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Nick Cave reflects on his enduring friendship with Warren Ellis

With Nick Cave and Warren Ellis embarking on a plethora of creative journeys together in the last few years it would seem that after decades together, their collaborative bond is stronger than ever at the moment. This is exactly what Nick Cave has been lovingly reflecting on in the latest instalment of his Red Hand Files.

Within the unfurling tome of wisdom that his weekly journal entries, he answered questions about friendship and creativity by stating: “There seems to me to be three levels of friendship.”

The Bad Seeds frontman set to headline Rock en Seine this summer then posited: “First there is the friend who you go out and eat with, or get pissed with, who you go with to the cinema or a gig — you know, have a shared experience with.”

Continuing: “The second kind of friend is one who you can ask a favour of, who will look after you in a jam, will lend you money, or drive you to the hospital in the middle of the night, someone who has your back — that kind of friend.”

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And then expressing that while none of the levels are mutually exclusive, there is also a third kind: “The third level of friendship is one where your friend brings out the best in you, who amplifies the righteous aspects of your nature, who loves you enough to be honest with you, who challenges you, and who makes you a better person.”

Placing his bearded buddy Ellis amongst the tiers, he mused: “Warren is such a friend. The reason why we have had such a long and productive artistic collaboration is because these three levels of friendship are firmly in place; we understand the nature of friendship and we look after the friendship itself.”

Later concluding: “When Warren and I are playing music together, we do not have to deal with the problems of an unstable relationship, or questions of status, or struggles for power.” Anyone who witnessed their magnificent Carnage tour can attest to that.