Lovely Creatures: The Best of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds was initially scheduled for release in the autumn of 2015. Thirty years or so had passed since the band had formed and much had happened during that time – the band morphing into as many versions of itself as there were albums to reflect this. It felt, to me, a good time to pay tribute to this unique creation.
The release of Push the Sky Away in 2013 felt, after so many reinventions, not just another incarnation but the throwing open of the doors to a new way for us as a band to make music. I read Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard’s diary-essay that completes the text for the book and I remember those times in all their creative joy, but from a great distance; for time and sudden fate had since created a different person to inhabit this old skin. Time became ancient history in a heartbeat as circumstances beyond my control took hold. It then became imperative and a matter of great urgency to make a new record and allow this different person to speak.
The Bad Seeds made Skeleton Tree in Paris towards the end of 2015 – in a strange, raw and different present. Whatever Skeleton Tree became, it was a wholly necessary addition to the band’s story. Lovely Creatures lost, for a time, its place in the narrative. Now, it seems the time is right to recognise and celebrate the Bad Seeds and their many achievements. So here, at last, it is: Lovely Creatures.
Lovely Creatures Afterword by Nick Cave