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Nick Cave just wrapped up a handful of shows on his massive world tour. Nick is covering the globe with both full band shows and some intimate solo question and answer evenings.

On this US leg, the shows were opened by the American ambient pop band Cigarettes After Sex. Their music dreamily drifted along bringing the audience with them. Their mixture of fog and precise stage lighting made for a captivating visual wonder. They performed a healthy set of their own songs with a version of REO Speedwagon’s “Keep On Loving You” thrown in and done in their own ethereal style to the delight of the crowd.

Next up was Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, the reason everyone was at one of Washington DC’s newest music venues, The Anthem. It has a feel of a small club with the room of a small arena. There doesn’t seem to be a bad spot in the house for concert viewing with it’s spacious general admission floor and it’s multilevel balcony seating on three sides of the floor. To go with the comfort of the venue is a sound system that delivers crisp clear sound. The staff was one of the most courteous and friendly venue staffs you will find, but enough about the Anthem….

Nick Cave and his band took the stage by storm with “Jesus Alone”, a song from his 2016 release Skeleton Tree. His set was full of high-powered classics as well as a cluster of slow moving ballads midway through the set featuring Nick on the keyboard. The lighting for the show enhanced the concert experience and is second only to the lighting of a Gary Numan concert in this reviewer’s opinion. During several high-energy songs, Nick’s violinist, long time bandmate, and musical collaborator, Warren Ellis was so wrapped up in the intensity of the songs that he launched his bow across the stage and started strumming on the violin strings. At one point, Nick took a stroll through the audience, hopped up on a video platform, and sang, giving the crowd at the back of the venue an up close and personal viewing. He also brought a number of adoring fans up to fill the stage. They sat and listened intently as he continued his inspired performance.

As always, a Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds is a show not to be missed. Nick’s ferocity on stage is legendary and his band is as tight a group of musicians as any you will find. No matter the cost, see them perform the next time they tour in your area. You will not be disappointed!

Set List for Washington, DC’s Anthem 10/25/2018

  1. Jesus Alone
  2. Magneto
  3. Higgs Boson Blues
  4. Do You Love Me?
  5. From Her to Eternity
  6. Loverman
  7. Red Right Hand
  8. God Is in the House
  9. The Ship Song
  10. Into My Arms
  11. Girl in Amber
  12. Tupelo
  13. Jubilee Street
  14. The Weeping Song
  15. Stagger Lee
  16. Push the Sky Away


  1. The Mercy Seat
  2. City of Refuge
  3. Rings of Saturn

Photos and Review by Rich Russo