Appearing onto the stage among a symphony of smoke and light, Nick Murphy fka Chet Faker engages in the beginning notes of “Meet You At Midnight”. The song, off of his third studio album, Run Fast, Sleep Naked, delicately places Murphy’s vulnerabilities in a potent manner. The audience is immediately invited to witness the arrival of Murphy; an artist who conveys his songwriting through critical thought and a captivating palette of genres. Gracing his skills between the piano and microphone, the Australian musician set the tone for a performance that demonstrated his exquisite musicianship.
Acclaimed tracks such as “Gold” and “1998” created buzz amoung the audience, as concertgoers sang along to the familiar indie electronica tracks. However, it was in the fleeting moments between tracks that Murphy proved his daring creativity. Accompanied by a live band complimented with a number of live eletronic elements, Murphy thrived in improvisation. Carrying immaculate transitions between compositions, the band sustained an exceptional connection creating a symmetry of cohesion. In need for contrast, “Yeah I Care” off his latest album descended that cohesion into orchestrated chaos, as Murphy and the band engaged in the mayhem of psychedelic rock.
As Nick introduced his newest compositions into the live setting, it’s apparent Run Fast, Sleep Naked is a vast departure from Murphy’s previous work. Following up on his polished debut Built On Glass (2014), his second studio album focuses on the fragmented thoughts and moments that came along during the artist’s four years of solitude while travelling. Recording his vocals in whatever spaces or environments stimulated him, Nick Murphy immersed himself in a process of self-discovery and supreme reflection. Making a transition from Chet Faker to Nick Murphy was no easy feat, but with the audience at The Wiltern hanging onto his every radiant note, the artist is a product of his bold rebirth.
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Cover photo: Mariana Martinez