I think quotes are very dangerous things.
November 8, 2005 3:30 AM   Subscribe

Return of the Recluse. After twelve years' absence, this week sees the return of Kate Bush. Released in the States today, Aerial is being received to the expected glowing reviews. Called a prodigy by some, overrated by others, she has had an undeniable impact on a diverse range of artists.
posted by geckoinpdx (34 comments total)
I was going to post a reasoned reply, but then I saw fish tick saying that Cat Power couldn't sing and was consumed by rage.
posted by NinjaPirate at 5:05 AM on November 8, 2005

Then I re-read what was said and realised it had all been a terrible dream.
Sorry fish tick.

Back on-topic, China Drum's cover of "Wuthering Heights" was one of the pinnacles of the 90's indie scene, but probably only if you enjoyed the original.
posted by NinjaPirate at 5:08 AM on November 8, 2005

Hounds of Love stands as the default soundtrack of my college days. It also bring up a bunch of wistful, happy memories, but that's just part of the charm, I guess.

Her talent is undeniable. Her ability to push the borders so far that she falls off the country is also undeniable, and makes just about any recording she creates a gamble -- but anyone willing to explore that much of the musical map is bound to find good and bad.
posted by eriko at 5:14 AM on November 8, 2005

NinjaPirate: China Drum's cover of "Wuthering Heights" was one of the pinnacles of the 90's indie scene...

For Kate Bush covers you can also go to the Futureheads' take on "Hounds of Love" or Placebo's "Running Up That Hill".

For Kate Bush fans, waiting 11 years for a new album must be a drag. And I say that as a fan XTC, who just aren't as prolifc as they used to be.
posted by Slack-a-gogo at 5:23 AM on November 8, 2005

Personally I much preferred Mr. Floppy's (A band very much in the mould of TISM) version :-)

Placebo's Version of "Running Up That Hill" (from the Sleeping with Ghosts Bonus Covers Disc), is also very, very good. I'd say it eclipsed the original, but then I suppose some would hurt me.
posted by fFish at 5:27 AM on November 8, 2005

Thank you so much for this. Kate Bush is definitely the soundtrack to large pieces of my adolescence (especially The Dreaming, which is just such a well-realized album). Like Bjork, she was always brave enough to try something new, sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't, but she was rarely dull. Looking forward to the new album.
posted by biscotti at 5:28 AM on November 8, 2005 [1 favorite]

Kate Bush and Peter Gabriel are sort of the musical pillars of my youth. Oddly, while I loved Kate's music, I could never listen to it for more than an hour or so without wearing out on her voice.

I've put in an awful lot of individual hours on her stuff over the years, though, let me tell you. Some weird, weird stuff... but weirdly brilliant.

THANK YOU for letting me know about the album, I'll be ordering it posthaste. :)
posted by Malor at 5:50 AM on November 8, 2005

Has it been 11 years?

Honestly, I'd rather wait a decade for a good or great album, than to wade through an album with a single good track every two years. Reading that she was taking time off from producing to raise her son is quite reasonable.

But I would argue that her music defies classification. Certainly she has her share of catchy pop tunes, but as someone who was willingly dragged to opera and musical theatre at a tender age, Bush's music strikes me as musical theatre without the stage. Her songs drop you into the middle of a story with characters, plot, and setting, sometimes a monologue, and sometimes with Bush voicing multiple parts of a conversation. It strikes me as too smart for pop, which tends towards the shallow song for the dance floor or the drive home. Bush is one performer I can't listen to while I'm at work because it demands too much of my attention.

That said, I didn't like Bush for a long time because a college roomate would play her every night while going to sleep, ending with "Breathing" which is on my personal top-5 list of songs so disturbing, I frequently can't bear to listen to them.

That song makes me wonder what happened to the political pop of the 80's and early 90's? Probably Clear Channel and Dixie Chicks and Mellencamp getting blasted for having an opinion. Perhaps its pop that has gotten stupider.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 5:57 AM on November 8, 2005

Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush !!!!!!
Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush !!!!!!
Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush !!!!!!
Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush !!!!!!
Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush !!!!!!
Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush !!!!!!
Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush !!!!!!
Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush !!!!!!

I Love Tori
posted by Pendragon at 6:06 AM on November 8, 2005

ooooooooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhh i just know that somethin' good is gonna happen oooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhalllllright
posted by rxrfrx at 6:09 AM on November 8, 2005

Well, I know what I'm gonna be looking for at Amoeba this weekend.

(Things I miss in my life: my 'This Woman's Work' boxed set. Went away in all my movings and shiftings, and I do miss it, especially the two disks of non-albums and b-sides.)
posted by mephron at 6:33 AM on November 8, 2005

If we're talking covers, don't forget Maxwell had a hit a year ago with "This Woman's Work". Kind of an American Idol/R&B take on the song.
posted by fungible at 6:39 AM on November 8, 2005

The bits of Aerial I've heard online reveal that she's back, and better than she was in her last effort, The Red Shoes. This work does, however, have the feel of someone who has truly locked herself away from the influences of popular music -- like she's now emerging from her own, self-imposed cocoon, still stubbornly Kate Bush. Gotta respect that.
posted by Parlour Tricks at 6:46 AM on November 8, 2005

For the last week I've had Rocket's Tail from The Sensual World lodged immovably in my head. Probably because of Nov 5th.
So far undecided about Aerial, but Kate Bush doesn't necessarily see things the way others do and it might take me a while to catch up with her. It usually does.
Three cheers for Kate.
posted by Joeforking at 7:23 AM on November 8, 2005

Heh. I had been reading the ILM forums and seeing a lot of thread titles about Kate Bush. I remembered her from my childhood as someone my dad listened to, so I downloaded Hounds of Love about a month ago. I've given it a go a couple of times, but I'm still not sure how I feel about it. I like it, but a lot of it is just, you know, like hearing the soundtrack to long car rides-- I had turned it into background music so now it's a bit different to actively listen to it.
But (from my egocentric position) I do like the coincidence of rediscovering Kate Bush only to find out that she has a new album coming out after years of silence. Y'all should thank me. Anyone else you want me to listen to in the hopes of hearing a new album from them? Peter Gabriel's right out, I'm afraid. His big drums make me giggle. Perhaps Indio? Anyone remember them?
posted by klangklangston at 7:32 AM on November 8, 2005

I agree Parlour Tricks: Aerial is much more atmospheric than Red Shoes, which was very poppy, but always felt too by-the-numbers to me. I'm still learning Aerial, but I think I like it. It's not The Dreaming; it's more mature and considered. There's no doubt that it's Kate though.

On the first few listens through, I seem to prefer the first disk to the second, but I think that may change over time. I could not believe pi the first time I heard it. I still can't get it our of my head this morning.
posted by bonehead at 7:35 AM on November 8, 2005

I do so hope it's as good as they say. When I heard "The Dreaming" on the radio in Canada, I literally went out the next morning and bought the album -- and I was not disappointed.

However, I felt things went downhill for her somewhat after that. Of course, she's a real artist -- even her nose-blowing is better than 95% of all pop music. But I really hope this album is as good as those reviews!
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 7:36 AM on November 8, 2005

Indio = Big Hard Sun, right?
posted by you just lost the game at 7:39 AM on November 8, 2005

klangklangston --- The Hounds of Love is probably her most intentionally commercial album, Kate Bush singing pop songs. A better place to start with her is one of the earlier works: The Dreaming is perhaps her strongest single album, though the compilation The Whole Story may be the best place to get a feel of her work. The boxed set This Woman's Work is definitive, but probably too much to start with.
posted by bonehead at 7:42 AM on November 8, 2005

Wow. I hadn't really listened to her before just now -- well, besides This Woman's Work, which was thoroughly evangelized by the exgirlfriend referenced here. I'll definitely be picking up a copy of the Kate Bush CD. While we're discussing Kates, I'm a big fan of Kate Rusby.
posted by VulcanMike at 8:06 AM on November 8, 2005

Indio = Big Hard Sun, right?

I listened to that song incessantly. The whole album was great, but sadly, Gordon Peterson hasn't produced anything since.
posted by solid-one-love at 8:06 AM on November 8, 2005

Indio does indeed equal Big Hard Sun, another album that I remember from long car trips as a kid. Ergo, if I buy it, Peterson will immediately get to work on a new album, the damned slacker.

I'll take a look for The Dreaming. I saw Aerial already on a torrent, but I'm holding off on it. Maybe I'll buy it in a bit, but I doubt that I'm going to download more. Every now and then, my morals outstrip my curiousity.
posted by klangklangston at 10:07 AM on November 8, 2005

Tori Amos is NOT Kate Bush - Nobody said she was.

From the 3 snippets on her Web site, it sounds like more of the same. Anybody have a link to listen to the whole thing?
posted by mrgrimm at 10:37 AM on November 8, 2005

Lionheart was the first album I ever bought. My brother and friends thought she had a "weird" voice. I thought it was unearthly and beautiful.
posted by slatternus at 10:40 AM on November 8, 2005

...also that cover.
posted by bonehead at 10:50 AM on November 8, 2005

Stangely, she epitomises a generation of us who feel it is acceptable to be intelligent.
In that sense maybe she has "Americanised" us (women)???

Provocative or what.................
posted by Wilder at 12:59 PM on November 8, 2005

Oh I dunno bonehead, the cover of Never For Ever pretty much takes the cake in my book, what with all the things coming from... somewhere under her dress.

Been a Kate fan forever, and quite looking forward to her new release. For my two pennies, I think Hounds of Love is probably her best album, although I do love The Dreaming - that whole album is about pain and it cries out in every note and song.
posted by elendil71 at 1:01 PM on November 8, 2005

Not to derail this thread, because I loves me some Kate Bush, but....

Why did the record company release the album one week earlier in the UK then in the states? In this day and age where getting content for free, it seems like a huge risk.

Also, I waited 12 damn years for this album -- I did NOT want to wait an additional week.

With that said, damn. Pi is just absolutely amazing.

Welcome back, Kate.
posted by hummus at 1:31 PM on November 8, 2005

And to clarify -- I will go out and purchase the album tonight.
posted by hummus at 1:53 PM on November 8, 2005

In this day and age where getting content for free, it seems like a huge risk.

Actually there was a lot of effort put into making sure that it didn't leak; I couldn't find it for love nor money (and I know where to look). I think that the earlier release had to do with the labels; new releases are on Monday in the UK (I think) and on Tuesdays in the States. But British artists often release their work earlier in the UK than here.
posted by geckoinpdx at 1:54 PM on November 8, 2005

geckoinpdx, you just weren't looking in the right places... I've had this for a week (and will be buying it tonight)
posted by papercake at 2:24 PM on November 8, 2005

apparently not, because you're the third person to tell me that. I'm going to have to turn in my l33t badge.
posted by geckoinpdx at 3:46 PM on November 8, 2005

Her new CD is "flying off the shelf" according to the clerk at Virgin Megastore in West Hollywood today, where I bought my copy of Aerial.

Who would have thought that Kate Bush would one of the biggest things in 2005?
posted by goofyfoot at 8:08 PM on November 9, 2005

geckoinbpx, check your email. The address in your profile.
posted by faceonmars at 9:52 PM on November 9, 2005

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