I first heard Bauhaus in 1986 while attending the North Carolina School of the Arts summer program. I was already into US and UK punk, but this was my first exposure to “Goth” or Death Rock” culture. There were a few strange kids who wore all black, heavy eyeliner, and even a guy who wore a skirt. I wanted to dislike the goths, because they seemed to be trying too hard, but I was intrigued by their music. They carried around a boom box playing what I found out was music by Jesus and the Mary Chain, Love and Rockets, and Bauhaus. I especially liked Bauhaus’s “Bela Lugosi’s Dead” and decided to get more of their music. Years later, after moving to Los Angeles, I met Bauhaus’ and Love and Rockets’ bassist David J. We became good friends and talked about music often. I got to hear a lot of great stories about Bauhaus and Love and Rockets, and I was very excited when David told me Bauhaus were reforming to play Coachella and do a tour. I saw the band at both Coachella and the Wiltern in LA. The shows were amazing, and I was overjoyed to see a band I thought I might never see perform. David mentioned to me that the chemistry Bauhaus felt on the tour had inspired them to work on a new album. Well apparently, the chemistry did not hold up, but lasted long enough to deliver “Go Away White” the first new Bauhaus record since ’83. Honestly, I was a little nervous because it sucks when a great band tries to do an album after a long hiatus and it tarnishes their almost perfect legacy(think of the new Stooges album). On the contrary, “Go Away White” is every bit as good as vintage Bauhaus without sounding dated. David asked if I wanted to make some art to help promote the album. Of course I did and I ended up making a poster, sticker, and stencil graphic. People who purchase the Bauhaus poster also get a stencil and sticker. There is also a downloadable version of the stencil. I’m not sure what it will be, but David told me that Bauhaus will be giving a special prize to people who send in the best photos of how they have used the Bauhaus stencil. Send photos to obeygiant.com and I’ll forward them to the band. The Bauhaus print and stencil package will cost $4o and will be released on March 26th.
Recorded in 18 days, some tracks in one take, Bauhaus’ fifth studio album proves that even a quarter-century’s hiatus can’t kill a great band, especially if it was undead to begin with. There’s no trickery here apart from the sinister seduction of Peter Murphy’s ever-deepening Transylvanian croon and the bare, live style makes the band’s heirs even more apparent. There’s PJ Harvey in David J’s swamp-blues bass; Nirvana in the shrieking, submerged guitar of Daniel Ash. But the quartet doesn’t compose or perform like elder statesmen: ”International Bullet Proof Talent” and ”Endless Summer of the Damned” are as spry and visceral as its first material. If the band had released a bunch of meandering albums during the past 25 years, you might call ”Go Away White” a return to form. Instead, it picks up right where Bauhaus left off: a wet dream for original fans and a blast of recognition for the newly eye-lined. –Billboard
It is virtually impossible to imagine the last 30 years of rock music without the influence of Bauhaus. They have inspired countless bands and have mesmerized the masses with their ability to be simultaneously sparse, dark, anthemic, and glam. With their new album, entitled Go Away White, Peter Murphy Daniel Ash, David J and Kevin Haskins have created an album as exciting and relevant as their earlier work. Echoes of Bauhaus have been heard in the work of their heirs and imitators for the past few decades and 25 years after their last studio release the band have returned with yet another undiluted glimpse into their world.
Music is a message in a bottle.
You send it out and there’s no telling who will find it or when.
It crosses time and space.
At the end of the 70’s, my band tossed out one of these loaded vessels from the shores of England’s grey and unpleasant land. In 1986, it was picked up by a 16 year old skate board punk in North Carolina, USA. The kid would go on to send out his own subversive messages all over the planet, inspiring many of the recipients to do the same and so . . . on it goes.
Now sender and receiver come together in the form of a beautiful new design.
Bauhaus as rendered by my friend, Shepard Fairey.
Go Away White.