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Bauhaus (band)

Bauhaus (band)

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Bauhaus was an English rock
Rock music
Rock music is a genre of popular music that developed during and after the 1960s, particularly in the United Kingdom and the United States. It has its roots in 1940s and 1950s rock and roll, itself heavily influenced by rhythm and blues and country music...

 band formed in Northampton
Northampton is a large market town and local government district in the East Midlands region of England. Situated about north-west of London and around south-east of Birmingham, Northampton lies on the River Nene and is the county town of Northamptonshire. The demonym of Northampton is...

 in 1978. The group consisted of Peter Murphy
Peter Murphy (musician)
Peter John Murphy is an English rock vocalist. He was the vocalist of the rock group Bauhaus, and later went on to release a number of solo albums, such as Deep and Love Hysteria...

 (vocals), Daniel Ash
Daniel Ash
Daniel Gaston Ash is the guitarist for Bauhaus, Tones on Tail, Love and Rockets, and solo projects.-Life and work:After going to concerts in his teenage years, Ash made a decision to be on a stage in some way...

 (guitar), Kevin Haskins
Kevin Haskins
Kevin Haskins also known as Kevin Michael Dompe is a drummer best known from the British rock group Bauhaus. He was also a member of Tones on Tail and Love and Rockets...

 (drums) and David J
David J
David John Haskins , better known as David J, is a British alternative rock musician. He was the bassist for the gothic rock band Bauhaus and Love and Rockets....

 (bass). The band was originally Bauhaus 1919 before they dropped the numerical portion within a year of formation. With their dark and gloomy sound and image, Bauhaus are generally considered the first gothic rock
Gothic rock
Gothic rock is a musical subgenre of post-punk and alternative rock that formed during the late 1970s. Gothic rock bands grew from the strong ties they had to the English punk rock and emerging post-punk scenes...


Bauhaus first broke up in 1983. Peter Murphy began a solo career while the other members continued as Tones on Tail
Tones on Tail
Tones on Tail was an "eclectic" musical side project of Daniel Ash of Bauhaus, along with art school friend, flatmate, and "Bauhaus roadie" Glenn Campling in 1982. After the breakup of Bauhaus in 1983, they were joined by drummer Kevin Haskins. Their music was described by one critic as...

 and, later, Love and Rockets
Love and Rockets (band)
Love and Rockets were an English alternative rock band formed in 1985 by former Bauhaus members Daniel Ash , David J , and Kevin Haskins . Former Bauhaus vocalist Peter Murphy had embarked on a solo career after Bauhaus split in 1983...

. Both enjoyed greater commercial success in the United States than Bauhaus had, but disappeared from the charts in their homeland. The band reunited for a 1998 tour and on a more permanent basis in 2005. The group announced plans to disband again following the release of their final album, Go Away White
Go Away White
Go Away White is the fifth and final studio album by British gothic rock band Bauhaus. Released on 3 March 2008, it is the band's first album of new material since 1983...

, in 2008.


Daniel Ash, his friend David J. Haskins, and Haskins' younger brother Kevin had played together in various bands since childhood. One of the longer-lived of these was a band called The Craze, which performed a few times around Northampton in 1978. However, The Craze still split up fairly quickly, and Ash once again tried to convince his old school friend Peter Murphy to join him, simply because Ash thought he had the right look for a band. Murphy, who was working in a printing factory, decided to give it a try, despite never having written any lyrics or music. During their first rehearsal, he co-wrote the song "In the Flat Field". Ash's old bandmate Kevin Haskins joined as the drummer. Ash made a point of not inviting David J, the driving force in their previous bands, because he wanted a band he could control. After only a few weeks though, Ash reconsidered and invited Haskins to replace original bassist Chris Barber. Haskins had already agreed to tour American airbases with another band, but decided that joining his friends' group was "the right thing to do". With their line-up complete, the unnamed band played their first gig at the Cromwell pub in Wellingborough on New Year's Eve 1978.

The band chose the name Bauhaus 1919, a reference to the German Bauhaus
', commonly known simply as Bauhaus, was a school in Germany that combined crafts and the fine arts, and was famous for the approach to design that it publicized and taught. It operated from 1919 to 1933. At that time the German term stood for "School of Building".The Bauhaus school was founded by...

 art movement of the 1920s, because of its "stylistic implications and associations", according to David J. The band also chose to use the same typeface
In typography, a typeface is the artistic representation or interpretation of characters; it is the way the type looks. Each type is designed and there are thousands of different typefaces in existence, with new ones being developed constantly....

 used on the Bauhaus college building in Dessau
Dessau is a town in Germany on the junction of the rivers Mulde and Elbe, in the Bundesland of Saxony-Anhalt. Since 1 July 2007, it is part of the merged town Dessau-Roßlau. Population of Dessau proper: 77,973 .-Geography:...

, Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

. Bauhaus associate Graham Bentley said that the group was unlike any Northampton band of the time, most of which played predominantly cover songs. Bentley videotaped a performance by the group, which was sent to several record labels in the hope of obtaining a contract. This approach was hindered partly because many record companies at the time did not have home video equipment or Bentley had to provide it himself, so the group decided to record a demo.

"Bela Lugosi's Dead" and 4AD

Together for only six weeks, Bauhaus entered the studio for the first time at Beck Studios in Wellingborough
Wellingborough is a market town and borough in Northamptonshire, England, situated some from the county town of Northampton. The town is situated on the north side of the River Nene, most of the older town is sited on the flanks of the hills above the river's current flood plain...

 to record a demo. The band recorded five songs; one of the tracks from the session, "Bela Lugosi's Dead
Bela Lugosi's Dead
"Bela Lugosi's Dead" is a gothic rock song written by the band Bauhaus. The song was the band's first single, released in August 1979, and is often considered to be the first gothic rock record released. It did not enter the UK charts. The b-side features the song "Boys" and some versions also...

", running more than nine minutes, was released as the group's debut single in August 1979 on Small Wonder Records
Small Wonder Records
Small Wonder Records was a UK independent record label owned and managed by Pete Stennett, that specialised in releasing records by punk rock and post-punk bands. It operated out of a record shop of the same name at 162 Hoe Street, Walthamstow, E17, east London...

 as Bauhaus (the 1919 abandoned). The single received a positive review in Sounds and stayed on the British independent charts for two years. The song received crucial airplay on BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1
BBC Radio 1 is a British national radio station operated by the British Broadcasting Corporation which also broadcasts internationally, specialising in current popular music and chart hits throughout the day. Radio 1 provides alternative genres after 7:00pm including electronic dance, hip hop, rock...

 and DJ John Peel
John Peel
John Robert Parker Ravenscroft, OBE , known professionally as John Peel, was an English disc jockey, radio presenter, record producer and journalist. He was the longest-serving of the original BBC Radio 1 DJs, broadcasting regularly from 1967 until his death in 2004...

's evening show, and Bauhaus was subsequently asked to record a session for Peel's show, which was broadcast on January 3, 1980.

The band released three more singles, "Dark Entries
Dark Entries
"Dark Entries" is the second single released by British gothic rock band Bauhaus. It showcases the guitar playing of Daniel Ash and tight rhythm section of David J and Kevin Haskins...

", "Terror Couple Kill Colonel
Terror Couple Kill Colonel
"Terror Couple Kill Colonel" is the third single released by British gothic rock band Bauhaus. Original sleeves were printed on a textured fabric. Two versions of this record exist; each having a different recording of "Terror Couple Kill Colonel" on the B-side...

" and "Telegram Sam
Telegram Sam
Telegram Sam was the third UK number one single for the British rock group T. Rex. The song also appeared on their 1972 album The Slider.Perhaps best known for bringing the term "main man" into popular culture, it was number one for two weeks, before being knocked off the top by "Son of My Father"...

" — originally written by glam rock
Glam rock
Glam rock is a style of rock and pop music that developed in the UK in the early 1970s, which was performed by singers and musicians who wore outrageous clothes, makeup and hairstyles, particularly platform-soled boots and glitter...

 pioneers T. Rex
T. Rex (band)
T. Rex were a British rock band, formed in 1967 by singer/songwriter and guitarist Marc Bolan. The band formed as Tyrannosaurus Rex, releasing four folk albums under the name...

 — before the debut of their first album In the Flat Field
In the Flat Field
In the Flat Field is the debut album by British gothic rock band Bauhaus, released in October 1980 on 4AD.-Recording:Following a 30-date tour, Bauhaus set out to Southern Studios in London to record their first album. As the band had a clear conception of what they wanted the record to sound like,...

in 1980 on 4AD
4AD is a British independent record label that was started in 1979 by Ivo Watts-Russell and Peter Kent, funded by Beggars Banquet Records, and is still active today...

. Despite negative reviews, In the Flat Field topped the indie charts and made headway onto the British pop charts, peaking for one week at number seventy-two.

Beggars Banquet and breakup

Bauhaus' growing success outstripped 4AD's resources, so the band moved to 4AD's parent label Beggars Banquet Records
Beggars Banquet Records
Beggars Banquet is an English independent record label that began as a chain of record shops owned by Martin Mills and Nick Austin, and is part of the Beggars Group of labels...

. Bauhaus released "Kick in the Eye
Kick in the Eye
"Kick in the Eye" is the fifth single released by British gothic rock band Bauhaus. It was released in 7 and 12 inch format as BEG54 and BEG54T with the same track listing and reached number 59 on the UK Singles Chart.-Song appearances:...

" as its debut release on the label. The single reached number 59 on the charts. the following single "The Passion of Lovers
The Passion of Lovers
"The Passion of Lovers" is the sixth single released by British gothic rock band Bauhaus. It was released in 7" format on the Beggar's Banquet label. The initial copies came with the lyrics on a printed insert...

" peaked at number 56. Bauhaus released its second album, Mask
Mask (Bauhaus album)
"Harry" was recorded on January 26, 1979 at Beck Studios. It, along with "In Fear of Dub" and "Ear Wax", had been released on an EP. The other songs were released as singles.-Omnibus Edition bonus discs:...

, in October 1981. The band employed more keyboards and a variety of other instruments to add to the diversity of the record. In an unconventional move, the group shot a video for the album's title track as a promotional tool for the band as a whole and not any specific song from the record.

Bauhaus followed with the single "Spirit", produced by Hugh Jones and intended to break into the Top 30. However, "Spirit" only reached number 42. The band was displeased with the single and re-recorded it for their third album The Sky's Gone Out
The Sky's Gone Out
-Song appearances:*"Ziggy Stardust" was used in The Ongoing History of New Music episode "What's the Big Deal About Bauhaus?", from 1998.-Personnel:*Peter Murphy — vocals, guitar*Daniel Ash — guitar*David J — bass...

, in 1982. In the same year Bauhaus scored their biggest hit with a cover of David Bowie
David Bowie
David Bowie is an English musician, actor, record producer and arranger. A major figure for over four decades in the world of popular music, Bowie is widely regarded as an innovator, particularly for his work in the 1970s...

's "Ziggy Stardust
Ziggy Stardust (song)
"Ziggy Stardust" is a song written by David Bowie in 1972 for the album The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars. The name Stardust was inspired by the Legendary Stardust Cowboy...

", which was recorded during a BBC session. The song reached number fifteen on the British charts and earned the band an appearance on the television show Top of the Pops
Top of the Pops
Top of the Pops, also known as TOTP, is a British music chart television programme, made by the BBC and originally broadcast weekly from 1 January 1964 to 30 July 2006. After 25 December 2006 it became a radio program, now hosted by Tony Blackburn...

. Thanks to the success of the single, the album also became the band's biggest hit, peaking at number four. That same year Bauhaus made an appearance in the horror film The Hunger, where they performed "Bela Lugosi's Dead" during the opening credits. The final cut of the scene focused on Murphy; this, coupled with the singer's modelling work in a popular ad campaign for Maxell
, commonly known as Maxell, is a Japanese company which manufactures consumer electronics. The company's notable products are batteries -- the company's name is a contraction of "maximum capacity dry cell" -- and recording media, including audio cassettes and blank VHS tapes, and recordable optical...

, caused resentment among the rest of the group.

Prior to the recording of their fourth album Burning from the Inside
Burning from the Inside
-Personnel:*Peter Murphy – vocals, guitar*Daniel Ash – guitar, vocals*David J – bass, vocals*Kevin Haskins – drums-Production:*Arranged and produced by Bauhaus*Engineered and mixed by Derek Tomkins and Ted Sharp*Mastered by Arun Chakraverty...

(1983) Peter Murphy was stricken with pneumonia, which prevented him from contributing much to the album. Daniel Ash and David J took the reins and became the driving forces behind the record, and even did lead vocals on a few tracks. The album's lead single, "She's in Parties
She's in Parties
"She's in Parties" is the tenth single released by British gothic rock band Bauhaus. It was released in 7" and 12" format on the Beggar's Banquet label...

", reached number 26 on the charts and earned Bauhaus their third and final Top of the Pops appearance. Bauhaus then embarked on an international promotional tour for the album, with dates in Europe and the Far East. David J recalled that the night before they were supposed to perform two shows at Hammersmith Palais
Hammersmith Palais
The Hammersmith Palais de Danse, later simply the Hammersmith Palais, was a ballroom and entertainment venue in London that operated from 1919 until 2007...

 in London the group decided to disband. The band played their farewell show on 5 July 1983 at the Hammersmith Palais; dedicated fans had been warned by the band's crew not to miss the show without telling them it was the last. After a long encore
Encore (concert)
An encore is an additional performance added to the end of a concert, from the French "encore", which means "again", "some more"; multiple encores are not uncommon. Encores originated spontaneously, when audiences would continue to applaud and demand additional performance from the artist after the...

 consisting of some of their early songs, David J left the stage with the words "rest in peace". Burning from the Inside was released a week later. The album received largely positive reviews and reached number 13 on the charts. Bauhaus released the single "Sanity Assassin" in limited quantities as a farewell gift for those who joined the group's fanclub.


After Bauhaus disbanded, the members of the band did various solo work. Peter Murphy worked briefly with bassist Mick Karn
Mick Karn
Andonis Michaelides , better known as Mick Karn, was an English multi-instrumentalist musician and songwriter, who came to fame as the bassist for the art rock band Japan, from 1974 to 1982....

 of Japan
Japan (band)
Japan were a British New Wave group, formed in 1974 in Catford, South London. The band achieved success in the late 1970s and early 1980s, when they were often associated with the burgeoning New Romantic fashion movement .- History :The band began as a group of friends...

 in the band Dali's Car before going solo with such albums as Deep
Deep (album)
Deep is the third album by the British solo artist Peter Murphy. It was released in 1989 along with his biggest single, "Cuts You Up".-Track listing:All tracks composed by Peter Murphy and Paul Statham; except where indicated...

and Love Hysteria
Love Hysteria
Love Hysteria is the second album by the British solo artist Peter Murphy, formerly of the gothic rock band Bauhaus. It was released in 1988....

. Daniel Ash had already started Tones on Tail with Bauhaus roadie Glen Campling as a side-project in 1981; after Bauhaus broke up Kevin Haskins joined the group, which released an album and several EPs before breaking up following a 1984 American tour. During this time. David J released two solo albums and collaborated with other musicians, recording two albums with The Jazz Butcher, and also with comics writer/spoken-word artist Alan Moore
Alan Moore
Alan Oswald Moore is an English writer primarily known for his work in comic books, a medium where he has produced a number of critically acclaimed and popular series, including Watchmen, V for Vendetta, and From Hell...

 in the short-lived band The Sinister Ducks.

During a discussion about the state of their projects at the time, Ash and David J began talking about reforming Bauhaus. All four band members arranged a rehearsal, but Murphy failed to show up the day it was scheduled. The other three band members rehearsed regardless, and were inspired by the chemistry they had as a trio. As a result, Ash and the Haskins brothers formed Love and Rockets in 1985. Love and Rockets scored a US hit four years later with "So Alive". The band broke up after seven albums in 1999. Both Daniel Ash and David J released solo albums during the Love and Rockets years; Peter Murphy contributed backing vocals to David J's 1992 single "Candy on the Cross."


Bauhaus reunited for the "Resurrection Tour" in 1998, which featured a new song, "The Dog's a Vapour", which was also included in the soundtrack for the film Heavy Metal 2000
Heavy Metal 2000
Heavy Metal 2000 is the 2000 follow-up to the 1981 animated cult film Heavy Metal, based on the fantasy magazine of the same name. The story itself is based on the graphic novel, The Melting Pot, written by Kevin Eastman, Simon Bisley and Eric Talbot...

. A live album recorded during the tour, Gotham
Gotham (album)
Gotham is a double-CD live album of a concert performed in 1998 by gothic rock band Bauhaus, which was released in 1999.-Disc one:# "Double Dare" – 6:20# "In the Flat Field" – 4:08# "A God in an Alcove" – 4:25# "In Fear of Fear" – 3:35...

, was released the following year and included a studio recording of a Dead Can Dance
Dead Can Dance
Dead Can Dance are an ethereal neoclassical duo formed in Melbourne, Australia, in August 1981, by Lisa Gerrard and Brendan Perry. The band relocated to London in May 1982 and disbanded in 1998. Their 1996 album Spiritchaser reached No. 1 on the Billboard Top World Music Albums Chart...

 cover, "Severance".

Bauhaus reunited again in 2005, playing that year's Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival
Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival
The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is a three-day annual music and arts festival, organized by Goldenvoice and held at the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California, in the Inland Empire's Coachella Valley...

 in Indio
Indio, California
Indio is a city in Riverside County, California, United States, located in the Coachella Valley of Southern California's Colorado Desert region. It lies east of Palm Springs, east of Riverside, and east of Los Angeles. It is about north of Mexicali, Baja California on the U.S.-Mexican border...

, California. At the opening of their set, Peter Murphy was lowered to the stage upside-down singing "Bela Lugosi's Dead". Following Peter Murphy's 2005 tour, Bauhaus embarked on a full tour beginning in North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

 and Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

 in the autumn of 2005 and ending in Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

 in February 2006. The band also mentioned that they hoped to record new music following the tour. In May 2006 the band toured with Nine Inch Nails
Nine Inch Nails
Nine Inch Nails is an American industrial rock project, founded in 1988 by Trent Reznor in Cleveland, Ohio. As its main producer, singer, songwriter, and instrumentalist, Reznor is the only official member of Nine Inch Nails and remains solely responsible for its direction...

 on the summer leg of their tour.

Bauhaus released their first new studio album since 1983, Go Away White, in 2008. This marked the end of the band and there was no supporting tour. Drummer Kevin Haskins said in an interview that they "were getting along really well, but there was an incident that occurred". As a result, "some of us just felt that we didn't want to carry on as a working unit". In an interview with SuicideGirls
SuicideGirls is a website that features softcore pornography and text profiles of goth, punk and indie-styled young women who are known as the "Suicide Girls"...

, bassist David J said about the breakup: "You have a test tube, and you pour in one chemical, and you pour in another chemical, and something happens. It starts to bubble. Pour in another chemical, and it starts to bubble a bit more. You pour in a fourth chemical, and it bubbles really violently, and then explodes. That's my answer". Peter Murphy claimed in another interview that "... he was most satisfied with the bonding on an emotional level. It was good to be working together and to put the past behind us and it was very positive. The result was coming out really fast, so it was exciting and it was very enjoyable", but in the end "... that rocky character worked and I think it was a bit right to finish it, really."

Murphy also stated in his Myspace
Myspace is a social networking service owned by Specific Media LLC and pop star Justin Timberlake. Myspace launched in August 2003 and is headquartered in Beverly Hills, California. In August 2011, Myspace had 33.1 million unique U.S. visitors....

 blog in January that "there's a lot more to it than this 'incident' that I've heard bandied about. In any group's business there are constant incidents, so what? Committing to being in a band takes tolerance, love, and a massive commitment. I've walked on that stage at times when I could emotionally barely manage to and give it all just the same. If I'd let some disagreement or bad word distract me from that goal, then I'd need to question my integrity. Anton Corbijn once related to me how Bono of U2 talked about one of the reasons that U2 had survived was that they're unlike many English bands; there was a kinship and priority given to each other as family. I personally sympathize with that. 'There is no love where there is no Love.'"

Musical style

Bauhaus combined a number of influences including punk
Punk rock
Punk rock is a rock music genre that developed between 1974 and 1976 in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Australia. Rooted in garage rock and other forms of what is now known as protopunk music, punk rock bands eschewed perceived excesses of mainstream 1970s rock...

 music, glam rock, and Krautrock
Krautrock is a generic name for the experimental music scenes that appeared in Germany in the late 1960s and gained popularity throughout the 1970s, especially in Britain. The term is a result of the English-speaking world's reception of the music at the time and not a reference to any one...

—even funk
Funk is a music genre that originated in the mid-late 1960s when African American musicians blended soul music, jazz and R&B into a rhythmic, danceable new form of music. Funk de-emphasizes melody and harmony and brings a strong rhythmic groove of electric bass and drums to the foreground...

 and dub
Dub music
Dub is a genre of music which grew out of reggae music in the 1960s, and is commonly considered a subgenre, though it has developed to extend beyond the scope of reggae...

—to create a gloomy and introspective sound which appealed to many fans left disillusioned by the New Wave
New Wave music
New Wave is a subgenre of :rock music that emerged in the mid to late 1970s alongside punk rock. The term at first generally was synonymous with punk rock before being considered a genre in its own right that incorporated aspects of electronic and experimental music, mod subculture, disco and 1960s...

 that arose in the wake of punk's collapse. Their sound proved influential, inspiring or bringing attention to a whole wave of post-punk
Post-punk is a rock music movement with its roots in the late 1970s, following on the heels of the initial punk rock explosion of the mid-1970s. The genre retains its roots in the punk movement but is more introverted, complex and experimental...

 groups delving into the intense, gloomy style that would eventually come to be known as gothic rock. Its crucial elements included Peter Murphy's deep and sonorous voice, Daniel Ash's innovative guitar playing and David J's dub-influenced bass.


  • In the Flat Field
    In the Flat Field
    In the Flat Field is the debut album by British gothic rock band Bauhaus, released in October 1980 on 4AD.-Recording:Following a 30-date tour, Bauhaus set out to Southern Studios in London to record their first album. As the band had a clear conception of what they wanted the record to sound like,...

  • Mask
    Mask (Bauhaus album)
    "Harry" was recorded on January 26, 1979 at Beck Studios. It, along with "In Fear of Dub" and "Ear Wax", had been released on an EP. The other songs were released as singles.-Omnibus Edition bonus discs:...

  • The Sky's Gone Out
    The Sky's Gone Out
    -Song appearances:*"Ziggy Stardust" was used in The Ongoing History of New Music episode "What's the Big Deal About Bauhaus?", from 1998.-Personnel:*Peter Murphy — vocals, guitar*Daniel Ash — guitar*David J — bass...

  • Burning from the Inside
    Burning from the Inside
    -Personnel:*Peter Murphy – vocals, guitar*Daniel Ash – guitar, vocals*David J – bass, vocals*Kevin Haskins – drums-Production:*Arranged and produced by Bauhaus*Engineered and mixed by Derek Tomkins and Ted Sharp*Mastered by Arun Chakraverty...

  • Go Away White
    Go Away White
    Go Away White is the fifth and final studio album by British gothic rock band Bauhaus. Released on 3 March 2008, it is the band's first album of new material since 1983...


External links