El Rey Theatre
Words and Photography by Mila Reynaud
Peter Murphy (Bauhaus, Dali’s Car) is touring once again in support of his new album “Lion”. This is his tenth studio album of original material and was produced by Killing Joke bassist Youth. Peter’s whirlwind tour visits destinations such as the US, Mexico, Peru and some select European Festivals. MP played two shows at the El Rey, July 3rd and 5th, in Los Angeles. I did the second round.
I wasn’t going there to listen to some Bauhaus hits or to remember the 80’s Goth period, as I am not nostalgic. I was going there to satisfy my curiosity about the collaboration with Youth. I love Peter’s solo material and I’m a huge fan of Killing Joke and Youth in particular.
The venue had been switched to the El Rey a few days before the shows. It was a good opportunity to appreciate his presence close up and it was a great interference! Murphy has a real human attitude with the crowd, talking and joking around. However, he was a little too picky with the photographers, and “yes” it was 3 songs in theory.
The combo of his musicians was Andee Blacksugar (lead guitar), Emilio Zef China (bass guitar and violin) and Nick Lucero (a raw power behind the drums). Murphy played some 12-string guitar and piano notes on some of the songs. The set list was pretty much the same for the both nights, or so I heard, a mix of five tracks off of “Lion” and songs from his back catalog. We got “She’s in Parties’’ as well, but I’m not sure about “”Marlene Dietrich’s Favourite Poem ”, and “Telegram Sam” was an extra ball. The show opened with a stringent “Hang Up” and closed with an epic Bowie-esque “Ziggy Stardust”.
The mood of the crowd was up and down as was Peter’s energy on stage. He paid more attention to the sound mix, than bringing us higher. No goose bumps or and adrenaline rush. I was stoically looking at him, as he allowed himself some theatrical poses. He’s so intriguing and fascinating, only some artists have that kind of aura. The tone of his voice is so “envoutant”, but I didn’t find what I was looking for. I will try another show. I do however highly recommend listening to his new album ‘’Lion”, it “roars”!