Don’t Forget the Songs-365: Mach Dos: Day 134
Tues. May 22, 2012
“♫ We got no time for that stuff here
Zero crime and no fear
We’ve bred all our kittens white
So you can see them in the night
And at night we’re on our knees
As quiet as a mouse
Since the word got out
From the North down to the South
For no-one’s left in doubt
There’s no fear about
If we all hold hands and very quietly shout
God is in the house […] ♫”
“God is in the House” is definitely the best song from 2001’s No More Shall We Part. Not my favorite Nick Cave album but this song is one of Cave’s masterpieces of irony—even Shakespeare would be impressed.
Nick Cave explained in an interview circa 2001—how he got the idea to write “God is in the House—” while visiting America. “ […] that song came from traveling around the States in Arizona and Colorado, me and Susie[Nick Cave’s wife] driving around in a car, going through these beautiful and strange little towns. But there was a kind of spiritual smugness about them: “We’re alright Jack and everything’s all right here,” and I found that a little bit sort of disturbing, so I guess that song comes from there.”
There is a sense of superiority that you feel from the antagonists in the song. The way that Cave sings “God is in the House” it truly sounds like a paean to a small town snuggled in religious pride. Forget X-mas, if you listen to the tone of “House” it’s as if, Cave is reciting his very own faith induced version of Twas the night Before The Rapture.
Besides all that—I love singing “God is in the House.” The next time I go to one of those dueling piano bars I’m going to request “God is in the House.” Reach out and touch the faith based satire from Australia’s Renaissance man singer, author, soundtrack composer, actor, screenplay writer—you name it and Cave has created it. He’s prolific, intelligent, and clever with the commanding and sometimes seductive voice of divinity. One of the greatest songwriters of our generation—Nick Cave’s take on religion is one that you’ll need to revisit again and again.
From the DVD of the same name, comes this clip of Nick Cave recording his vocal in the studio during the sessions for No More Shall We Part.