Nick Cave on claims early LP had violence towards women: ‘I’m not a misogynist’

Nick Cave has said he is “not personally a misogynist” as he addressed accusations that his studio album Murder Ballads was violent towards women.

He released the album in 1996 with his band Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds, and said he is glad music has the capacity to “outrage”, explaining the LP was violent not just to women but to everyone.

Speaking on The Louis Theroux Podcast, he said: “Some of my early lyrics with The Birthday Party (band), the Murder Ballads record, this kind of thing, there was violence towards women, but there was actually violence towards everybody.

Nick Cave in concert at the Apollo Victoria in 2006 (Yui Mok/PA)

“They were just violent records. There were heroic women, and female murderers, and all sorts of stuff going on in that record, and songs before that.

“But I’m not personally a misogynist.

“I don’t have those inclinations but I liked to write songs that were violent in those days.

“I just enjoyed the thrill of language, being able to write about violent things in the same way that a thriller writer maybe likes to write about violent things too.”

Glastonbury Festival 2009 – Day Three
Nick Cave performing during the 2009 Glastonbury Festival (Anthony Devlin/PA)

Raised during the genesis of punk culture, Cave also talked about censorship in art and said “the number one thing” punks did was challenge people’s virtues.

He added: “This troubling of the waters, that is the self-evident value of art and that if we’re to put art through a kind of righteous sieve and take all the unrighteous bits out, what we get is just the bland and the morally obvious.”

The Louis Theroux Podcast is available for free exclusively on Spotify with new episodes airing every Tuesday.