Oblique Portrait: Bauhaus

For a band that was so short-lived, Bauhaus' influence is far-reaching. This mix follows the long, often intertwined careers of each member. If you would like to subscribe to future episodes of this podcast you can find it in itunes, or you can copy this link and subscribe manually.

Bauhaus are widely accepted as the godfathers of goth, but that's hindsight. Goth wasn't yet a thing in 1979. No, Bauhaus were a post-punk band, infused with glam rock, dub reggae and punk fury. While their unique take on all that was codified into goth as we know it today, it's not nearly as multi-faceted as the actual bands it's based off.

Bauhaus wasn't fated to last long: 4 albums (at least one of which was merely cobbled together) plus a clutch of singles. Between singer Peter Murphy, guitarist Daniel Ash and bassist David J, they were trying to contain three distinct, competing and prolific voices under one banner. By their last missive, you could hear them peeling away from each other, presaging what they were about to reveal.

Each member had new material waiting in the wings. David J was quick with solo releases, and slung bass for the Jazz Butcher (but that's a different story). Daniel Ash took drummer Kevin Haskins to start Tones on Tail. After an abortive sojourn with Japan's Mick Karn as Dalis Car, Peter Murphy was recording under his own name. Within a couple of years, most of Bauhaus had reconvened as Love and Rockets.

Theirs is a history that's proven hard to outrun. Bauhaus has reunited twice: once in '98 for a tour and again in '06, which yeilded new album. Love and Rockets has broken up and regrouped at least once. Ash and Haskins are back at it, touring as Poptone, performing material from Love and Rockets and Tones on Tail.

While 25 songs can't contain all this history, I tried not to constrain it either. There may be no Bela Lugosi's Dead or So Alive to be found, but I wasn't contrarian about including singles, just avoiding the obvious. It ends where it began, with Peter Murphy performing live, digging deep for a rare b-side off Bauhaus' fist single. 

This is the wild and divergent sound of Bauhaus, not only as they once were, but also what they went on to become.

Bauhaus: St. Vitus Dance
Bauhaus: Kick in the Eye
Bauhaus: Swing the Heartache (BBC session)
Bauhaus: Slice of Life
David J: The Promised Land
Tones on Tail: Rain
Dalis Car: Create and Melt
Love and Rockets: A Private Future
Peter Murphy: Canvas Beauty
Love and Rockets: All in My Mind
Peter Murphy: Crystal Wrists
Love and Rockets: No Big Deal
Daniel Ash: Not So Fast
David J: Fingers in the Grease
Daniel Ash: Roll On
Peter Murphy: Sails Wave Goodbye
Love and Rockets: Body and Soul
Bauhaus: Severance
Peter Murphy: Your Face
David J: In the Great Blue Whenever
Bauhaus: Undone
Peter Murphy: I Spit Roses
David J: Dagger in the Well
Daniel Ash: Too Much Choice
Peter Murphy: Boys (live)