Hear Nick Cave’s New Spoken Word Track ‘Shyness’

Nick Cave and Warren Ellis have released a new song, “Shyness,” a spoken-word letter to Daniel and Vera based on Cave’s The Red Hand Files Issue #68 from October 2019.

The single, released via Cave’s online store Cave Things, is available as a two-sided black vinyl 7-inch. The music accompanying the spoken word lyrics was written by Cave and Ellis, and performed by the pair with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. The b-side, “Witness,” was also performed with the orchestra.

Earlier this year, Cave and Ellis released a collaborative album, Carnage. Next up, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds will unveil B-Sides & Rarities Part II, a follow-up to 2005’s B-Sides & Rarities compilation, on October 22nd.

In total, the 27-song B-Sides & Rarities Part II boasts 19 unreleased tracks — compiled by Cave and Ellis — including the first recordings of album cuts like “Skeleton Tree,” “Girl in Amber,” and “Bright Horses,” the studio version of the quarantine-penned “Euthanasia,” Cave’s cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Avalanche,” an official version of the spoken-word piece “Steve McQueen,” an orchestral take on “Push the Sky Away,” and more.

“I always liked the original B-Sides & Rarities more than any of our other albums,” Cave said in a statement. “It’s the only one I’d listen to willingly. It seems more relaxed, even a bit nonsensical in places, but with some beautiful songs throughout. There is something, too, about the smallness of certain songs that is closer to their original spirit.”

In addition to the two-CD, two-LP and digital version of the second installment, the band will also package both the 2005 collection and the 2021 compilation as the limited edition B-Sides & Rarities Part I and Part II, a 7-LP box set featuring all 83 tracks and exclusive sleeve notes. All formats are available to preorder now ahead of the October 22nd release.