In Berlin, The Birthday Party got a completely different response, and they felt like they’re being welcomed with open arms. These first years in Berlin were great, but they also brought the end to The Birthday Party. Nick Cave put together the Bad Seeds, with Blixa Bargeld of Einstürzende Neubauten who used to work at a bar called Risiko in West Berlin, and it sounded quasi-religious and morbid like what he was playing before.
The camera first follows Nick Cave while he plays piano somewhere that looks like Kreuzberg with the Berlin Wall in the back, and he starts to show his room to the camera. First, his collection of German Gothic painting, then his gun and his desk. The musician looks too young for the 30 years of age he has in the movie, and he seems disinterested in the whole film without making it look less appealing.
During his time in Berlin, Nick Cave recorded at the Hansa Ton Studios next to Potsdamer Platz, as David Bowie did a few years before. There, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds recorded “The Firstborn is Dead” in 1985, “Your Funeral … My Trial” in 1986 and, lastly, “Tender Prey” in 1988.
If you like to know more about Nick Cave and how West-Berlin used to be like in the 1980s, Stranger in a Strange Land is the documentary that you didn’t know you were looking! And, the picture on top is from Bleddyn Butcher and we managed to find it in an interview she gave to The Guardian in 2016.
If you’re interested in Nick Cave in Berlin, after watching the documentary here, we manage to find his house in Kreuzberg.