Written by GE 138.
I'm as big a Bauhaus fan as anyone else I suppose. I've seen them a few times before, I love more than a few of their songs, and since Mr. Peter Murphy has gifted us with his presence on his Mr. Moonlight Tour, which is a celebration of 35 years of Bauhaus, well, I figured I should probably be there, even though the 35 years thing is stupid math, like Local bands do with their 10 year anniversaries, but I digress. I figured there was no other place to be on a Weds. night than at this gig, so with my Gothic Steam Punk looking chick in tow, I headed off to Hipsterville to the dreaded LVCS to catch the Godfather of Goth do his thing. I said Hello to Brandy Vinyl, both the show's Promoter and ticket taker, as I was walking in, and once inside the venue it was nice and dark and cool and full of dry ice smoke. It was like 2 feet thick in the air and gave everything a chemical aftertaste which was really noticeable when you went outside to smoke in the fresh but hot Summer air. The turnout was pretty good, not as good as Peter Murphy's gig here just last year, but whatever. I guess the true Goth community was boycotting the gig. People were bitching about Peter Murphy doing an all Bauhaus gig without any of the original members, people were bitching about the venue and the shittiness of both sound and drink prices there, people were bitching about whatever it is they were bitching about but I didn't care. I wanted to hear Peter Murphy growl Stigmata Martyr at me and that was all there was to it.
It was standing room only inside the place, as they had the audacity to sell off any of the booths or places to sit at, to people who had paid $75 for 'VIP Passes"... fucking pathetic. Anne and I got lucky as some guy who was drunk and lonely let us have his booth as he wandered around and did whatever it was he was doing, as long as we let him sit back down there whenever he wanted to. Sounded like a deal to me. I kept buying him beers to keep him happy. :-) We had got there just as the 2nd band of the night, Ours, was beginning their set. Who the first band was I have no idea. Ours had the look and sound of every band I had seen at old L.A. / Hollywood haunts like Helter Skelter, Scream, or Zombie Zoo. They had a heavy, droning, Tribal sound to them, like Specimen, but with Thom Yorke from Radiohead on vocals. I mean, that motherfucker could sing! He sure could scream his head off, and he loved to hear himself doing it. I started digging them towards the end of their set, once the soundman was through really fucking them over. I fucking hate this place. If they had a decent soundman, they'd be dangerous. Anyways, the band had some people in the audience digging on what they were playing, and they had a few more once they were done. Ours were OK, but nothing that made me want to get up off my ass and take pictures of them. I was waiting to do that for Peter Murphy.
And wait I did, because once Ours had cleared their gear off of stage, Peter Murphy's band checked their stage gear, and then they showed this odd, 10 minute long YouTube type of video about the history of Peter Murphy, with something leading up to him explaining why he was doing this Tour, as well as a plug for a new upcoming album, and once it was done, the show began as Mr. Murphy glided like a ghoul across the stage as the band started into King Volcano, and I was kind of like, Ugh, what a droll opener, sounded good and all, but just lacked the dynamics I was looking for as an opening salvo. The classic acoustic guitar intro to Kingdom's Coming was next, and I was almost ready to go sit back down with Anne at the booth and catch a snooze when after that, he started playing the good stuff, the old stuff, the stuff with balls, starting with the sick, droning, haunting guitar work of Double Dare and In The Flat Field and I was in Heaven. All was Bliss and Heaven. This was what I wanted to hear. This is what I paid $35 at the door for. The band backing him was (I think) the same band that was backing him the last time I saw him, maybe a different drummer, but I dunno. All I know is that they were pretty much faithfully recreating the classic Bauhaus sound, and they seemed to be having fun while doing so, especially the guitarist. Must be fun playing Daniel Ash's incredible guitar work. I was jealous of the drummer during In The Flat Field. I love that song and play it all the time, and here he was playing it with Peter Murphy himself. Lucky fucker.
Peter Murphy pretty much stayed to the 'classic' Bauhaus greatest hits list, playing everything and anything from their varied musical repertoire, ranging from melodica infused She's Into Parties, the mesmerizing God In An Alcove, 80's drenched Spirit, to the downright spooky Burning From The Inside. Silent Hedges was a bit of a surprise but damn, it sounded good. It was such a great set. Bela Lugosi's Dead was played mid set, and kept to under 5 minutes, which was a bit of a shock, but the same could be said for them playing Stigmata Martyr. The last time I saw Bauhaus, in like, what, 1998, they weren't playing that song because of Mr. Murphy's recent Religious realizations, revelations, whatever, so when the band kicked into that song towards the end of their set, I was loving it. It's one of my favorite songs. It sounded gloriously Evil, as well it should. In nomine patri et filii et spiriti sanctum. Amen. The set ended, for me, waaaaaaayyyy too soon, and after a bit of begging from the audience, Mr. Murphy and crew went back up on stage and played a few more classic Bauhaus songs, ending with the absolutely perfect 1-2 knockout punch of Telegram Sam and Ziggy Stardust. Just. Fucking. Perfect. Before he left the stage, Peter Murphy thanked everyone for all their years of support, and the howls of Love and Adoration that were thrown back at him was something to be seen and to hear. As soon as that man stepped off the stage, he was rushed by a throng of females who wanted to touch him, or talk to him, or do nasty stuff to him, so I took that as my cue to leave and I headed to the door before the drunk guy who gave us his VIP booth came back to try to talk to us some more. It was an absolutely brilliant performance from Peter Murphy. Nothing was expected. Everything was delivered.