Peter Murphy Talks Octopi and Roses As New Album Debuts
One of 2011's high points for Rocks Off has been the opportunity to get close to the legendary Godfather of Goth himself, Peter Murphy, as he prepared for the release of his new studio album Ninth. Murphy's performance at Numbers earlier this year was an amazing journey into the process of an artist who has not let up for a second in his pursuit of new and exciting directions to take his music. For those among you who may only remember Murphy for "Cuts You Up," we'll take a look at what the man is up to now.
The lead single from Ninth is "I Spit Roses," and like all the material from Ninth it is phenomenal. In many ways the whole album is the perfect medium between the aggression of Unshattered and the Arabic experimentalism of Dust. What you're left with is the perfect pop-goth record, something the world has been waiting for since Murphy's own Deep.
The video for "I Spit Roses" is a lavish and mind-blowing affair that gives Murphy a great opportunity to preen and pose in a multi-colored, nautical world. If you've ever had the desire to live inside one of those masterful old marine time maps that labeled the unknown with dragons then you will be right at home. A jedi may not crave adventure and excitement, but Rocks Off can't get enough of it when the soundtrack and cinematography are this spell-binding.
We sat down with Murphy briefly to ask him about the video for "I Spit Roses." Continue on our interview.
Rocks Off: Who directed the video, and what made you want to work together?
Peter Murphy: Justin Coloma is the director who sent me his initial treatment. I then modified the script and from then on began to collaborate with him. His wife Linda Strawberry did all the hand painted screen that appear - and what fine work! What made me want to work together was a mixture of last minute rush to film without a director in mind at the time and then using my instinct to simply go with Justin.
RO: Is the video anything like the visuals you had in your head when you wrote the song?
PM: No, not when writing the song, yet it is a shanty tale and so the film work was an extension of the visual writing of the song.
RO: Was it difficult to act and sing using green-screen technology? Not having sets or other band members to play off of, we mean?
PM: No, like driving another car. Initially the clutch and gearshift feels awkward, but after 2.2 minutes I was just fine. I do not always want band member to play off of.
RO: Are you representing several different characters throughout the video, or is it just different incarnations of the same one?
PM: Incarnations of the same Captain, who is simultaneously the Sea, Poet and Master of himself - a mutiny on his character would necessarily have no effect since this Captain is there and not there all at once.
RO: Why do you think a kraken would save you from being knifed in the back like he does in the video?
PM: I asked him to, and he is an Octopus, not a Kraken
RO: Are you planning on doing in more videos for Ninth?
PM: Yes, "See Saw Sway" is now in the editing process - more to come after that also.
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