Nick Cave & Warren Ellis Announce 'Australian Carnage' Live Album

23 August 2023 | 9:07 am | Mary Varvaris

'Australian Carnage - Live At The Sydney Opera House' hits streaming services this Friday, 25 August. The vinyl release follows in December.

Nick Cave & Warren Ellis

Nick Cave & Warren Ellis (Credit: Daniel Boud)

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Surprise: a new Nick Cave and Warren Ellis live album is hitting streaming services this Friday, 25 August, with a vinyl release to follow on Friday, 1 December.

Australian Carnage - Live At The Sydney Opera House was recorded – you guessed it – at the Sydney Opera House over three intense nights (16, 17 and 18 December 2022) as the pair took their collaborative 2021 LP, Carnage, on the road, while promoting Cave’s other most recent albums, Skeleton Tree and Ghosteen.

A full 18-track album will be available to stream on Friday, with the vinyl album containing eight tracks. You can pre-order and pre-save Australian Carnage here and listen to the live version of Balcony Man below.

Despite their longstanding works in the Bad Seeds, the Carnage tour was the first time Cave and Ellis toured together as a duo. During the Australian tour, they were accompanied by Radiohead bassist Colin Greenwood, Bad Seed Larry Mullins, and backing vocalists Wendi Rose, Janet Ramus and T Jae Cole.

“Touring Australia with Warren after so much time away was one of the highlights of recent years,” Cave commented in a statement.

Cave called each night on tour “moving and unforgettable”, “from the intimacy of playing in theatres and art centres to the vast and uplifting nights at Hanging Rock, through to our final three nights at the inimitable Sydney Opera House.

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“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.”

Ben Marshall, the Sydney Opera House Head of Contemporary Music, added, “Nick Cave and Warren Ellis’ Australian Carnage live album is an extraordinary record of two of the most beautiful and brilliant artists of their time reaching for something else with their immensely talented on-stage collaborators.

“They were more than concerts that Nick & Warren brought to Australia and Sydney Opera House; something profound and numinous was happening in the Concert Hall between the artist and the audience at their performances here, and I hope this album touches you too.”

You can find the complete tracklist below.

“The creative collaboration between Cave and Ellis is untouchable,” The Music’s Bryget Chrisfield summarised in a live review of the pair’s Hanging Rock show. You can read the rest of the review here.

Australian Carnage - Nick Cave and Warren Ellis Live at The Sydney Opera House tracklist:

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