Country of origin:
Type of music generally:
Most recent release, Nine Days Wonder (with David Goodrich, 2011)
Hugh Blumenfeld (Sherlyn.Koo)
Mainly own material
Peter Mulvey is an acoustic musician with a difference. From the opening bars of his debut CD you can feel it—there's something special here. It's not the trick he uses with his bottom guitar string, de-tuning it so that all you hear is a resonant steely buzz. It's not the bass-heavy groove. It's not the lyrics he writes, that can soothe your soul or pack enough punch to stop you dead in your tracks. It's all this and more, much more.... It's obvious Mulvey a honed performer, not surprising since he once studied drama and more recently cut his teeth busking in the Boston subway. And what teeth they are! One of my favourite recent "discoveries". (Sherlyn.Koo>
Comments about live performance:
Peter Mulvey did a very short set interspersed with really random and hilarious between-song banter. I had no idea what to expect, but I was pleasantly surprised. He's a really good guitar player, and has a nice voice. (10/97, email@example.com)
Recommended first album:
1995—Eastern Front Records—EFR 109
Available in the U.S.
Highly recommended for contemporary folk fans
Peter Mulvey—vocals, six-string guitar, twelve-string guitar
Jack Nicholas Cannon—bass guitar, mandocello
Ducky Carlisle, Jack Nicholas Cannon, David "Goody" Goodrich, Peter Mulvey, Mike Piehl, Rob Swalley, Jerry Potts, Amy Hartmann, Jennifer Kimball, Pamela Means
"Rapture" is pretty ambitious for a debut CD, combining as it does such disparate elements such as rock, folk, groove, instrumental, and even a spoken word track and a "radio play for voice and guitar". Yet it all fits together quite neatly. Underlying it all is a deep bass groove which pushes the whole album forward with a delicious inevitability (and also blew out one of my car speakers, but I think that was a worthwhile sacrifice). It's not just the groove though—another important thread is Mulvey's exceptional songwriting. I don't know how he does it, but he always seems to find some new twist or turn of phrase to put everything in a new light, or to put some bright image into your mind that you won't be able to get rid of for days.
1997—Eastern Front Records—EFR-CD-112
Available in the U.S.
If you liked Rapture you will probably like this.
Peter Mulvey—voice, six-string guitar, twelve-string guitar, high-strung guitar
David "Goody" Goodrich—electric guitar, mandolin, acoustic guitar, slide guitar, national guitar, keyboards
Deep Blue, as the name would suggest, has a much darker tone than Mulvey's debut album Rapture. Although the basic elements remain the same—Mulvey's songwriting skill and the deep bass section beneath it all—producer Nicholas Sansano has smoothed over a lot of the rougher edges, giving an album that is overall far more polished than the previous. The songs also are different, focusing less on hope and love and more on the darker side of life. It's another fairly ambitious effort from Mulvey, with the most ambitious track of all being "Birgit", in which Mulvey and Elizabeth London read the lyrics simultaneously with the vocals fading in and out between the two, giving a highly eerie effect. Other excellent tracks include the opening track "Grace", "Out Here" and "Midwife", probably the most lyrically capturing of all the songs on the album.
There is a mailing list devoted to discussion of the music of Peter Mulvey. To subscribe to deep-blue, send the following command in the body of an email message to firstname.lastname@example.org: subscribe deep-blue
Thanks to Sherlyn Koo for work on this entry.
DISCLAIMER: Comments and reviews in the Ectophiles' Guide are excerpted from the ecto mailing list or volunteered by members of the list. They are the opinions of music enthusiasts, not professional music critics.
|Entry last updated 2012-09-09 20:40:15.
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