Thursday, August 8, 2013

Grinderman, "(I Don't Need You To) Set Me Free"

I've lost track of the amount of break up mixes I've made for friends over the years. But until this week, I somehow never put one together for a guy. Tell me all you want about gender stereotypes, but there are some things that men will never understand about women, and vice versa. Older folks would probably call Scott a man's man, and he's not getting any Alanis Morissette on his mix.

Nick Cave can ache and sound vulnerable, but he's also one of the only artists who can make a broken heart feel badass. His two-album stint with Grinderman ranks with the best Bad Seeds songs, and totally trounces anything in the Birthday Party's book, as "(I Don't Need You To) Set Me Free" proves. Cave plays the conflicted male in the great tradition of Dostoyevsky's Notes from the Underground and John Waite's "Missing You." When he talks about getting sick ("Every time I see you...think of you...dream of you...cry for you,") you can tell that it's not making him weak. He's got the Grindermen with him.


M said...

Ahhh Nick Cave, one of my all time favourites. I heard him being described on the radio (the show host had been to a concert of his) recently as a man who did not know how to accept growing older. They didn't mean it as a compliment. I sense that about him.

But in any case, love his work. Am partial to a bit of Nick The Stripper and the like and don't know enough about Grinderman to make a comparison.

Ben Apatoff said...

One of my favorites too. I think that most artists embarrass themselves when they refuse to accept getting older, but somehow he makes that licentiousness work for him well into his 50s.

I'm also a fan of "Nick the Stripper" and the Birthday Party, though I feel like Grinderman maintains that wickedness with a better song structure. They've only got two albums, check them out when you can.