Thin, with prominent cheekbones, a baritone voice, and a penchant for gloomy poetics, Peter Murphy is often called the "Godfather of Goth. In his four decades of service in the post-punk culture wars, Murphy has confounded fans, critics, even himself. As the main-man of the acclaimed outfit Bauhaus, he helped usher in ground breaking opaque moods and atmospheres into the post-punk landscape. When the band broke up for the first time in 1983, the singer set off on a solo career that found him challenging his audiences in numerous ways. When the music press tried to tag him as “the new David Bowie,” he’d close his shows with a vamping of the Thin White Duke’s disco classic “Stay,” only to switch into a cover of Bauhaus’ funky punch-up “Kick In The Eye,” followed by a cover of Pere Ubu’s “Final Solution,” which ended with a burly roadie physically picking up the singer and putting him in an airplane spin. When fans and critics tried to paint him exclusively as “the King of the Goths,” his response was to encore with Prince’s venerable “Purple Rain.” When the singer began to explore more melodic concerns to distance himself from the gothic-rock culture he helped create, he accessed both new audiences and successful records.
He’s aligned himself with Nettwerk Records to release NINTH, his first solo album in seven years and the first since the permanent dissolution of Bauhaus in 2009. Produced by David Baron, Ninth is a culmination of where the singer has been and where he is now, all imbued with a confidence that has been Murphy’s stock in trade. While countless performers and industry types bemoan the demeaning of music in current download culture, Murphy’s only concern is continuing to connect with his audience with unparalleled honesty.