Peter Murphy arrived in front of the Observatory on Sunday night to play an all-Bauhaus set that reaffirmed his place as the Godfather of Goth Rock. And despite all of his recent legal troubles, he hit the stage with unfazed charisma, kicking things off with “King Volcano,” before diving into a lengthy, well-attended set.
Murphy picked a large selection of Bauhaus songs to play from across his catalog. And at one point Murphy had his bassist, pull out and play a violin for the first half of ” A Strange Kind of Love,” one of his solo classics. It was beautiful to hear it in person and it was fantastic that he had made sure to play the violin with it. It was a very nice added touch to the set list.
For most of the songs,vMurphy was strutting around stage–and becoming very handsy with the guitarist, who didn't seem to mind. For a few songs like “Stigmata Martyr” and “Dark Entries” he strapped on a guitar to play the beginning cords, adding an essential bit of heaviness to the live set. For those songs and “Bela Lugosi's Dead” they used a fluttering strobe light which was somewhat annoying but it added mainly to the eerie feeling that each of the songs were giving.
For his encore Murphy played “Hollow Hills,” which required a recorder piano instrument which was so entertaining to see on stage. I have never seen one of them before and it sure does make a difference in the sound. It might be small and unknown to me, but it makes a lot of sense how some of the sounds were achieved with a real instrument.
Murphy and his Bauhaus backing band played on the top of their game and no one had to carry the other person through the show. It was also amazing that the last song he played was “Ziggy Stardust,” a final send off that any cover lover could appreciate.
The Crowd: Older Goth people who have loved him since they were whatever they were in the '80s. Some Goths in their 20's that had the '80s style going on.
From the Crowd: “Slytherin was the fourth house I think.”