Planet Mosh: David Duchovny Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester 19th February 2019

A Planet Mosh writer recounts their experience attending David Duchovny’s performance in Manchester

By Alex English

Photo: Jane Jimenez

The name David Duchovny might be familiar if you were a fan of the American cult sci-fi show The X-Files where he became notably known for his role as FBI agent Fox Mulder.  Duchovny also gained famed playing Hank Moody in the adult sitcom Californication.  He now joins the list of other, cross over actors like Juliette Lewis, Bruce Willis and Kiefer Sutherland who have ventured on a musical career. At the age of 58, Duchovny proves it’s never too late to put your heart and soul into pursuing your dreams.  Aside from writing three novels; he’s now released his second album Every Third Thought.

With a packed out show at the Royal Northern College of Music, you could easily think that it’d be a sombre affair with a seated performance but you couldn’t be further from the truth as David Duchovny demos that he is as serious about his singing career and it’s not just a fad or knee jerk reaction or a mid-life crisis as some may speculate.

David Duchovny looks a little apprehensive as approaches the stage, slowly, taking his position in the centre.  You can’t quite see his backing band that is still emerging from the shadows but you can hear Pat McCusker with his a big sounding  Gibson ES guitar being played, it’s distinctive clear-cut sound soars out over the audience on the evocative Spiral.

There’s nothing fossilized about this newish music agent.   But you’d be right to assume that some of the audience is only here to catch a glimpse of their favourite A-list star.  Whilst others are sat curiously in awe of the man on stage, the fevered front row fans have done their homework and are singing along to their icon.   You might say whatever Duchovny turned his hand to people would be there but you’re going to get that if you’re renowned for doing something else.   I like that David has a following, and for whatever reason, they are out in support.  As many a musician knows, weathering venues of all shapes and sizes have to be done to make your musical imprint.

Interacting with the crowd appears to be second nature to Duchovny. From bantering to fans down the front, he misses no one out as he breaks free from the stage during his cover of The Velvet Undergrounds Sweet Jane.  Performing a victory lap around the seated patrons, he’s; like Pac-man as he greets his fans up and down the aisles, I even got a high-five from the back row.  It just showed, no matter the celebrity status he’s just a down to earth guy.    Returning to the stage and holding his mike aloft, his fans sing back to him the chorus as he completes his cover version of this classic rock song.

Stranger in the Sacred Heart holds a special place for David as he explains that this song is about his father, and he wrote it about his dad and hopes the lyrics will mean something to you as they do to him.  Placing his hand to his chest, you can feel his passion for this striking melodic rock number as it crescendos full force towards the end of its journey.

How would you describe David Duchovny vocally? Personally, he reminds me of Mason Jennings with the way he performs some of his songs, they are reflective and weighty. With his deep husky voice and smouldering undertones, his vocals wouldn’t be out of place on some of the more profound Bon Jovi songs.

Hell or Highwater from his first album got Duchovny all in a flurry, as the audience got out their phones and shone them like little flames of light towards him on stage. Messing up the lyrics, he halts the song and responds by saying ‘’ I’ve fucked up this song and it all your fault, and I love you for it.” ”So I’m gonna try to make it through the rest of the song without weeping’’ and  ‘’Just like Meatloaf you took the words right of my mouth’’. As his band gears up, Duchovny manages to sing out the rest of the song in beautiful surround of torchlight from the crowd.

Taking an encore the band and David leave the stage.  Duchovny returns wearing a Man-united- football shirt, it goes down alright with the fans albeit with a bit of booing from some of them, that aren’t local football supporters!

Singing the beautiful piano-based Let It Rain which is accompanied by his talented violinist.  David then tells us the next song was a huge hit in the 80s as he finishes his set with a cover of Blue Oyster Cult’s Turn Out the Lights. Almost everyone is stood up out of their seats and rocking out to this memorable 80s hit. I don’t think Duchovny thought much of the football shirt as he promptly removed it towards the end of the set and in turn received a rapturous round of applause!

Playing for an hour and a half the time seems to fly by. Duchovny and co have cleverly honed their own sound as well as throwing in some crowd-pleasing cover songs into the mix, which made for a great evening of easy listening rock with David being the entertaining humble host.

I read that Duchovny said in an Interview ”come see the actor, stay for the music” and he couldn’t be more precise as tonight we got to see the musical side of this multi-talented showman. Did I mention he can play the guitar, it just didn’t surface in tonight’s show, now that would be something I like to see him do!

NewStatesman: “Watching Agent Mulder busting Eighties rock moves, I’m struck by a strange sense of sincerity”

A writer for New Statesman describes their experience enjoying David Duchovny performing live in London.

By Kate Mossman

David Duchovny wrote a song about the time Bob Dylan did an ad for Chrysler in conjunction with the Super Bowl. The song, like a much-simplified version of “American Pie”, runs over many sad verses.

“Joker man takes off his mask,” it goes. “Reveals a car salesman at last…

Worked up quite a thirst

Watchin’ all them bubbles burst…

Save me a place at the bar

Bobby Dylan was sellin’ cars

Singing live at the Shepherd’s Bush Empire in London last week, Duchovny – best known for playing Mulder in The X-Files – updated the 2015 track as if to acknowledge that a sell-out Dylan might be the least of America’s problems. “Impeach that motherfuckin’ fascist in the White House!” he cried at the end, which was a bit of a shame as far as I was concerned, because a song slagging off Dylan at length struck me as really quite original in itself.

Duchovny also has a song about a Roman coin weighing down the pocket of a man who’s trying to get to heaven. And another about the time he went to the Sacré-Cœur and learned, to his astonishment, that when people pray in a church, they sometimes pray for other people, and not just themselves.

Unlike part-time musician Johnny Depp, who wanted to be a rock star long before he wanted to be an actor, Duchovny only picked up the guitar in 2011, and perhaps it shows. His band, who recall a group of enthusiasts in a garage playing for the first time, produce a thick bed of seat-shaking reverb, and you wish David himself had a better voice. Whenever he steps near the front of the stage, he gets a whooped fanfare from female fans. Flat of stomach and firm of bicep, he occasionally resembles a stripper at a hen do, though he refuses to take off his shirt.

Duchovny’s songs – all of them written in his apartment, he says – have been compared to the songs of the alt-country band Wilco, but I think that this is to overlook a certain grandeur in the lyrics, which are more suited to the world of classic rock. His albums have names such as Hell or Highwater: there are probably more people here tonight than bought that record. Half the audience seem to be standing at the side of the stage – a ghostly chorus of mates from the world of show business, one or two of them brought out to tinkle a cowbell. It’s a reminder that when you are rich and famous, you can try your hand at any art form and there’ll be an audience for it – even if the audience is mainly fans of The X-Files.

Across town, Duchovny’s old compadre Gillian Anderson appears in the West End production of All About Eve to mixed reviews. According to Twitter, Mulder and Scully met the day before and took a selfie. It is good to see that both are challenging themselves in front of a small, live audience in London.

Duchovny’s on-stage movements are wondrous strange, so completely out of proportion with the meshy hum of his music. In a ban-the-bomb T-shirt, and with little stonewashed legs, he takes his cue from Eighties hair metal bands, executing a string of little star jumps, jerking up and down with his fists clenched in time with the beat, and sliding on his knees into the spotlight – David Lee Roth meets Freddie Mercury meets a VHS exercise routine.

Duchovny’s moves save the whole night for me because they make his project feel personal – so unpolished, so lumbersome, so unedited and exposed. That he genuinely knows music is beyond doubt: he recently described Van Morrison as “constantly searching for another vowel” and he wants a 16-minute gospel piece by the Shekinah Glory Ministry played at his funeral. But unlike other A-listers – Kevin Costner with his band the Modern West; Hugh Laurie and Jeff Goldblum with their high-profile turns at the piano – Duchovny’s vanity project is, at the end of the day, just too scruffy to be vain.

Ramzine: David Duchovny steals Shepherd’s Bush’s heart

Ramzine covers in detail David Duchovny’s recent performance in London as part of his European tour.

By Claudia Mancino

Actor, writer, producer, director, novelist, and singer-songwriter. Whether you are into music or into cinema and TV, there’s no way you wouldn’t have heard of David Duchovny. Tonight Shepherd’s Bush is hosting a unique event as David has embarked in a long European tour called Every Third Thought. The name comes from his latest album released last year which followed the success of Hell Or Highwater. This man definitely didn’t need to follow the usual procedure of chasing labels or handing out demos. People already knew him because of his many characters on the big screen and some of the public probably decided to attend his gig to see agent Fox Mulder or cheeky player Hank Moody on stage. As much as this could sound like an easy route for David, it also leaves space for music critics to question his talent which is absolutely unfair to David as a musician. Approaching gigs like this with an open mind is always the key. From what I heard on CD his music sounds heartfelt, genuine and effortless. On the other hand there’s no element of surprise, in all honesty nothing too innovative comes out from it but we have to remember that this is not an 18 year old guy who dreams to make it big in the music business. David took his first guitar lessons as an adult during the making of ‘Californication’, although he’s mostly self-taught it’s impressive to see this man having such a brilliant control of his voice on stage. Surely those vocal lessons he has admittedly said to have taken have eventually paid off.
It’s officially time for the main act and Duchovny starts his set on time and with a song from the new album titled ‘Spiral’. Shepherd’s Bush is an all seated venue tonight but on the lower level every single person is standing up, clapping and dancing. “Thank you London, this is the last night of our tour” says David before playing ‘Every Third Thought‘, a great representation of his latest record because of his assuasive yet catchy sound. Third on is the vibrant ‘3000’ from the album Hell Or Highwater. Looking at the public, it’s clear that fans are fully hooked, women in particular. It’s no secret that Duchovny has always been seen as a sex-symbol, he keeps himself well but the most attractive thing about him is his culture. He’s extremely intelligent and it shows when he speaks so eloquently to his audience. He has got only two albums to exhibit tonight but somehow it’s enough. He knows how to make this a broad show because he’s charming and funny and this formula definitely works. At times he even looks like he’s performing to an empty room due to his unique way of getting lost in what he is doing and this is one of his strengths. He doesn’t need to impress his fans with perfection as no one is there to listen to a seasoned singer hitting all the high notes. Instead we are all here to have a good time and everyone seems to be enjoying themselves. David has a superlative stage presence, even when he comes across as kinda shy at times, it all makes sense and it’s all part of a successful and genuine delivery of his work. What’s most surprising is the way he constantly moves on stage and waves at his fans, he doesn’t like to stay still. When I pointed it out to him after the show David funnily replied that “sometimes you just need a good pair of sneakers”.
Tonight he also includes two covers ‘Stay’ by Bowie and ‘Burnin’ For You’ by Blue Oyster Cult with the latter being performed later in the encore. Both are well executed and David succeeds in maintaining his distinctive approach when giving his own interpretation. During the gig he makes the audience sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to his keyboard player who was turning thirty and then calls his tour manager Kerry Lee on stage to kindly thank her for all the hard work she had put in this tour. The night concludes with David singing ‘Half Life’ right in the middle of the public and if that wasn’t enough he performs a magnificent encore which includes ‘Let It Rain’‘Burnin’ For You’ and ‘When The Whistle Blows’. But it’s not the end, really. In fact David comes back for an extra song, a treat for London who gets to hear an excellent cover of The Velvet Underground ‘Sweet Jane’. The band leave Shepherd’s Bush super enthusiastic and energised by what they have seen. Tonight this multi-talented man has cleverly surrounded himself with a very skilled band who has accompanied the singer in a magnificent way throughout the show, however David’s command of the stage is his strength and it’s the main reason why he is a show stealer. As he waves goodbye, his fans are applauding him copiously and definitely hoping for him to come back soon.

ABC News Radio: The truth is out there, David Duchovny takes his music overseas

ABC News Radio checks in with David Duchovny amidst his 2019 European tour.

By Stephen Iervolino

Photo: Jane Jimenez

(NEW YORK) — X-Files actor, director, and author David Duchovny recently released his second album, Every Third Thought, and is currently on tour overseas in support of it.

After dates in the States, he and his band played Moscow, St. Petersburg, Bucharest, Budapest, and Vienna last week.

Duchovny plays Poland tonight, followed by a Saturday night show in Berlin, and dates follow next week in the Netherlands, Manchester, and Dublin.

Duchovny tells ABC Radio of overseas audiences, “Somehow they’re just really receptive. Not that they’re not receptive here. But I think the mere fact that you’ve loaded up your gear and humped across the ocean, and came to their home to play for them — there’s a certain kind of appreciation for that.”

“I never thought I’d perform for anybody, let alone record,” admits the actor about exploring his musical side later in life. “So I felt no pressure at all…It was just like a dare to myself, to try to write a song, you know?”

Duchovny noted that there’s a, “double edged sword,” when it comes to actors trying to stretch their musical muscles.

“Without my notoriety in other fields, there’s no way that I could play the size of the rooms [that I play] — or even play at all, and I realize that,” he says. However, he allows, “In many ways it doesn’t bother me at all that — let’s say half the people came out because they wanted to see, you know, an actor that they like up there. I’m pretty confident that the music stands on its own….You know, it’s either going to sit in your ear in a nice way or it’s not.”

Duchovny and company wrap things up next Friday night, February 22, at London’s O2 Shepherd’s Bush Empire concert hall.

The Irish News: Come for the Actor, Stay for the Music

The Irish News interviews David about his debut show in Ireland and what inspired him to pursue music and touring.

By Lorraine Wylie

TO SCI-FI fans, he’s the good-looking FBI agent Fox Mulder from television’s The X-files. But, in a career spanning 30 years, ‘conspiracy theorist’ is just one character David Duchovny has brought to life.

With over 30 movies and numerous television shows under his belt, the American A-lister has earned a string of coveted awards, including two Golden Globes. He’s also turned his hand, with some success, to writing, directing and producing. Little wonder Duchovny’s name has joined the stars on Hollywood’s walk of fame.

Now, he has a new role – singer/songwriter. With two albums to date, Hell or High Water plus the current offering, Every Third Thought, it seems Duchovny is already striking a chord with music fans. Ahead of his European tour, the star took time from his busy schedule to tell me about his latest odyssey.

Read the full interview on The Irish News website here.

Louder Sound: David Duchovny – 10 Records That Changed My Life

Louder Sound gets the scoop on which 10 songs had the biggest impact on David Duchovny’s life.

By Fraser Lewry

David Duchovny is not your normal rock star. For a start, he’s bona fide Hollywood A-lister, with The X-Files and Californification under his belt and Golden Globes for both on the mantelpiece.

He’s also a novelist. In 2005 he published Holy Cow: A Modern-Day Dairy Tale, a madcap adventure about a dairy cow named Elsie Bovary who decides to move to India because she’s heard that cattle are revered there. He followed this with Bucky F*cking Dent, a tragi-comedy about a man with a battery-powered fish.

And he’s a musician. While the usual route from successful actor to serious musician is to toss money in the direction of a favourite genre – see Jeff Goldblum (jazz) and Hugh Laurie (blues) – Duchovny’s approach feels less folly and more heartfelt.

For a start, he writes his own material. It’s alt-rock in a Wilco vein, grown-up, adventurous songs of melancholy and introspection, sung in a voice that – while unpolished in places, as if he hasn’t quite yet figured out the shape of his own sound – fits the music perfectly naturally.

With two albums under his belt – 2015’s Hell or Highwater was followed by last year’s Every Third Thought – he’s taking the show on the road, backed by New York band Weather. He’ll play Manchester on February 19 and Dublin on the 20th, before wrapping up the UK leg of the tour with a show at London’s Shepherd’s Bush Empire on the 22nd.

See the full list of songs on Louder Sound’s website here.

Music Radar – David Duchovny: “I Guess I Can Say I’m a Songwriter Now!”

Music Radar talks to Duchovny about his upcoming European tour, as well as his experiences with songwriting.

By Rich Chamberlain

“My notoriety as an actor is my leg-up,” David Duchovny tells MusicRadar ahead of his far-reaching European tour. “I get to fill places that I wouldn’t be able to fill just because of my music.”  

Duchovny’s feet are firmly planted on the ground when it comes to discussing the European run of dates which kicks off this week in Moscow and winds up on 22 February in London.

“I can take my music there and I am perfectly happy and a realist about how I can fill these places. I don’t care why people came to see me, it’s just great that they did even if it’s because they know me from this or that but now they can listen to the music.”

The thing is, while fans of Duchovny’s TV and movie work may part with their cash out of curiosity, the X-Files star has tunes to back up the chutzpah of a well-known face launching a music career in his 50s.

If Duchovny’s 2015 debut Hell or Highwater was the sound of a relatively inexperienced musician finding his feet, 2018’s Every Third Thought is a marked step up, filled with assured songwriting and his ever-increasing confidence as a musician and singer. Even better, it’s all rooted in the 58-year-old’s most treasured influences.

“I’m a British invasion guy,” he says. “When I was growing up it was all the Beatles, Stones, Who, Kinks, Elton John and then as I got a little older it was Allman Brothers, Sly and the Family Stone, Al Green, Stevie Wonder.”

As Duchovny (who is also an acclaimed author with three novels under his belt since 2015) prepared to head out to Moscow for that first show, we caught up with him to talk his unlikely solo career, the joy of his precious Martin and how he’s bravely battling against gear acquisition syndrome.

Read the full interview on Music Radar’s webiste here.

Budapest Business Journal: Welcoming David Duchovny – the Musician – to Budapest With ‘Open Ears’

Budapest Business Journal gets a chance to talk with David Duchovny before his debut visit to Budapest.

By David Holzer

Photo: Jane Jimenez

Actor, director, writer and now singer-songwriter and performer David Duchovny comes across as a serious dude.

This might be because he’s talking to me, a complete stranger, via WhatsApp. Or, because he’s dreading being asked if there will ever be another series of “The X-Files”, the sci-fi TV series that made his name way back in the early ’90s, much to his surprise. I don’t blame him.

I finally make him laugh when I ask him if he plans to try being an artist next. And at least one of us gets to relax a little.

Duchovny is clearly a bright guy. He has an English literature degree from the United States’ prestigious Princeton University and has written three novels. The first two, “Holy Cow” and “Bucky F*cking Dent” hit the New York Times Best Sellers’ list. “Miss Subway”, his latest, has had excellent reviews.

And now Duchovny is doing music. He’s clearly a fan, comfortable talking about anyone from Bob Dylan to The Clash. “Hell or Highwater”, his first album, came out in 2015. The second, “Every Third Thought”, was released on vinyl and CD towards the end of 2018. He will be at MOM Sport in Budapest on February 11. Which is why I’m interviewing him.

Read the full interview on Budapet Business Journal’s website here.

People: David Duchovny on His Relationship with His Father: I ‘Didn’t Get as Much of My Dad as I Wanted’

People sits with David Duchovny to discuss the deeper meaning behind some of his new music.

By Jodi Guglielmi

Photo: Don Arnold/Wireimage

David Duchovny is letting go of any hard feelings toward his father.

The X-Files actor stopped by PEOPLE Now on Wednesday and opened up about how becoming a dad changed his outlook on his own childhood.

“You let go of so much stuff,” he said. “Because you’re like, this is impossible! No wonder we all make mistakes.”

Duchovny said his parents’ divorce when he was young affected his relationship with his dad.

“I probably didn’t get as much of my dad as I wanted as a kid,” he said. “There was always that kind of hunger for him.”

Duchovny shares two children with his ex Téa Leoni: daughter Madelaine West Duchovny, 19, and son Kyd Miller Duchovny, 16.

Duchovny, who is also a musician, channeled his feelings about his father in his new song “Stranger in the Sacred Heart,” which he wrote while touring in Europe.

In 2003, Duchovny’s father, Amram Duchovny, died from heart disease in Paris. He was 75.

“Being in Paris where my father died, I felt a little shutdown, a little sad,” Duchovny said. “This kind of opened me up a little bit.”

1010Wins: David Duchovny on his new music — and of course, ‘The X-Files’

1010Wins interviews David Duchovny and his band about their new music they’re taking on tour to Europe this year.

David Duchovny is no stranger to wearing different hats — from actor to director to musician to a slew of other roles — and that’s exactly how he likes it.

“I just like change and I like to find different ways of expression,” Duchovny — who was joined in-studio with his bandmates Colin Lee and Pat McCusker — told 1010 WINS’ Kyle McMorrow.

His latest video is for the track “Stranger in the Sacred Heart” from his album “Every Third Thought.”

The song is about his father and his death, and the seed of its origins were planted a few years ago when Duchovny was performing in Paris, where his father retired.

“The songs that I write tend to be personal, although I try to make them universal at the same time,” Duchovny said, “so it’s not a confessional enterprise that I’m into.”

Watch the full video interview on 1010Wins’s website here.