Review: Nick Murphy’s Raw, Emotive Voice Felt Liberating at the Metro

Nick Murphy (formerly known as Chet Faker) brought his unique blend of soulful sounds and feel good tunes to Metro Chicago. The singer-songwriter hailing from Australia performed a set of some familiar tracks while also highlighting the best of his latest album Run Fast Sleep Naked before a packed venue of enthusiastic fans.

Opening for the singer was the Brooklyn-based electronic duo Beacon. It’s difficult to describe their dreamy, synth-heavy style of genre-bending music. However so, the duo’s soothing set showed off their cosmic sound and made you feel like you’re drifting off in space. Performing tracks including “Marion,” “On Ice,” and “IM U,” the duo proved to be the perfect act to start out Murphy’s show.

Without much of a delay, Nick Murphy took to the stage following Beacon’s set. Opening with “Hear It Now” off of Run Fast Sleep Naked, the singer accompanied his lines with the soft, ghostly notes of his violin bow playing against his guitar strings, creating a resounding, almost haunting sound. Murphy then transitioned into “Yeah I Care,” a much more upbeat, gritty track also off of his latest album. Throwing things back to his days as Chet Faker, Murphy performed a couple of fan favorite tracks, including “Gold” and “1998” from Built On Glass, a fan-favorite album.

Most of Murphy’s songs were accentuated by a symphony of vibrant strings, deep bass, and synths, which highlighted his raw, emotive voice and never deterred from it. Murphy’s setlist showed off the many different facets of his musical artistry. Just like the different styles of tracks featured in his latest album, Murphy’s set was also a mixture of various types of music and songs from his growing discography. Since renouncing his stage name back in 2016, it seemed as though Murphy finally felt more liberated to explore his musical style in his latest album. In Run Fast Sleep Naked, the singer experimented with an assortment sounds and genres. His colorful performance also reflected that sense of freedom and ease as well.

Wrapping up the evening, Murphy began to close out his set with “Talk Is Cheap,” “Novacane & Coca Cola,” and “Sanity,” before concluding the show with an brief encore. Performing “Believe (Me)” and “Medication,” he bid the crowd goodbye until the next time. As great as Murphy’s albums are, there nothing quite like listening to his music live.

Can’t get enough of Nick Murphy? Then be sure to listen to his album Run Fast Sleep Naked and check out one of his upcoming shows.

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Pearl Shin

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