Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds already revealed “We No Who U R,” the mellow but menacing first glimpse at the Australian crew’s upcoming 15th full-length, Push the Sky Away (out February 19), and its accompanying Gaspar Noé-directed video. Now comes “Jubilee Street,” a string-laced slow burner that tells the story of a girl named Bee, who “had a history but no past.” Over the course of six-and-a-half minutes, Cave presents a theatrical reading of the song’s prostitution- and hypocrisy-focused lyrics, aching that he’s got love in his tummy, even though it’s clear he’s strolling Jubilee Street for something else. Violins weave in over the narrator’s leering guitar, just before Cave admits that his name was written on every page of Bee’s little black book. But, hey, “a girl’s got to make ends meet, even on Jubilee Street,” right?
The imagery gets more surreal as the well-dressed lecher goes downtown in his tie and tails, with “a fetus on a leash,” and then goes all Red Dragon, declaring, “I am transforming / I am vibrating / I am an embryo eating dark oxygen.” Cave closes the curtains and testifies, “I am flying,” right as the darkness swallows him whole.
“Jubilee Street” is now available for download on iTunes, and digital downloads of “We No Who U R” come with pre-orders of Push the Sky Away. Check out Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ upcoming North American tour dates, featuring “People Ain’t No Good” cover star Sharon Van Etten.
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds 2013 North American tour dates:
March 14 – Dallas, TX @ McFarlin Auditorium
March 16 – Nashville, TN @ Ryman Auditorium
March 17 – Asheville, NC @ The Orange Peel
March 19 – Philadelphia, PA @ Keswick Theater
March 20 – Washington, DC @ Strathmore
March 22 – Montreal, QC @ Metropolis
March 23 – Toronto, ON @ Massey Hall
March 24 – Boston, MA @ Orpheum Theater
March 28 – New York, NY @ Beacon Theater
March 29 – New York, NY @ Beacon Theater
March 30 – New York, NY @ Beacon Theater
April 1 – Chicago, IL @ Chicago Theater
April 3 – Denver, CO @ Ogden Theater
* Sharon Van Etten supports on all dates