Posted on by Oran

One of the icons of the post-punk years, Peter Murphy of Bauhaus reveals two solo releases on his own ‘Silver Shade’ record label. 

His charismatic, devilish and dangerous personae, combined with his stunning voice and razor-sharp cheekbones, saw him become one of the pin-ups for what was to be mis-labelled “Goth”.

Post Bauhaus, he released a series of acclaimed solo albums and fronted the band on their
intermittent back from the dead reunions before the band collapsed in 2023.

Bauhaus were never short of giving a nod to their mentors with several well executed covers that they made their own. The singer continues this tradition with ‘Peter Live – Vol One – Covers’, the first of two albums for his own new Silver Shade label, showcasing his own solo interpretations.

The albums are prefaced with ‘Peter Live’. ‘Peter Live – Vol One – Covers’ and ‘Peter Live – Vol Two – The Blender Theater NYC 2008’. Silver Shade will release his live concerts and re-issue solo albums in future times.

There is more to a cover version than copying it note for note, and the ever-astute vocalist gets to the heart of the art of darkness of these songs by unzipping them inside out whilst giving a nod to the music that made him what he is.

He stamps his own authority all over them, from a thrilling take on Iggy’sFuntime’ to a dramatic version of ‘Hurt’. There is a terrifying, sparse dynamic take on Pere Ubu’s iconic ‘Final Solution’ and a stomping and powerful nod to Howard Devoto’s Magazine with a brilliant take on their ‘The Light Pours Out Of Me’.

Theatrical embraces of Elvis’sLove Me Tender’ and Prince’sPurple Rain’ underline the eclectic spirit of Peter’s musical journey and, of course, being one of the generation of the children of Ziggy, there is the Bowie moment on the stunning take on David’s first hit, ‘Space Oddity’ that adds to the song’s sense of unease and isolation.

The album concludes with ‘Hurt’ with the song’s writer Trent Reznor (NIN) playing the piano and Peter re-claiming the song from Johnny Cash’s version for power and emotion.
Watch the ‘Hurt’ video recorded in 2006 on tour at 99X Radio station in Atlanta, featuring Trent Reznor from Nine Inch Nails on piano below…

Peter Murphy: “There’s no point in covering a song unless of course it’s got you somewhere in there. To have chosen ‘Purple Rain’ was at the time of the general expectation that I would opt for some lame purposely naff ‘alternative’ song was and is a stroke of genius in action.

The audio might be wanting on a couple of songs, but if that puts you off, then go and listen to any of the thousand mediocre songs of some tiresome star.

The second release, ‘Peter Live Vol Two Blender Theater NYC 2008’, is an unreleased concert from the Blender Theatre at Gramercy on 27 th June 2008, and Peter and the band are in shimmering form.

The releases include Bauhaus and Peter’s career spanning solo highlights such as ‘Cuts you Up’, ‘I’ll Fall With Your Knife’, ‘Crystal Wrists’ and ‘Gliding Like a Whale’.

The two albums are snapshots of something special, something spiritual and are full of a musical imagination creating hypnotic takes on key songs from Peter’s life. The live edge adds a frisson of excitement, and the iconic frontman proves he is far from undead with some of the best vocals of his long career in these two snapshots that harbingers further musical missives from the archive.

Peter Live – Vol One – Covers
CADIZLP269 Sleeve artwork features original painting by Peter. Golden nugget coloured vinyl, limited edition. Embossed sleeve.

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