to this, I don’t know, it seems we’re happy.”

Upon first listen, “Wild God” certainly seems to embody this newfound lightness. Compared to the meditative space that drove Ghosteen, “Wild God” is remarkably upbeat, organic, and — with the climactic, chorus-backed outro — anthemically triumphant.

Of course, being Nick Cave, diving into the lyrics reveals no simple expression of happiness; he said as much himself in the aforementioned quote. Rather, through the tale of an elderly man letting his memories take over, “Wild God” speaks to the importance of working towards contentedness in the face of, well, everything.

At every turn, the old man/wild god faces loss, adversity, and suffering: rape and pillage in the retirement village, the death of the girl on Jubilee Street (a potential callback to the Push the Sky Away track), and winds of tyranny. And yet, he’s a wild god in search of what all wild gods are searching for, winds of tyranny be damned.

“And the people on the ground cried, ‘When does it start?’/ And the wild god says, ‘It starts with the heart,’” Cave sings, giving our titular wild god an opportunity to offer his wisdom. “And the people on the ground cried, ‘When does it end?’/ And the wild God says, ‘Well, it depends, but it mostly never ends.’”

Truly, it mostly never ends, that being anything and everything that takes away one’s joy. But when you’re feeling lonely or blue, bring your spirit down, make like a wild god, and find your peace — it’s out there. Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds certainly did.

— Jonah Krueger
Editorial Coordinator

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