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Peter Murphy - Bare Boned And Sacred album review

Goth godfather unplugged

Cover art for Peter Murphy's bare-boned and sacred

Although for many Peter Murphy will forever be the Bauhaus goth godfather crooning Bela Lugosi’s Dead, the last four decades have seen him immersed in deeper musical pursuits, releasing ten idiosyncratic solo albums and touring the world.

2016’s Stripped tour saw Murphy accompanied by guitarist John Andrews and multi-instrumentalist Emilio ‘Zef’ China, presenting catalogue highlights up to 2014’s Lion in their most naked form (and throwing in a folk-hued seven-minute Bauhaus medley to keep the old fans happy).

Although several songs display marked similarities to Peter Gabriel, it was inevitably the spirit of recently departed Bowie gripping Murphy the April night this set was recorded at Bleecker Street’s Le Poisson Rouge, manifesting in a heartfelt version of The Bewlay Brothers and hot-wiring his multitracked vocals on dark reveries such as The Rose and Lion. To their credit, Murphy’s trio have built their own bleakly intimate world by the closing Your Face.

Kris Needs is a British journalist and author, known for writings on music from the 1970s onwards. Previously secretary of the Mott The Hoople fan club, he became editor of ZigZag in 1977 and has written biographies of stars including Primal Scream, Joe Strummer and Keith Richards. He's also written for MOJO, Record Collector, Classic Rock, Prog, Electronic Sound, Vive Le Rock and Shindig!