It’s always a little jarring when an artist makes a major shift. Many musicians’ secondary efforts have fallen on deaf ears; just look at “the sophomore slump.”
As a fan, you worry your icons will fall in to this treacherous trap. Change is scary, humans fear the foreign. We stick to our habits and routines even if they no longer serve us.
This is not the case with Nick Murphy, the producer formerly known as Chet Faker. He has shed his old persona in exchange for his given name, and has become a new force of creation.
Nick began Saturday’s set with his single “Medication” off his latest EP Missing Link. The song slowly builds until Murphy hits us with the sexy, raspy croon we all fell in love with. The intensity builds as he loops himself into a chorus of slowed down, spooky voices that haunt our memories with their melody. The room was filled with light in sunset tones, syrupy oranges transformed to fiery crimson hues that perfectly fit the sultry soundscape that unfolded around us. As Murphy revealed song after song, we all fell together into a seductive groove, his voice lulling us into a spell. My new favorite is “Your Time” which harkens back to the glory days of R&B but also carves a niche for the future. The tune drips with longing and lust and the persistent echoes of the refrain. The singer’s grunts and coos illustrate the utter longing for his object of desire and send endorphins charging through your psyche.
In shedding the past, you must remember to always stay true to yourself. Nick Murphy’s next evolution of sound is another stage in his growth as an intuitive creator. He has stepped into his true artistic self and I’m excited to watch his metamorphosis.