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Trailer Drops For New The Birthday Party Documentary, 'Mutiny In Heaven'

30 August 2023 | 11:47 am | Mary Varvaris

The new teaser contains terrifying footage of Nick Cave performing on stage.

The Birthday Party

The Birthday Party (Credit: Brian Shanley/Supplied)

Mutiny In Heaven, the new documentary about one of Australia’s most thrilling bands, The Birthday Party, has received a new teaser that will only increase excitement for punters who didn’t manage to see the film’s premiere screenings as part of the Melbourne International Film Festival (MIFF) earlier this month.

The film is set for a wider cinema release in September and October, NME reports.

The documentary, directed by Ian White, features previously unseen interviews with band members Nick Cave, Tracy Pew, Rowland S. Howard, Mick Harvey and Phill Calvert and a soundtrack curated by Harvey. You can watch the new teaser below.

The new teaser contains terrifying footage of Cave performing, with a voiceover calling The Birthday Party a “monstrous beast” when they took the stage. The synopsis notes that Mutiny In Heaven is “the story of epic struggle, artistic genius and total chaos, bringing the band’s own account to the screen for the first time.”

The Birthday Party are still regarded as one of the most influential acts in Australian music history.

All in all, the five-piece powerhouse lasted just six years. But in that time, The Birthday Party established an incredible legacy that remains as strong as ever four decades after their breakup – taking the world by storm and crafting a sound entirely their own.

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The Birthday Party’s blend of post-punk and goth-rock with noise, blues, free jazz and rockabilly flavours has influenced dozens of bands that went on to find their own success. 

Mutiny In Heaven celebrates all of it without filter, showing The Birthday Party at their rawest and most raucous.

The film is promised to showcase “rare and unseen photos, artwork, letters and diaries, unreleased tracks and studio footage”, as well as new interviews with and “sardonic recollections of their youthful hopes and dreams” from the band’s surviving members (plus newly unearthed interviews with guitarist/songwriter Rowland S. Howard, filmed shortly before he died in 2009).

In 2014, Liberation Records acquired The Birthday Party’s entire discography and embarked on “a carefully curated reissue program”.