Title: He Wants You/Babe I'm On Fire
Format: 10" Single
Catalogue Number: 10MUTE290
Year of Release: 2003
A1 He Wants You (Edit) 2:55
A2 Everything Must Converge 4:16
B1 Babe, I'm On Fire (Edit) 3:56
B2 Little Ghost Song 3:42
He Wants You is a somewhat lacklustre follow-up single to Bring It On. A standard piece of Cave balladeering, but lacking an essential something. No idea why it was edited from the album's (hardly over-long) 3:30, but radio airplay is probably behind it.
Everything Must Converge will similarly fail to stand out in the Cave canon. The Blockheads, of "Ian Dury and the" fame provide backing vocals, as they do on He Wants You, but combined with Nick Cave's Hammond playing simply gives it a feeling of parodying lounge music, and doing it badly. There then follows a tacked-on harmonica coda, which sounds a bit like early Money Mark, and is rather odd.
Babe, I'm On Fire was undoubtedly the highlight of Nocturama. Its appeal lies in the fifteen minutes of lyrical wordplay and exuberance, built around Martyn P. Casey's dirty bassline and the rest of the Bad Seeds thrashing around in an increasingly disordered fashion. Editing it down to less than four minutes is akin to vandalism, it's just getting going when it stops. You can listen to the whole thing, as well as watching the video, at YouTube: Part One & Part Two.
The final number is the only reason you might buy this. Little Ghost Song is a piece of Cave balladeering that hits the mark. About the recording, Nick said at the time of release, "Little Ghost Song was a happy accident in the studio, where the slave reels misaligned and began playing some elements of two songs at the same time. We were dumbstruck at the beauty of it". This accounts for the slightly jarring feel to the piano. Other instrumentation is sparse, and the focus is on Cave's tale of the poor little girl, with a handful of snow, who has bewitched him, such that the song ends on the repeated line, "You got me eating right out of your hand".
This song and Everything Must Yada-yada are, of course, on the B-sides and Rarities compilation.