Music fans may already know Nick Murphy, even if they don't recognize his name.
Musician Chet Faker decided to shed his stage name last year, curiously addressing fans with a public yet ambiguous Facebook post that offered no reason except "things changed in my life." Many didn't find out until last spring when a guy named Nick Murphy, formerly Chet Faker, announced a world tour, which stops at the Bomb Factory in Dallas on Oct. 25.
You could consider this run of concert dates a coming-out tour. After all, Murphy still promotes himself with "fka Chet Faker" tacked onto promotional materials and show posters. But the name change might not be as spontaneous as some think. After spending the better part of a decade touring as electronic producer Chet Faker, Murphy says to use a new name -- or "to remove a moniker" -- was a natural evolution.
"I realized what I had created with Chet Faker was a fraction or portion of much larger fabric that I had always been writing, but never incorporating or releasing," he says. "Even when I started considering putting music out as Nick Murphy ... I didn't have to think about the concept. It just is whatever I feel."
Murphy's decision to employ a stage name in the first place was born out of necessity, he says. Years ago, he scheduled a gig at a club in his native Australia and fans showed up expecting a different Nick Murphy.
With several singles and an EP now under his belt, Murphy isn't worried that will happen again. In fact, he doesn't much care. Reverting to his real name has given Murphy the freedom to play whatever he damn well pleases.
"That's my name, it's been my name my whole life. It's not some name I've only known as long as my fans have known me," he says. "I was surprised, you know, how many sort of invisible walls just fell down when I started sort of moving in that direction."
So what's the music like? Don't ask Murphy to describe it -- his original qualm with Chet Faker was being boxed into a genre, he says. Missing Link, Murphy's EP which came out in May, explores wider electronic soundscapes than Chet Faker fans might be used to, from the breakbeat-leaning "Weak Education" to eight-minute synth epic "Forget About Me." His newest single, "Medication," swings the opposite way, leaning heavily on organic piano, drum and bass lines.
Murphy composed the music for both projects similarly, playing and recording vocal, piano, guitar and other instrumental tracks before weaving them together with software. (He switched from Ableton to Pro Tools recently.) When he comes to the Bomb Factory, Murphy will bring a four-piece band, featuring musicians who play live bass, synthesizer, guitar, saxophone and drums. Murphy says he'll also bring the spirit of Chet Faker.
"I don't quite have enough new songs" to leave out Chet Faker material, Murphy says. "I don't want people to think that era is dead or anything ... everything that was encompassed in that music will still be a part of what happens next, but there will also be other aspects to it.
"People get scared of change, but I also think that's my job," he says. "I can't call myself a creative and do the same thing forever."
Plan your life
Nick Murphy performs Oct. 25 at 8 p.m. at the Bomb Factory, 2713 Canton St., Dallas. $35-$99. Buy tickets here.