Album Review
by SashaS

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Peter Murphy: 'Unshattered' and beyond
Peter Murphy: 'Unshattered'
Peter Murphy: ‘Goth-godfather’ unlocks deeper emotions

Peter Murphy’s been ‘on the road’ for nigh to 3 decades… [OK, for the pedants - 27 years.] Alas, it’s been a career with infrequent releases: ‘Unshattered‘ arrives three years after the avant-garde, Turkish-inspired ‘Dust’ and it couldn’t be more different by being a collection of subtle, mature pop songs. Due to quality of Murphy’s voice in a non-rock technique sounding very much alike with David Bowie and Scott Walker, it is delivered with passion and style.

“‘Unshattered’ will surprise many listeners with its delicate arrangements, acoustic-driven songs and Murphy’s crooned vocls which range from playfully theatrical to genuinely soulful,” points out the man’s press release and, for once, it ain’t ‘wiki wiki’ talking.

Another surprising thing is that although the album was [mainly] written and recorded in few weeks, some of the music dates back to sessions few years old - including contributions from former Bauhaus drummer Kevin Haskins, ex-Jane’s Addiction’s bassist Eric Avery and drummer Stephen Perkins (ex-Jane’s Addiction, ex-Porno For Pyros).

Still, all the rocking credentials, and Murphy ain’t slouch himself, but this is a thoughtful, lolling and exquisite album in a more traditional, and classy, vein. There are moments where he let it rip, on ‘The First Stone’ and ‘Blinded Like Saul’, but these are generally songs strong on melodies [probably the strongest set of his career in this respect], containing details and twists that keep listener far from predictable realm.

Highlights are numerous and varied, from funky-rocking ‘Idle Flow’ and a tad-slower ‘Piece of You’, the torchy ‘Emergency Exit’… Only the concluding track, ‘Breaking No One’s Heaven’, bridges to the previous album, ‘Dust’, rooted in Turkish culture Murphy assimilated/got inspired by over the number of years he’s lived in Istanbul.

These are songs that retain an overall mystical aura, as Murph himself notices: “‘Unshattered’ is such an oddity that I’m still not used to it myself. It is an enigmatic and elusive to me, even though I wrote every word.” That’s the benefit of non-linear writing, you can dip into it time and again.

This album makes it almost obligatory to recall Bauhaus’ appearance in David Bowie/Catherine Deneuve/Susan Sarandon starring and Tony Scott directed 1983 movie, ‘The Hunger’, when the band’s live performance opens the film. And for younger fans of nostalgia - and, by the way, who isn’t? - Peter Murphy and Bauhaus perform together again.


EU tour dates:

05 July - Olympic Games Beach Volleyball Stadium, Athens
08 July - Ruvido, Bologna
09 July - Zoobar, Rome
12 July - Bikini, Barcelona
13 July - Arena, Madrid
14 July - Cormoran, Valencia
15 July - Le Batofar, Paris
16 July - Le Batofar, Paris
18 July - Temple Bar, Dublin
19 July - Scala, London
20 July - Nottingham Rescue Rooms, Nothingam
21 July - University Academy, Manchester
23 July - Tivoli, Utrecht
24 July - Markthalle, Hamburg
26 July - K17, Berlin
27 July - Café Atlantic, Freiburg
29 July - Headlining Festival, Vilar de Mouros, Portugal

Peter Murphy’s album ‘Unshattered’ is released 11 July 2005 by Viastar/Artful