Back to Moments 2.0.
-- Andrew Marvick (IED)
[ordered by date]
[Attention! This collection is far from complete, because I am not very much interested in rating etc. ! WIE]
Date: Thu, 09 Sep 1993 04:23:11 -0400 (EDT)
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (N. Richard Caldwell)
Subject: The Red Shoes: First Impressions!
We've heard it. Yep, the whole darned thing. The Red Shoes. What do we think? Well read on if you don't mind spoilers...
But first let's talk about this single, "Eat the Music." At first glance this thing looks like something by Carcass. It's not particularly attractive. If this is Kate's idea of fruit cocktail I think I'll pass.
"Eat the Music" is pretty much what I expected from some of the comments here, "mostly harmless." The latin beat doesn't bother me, it's just not particularly interesting. The lyrics don't do much for me either but I think we'll give this one a bit more time to simmer before giving it a thumbs up or down. If nothing else, it's great to hear some actual brass instruments in there instead of cheesy synth sounds.
Whoever decided to put the 12" mix of "Eat the Music" right after the original cut should be removed immediately. It's like those mock Monty Python endings, "and now for your listening pleasure, 9 *more* minutes of "Eat the Music." The difference is that the extra Monty Python bits where always interesting. So at this point I was starting to get concerned. I desperately want to like this new album and this single wasn't pushing any buttons either way.
Then "Big Stripey Lie" comes crunching and grinding in. Yow! Kate referees a grunge match between Neil Young and Nigel Kennedy? Huh? I have no idea what this is about yet but I love it. I just have to be sure to hit stop before "Candle in the Wind" starts which is a shame because you really need some time to recover from "Big Stripey Lie."
Now I feel a bit better. My faith in Kate's ability to do something new and exciting, I'm ready to give "The Red Shoes" a fair listen.
Here are some very preliminary thoughts on the new album based on a first listening (and before you ask, no, we can't make copies). My impressions are still pretty sketchy, opinions are still under construction.
First up is "Rubberband Girl." This one is good fun. I don't understand why on earth they didn't go with this for a single in the US. Someone at Columbia needs to go back to the mail room. Besides, the "HIkeeba!" picture in the "Rubberband Girl" ad is much more pleasant to look at than traumatically bisected produce.
"Moments of Pleasure," as seen on TV. It's growing on me. Very nice.
"Song of Solomon" Hmmmmmmmm hmmmmm. Don't want your bullshit, just want your sexuality? Is this the male or female speaking? I don't know, but it's an interesting song. This song includes some harmonies that are either the Trio Bulgarka or Kate doing a very good imitation. The good news is that it's much more subtle than on "The Sensual World." (Not that I don't love some of the unsubtle parts they did on TSW, but I really didn't need any more of the The Sensual World sound on this album, thanks. On this track Kate even seems to recall that you don't have to use all 48 tracks all the way through the song.
"Lily" starts with an old woman talking cosmic religiony stuff and the song goes on about protecting oneself in life with a ring of fire. Gabriel in before, Rapheal behind, Micheal to the right, someone else (Eurial?) to the the left. Hmmm, somehow I doubt that Kate is singing about Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles...
"The Red Shoes" tells the story of the red shoes, probably the movie version. At the start this sounds a lot like one of Caterwaul's mandolin songs or Heart's "Sylvan Song."
"Top of the City" sounds like a fairly standard "person looks out across the city, longing for their lost love" track. No opinion, yet.
"Constellation of the Heart" Turn the telescopes inside out and point them away from the Big Sky? Kinda nice, very poppy, dancey track.
"Why Should I Love You?" drips purple Prince ooze from every chorus. And no, I don't mean that in a derogatory way. It's a pretty good track, actually.
"You're The One." One word: wow. Kate rocks her blues to a lighter shade of pale, sits in with the Trio and jams with one of the guitar gods. Awesome track! I only wish it had an ending. I generally hate it when songs fade out and this is even worse because this song cries out for some kind of ending.
Our overall impression? Very positive. Nobody is likely to compare this album to Kate's best work but we think it's a step forward from TSW. Lyrically we'll have to wait and see but musically I think Kate makes better use of her voice and has done some more interesting arrangements. I really couldn't judge much about the engineering in that first listen but perhaps that's a good sign.
Did anyone notice that Love Hounds are mentioned in the promotional flyer that Columbia has circulated to retailers? More on that tomorrow.
Date: Thu, 23 Sep 1993 04:01:56 -0400 (EDT)
From: email@example.com (N. Richard Caldwell)
Subject: Re: Kate Reviews (and more Red Shoes Impressions)
Top of the City.
Growing on me rapidly, very sad and probably very personal. I wonder if this song is referring to a specific place.
"Take me up to the top of the city
And put me up on the angel's shoulders"
This would be the highest point in some city, evidently with angel sculptures of some kind. "Put me up on the angel's shoulders" could just be a metaphor but I think it's supposed to be literal as well. She'd like to get up to the highest point in the city on this sculpture, but she would also like to be up on the angel's shoulders to see what her loved one is up to now ("she's no good for you, baby").
> Oh, one of the lines in TRS is..
"And this curve... it's your smile... and this cross... it's your heart... and this line... it's your path".
Punctuated with some strange vocal noises. This album has lots of those interesting background vocals that you have to spend some time decoding.
My favorite so far is "You're The One," another sad one. If this song is as personal as it seems, it's difficult to imagine Kate actually working with Del on the song.
"It's alright I'll come round when you're not in
And I'll pick up all my things"
The song opens with this dramatic phrase and goes on to build an almost desperate sense of loss before fading out. I mentioned before that I don't care for the fade out but fade-outs always seemed to me to indicate to me that the feelings or issues in a song remain unresolved and that may be appropriate for this song. Still, I think the song fades out a bit too early.
Another favorite is "Lily" the song that may be Kate's latest "how do I protect my space" song. This time, Lily advices to protect yourself with fire and a formidable collection of guardian angels. I mentioned a spoken part at the beginning. Here it is, most of it is pretty clear. I'm uncertain of the last word...
Oh thou, who giveth sustenance to the universe
from whom all things proceed
to whom all things return
unveil to us the face of the true spiritual son
hidden by a disc of golden light
that we may know the trueth
and do our whole duty
as we journey to thy sacred f(ield?)
I can't wait to hear what you folks think of "Constellation of the Heart." Missy pointed out that this track sounds more than a little like something from Tori Amos' "Y Kant Tori Read." Very dance poppy but still lots of fun. There is a long part at the end where Kate has a dialog with her chorus. Kate's part is on the right...
Think you'd better wake up, captain,
there's something happening up ahead.
We've never seen anything like it.
We've never seen anything like it before.
I want a full report
What do you mean, that's it?
Thats all you get, you'd better do something about it.
What am I s'posed to do about it?
We don't know, but you can't run away from it. Maybe you'd better face it.
I can't do that
Come on face it.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Kuyper Hoffman)
Date: Wed, 27 Oct 93 23:24:32 SAT
Subject: tRS Released in South Africa
Let's face it, one way to make yourself unpopular is to make statements like "Well, I guess I'm the first person in the Southern Hemisphere to buy The Red Shoes - heck possibly in the world!!" even if it's probably not strictly true :-)
Well at about noon (GMT) on Wed 27 Oct 1993 I walked out of Digital Music with my very own copy. I didn't know a Moto Guzzi 500 could pull moves like that on my journey to the nearest CD player.
Opening the packaging revealed a rather interesting CD pamphlet. Not your usual "page-through-me" affair, but rather a mini poster folded into 12. Hooray an even number, and it matches the number of tracks on the album.
One side shows KaTe being held up by (I guess) one of the dancers from the EtM vid. At the bottom are the production credits and the Thanks list. The album is dedicated to the late Hannah Bush.
The other side carries the lyrics. The first six are in order of appearance on the CD, but then follow a rather wierd pattern. What with the release being so close, it's not worth it for me to list all the lyrics here (apart from all that typing - yikes!). The lyrics are printed pretty small, and repeated folding is going to make some lines unreadable. They're printed in semi-opaque dark-grey boxes on a background of fruit. All the fruit has been neatly cut in half. Photo credits again go to John Carder Bush / Kindlight.
Unable to wait any longer at that stage I hurriedly put the disc on and waited. Rats, RbG is the first track - "I've already heard this one, shall I press skip, no damnit, get a grip on yourself, listen to it properly".
Somewhere I pressed STOP to see the running time (55:30) and then resumed play.
Then comes And So is Love. No real comments at this stage.
Having only heard EtM 2wice on the radio (nothing was released here as a single, and I was only able to obtain the RbG single) I really enjoyed hearing it with REAL BASS. It's rythmns are so African and I later had it's sound compared to that of a local Cross-over band appropriately called "Magno Groove" whom you may have seen in a live crossing to Johannesburg during an AIDS concert (in Wembley?) where George Michael took lead vocals in Queen (for the first time?). They also crossed to U2 in LA, but I was disappointed. BUT I digress.
The quiet bits of MoP remind me of TWW - just an observation.
I'm still getting used to The Song of Solomon & Lily.
The title track - now there's one I know I like. I can't sit still during this one (well I guess the story really works). I just feel like leaping about - not club stuff, but a real head-nodder. More Valiha on this one, with Paddy adding some whistles and a Musical Bow. The whistles kinda make me think of Jethro Tull. I'd like to hear this one on the radio.
Top of the City slows it all down again (relatively to tRS). Followed by Constellation of the Heart. Again, still working out what I think of these.
BSL has been done to death on Love-Hounds, so I'll just mention it together with an answer to my own question of a few weeks ago -KaTe's the one on guitar. She makes a few guitar appearances, is this new?
It all rounds off with Why Should I Love You? and You're the One.
Much of this is going to take a good few repeated listens to get used to, but I definitely like it.
Clapton appears on: And so is Love
Beck on: You're the One.
Nigel Kennedy: Top of the City & BSL
Prince: Why Should I Love You? Lenny Henry also does vocals on this one.
Gary Brooker: And so is Love, Constellation & You're the One (still sounds like his days in Procol, or maybe that's just the Hammond)
Now to explain how I got it.... Well I can't - EMI in South Africa decided that 25 Oct was a good release date, and it was in the stores today (possibly even yesterday). My copy is a full UK import (both booklet and CD).
I have delayed going on holiday until I had the album and had listened to it a few times, so tomorrow I'm off on my Bike. Any flames and other hate-mail will therefore only be read in about 2 weeks :-)
I hope you all enjoy tRS when your copies arrive. Only problem now is this one and my 2 singles don't fit in my TWW box ;-) It's tough at the top!
Date: Thu, 28 Oct 93 10:58:18 EDT
Subject: Re: tRS Released in South Africa
> Opening the packaging revealed a rather interesting CD pamphlet. Not your usual "page-through-me" affair, but rather a mini poster folded into 12. Hooray an even number, and it matches the number of tracks on the album.
I hate those things. Hate 'em, hate 'em, hate 'em. Anybody who comes up with a design like that doesn't look through their CD booklets much. They rarely fit neatly into the liner notes slot and folding and unfolding these things more than a few times tears them all up.
> The other side carries the lyrics. The first six are in order of appearance on the CD, but then follow a rather wierd pattern.
Interesting. There are six songs supposedly included in the video, including most, but not all, of the first six tracks. The six songs on the video are split on the CD by "Song of Solomon." I guess it's possible that SoS could appear in the film without a full fledged video, but this series of songs just doesn't make sense to me for the film. Why would "The Red Shoes" appear last in the sequence if this reflected their order in the film? What is the "wierd pattern" of the second six lyrics? Where does TRS fall in this order?
> lines unreadable. They're printed in semi-opaque dark-grey boxes on a background of fruit. All the fruit has been neatly cut in half. Photo credits again go to John Carder Bush / Kindlight.
Kind of a shame that the packaging would be inspired by the least inspiring track on the album.
> Then comes And So is Love. No real comments at this stage.
Just say, "Great." That covers it. This is a theme that seems to pop up a lot in the album. Life is sad and so is love, says Kate. Yet she told one interviewer that she saw this as being positive (another one of these deals). I guess you could say so if you look at it from the aspect that life and love are hard at times, but it's still worth it all and still we continue on.
> I'm still getting used to The Song of Solomon & Lily.
Great and great.
> The title track - now there's one I know I like. I can't sit still during this one (well I guess the story really works). I just feel like leaping about - not club stuff, but a real head-nodder. More Valiha on this one, with Paddy adding some whistles and a Musical Bow. The whistles kinda make me think of Jethro Tull. I'd like to hear this one on the radio.
The whistles have a very medieval feel, like some of Jethro Tull or Ian Anderson's work.
> Top of the City slows it all down again (relatively to tRS).
Slows it down, but cranks up the intensity as it goes on. The desperation in this song is incredible. It's a good thing they didn't get it too close to "You're the One." The commulative desperation would have had folks out on ledges all over the world.
I DON'T CARE IF IT'S RAININ'
I DON'T CARE IF IT'S DANGEROUS
JUST TAKE ME UP TO THE TOP OF THE CITY
The caps are a must here.
> Followed by Constellation of the Heart. Again, still working out what I think of these.
What's to figure out? This is, without question, Kate's tribute to Y Kant Tori Read. This track might seem like a throw-away at first but it really says something about the whole tone of the album. "Looking at the big sky" is all well and good but at some point you need to turn that telescope around and look at what's going on inside. This album seems to be the product of just such a self-examination.
> BSL has been done to death on Love-Hounds, so I'll just mention it together with an answer to my own question of a few weeks ago - KaTe's the one on guitar. She makes a few guitar appearances, is this new?
Wha?! Kate on guitar? Are we talking about the *lead* guitar on this track? If Kate went from not playing (that I know of) to playing *that well* in just four years, she may be a goddess after all.
> Much of this is going to take a good few repeated listens to get used to, but I definitely like it.
> I hope you all enjoy tRS when your copies arrive.
Done did. The CD should arrive just in time for this tape to wear out completely. :-)
Date: Fri, 29 Oct 93 01:27 MET
From: email@example.com (Ulrich Grepel)
Subject: The Red Shoes - it's here, it's here :-) :-) :-)
Today (well, yesterday, anyhow: on October 28, 1993) the new album by Kate Bush, The Red Shoes, appeared in the shops in Germany. I checked two of them, both in Frankfurt. The first one (Virgin Megastore) had 173 (174 before I came) copies of the CD. Counted 'em. The second one (WOM) had a few less (about 25), but nevertheless it was there. Cheaper than at Virgin (Grrrr...), but what do I complain - 4 years of waiting finally came to an end!
Anyhow - I had a copy of the album on tape for about 2 1/2 weeks now (thanks to you know who), but it is always better to hear it from CD instead of an nth generation tape (THANKS nevertheless!), and especially to have the lyrics sheet. As I reported last Friday (Saturday, ok) the booklet actually is a small poster of 3x4 the size of a booklet. Side one contains the title picture, the album credits and a poster with Kate and Stewart Arnold (?) Side two contains a BIG BUNCH of fruits and the lyrics.
The KT-symbol is really easy to find. As reported earlier it's directly below the lower shoe of the title picture, turned about 90 degrees clockwise and a bit bent. No secret here, it's really toooo easy. The title of the album appears above, the name of Kate below the round picture, as seen in all German and English ads I've seen. Not like in the letter sized US promo sheet for the album that I received today (thanks Suzanne!), as there the places are exchanged.
I already hacked in all the lyrics and the credits, they follow in a second message. Errors there are not always mine - check out for example the credits to John Carder: "Photograpy" without the second 'h'! Please check this out as soon as you find your version of the album - it'd be interesting if they correct this someday. (How about a 'first pressing' check?) Most other errors are probably mine.
I'd say that the album is QUITE interesting lyrically. If Kate and Del really broke up then it is BY FAR Kate's most personal album so far. If not - then it's not about her!
BTW: Del is not playing any instrument anywhere on the album, he's credited as recorder and mixer and Fairlight programmer, and he's thanked.
Somehow I just knew the dedication line beforehand. I would have been disappointed if it wasn't this one (or one to the same effect).
Now you want to know how the album is? GREAT! Listen to it! Try it out! Check it out! (But I surely don't have to tell you all this...) I'm pretty bad in describing music, so I will let others do this job. Hey, therefore I am a quick typist!
I think I know the next Kate Bush Club quiz question: Name all the fruits you can find on the album!
I can't wait for a certain entry to the famous PMRC list of Kate's songs that should be banned... Or rather more than one entry.
From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Jerome Chan)
Date: Tue, 02 Nov 1993 16:25:58 -0500
Subject: Track Sequence?!
Is it my imagination or does playing the songs in the order of the lyric sheet sound better then the original order? :P
Date: Tue, 2 Nov 93 18:43:31 -0500
From: at895@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Kevin F. Holy)
Subject: Re: Track Sequence?!
Yes, I agree that the arrangement of songs on the lyrics sheet are better than the arrangement on the CD, going from left to right, top to bottom.
From: email@example.com (Kathleen Morrey)
Date: 6 Nov 1993 00:55:03 GMT
Subject: Discrepancies US/UK cover printing
Uli asked about the discrepancies b/w the US and the other versions of the booklet/cover printings. (I haven't figured out how to include previous messages, forgive me).
1) yes, in the US version, Kate's name is on top and TRS is on the bottom.
2) no, photography is spelled properly in the credits.
Another question - what did they need a French interpreter for? Dumb question, but it crossed my mind, I'll make it cross yours.
Date: Sun, 7 Nov 1993 07:55:51 +1000
Subject: More KaTe thoughts
What a great few days! I've been off the air at the Mac World Expo in Sydney. I took my TRS tape with me (as well as my new copy of HomeGround #49 that had arrived the day before, nice one Peter, Krys and Dave) but replaced that the first day with my own copy of the CD! :-) I didn't get much of a chance to listen to the CD all that day as I was busy with the Expo and then a night out on the town with some friends. You know how it is when something's just fall into place, like they're just meant to be? Well the place we all hit for our dinner played right through 'The Whole Story' whilst we ate. Buy time I got back to the hotel I was tired, sore and very sated. I lay back, turned the lights off and listen to TRS (very loud) over headphones. To quote her goddessness ... "Hmmmm yess..." :-) The whole album seemed to just click for me. Till that point there were certain songs that I'd kind of switch off to when they came around ('Why Should I Love You' being the main one) It's amazing just how much you can pick out of the music when you're in that sort of frame of mind. Just let yourself fall into the songs.
It looks like everyone has been very busy whilst I've been away!
>Now, I have to go back and listen to it again to see if I can figure out what's being said behind "Oh my God it's a jungle in here, you've got wild animals loose in here" on BSL. (Still haven't figured out the 1st interjection on RBG.)
I like KT's Kookaburra laugh right after she says "you've got wild animals loose in here". As for what is said behind that whole verse, I can't make it out at all. Also there is a funny "beep" to be heard at about 2:47 into BSL which sounds for all the world to be a Mac beep. :-) I noticed this just now whilst I was listening to the CD over my Mac and reading the news. I'm flicking the CD backward and forward and I get this sound like a system alert, but there is no alert!
Peter Fitzgerald-Morris sez...
>She has clearly taught Kate Dion Fortune's cut down version of the lesser ritual of the pentagram - a potent method of defence against psychic attack.
Stephen reminded me of another good description of this sort of thing from the Deverry series written by Katharine Kerr. The series as based deeply in Celtic mythos. The character Nevyn utilises the visualisation of the circle or pentagram of fyre (or light) guarded at four points by the Lords of Wyrd to protect himself and friends from 'psychic' harm.
Has anybody noticed what KT screams just after the 'Grrrrrr, this is my space' in Lily? In the left channel she screams 'Who's at left?" and then in the right channel she screams 'Who's at right?' :-) The problem is I can't understand what is said about 3:25 into the track. It's in the middle of the repeated chorus, just before she sings 'Raphael behind me'. It sounds like (and please don't flame me) 'Yeah INX' !!! Anybody got any ideas about that one?
She REALLY is... :-)
Date: 08 Nov 93 11:56:42 EST
From: Mike Mendelson <MJM@ZYLAB.MHS.CompuServe.COM>
Subject: TRS gets better/how to enjoy ETM
I've been listening to TRS over the weekend and I'm starting to like it more and more. I'd have to agree with Vickie... I don't know how people can be so sure of their opinions after such a short listening span. I'm also really tempted to post a song-by-song commentary but until I can hear each song distinctly in my brain without tuning on my CD player, I don't feel qualified.
I will say something about Eat the Music, however, which has gotten lots of bashing. I'll admit that the basic musical tenant of the song is very simple, but the interesting thing to me is 1) Kate's vocals, and moreover 2) the pattern of backing vocals. Listen carefully to how the call and response works.
Split me open / oo oo oooaaa ooo
blah blah blah blah / oo oo oooaaaa ooo
ditty dit dit / ooaa oooaaoo ooo
These littles responses (the BV ooo aaa ooo's) change slightly every other time or so, and I find that if I listen closely to these they reflect great musical thinking. How did she decide how to move the ooos up or down this time or that time. This is very subtle, but if you listen carefully you will see how these ooo's are the genius in this song. They take a simple melody and make it move and sway and focus. I don't care how much you hate the song. Just give it a listen and concentrate on the call and response of Kate's voice interacting with the BVs. I find this fascinating every time. Also, if you try and predict what the next oooo will be, you be wrong most of the time.
Date: Tue, 09 Nov 1993 01:02:44 -0500 (EST)
From: Peter Byrne Manchester <PMANCHESTER@ccmail.sunysb.edu>
Subject: TRS Tracklist
Maybe it was Richard Caldwell, I can't remember, but somebody the other week mentioned that they were experimenting with playing Side B of the new album with the tracks in the order in which the lyrics appear on the UK album slipcover (or EMI CD foldout).
Well, whoever you are, you found the secret. The folded sheet for the US Sony/Columbia CD looks to be a last-minute fudge: the fruit in the background is b&w, and the lyrics are scattered out of any order at all--much less the clear SideA Side B structure of the album. But on the liner for the 12" vinyl album, and on the folded sheet for the EMI CD (background in color, and much heavier stock) it is completely clear that there is a very formal Side A/Side B construction for this set, and that the original track order for Side B was:
I very strongly suggest programming your CD player to play the songs in this sequence, making the tape for the car in this sequence, and thinking about the songs and the album as a whole with this sequence.
This is so clearly the artist's intention that I'm not even going to take time to comment on it now. Kate let marketing people overrule her about the UK single ("Eat the Music" was always the single in her mind, it appears), and she let them have their way on the Side B tracklist too. I can hear what they were telling her: "TotC and YtO are two quiet songs back to back, and WSILY and CotH are two funky ones back to back; mix 'em up!" She knew that the real tracklist had already gone to print, so what the hell, why fight it. Those of us who pay attention had already been alerted.
The album can't end with "You're the One," because then it would be lyrically completely disconsolate, whereas musically it is stunningly strong and collaborative and healing. If you don't have the UK CD or vinyl releases to guide you on this question, just try this order for Side B out and see if it doesn't solve a lot of problems. The core discovery: "You're the One" is answered by "Big Stripey Lie."
From: Craig Heath <craig@sco.COM>
Date: Wed, 10 Nov 93 2:57:09 GMT
Subject: Track Order
Peter Byrne Manchester wrote:
> I very strongly suggest programming your CD player to play the songs in this [lyric sheet] sequence, ...
> This is so clearly the artist's intention that I'm not even going to take time to comment on it now...
I was trying not to post this, but this has pushed me over the edge. I vehemently disagree with this. I think, musically, the tracks as they are ordered on the CD are in perfect arrangement. I can see there is an argument for the lyrics making more sense in the lyric sheet order, but this is completely outweighed by the musical sense, IMHO. The decider for me is "You're the One", which absolutely has to be last, because of the "Whiter Shade of Pale" references (using Gary Brooker, "Doing cartwheels 'cross the floor", etc.) These are 70s references (I know WSoP was 1967, but it didn't impinge on me until the 70s), and at any party I went to in the 70s, noone would have even considered playing WSoP anything other than last.
My personal opinion is that the lyrics are arranged on the lyric sheet the way they are simply because they wouldn't have fit the space in a pleasing manner if they had been in the proper order (and I'm not going to believe that Kate had more control over the lyric sheet than she did over the track order on CD).
> The album can't end with "You're the One," because then it would be lyrically completely disconsolate ...
I agree, but that's the way it is, if you just read the lyric sheet. I think the musical references transform the lyrics substantially. I have my own ideas on this, but I'm afraid I can't share them with the list, because they're too personal.
Date: Tue, 9 Nov 93 15:13:33 EST
From: Andrew B Marvick <abm4@columbia.EDU>
Bravo, Graham! IED was wondering when someone would finally calm down from the initial adolescent impulse to trash (mindlessly) Kate's new music long enough to start LISTENING to it -- and thus to notice, for example, the three "buried" spoken messages in "Lily", which IED has been trying to make out for days now. He almost agrees with you about the first two, but he believes the full lines are something like "Here's Michael on your right!" and "Uriel on your left!" or something like that. As for the third, later line, it stands out very clearly as a spoken sentence, but IED has yet to make out a single word. There are also messages on other tracks, he believes.
As well as a touching inscription on the run-out groove of the vinyl LP, which Kate almost certainly etched herself.
-- Andrew Marvick (IED)
Btw, the album is inarguably the greatest piece of recorded music to be released in at least the last four years. All posted attempts to convince otherwise have thus far failed miserably, and have succeeded only in bringing shame and ridicule upon their authors. It's interesting to see with what desperate, passionate, feverish energy these persons rush to announce their boredom, indifference and disinterest. Meanwhile, of course, they fail utterly to see the Face of the Sun which shines so brilliantly above them all the while...
Date: Wed, 10 Nov 1993 21:58:24 -0500 (EST)
From: Peter Byrne Manchester <PMANCHESTER@ccmail.sunysb.edu>
Subject: Re: TRS Tracklist
Craig Heath replies to my suggestion that the track order for Side B of TRS suggested by the UK lyric sheets reflects Kate's original intention:
> ... I vehemently disagree with this. I think, musically, the tracks as they are ordered on the CD are in perfect arrangement. I can see there is an argument for the lyrics making more sense in the lyric sheet order, but this is completely outweighed by the musical sense, IMHO.
He provides a very telling (but not, in my view, decisive) illustration of this last consideration, but I need to take a point he makes later first because the physical evidence is actually more ambiguous than I had realized when I posted.
>My personal opinion is that the lyrics are arranged on the lyric sheet the way they are simply because they wouldn't have fit the space in a pleasing manner if they had been in the proper order (and I'm not going to believe that Kate had more control over the lyric sheet than she did over the track order on CD).
I hadn't meant to suggest that Kate did not control the final track order - of course she did, and in that sense it is certainly authoritative. My argument was that the track order on the album slipcover suggested that at one stage she had had a different order in mind, and was talked into the one released by marketing considerations. I would never have entertained such an idea for an instant if we hadn't learned through Del Palmer that something precisely like that happened with RBG as the first UK single, rather than EtM which she preferred. And I should add that even if another order was once contemplated this one clearly must have things in its favor, too.
Obviously my whole argument depends on the premise that the order in which the lyrics are arranged on the slipcover is meant to correspond to the playing sequence. It certainly looks that way, since the Side A lyrics are in six black boxes across the top, in playing sequence, and the Side B lyrics are in six black boxes below them, in playing sequence except for the reversed positions of YtO and CotH. Craig is right that in the particular format of the design, the lyrics box for CotH wouldn't fit under the box for EtM that would be above it. I would answer that the design could be adapted in all sorts of ways to work around that, and why arrange the lyrics in two sets of six that match the album contents exactly (except for the one switch) in the first place, if you don't intend people to assume that they follow the playlist?
BUT! I now see that the order of the Side B lyrics on the UK CD foldout (which folds out to be 12 times larger and has the background fruit in color, as against the US which is only 8 times larger, on thinner stock, and with the background in black and white) is completely different from the album itself: YtO, WSILY?, BSL, TotC, TRS, and CotH (the Side A songs, once again, are in correct order). I cannot imagine defending this as a playing sequence, lyrically or musically. Moreover, it is evident that the order in which the Side B lyrics have been placed is indeed chosen to maximize the use of space, with the longest (CotH) placed under the shortest for Side A ("Lily"), the shortest (BSL) under the longest (EtM), and so on. In addition, the album jacket itself prints the tracklist on the back in the same order as the disk. (And finally, if it is relevant, the lyrics for the US CD are in three rows of four each, in an order that has nothing whatever to do with the album order, not even the contents of each side--which both of the UK lyrics sheets respect.)
Is my suggestion dead? Maybe not. Since the layout of the Side B tracks for the UK CD foldout does maximize the use of space, the layout used for the lyrics on the album slipcover does not, forcing the font to be ever so slightly smaller than it needs to be--but that is almost illegibly small. So there is still a little room to argue that it is intentional.
I willingly admit, however, that I lept from one piece of physical evidence whose ambiguity I did not fully assess to a suggestion about artistic intention mainly because the playing sequence I described seemed like a revelation to me--certainly lyrically, where Craig sees some plausibility himself--but also musically. He writes:
>The decider for me is "You're the One", which absolutely has to be last, because of the "Whiter Shade of Pale" references (using Gary Brooker, "Doing cartwheels 'cross the floor", etc.) These are 70s references (I know WSoP was 1967, but it didn't impinge on me until the 70s), and at any party I went to in the 70s, no one would have even considered playing WSoP anything other than last.
This is an excellent argument, very important for exploring this album, which is chock full of musical allusions of this kind. I agree completely that at the end of "You're the One," some larger ending is marked, too, with the WSoP tonality working just as he describes. But that fits exactly into the way I perceive "Big Stripey Lie," as marking a new beginning, moving through grief and pain to dismisal, and it amplifies the meaning of the start of TotC, "This chapter says, 'Put it out of your mind'." And CotH still sounds to me like a natural album-ender, its funky upbeat made ironic by the lyrics, and the little gizmo in the trail-off seeming like a kb 'signature' (listen to the last time that the chorus can be heard singing the line that previously is "it's gonna be paradise" and see if you can hear what they say instead of "paradise").
Bottom line: having thought this through once more, I think Craig's chances of being right are about 87%, mine about 13%. The wonderful thing is that of course it is a matter of simple fact what, if anything, the order of the lyrics for Side B on the record sleeve is meant to signify--we just don't happen to know yet. I will therefore cling for the time being to my tattered but still pleasing hypothesis.
Date: Thu, 11 Nov 93 22:41:27 EST
From: Andrew B Marvick <abm4@columbia.EDU>
Subject: Play Order
Greg, you fill our ether with declamations and declarations, but please, take the time to re-read your posting and you will see that nowhere have you offered any support for your opinions. Reasons! Give some, please. Then and only then can constructive debate begin.
bY far the most iLLuminating discussion to appeAr in love-hounds since thE Release of thE album has steMmed from peter manchester's theories regarding the track order for side two. ied was honored to be present when prof. mAnchester firSt suggEsted wHat mighT be caLLed experiment v, And he muSt say thaT the track order as revealed (exquisItely) on the inner sleeve of the uk vinyl lp does make Great seNse to thIs devoted fan. furthermore, he Does not beLieve that eIther the UK cassette's track order or that of the uk cd shoUld Bear as much weight as that of the vinyl lp, to which we alL know kate is partiaL. (her continuatIon of tHe "secret" runout-gRoove messagE with trs is gooD eviDence of that, not to mention her own re-affirmation in A recent interview.) therefore, in ied's humbLe opinion the evidencE still weigHs in favor of peter's original interpretaTion.
ied would demur on one minor Point, however: he sees no reason to assUme that the chanGe(s) to the track order must have been prompted by commercial concerns at aNy stage. it could well be that the track order on sIde two remained a matter of doubt for kate herself until shortly Before the release date (or even later). we siMply have no way of knowing. or (and this is an explanation which ied fInds particularLy attractive, though of course it is unsupported by any faCt) the confusion Might well have been created deliberately, and the clues to the side's correct running order placed on the lp's sleeve for the dedikated to dIscover for themselves, thus to be further delighted...
-- Andrew Marvick (IED), searching for the man with the stick for the next three weeks. He'll see you all on the angel's shoulder when he returns...
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 1993 00:11:42 +1000
Subject: TRS Play Order AND MORE!!!
I've got LOTS to tell you today!! :-) :-) First an answer to the alternate suggested play order.
[ Stuff from Ed and Craig about the possible alternate play order of TRS deleted ]
I checked the gate fold lyric sheet from the tape and the order IS in the suggested alternate order.
I think Craig is quite right in that the album plays very well in that order. What do the rest of you think??
Now for the other BIG news. When I got home from work last Friday there was a parcel waiting for me from EMI Australia. I tare the thing open and out fall TWO TRS promo CD's and a VIDEO!!!!!! OH MY GOD!!! :-) First to the CD's. The Australian CD's look like the US addition except that it reads 'The Red Shoes' across the TOP and 'Kate Bush' across the bottom (I believe this is the same as the UK addition?) The cover insert folds out to be about 1/3 larger then the US insert (you get a slightly bigger picture of Kate out of this) and the fruit behind the lyrics is fully coloured. The CD itself has a full colour picture of the dancing shoes cover. In all a very nice package.
Date: Sun, 14 Nov 1993 02:48:13 -0500 (EST)
From: Peter Byrne Manchester <PMANCHESTER@ccmail.sunysb.edu>
Subject: All is revealed
In addition to generous and instructive things IED said about the 'tracklist' thread, in Andy Marvick's post the other day, there was a classic IED Mystic Message woven into the paragraph in question. The 'code' was so far from devious that I take it to be a message meant to be posted (read the letters in caps in the paragraph, backwards):
I'M CLIMBING UP THE LADDER HILL BUILDING IT'S ALL THE SAME REALLY
This of course assimilates the ladder mentioned in "Constellation of the Heart" to the hill and building the singer would go running up in RUTH, "if only could." IED then signs off, "searching for the man with the stick for the next three weeks. He'll see you all on the angel's shoulder when he returns...".
In CotH, we find the lines
Oh and here comes the man with the stick
He said he'd fish me out of the moon
It having been my great joy and privilege to have Andrew Marvick visit three of the past four weekends, and so to share first experiences of "The Red Shoes" with him, including the EtM and RBG videos that he otherwise would have missed (he has no TV in New York), I find the jumble of emotions he is signalling here quite moving. If it seems that IED has been uncharacteristically scarce in recent weeks, that is because Andy was back at Columbia this semester completing his doctoral disseration, and it now appears (to his joy and terror) he has finally been invited to prepare it for defense. So, before turning to some last remarks on the tracklist question, the following message should go forth: Calling all angels! Calling all angels! If you're an angel, you know what to do.
One more step to the top of the city
Where just a couple of pigeons are living
Up on the angel's shoulder.
One more step, Andy! Go for it! Give 'em hell!
Tree of Schnopia (Mystery Science Drewcifer 3000) writes:
>And to those who are putting forth this ridiculous postulate that the order of songs on TRS is (gasp) adulterated...why not run along and invent some more conspiracy theories and let us do our thing? Has it not occurred to you that perhaps *KaTe* chose the final order of tracks, and that the "original" was just a first idea? Has it not occurred to you that she looked at the order of the postulate and said "my God, that would sound like shit", as I did? I mean, program your disc however you please, but don't try and pass it off as the "real" order, lyric sheet be damned.
Well, this is my fault; the spin I put on my initial report of the possibility that an alternative track order is suggested by the lyrics order on the record sleeve, was a bad move. Even if it is a trademark affectation of the newsgroup, the mock-authoritarian style is not redeemed by its irony and always winds up generating more heat than light. I apologize.
Moreover, I stipulate: the released album is authoritative and what Kate intended to release (it is not "adulterated"). No doubt there were lots of ideas about the playlist, and no doubt Kate discussed her ideas with others whom she listened to because she trusted their judgment (there was no "conspiracy"). I was clearly wrong in supposing that the playlist suggested on the record sleeve represented an "original" order intended for the album that she was talked out of late in the production process, since the record *jacket* has the released order on the back, so there is no need to suppose that marketing considerations played any role. IED makes the point well:
>in ied's humbLe opinion the evidencE still weigHs in favor of peter's original interpretaTion. ied would demur on one minor Point, however: he sees no reason to assUme that the chanGe(s) to the track order must have been prompted by commercial concerns at aNy stage. it could well be that the track order on sIde two remained a matter of doubt for kate herself until shortly Before the release date (or even later). we siMply have no way of knowing.
Most true. Still, we do have evidence that Kate can remain fond enough of an early (or at least alternative) version of her work to give *it* to us too: "Alternative Hounds of Love" (which still sounds to me like a way the song wanted to go at an early stage, that she just couldn't let go of). So the correct form of the 'Experiment V' hypothesis that Andy and I considered last weekend is stated by IED:
> or (and this is an explanation which ied fInds particularLy attractive, though of course it is unsupported by any faCt) the confusion Might well have been created deliberately, and the clues to the side's correct running order placed on the lp's sleeve for the dedikated to dIscover for themselves, thus to be further delighted...
The inferences can be summarized:
The order of the lyrics on the record sleeve is NOT the maximally efficient nesting of the Side B songs beneath the Side A ones; the UK CD lyrics sheet is.
The complete mess of an order in which the lyrics are listed on the US CD lyrics sheet might be a 'covering of one's tracks' (the pun here is distracting), intended to confuse the inattentive.
It is one thing to print the Side A lyrics in album sequence, the Side B lyrics almost entirely out of order, so that one is provoked to look for (and promptly discover) some other principle of arrangement (as on the UK CD). But it is quite another to arrange all of the lyrics for sides A and B, in discrete groups of 6, in such a way as entirely to match the album sequence except for a single reversal of position of two songs. Yes, CotH won't fit under EtM in the format chosen, but if that's the whole reason, that's teasing!
Finally, of course, there is the whole huge factor of the sheer musical and lyrical satisfactoriness of the suggested playlist. It's an *experience* to hear and think of the album that way, and it's nice to think there is a chance it comes from Kate--an esoteric version of the exoteric album. Craig Heath saw some point to it lyrically from the start, and has now made a capital observation, picking up on my last post:
> <CH> [I said YtO must be last because I interpret the WSoP references as indicating an ending]
> <PBM> I agree completely that at the end of "You're the One," some larger ending is marked, too, with the WSoP tonality working just as he describes. But that fits exactly into the way I perceive "Big Stripey Lie," as marking a new beginning, moving through grief and pain to dismisal...
> When I read this catalogue of emotions, it struck a chord, but my next thought was "where is anger?" Certainly my response to YtO involves being on the cusp of an emotional progression, and it's hard for me to distinguish how much of that progression is coming from clues in the lyrics and music, and how much from my personal psyche; however, the progression I feel from YtO is: self-pity, then anger, then acceptance.
YES! How blind could I be?! The last line of "You're the One," "just forget it alright", is spit out with more open rage than I can remember ever hearing from anyone, much less KB. There is a very natural sequence, not just emotional but spiritual, that anyone who's been through it will recognize: after denial (often enough self-pity as CH designates it), rage; then grief and pain; then dismissal. If a person can actually get through that (it is precisely like going to hell), there may come recovery ("You're the One") and the beginning of wisdom ("Constellation of the Heart").
Craig Heath notes:
>Now, the difficulty I had in accepting BSL as a rejoinder to YtO is, I must confess, largely because I don't feel I understand what BSL is trying to say. All I get from it so far is anger, but that is enough for the triptych of YtO, BSL and WSILY to mirror that same progression of emotions (I think WSILY is the weakest link of the three in this theory, but it's close enough).
Agreed that BSL is angry; it does reach dismissal ("hey all you little waves run away"), with only the ache left (the violin line). For me, the key to the song is "Oh my God it's a jungle in here, you've got wild animals loose in here". "In here" is *in that musical passage*, sonically; Kate swamping the mixing desk with the almost unbelievably percussive walk-below-the-bottom bass line. <This can *only* be heard all the way to the bottom on the EMI CD> The credit for that performance should read "LEAD Bass - Kate". People justly admire the guitar work, but she doesn't play a line on the guitar at all; it's all feedback and phasing--a great ear, but no licks. But that bass lead!!! You have to hear it in relation to the sound of "Ne T'Enfuis Pas" in its original mix, where Kate herself was being a wild jungle animal, to sense the deliverance this song and her performance on it must have been for her.
It's the strength of the collaboration on "Why Should I Love You?" that makes that track work for me on this theory. I find Prince's work on this cut to be supremely tasty, even elegant--especially given the technical situation. It sets up Lenny Henry's verse to be as beautiful as the Trio sets up Kate's to be at the beginning.
Craig Heath to me again:
>PBM also said:
> [The WSoP references are] an excellent argument, very important for exploring this album, which is chock full of musical allusions of this kind.
>Would you care to be more specific? ...
I wish I could be. It was Andy who was boiling over with observations, and I should have been taking notes. He caught a lot of Captain Beefheart and Incredible String Band things. He picked up a theme in backing vocals on a song here that was an instrumental line somewhere in "The Ninth Wave," and was in turn some kind of Beatles quote. I'm not musicologist enough to catch this stuff on the fly.
I will share one last thing and then quit. My kately friend Margaret (whom Andy met) points out that the theme of RBG is among the oldest of all for Kate Bush. In "Room for the Life," the last lines of the second verse,
How long do you think, before she'll go out, woman
Hey get up on your feet and go get it now
Like it or not we keep bouncing back
Because we're woman
Enough. I've got to go grade 17 graduate exams on Aristotle's Metaphysics. Interest should shift to "The Line, the Cross, the Curve" that premiered yesterday.
Date: Fri, 23 Dec 1994 13:49:48 -0500
Subject: Steely Dan conneKTion
IED is happy to endorse Chris's comparison.
In fact, he thought the musical reference Kate was making to Steely Dan in "Why Should I Love You" was extremely clear, as are several other deliberate references she makes to pop music past on side two of The Red Shoes ("A Whiter Shade of Pale" in "You're the Only One", "Tomorrow Never Knows" --particularly the rhythm pattern and the McCartneyesque bass-playing by John Giblin -- in parts of "Top of the City", and Captain Beefheart in "Big Stripey Lie"). He hadn't thought to mention these links until now, because it had not occurred to him that Love-Hounds were not already aware of them. Since Chris's suggestion has now been unwisely challenged, however, IED must join the discussion.
Anyone doubting the Steely Dan connection should listen in rapid succession to the male chorus section of "WSILY" and to the first couple of tracks on Steely Dan's post-"Aja" album "Gaucho". The likeness between the rhythmic sounds and chord progressions is unmistakable -- and makes very clear, incidentally, just how silly are some tin-eared critics' assertions that this track is largely the work of Prince. (Kate has already explained the limited extent of Prince's presence on the final track, anyway; his primary surviving contribution is the characteristic guitar solo.)
Also, Kate has herself at least twice named "Gaucho" among her favorite albums -- she even played one of the most relevant tracks from that album during her stint as a guest dj on a 1980 radio program. The link is therefore as well confirmed as any reasonable student of Kate Bushology could hope.
-- Andrew Marvick (IED)
On to Moments 3.0. - The Film
Written by Love-Hounds
compiled and edited