David Turpin
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David Turpin

Dublin, Leinster, Ireland

Dublin, Leinster, Ireland
Band Pop Alternative


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Biographical Information"


The Late David Turpin is the stage name of the Irish-born musician and artist David Turpin. Critically acclaimed in his homeland, Turpin is now preparing his first album for international release.

Fastidiously detailed and luxuriously textured, Turpin's music is an eccentric but accessible breed of highly polished conceptual pop. Preoccupied with the numinous and the supernatural, his songs take in glistening analogue synthesizers, delicate live instrumentation and, perhaps most surprisingly, swaggering rhythms inflected by American R'n'B. Atop it all is Turpin's gossamer murmur of a vocal, floating from the speakers like the sweet nothings of a spectre bridegroom. Carefully assembling his songs at home and in the studio, Turpin has recorded with collaborators ranging from Villagers frontman Conor J. O'Brien to lauded chanteuse Cathy Davey.

Eschewing the confessional approach favoured by so many young songwriters, Turpin draws upon the iconography of the folkloric and the supernatural, as well as his own fertile imagination, to produce something that is entirely individual yet oddly mythic. Firm favourites at his live shows include 'The Red Elk', a sinister animal transformation tale set to swooning synthpop, and 'The Bone Dance', an adhesively catchy dance song that manages to locate epic significance in the skeletal structure. Alluding to death yet bursting with life, Turpin's music might gravitate toward the cemetary, but it finds endless humour, colour, and romance beneath the headstones.

Part seance and part cabaret, Turpin's live shows, in which he fronts an all-female band, are stylish and entertaining in a manner far removed from the strumming and rutting of so much live performance. He has opened for Marc Almond and toured with The Divine Comedy, and he is the only pop musician to have played in the Sculpture Hall at The Hugh Lane Gallery, Dublin (the oldest museum of contemporary art in the world). In 2010, he was commissioned by the Irish Film Institute to give a special performance in honour of the legendary underground filmmaker Kenneth Anger.

Turpin's richly imagined musical world may derive, to some degree, from his late discovery of pop music. Growing up in what he describes as a "Victorian house perpetually on the verge of collapse", Turpin didn't own a pop record until he was 16. "Pop music wasn't forbidden in the house," he says, "it just never came up. I think that's why, for me, it's always seemed strange, romantic, and slightly frightening." Now, in his own music, Turpin captures these very qualities and communicates them to his audience, inviting his listeners into an eerie world they may not wish to leave.
- Kabinet

"Complimentary Things That Have Been Said"

"Distinctive and sophisticated [...] possessed of a beautifully dry wit" - Sunday Business Post

"Highly original" - The Irish Times

"Weird and wonderful" - News of the World

"Beautiful [...] beguiling" - RTE

"Deliciously experimental [...] quietly sensational" - AU Magazine

"Scarily good" - The Star

"Goregeously stark [...] a super-introverted fusion of Prince and Leonard Cohen" - Metro

"Strikingly original" - Analogue Magazine - Various


David Turpin's debut album "The Sweet Used-To-Be" was released on April 4, 2008. Tracks from the album have received airplay on a range of national and regional radio stations, and have been extensively playlisted on Web-based streams.



David Turpin’s dark, tender electro-torch songs are unlike anything in contemporary Irish music. His album The Sweet Used-To-Be, released April 4 thru’ Kabinet Records, has drawn high praise from all sections of the Irish music press.

Drawing inspiration equally from the shimmer of processed pop and the experimentalism of the avant garde, Turpin produces music that has prompted comparisons ranging from Pet Shop Boys to the Velvet Underground, while remaining uniquely his own. Turpin’s refined arrangements – filled with swooning synths, pulsing 808/909 beats and sweet-voiced backing singers – envelop lyrics possessed of a rare emotional rawness, tender melodies blending with a melancholy undertow to convey a highly personal, romantic vision.

Turpin is also an accomplished visual artist. His visual sense is carried through to his coolly theatrical live performances, in which he appears at the centre of a five-piece band.