One look at the subject matter of Nick Cave’s oeuvre and you certainly wouldn’t peg him as a God-fearing man. Take, for example, the title character of his second novel, The Death of Bunny Munro, who neglects his son in favor of a “relentless pursuit of sex, alcohol, and drugs.” In fact, Cave is so notoriously intrigued by hedonistic characters like Bunny Munro that it seems he really can’t help himself from sublimating his own cynical view of human nature into his work. With that in mind, Cave’s response to Claire Armritstead of the Guardian’s question on whether he’s religious isn’t too surprising:
No. As a person sitting here now, no i’m not, but I do write songs and I have, over the years, I have a kind of community that I look over, which are the characters that come crawl out of my largely narrative songs. And within that environment, I think some kind of god exists and sometimes it’s malevolent and sometimes it’s kind and sometimes it’s just there by it’s absence in some kind of way. But do I personally believe in a personal god? No, I don’t.
Cave may love to tell the stories of depraved characters, but as a narrator, a tinge of belief in right and wrong often comes out as a kind of revenge plot. Bunny Munro, for example, ultimately realizes “that the revenants of his world—decrepit fathers, vengeful ghosts, jealous husbands, and horned psycho-killers—lurk in the shadows, waiting to exact their toll.”