Pauline Murray, frontwoman of iconic first-wave punks Penetration, today announced a new solo album and shared its first single, Secrets.
Elemental, which is more in line with the music she produced in the early 80s with post-punk/synthpop band The Invisible Girls, will be released on 25 September on Polestar Records.
As singer in Penetration, Pauline was the voice behind one of punk’s most powerful anthems, Don’t Dictate, and their debut album, 1978’s Moving Targets, is regarded as a classic.
This new set of songs is a shift away from the guitar-driven Penetration sound, and sees Pauline working with Steve Hopkins from The Invisible Girls on keyboards, and Roxy Music drummer Paul Thompson.
She also continues her long-term partnership with Penetration co-founder Robert Blamire, while current band members Paul Harvey, Steve Wallace and Ken Goodinson are also involved.
Recorded in France during October 2016 and completed at their own Polestar Studios in Newcastle last year, Elemental contains 10 songs whose subject matter includes the power of nature, emotional ties, reflections, depression, missing persons and ancestors.
Lead single Secrets was written and originally recorded on a four-track Teac tape machine in the late 1980s, but the only copy that existed was on cassette, as the original tape was long lost.
“It was mixed to a cassette and left in a box for years,” explains Pauline. “When we were recording the new album, we remembered this track, found the cassette but couldn’t find the original master tape. All the parts were there, and it sounded really good, but the recording was unusable.
“We decided to re-record it and tried to replicate the original arrangements, keyboard parts and sounds whilst maintaining the original atmosphere. It’s amazing that something hidden away for so long can assert itself fully into the here and now. Like a secret being revealed.”
“Lyrically, it’s about the pressure to conform to social perceptions and expectations, having to rely on body language and energy exchange to see what’s really going on.”
Pauline admits it’s a dream come true having Paul Thompson play drums on the album.
“As a 15-year-old, I was a big Roxy Music fan. I would never have thought that their drummer Paul Thompson, who played on all those fantastic records, would be playing on my album all those years later.
“Paul came into our studios with Lindisfarne and we plucked up the courage to ask him to play on some of the tracks. It was really exciting when he agreed and an absolute buzz to hear him playing on the songs.”
You can order Pauline Murray’s album Elemental HERE.