Online music magazine based in Copenhagen, Denmark

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Ronald Laurits Jensen

Ronald Laurits Jensen has 2 articles published.

LIVE REVIEW: Peter Murphy – 40 years of Bauhaus, Store Vega, 11.12.2018

in Live Reviews by
Bauhaus

As the title of this show tells, this Tuesday night at Store Vega is all about nostalgia.
A look around while listening to the opening act Desert Mountain Tribe, shows an audience that has at least one thing in common:
They prefer to wear darker colors.
The supporting duo’s set of energetic, monotone and dark psych-rock culminating in an exhaustive and repetitive performance by the drummer is well received by the mature crowd. And after only a short moment, the main acts are entering the stage.
Peter Murphy, peacocking in a full beard, full make up and a dark, shiny jacket has teamed up with bass player David J, as one half of the original Bauhaus. As stand ins for the absent members is The Mission guitarist, Mark Gemini Thwaite and drummer Marc Slutsky.
As the show opens with the disturbing guitar riff of “Double Dare”, the opening song from the band’s 1980 debut album In the Flat Field. Most people in the audience is immediately drawn into the the atmosphere of what is by many considered the first goth records recorded. Adding the drums, functioning as both rhythm section as well as a backing melody, transcends the whole room within seconds, even before Murphy opens his mouth.

peter murphy bauhaus

While 61 year old Peter Murphy’s voice may have turned darker during the years he still masters his unique and dramatic vocal that has been his trademark in four decades, always combined with a theatrical mime show, highly influenced by a young David Bowie’s and early European dada avantgarde.
Thwaite’s guitar playing was an impressive imitation of Daniel Ash’ original work, yet still leaving room for his personal interpretations. And in combination with Peter Murphy’s beard and sufi dance, inspired by his years spend in Turkey, made most of the songs seem fresh and relevant.
As the concert developed, Peter Murphy was less tight in his performance and showed a bit more of a traditional rock’n’roll attitude, reaching out to the audience and even during “Nerves” promoting the audience to do hand claps.
This made the second half of the show loose a bit of momentum while at the same time the band also suffered a bit from a few sound issues.
As the band played their big hit “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” Murphy posed as Count Dracula on stage but even though the audience applauded it was perhaps the weakest part of the show. Fortunately the band managed to get back on track, playing “Kick in the Eye”, “Passion of Lovers”, “Dark Entries” and other classic songs a lot more convincing and after several extra songs ending the whole show with a perfect praise to David Bowie with another hit from the Bauhaus catalogue: “Ziggy Stardust”.

Photo by Morten Aagaard Krogh (mortenkrogh.com)

LIVE REVIEW: Kurt Vile & The Violators, Store Vega, 05.12.2013

in Live Reviews by

Entering Kurt Vile & The Violators’ show at Vega last night was like attenting a private party of the kind where nobody really bothers to get up and greet you welcome, and where it is up to you, if you feel at home or as a stranger. I felt at home quickly, but perhaps that was due to the fact that my only memory of Kurt Vile from previous shows is of his back and therefore I did not even expect him to face the audience – which he actually did all night only hiding behind his hair.

This band does not attempt to entertain or please anyone. They are are merely just there as if they were back in their own rehearsal space playing their songs regardless of whoever hangs out there and who cares to listen. And while some people find that attitude arrogant or boring or just too stoned out, I personally find that it serves to unveil the actual purpose of a visit by Kurt Vile and his band: The music.

Lou Reed once said: ‘You can’t beat two guitars, bass and drum’. Kurt Vile follows this rule to perfection, only broken by a few occasional rhythmical add-ons from a laptop. In one song a saxophone is taken onto stage, but noone plays a single note on it until the end where it is used solely to add to the white noise of several distorted guitars.

This no-nonsense attitude towards guitar-driven rock makes Kurt Vile & The Violators sound both timeless and at the same time completely present.

Few other bands dare to devote several minutes to just playing two chords over and over again, without adding some cool attitude or an interesting light show, in case anyone in the audience should get bored. Neil Young and Crazy Horse obviously comes to mind, but also less noisy bans such as Tom Petty’s Heartbreakers.

In fact, the only boring passage in yesterdays performance was one of the most anticipated songs, Jesus Fever, a song which Kurt Vile played in such an uninspired way, that I feared he would fall asleep. It seemed to me as if the demand for a ‘hit song’ from the audience bored Kurt Vile and instead doing a new interpretation of  the song in a Dylan’ish way, he just chose to get over with it as fast a he could and return to jamming with his band mates.

VIEW THE FULL LIVE GALLERY HERE

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