Sometime Dead Can Dance drummer Peter Ulrich takes a detailed trip back in time, to catalogue the band’s journey from shoe-string budget experimentalists to internationally esteemed sound artists.
Peter Ulrich describes his suburban upbringing in Harrow. He dabbles in music as a teenager and dips his toes into arts marketing as a theatre press officer. Meanwhile, the first inception of Dead Can Dance takes shape in Melbourne, Australia; at the helm are Brendan Perry and Lisa Gerrard (now most famous for her Grammy-winning Gladiator film score collaboration with Hans Zimmer). In 1982 the pair relocate to London in search of a recording deal. The musicians pursue a deep interest in ritual and ceremony drawing on global traditions and processes of immersion in sound. Gerrard distinctively uses a glossolalia singing technique. Paths cross when Perry invites Ulrich to audition in an estate community hall on the Isle of Dogs, where they are neighbours. Embarking upon the road not yet taken, as a Dead Can Dance percussionist and tour manager Ulrich’s journey begins.