Thursday, April 18, 2013

SHOmework - Peter Murphy 4/26

Houston has been very lucky, over the past few years, to be a frequent tour stop for ex-Bauhaus front-man, Peter Murphy. He played Numbers in 2011, HoB in 2012 and will be returning to Numbers again on the 26th.  This is a special tour though, for a couple reasons, not the least of which is that fact that it almost did not happen.

Murphy vs. Smokey

In late March, Murphy got hauled in by the LAPD for allegedly driving under the influence and having a baggy of meth in his possession. No – let me be more specific – the LAPD said they found the bag in the back of a cruiser used to transport Murphy. If that doesn’t sound fishy enough, Murphy’s legal counsel claims that his client blew .01 on his breath test, which is the lowest amount of blood alcohol the test can even register. The legal limit in most states, including California, is .08.

But fishy or not, the timing was also tragic for fans, given that Murphy’s North American leg starts April 20th. Then there was also the added annoyance that a judge set Murphy’s bail at some ridiculous sum, over concerns that Murphy would try to flee the country. Somehow, and it probably has something to do with the fact that the charges were shaky to begin with, Murphy has been given the go-ahead to tour as planned. He’ll still have to attend a hearing in May, but given the evidence, Murphy seems pretty safe.

Mr. Moonlight

The second most exciting aspect of this tour, besides the fact that Murphy is still actually performing instead of sitting in jail, is the set list. In the past, Murphy’s setlists have relied heavily on solo material, some of which succeeds and some of which is painful to behold. The point being that set lists that give preference to solo material fly in the face of why most people attend shows. Yes, “Cuts You Up” is a decent solo song and I wouldn’t mind seeing it live, but that’s absolutely not the reason people come. People come mostly for the 2-3 Bauhaus songs he might perform (last tour Murphy did “Silent Hedges”, “Stigmata Martyr” and “Too Much 21st Century”).

The Mr. Moonlight tour will be a celebration of 35 years of Bauhaus. The set list will be all Bauhaus, all night. If there is a time to see Murphy, it is now. Even though a full Bauhaus reunion would be the best scenario, it ain’t gonna happen. When they reunited in 2006 to record “Go Away White,” they couldn’t even stay together long enough to do a full supporting tour. For the rest of eternity, it’s going to be Peter Murphy one night and Love and Rockets another night.

For those of you who have Spotify, click here for what is, in my estimation, a likely set list for Murphy next Friday.

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