|Musicfolio.com||Reviews & Recommendations|
|"We're fueling for the light
Cascading like the rain
| " Peter Murphy, frontman of the legendary
Bauhaus and Godfather of Goth, is one of the most
talented artists on the music scene nowadays. His gloomy sonorous voice
resonates like thunder...it cuts you up, it takes you high. His lyrics,
although sometimes pretentious, bounce from profound philosophical statements
to incomprehensible semantic fields. With clear middle-eastern influences, his
luring songs range from dark ballads to more accessible pseudo-pop tunes.
The charismatic icon he is, is a must-see on stage; whether it be his famous cat-like movements or his theatrical vampire appearances (Bela), Peter knows how to put a show on ...'part character, part sensation', I'll always associate his figure with grandiose somber melodies."
-- Said Sukkarieh, Musicfolio, 9/99
1986: Should the World Fail to Fall Apart
After the release of his version of Pere Ubu's Final Solution, announcing his come back as a solo artist following his Dalis Car endeavor with Mick Karn in 1984, Peter puts together his first full-length album, a bouquet of reflective harmonious songs. Influences, if any, range from David Bowie to Japan.
Favorite picks: Never Man, Confessions, Final Solution
½ 1988:Love Hysteria
(...) Love Hysteria finds Murphy abetted by a tight, innovative band that changes color with each song, through the pop sheen of "All Night Long" and "Indigo Eyes" (both potential hits), the obtuse-yet-accessible "His Circle" and "Blind Sublime," and the killer ballad "Time Has Nothing To Do With It." Classy and consistent, this is an invigorating return to form for one of the '80s most distinctive performers...
-- CMJ Music Journal
½ 1990: Deep
"... the finely sculpted cheekbones and lupine grace remain famously intact. Aging followers of Peter Murphy's former band will also be relieved to learn that echoes of Bauhaus reverberate throughout this album. Images of sex and death float in and out of the songs whilst Peter Murphy's lugubrious vocals, pitched as ever somewhere between David Bowie, Iggy Pop and Lou Reed, grapple bravely with complex metaphysical lyrics with only a tenuous connection with comprehensibility..."
-- Paul Davies, Emap Consumer Magazines Ltd.
¼ 1992:Holy Smoke
Holy Smoke seems to be an album consisting almost entirely of filler. It's quite pleasant to listen to, but nothing *grabs* me. It just drifts in one ear and out the other without involving the brain at all. After the interesting vaguely operatic intro to "Keep Me From Harm", the rest of the album fails to live up to expectations. It wanders from song to song without really going anywhere or doing anything out of the ordinary, eventually fading out with an equally vaguely operatic outro. The tracks tend to be rather to long and this, combined with their homogeneousness, makes them all blend together mentally into one long track which is unmistakably Peter Murphy but about which it is difficult to recall anything worthy of mention. Not bad, just bland in the extreme.
-- Al Crawford, Al's Review Archive, www.awrc.vom
½ 1995: Cascade
It takes repeated listens to a new Peter Murphy album to get at the hidden depth below the finely-tuned pop surface -- but it's rewarding work, and rarely more so than on Murphy's latest, Cascade. Even as the more pop-like tracks, like "The Scarlet Thing In You," are being promoted as singles, there are dark, rich waters beneath. The album spans a broad range of styles, from the urgent opener, "The Mirror to My Woman's Mind," to the dreamlike "Subway" to the quasi-metallic "Disappearing," but the album's consistent emotional tone is created by Murphy's powerfully expressive voice. The title track is a mini-opera, a cinematic piece where musical layers build towards frightening climax...
-- AP Durkee, Sites & Sounds Magazine, Aug 95
1998: Recall [EP]
A surprising team: Peter Murphy joined by Sascha Konietzko, Tim Skold and Bill Reiflin from KMFDM! The outcome is an EP holding two mixes of old songs: Roll Calland Indigo Eyes, as well as two new songs Surrender and Big Love of a Tiny Fool. The electronic touch of KMFDM is there, the soothing voice of Peter is there, yet the whole doesn't add up to the sum of the ingredients. The 5th track is a live version of Big Love of a Tiny Fool, and it's an absolute beauty.
Said Sukkarieh, musicfolio.com, 9/99
2000: 1985-95-Wild Birds-Best Of
A 10 year retrospective of Peter Murphy's best selling hit songs, rather than a 'best of'. The album does not include masterpieces like Never Man, Confessions, Socrates the Python, Cascadeor Low Room...but it still stands as a good introduction to new fans.
2000: A Live Just for Love
"... a live CD culled from Murphy's November 30th show at the El Rey Theatre in Los Angeles, where he ran through a set of his latest and greatest tunes accompanied by former Porno for Pyros guitarist Peter DiStefano. The album also includes a supplemental disc that features the acoustic encore Murphy performed with Bauhaus band mate David J, wherein they performed the classic Bauhaus tunes Hope, All We Ever Wanted and Who Killed Mr. Moonlight, as well as a cover of Elvis's Love Me Tender."
"From Dust comes re-invention. With his newest recorded offering titled Dust, Peter Murphy has re-written his musical narrative. Dust is how you will know him for the only thing that matters; and the only thing that matters is now. The respective co-producers, Peter Murphy and Mercan Dede, bridge the gap between east and west on Dust. Dust, Peter's eighth studio recording, is the combined effort of a man born in England and raised on Western traditions who a decade ago transferred his roots to that of Middle Eastern influenced Turkey. It is also of a man born in Turkey and raised on eastern traditions who transferred his roots to the Western influenced Canada.
(...) Two unique and vibrant revisions are included on this album, My Last Two Weeks and Subway (with its newly added epilogue final verse). These songs are re-defined, and reinterpreted in a way that display the depth and richness of their compositions to provide a backdrop with which to reflect, as history and present tense are cradled side by side. They both reveal what much of the album expresses, a sense of renewal, of regeneration and of spontaneity. "
"With the exception of a couple of teasers released on the Recall EP in 1998, Peter Murphy has not produced any new material since 1995, making DUST a much anticipated album release. Marketted as the fusion between East and West, Dust is in fact in a category of its own, displaying Murphy's impressive vocal skills on a bed of layered authentic Turkish music, utilizing traditional instruments like the Ud, the Kanun and the Tabla.
The result is an album that will keep you scratching your head for a while wondering where it stands with respect to Peter's previous work. It is a creative experimental effort, delivering what no other artist has succeeded in accomplishing: the perfect harmony between middle-eastern music and modern rock. Requiring repeated listens to appreciate the rich and textured music background, DUST stands as a display of creativeness and superior musical savvy. Unfortunately, with the exception of the opening piece, Things To Remember, Dust contains no accessible and catchy pop tunes, will not spawn any new hits, and will probably not win any new fans.
Musicfolio picks: Things To Remember, No Home Without It's Sire, Your Face. "
Said Sukkarieh, musicfolio.com, 4/02
½ 2004: Unshattered
Tracklisting: 01.Idle Flow 02.Kiss Myself 03.Piece of You 04.Face the Moon 05.Emergency Unit 06.Thelma Sings to Little Nell 07.The Weight of Love 08.Give What he's Got 09.Blinded Like Saul 10.The First Stone 11.Breaking No One's Heaven
"Though almost worshiped by his long-time goth fans, Mr Murphy never truly managed - albeit willingly - to break through the mainstream all these years. Maybe all that is about to change. Working with pop producer Gardner Cole (Madonna, Tina Turner, A-Ha,...) on his latest offering sure helps the cause. Opening with three pop-rock pieces (Idle Flow, Kiss Myself, and Piece of You) all destined to seduce mainstream audience, 'Unshattered' rarely crosses the realm of darkness. But that staggering pop feel will undoubtedly leave many fans apprehensive at first listen.
Idle Flow, the first single, was co-written with Peter DiStefano (Porno For Pyros) and originally released on DiStefano's Rambient project back in 2001. The album features also contributions from Jane's Addiction bassist Eric Avery, and Stephen Perkins (Porno for Pyros, Jane's Addiction), as well as ex-Bauhaus bandmate Kevin Haskins.
'Unshattered' is not all pop though, Emergency Unit is a haunting melancholic track, Blinded Like Saul is menacing and true to Peter's signature style, while The First Stone is a sublime song reminiscent of the brilliant 'Love Hysteria' album. And of course all through the album THAT voice never fails to deliver and amaze."
-- Said Sukkarieh, musicfolio.com, 10/04
¼ 2011: Ninth
Tracklisting: 1. Velocity Bird 2. See Saw Sway 3. Peace to Each 4. I Spit Roses 5. Never Fall Out 6. Memory Go 7. The Prince & Old Lady Shade 8. Uneven & Brittle 9. Slowdown 10. Secret Silk Society 11. Creme de la Creme
"It is punk, jaunt, goth, doom, 80s gloom, everything is present and accounted for. Is Murphy at his best 100% of the time? Opener, Velocity Bird, could exhibit otherwise; does it mean the album sucks, on the whole? Absolutely not. (...) To give you a rough idea of how flawed yet delectable 'Ninth' is, Memory Go and Never Fall Out show two polarizing points in Murphys existence, here: the former giving him room to really dance on modern times with a Bowie-meets-Danzig slant (also see: The Prince & Old Lady Shade), whilst the latter follows Velocity Bird in the same weaknesses. People will take this Murphy record, or they will leave it. I do not suspect it will hold up in the long-term, which is probably a crime all its own, given the retro nature of Ninths majority compositions. As suggested by one of the song titles, Ninth can be Uneven & Brittle at junctures, but to be fair, this album could have easily been considered a toss-away or entirely unnecessary before even getting a proper listen. Why? Because lots of folks tire when former glory comes back to try and regain footing in the new ages, or worse still, never know when to quit. Peter Murphy might not be what he once was, but utilizing contemporary goth rock sounds in a current backdrop without too many missteps has to count for something. (...) 'Ninth' may not live up to what one expects from early Murphy or Bauhaus, however it does do its job fairly well, and its unlikely that Murphy will top this awesomeness alone.
-- David Buchanan, Consequence of Sound, 6/11
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