Starting with the challenging angst of ‘Double Dare’, with shattering guitar over a curious but fierce stop-start rhythm while Murphy rages ever more strongly over the top, ‘In The Flat Field’ contains a wide variety of inspirations and ideas. The astonishingly precise rhythm section of David J and Haskins pulls off a variety of jaw-dropping performances, including the high-paced tension of the title track and the brooding crawl from ‘Spy In The Cab’. Ash, much like his longtime hero Mick Ronson, turns out to be a master of turning relatively simple guitar parts into apocalyptic explosions, from the background fills on ‘St. Vitus Dance’ to the brutal descending chords of ‘Stigmata Martyr’.</p>
<p>• Murphy, meanwhile, channels as much Iggy Pop as he does Bowie, proving to be no simple copyist of either, able to both maniacally sing-shout and take a somewhat lighter touch throughout.
Concluding with the seven-minute ‘Nerves’, an aptly titled piece that alternates between understated energy and unleashed power toward a dramatic ending, ‘In The Flat Field’ started off Bauhaus’ album career with a near-perfect bang.