What a fantastic injection of bloody, visceral life Nick Cave gives everything he touches. In a publication that too easily slips into the dusty, insular world of culture wars from a decade past, Peter Conrad’s essay was a blast of humanity. Cave’s work is elite in its craft and ideal in its aims, yet remains popular and inclusive in its appeal. Churches in Australia today could learn a thing or two from him. Cave’s work perhaps unintentionally reminds us that religion is as much about transcendence as ethics. Religion in Australia is drifting towards being mainly a provider of ethics. This is a competitive field and one where it’s reputation is tarnished. Perhaps the incense, death, ritual and humanity of transcendence-focused religion is due for a revival. Cave has already written a few hymns that could be used.