Arthur Cave, 15, suffered a fatal brain injury after plunging from a cliff onto the underpass of Ovingdean Gap in Brighton, East Sussex, on July 14. The student was taken to the Royal Sussex County Hospital but died that evening.
An inquest at Woodvale Crematorium in Brighton heard that Arthur was seen “staggering” on his own moments before he fell off the cliff.
Members of the public tried to resuscitate him after he was found lying on the ground without any shoes or socks on.
Cave and his wife Susie Bick briefly walked out of the courtroom as graphic details of his injuries were read from an autopsy report.
The cause of death was from “multiple traumatic injuries due to a fall from a height”, the hearing was told.
During the evidence of pathologist Dr Simi George, Brighton’s senior coroner Veronica Hamilton-Deeley asked: “The history you had was that LSD was used?” Dr George replied: “Yes.”
Nick Cave, 58, is an Australian musician and songwriter, best known as lead singer of the Bad Seeds, an alternative rock group formed in Melbourne in 1983.
Following Arthur’s death, Cave and his wife released a short statement through Sussex Police saying: “He was our beautiful, happy, loving boy.”
A friend of Arthur, who cannot be named, said the pair had taken LSD together.
The boy had researched online about the effects of the drug but had not read anything about the “darker side”, the court heard.
The pair had arranged to take the drug, also known as acid, on a grassy area near Rottingdean Windmill in Brighton.
Musician Nick Cave at the inquest of his son Arthur in Brighton. The teenager had taken LSD before his fatal fall. pic.twitter.com/4U1vn7ngX5— BBC South East (@bbcsoutheast) November 10, 2015
In a summary of the boy’s statement, Detective Constable Vicky Loft told the court: “Arthur was hesitant but said if they were worrying about things it would have an effect on the trip and make it a more negative experience.
“They decided to take one together at the same time. They took a tablet each, placed it on their tongue and waited for the effects to start.”
The boy said they took three tablets between them and were initially in “good spirits and happy”.
The friend said he then started having “vivid hallucinations”, including seeing patches of oil on the grass and shapes and colours in the sky.
DC Loft said: “[The boy] became paranoid and felt like people were staring at him in cars. He couldn’t tell what was real and what was not real. He thought he could see Arthur covered in vomit but wasn’t sure if it was real.”
The boy said he was not sure if he and Arthur walked off together but recalled they went their “separate ways”.