The Reviews

The Red Shoes Reviews
Part 2

Max (German)
Max (English)
Minneapolis Star Tribune
City Paper
Nat'l College Magazine
Haagsche Courant
Rolling Stone
Die Woche #46
The Baltimore Sun
musikexpress/Sounds (German)
The Independent
New York Press

To the Reaching Out (Reviews) Table of Contents

Date: Tue, 2 Nov 93 22:54 MET
From: uli@zoodle.robin.de (Ulrich Grepel)
Subject: Kate article in German magazine 'Max', issue 11/1993

Another German magazine, Max, has a Kate Bush article in the November 1993 issue. Again I've already transcribed but not yet translated it. This will follow as soon as I have time.

Bye, Uli

P.S.: Look at least at the discography, it's something between funny and annoying!

Artikel aus 'Max, November - 11/93'

1 Seite. Zwei Bilder aus dem (ersten) Rubberband Girl video (Kate in Zwangsjacke und Kate auf dem Trampolin) sowie ein Bild mit Kate mit Hut (siehe auch me-sounds 11-93).


von Britta Weitholz

Sie gehoert zuer britischen Musikszene wie klebrige Toertchen zum Fuenfuhrtee. Seitdem Kate Bush mit "Wuthering Heights" 1978 die internationalen Charts stuermte, ist die angelsaechsische Musiklandschaft um einen ernstzunehmenden Top-Act reicher. Das aktuelle Album "The Red Shoes" (EMI) ist der siebte Streic der inzwischen 35jaehrigen Ausnahmevocalistin.

Ihre Karriere beginnt so bilderbuchig, wie man es sich kaum anders vorstellen kann: Mit suessen sechzehn wird Kate Bush, Tochter einer Irin und eines Landarztes aus Plumstead, von Pink Floyds Gitarrenmastermind David Gilmour hoechstpersoenlich entdeckt und gefoerdert. Er verschafft dem jungen Klaviertalent einen paradiesischen Vertrag beim Majorlabel EMI: Drei Jahre lang darf sie auf Kosten der Plattenfirma Tanz- und Gesangsunterricht nehmen, bevor der Studiotermin fuer das furiose Debuet "The Kick Inside" ansteht. Die aussergewoehnlich hohe Stimmlage wird zum Markenzeichen des schuechternen Teenagers. Mit sehnsuchtsvollen Liebesballaden und melancholisch-raffinierten Harmonien erobert sie nach und nach eine wachsende Fangemeinde, die verstaendlicherweise auf Buehnenpraesenz draengt. 1979 geht Kate Bush das erste und einzige Mal in ihrer Laufbahn auf Tour. "Ich bin kein Konzertmensch. Das mag daran liegen, dass ich nie in einer Live-Band gesungen habe, sondern zu Hause allein vorm Klavier sass und vor mich hinkomponieren durfte", erklaert sie ihre Aversion gegen das oeffentliche Zurschaustellen ihrer Kunst, "1979 hatte ich irgendwann das Gefuehl, zuviel von mir preisgegeben zu haben. Die oeffentliche Kate wurde immer groesser und die private schrumpfte regelrecht." In mehrjaehrigen Pausen zwischen jedem neuen Album zieht sich Kate Bush vollends zurueck und taucht allenfalls fuer Benefizprojekte oder fuer ein Duett mit Freund und Kollege Peter Gabriel ("Don't Give Up") wieder auf. "Ich moechte mich niht dem unterwerfen, was die Menschen in mir sehen wollen. Daher entwickle ich immer andere Persoenlichkeiten - vor allem in Videos. Damit ich nicht durch Aeusserlichkeiten auf ein Image festgenagelt werde."

Auf geradezu exorbitante Art und Weise versteht es Frau Bush, immer wieder neue Bilder von sich zu entwerfen: von der kindlich-naiven Fee bis hin zur erotisch-geheimnisvollen Femme fatale.

Doch auch, wenn es nicht so scheint, ist die 164 Zentimeter grosse Frau mit den langen Hennalocken gar nicht so furchtbar geheimnisvoll: "Manchmal ueberlege ich, dass Leute, die mich sehen, denken: 'Oh Gott, sieht die nicht klein und alt aus?', aber ich weiss, dass mir das nie jemand ins Gesicht sagen wuerde."



Date: Tue, 2 Nov 93 23:25 MET
From: uli@zoodle.robin.de (Ulrich Grepel)
Subject: English translation of Max article

Well, this one was short, and I had a bit of time left, so I'm already ready with it. It doesn't say ANYTHING, has serious spelling errors in the discography, but it is POSITIVE. Remember that Max probably won't say anything negative about anyone, since it's that kind of a magazine. Don't Worry, Be Happy...

Bye, Uli

Article from 'Max, November - 11/93'

One page. Two pictures out of the (first) Rubberband Girl video (Kate in the straight jacket and Kate on the trampolin) as well as a picture with Kate wearing a head. This is the same picture that was used in the me/sounds interview in their 11/93 issue.


by Britta Weitholz

She belongs to the British music scene like sticky cakes to the five o'clock tea. Since Kate Bush took the international charts by storm in 1978 with "Wuthering Heights" the anglo-saxon music scene is enriched by a top act that has to be taken seriously. The actual album "The Red Shoes" (EMI) is the seventh go from the now 35 years old exeptional vocalist.

Her carriere begins so perfect, as you almost can't imagine in any other way: With sweet sixteen Kate Bush, daughter of an Irish woman and a country doctor from Plumstead, is discovered and supported in person by Pink Floyds guitar mastermind David Gilmour. He managed to get a paradisical contract with the major label EMI for the young piano talent: three years long she is allowed to study dance and singing on the expense of the record label, before the studio date for the furious debut "The Kick Inside" was due. The exceptionally high pitched voice got the trademark of the shy teenager. With longing love ballads and melancolic-subtle harmonies she gradually conquers a growing body of fans who understandably demand stage presence. 1979 Kate Bush goes for the first and only time in her carreer on tour. "I am not a concert person. This might be because I've never sung in a live band, but rather was sitting at home alone at the piano and was allowed to compose to myself", she explains her aversion against public display of her art, "at some point in 1979 I had the feeling that I had given away too much from myself." In multi yearlong pauses between each new album Kate Bush pulls back herself completely and at most emerges again for benefiz projects or for a duet with her friend and colleague Peter Gabriel ("Don't Give Up"). "I don't want to submit to what people want to see in me. Therefore I always develop different personalities - especially in videos. For not being nailed down to an image by appearances."

With a downright exorbitant way Ms Bush understands to create always new pictures of herself: from the childish-naive fairy to the erotic-mysterious femme fatale.

But even when it doesn't seem so the 164 cemtimeter tall woman with the long henna locks isn't so dreadfully mysterious: "Sometimes I think that people who see me think: 'Oh God, doesn't she look small and old?', but I know, that noone would say this to me straight into the face."



From: hoyme@src.honeywell.com (Ken Hoyme)
Date: Tue, 2 Nov 1993 03:46:58 GMT
Subject: TRS Review in Minneapolis Star Tribune 10/31/93

Sunday's edition of the Minneapolis Star Tribune had a brief review of The Red Shoes. The banners at the top of the Entertainment section grabbed me with

"Listen up: Kate Bush can make you gasp."

So I flipped to page two and the Listen Up (music review) section has a photo of Kate with the overall section title of

"Kate Bush: gasp of awe, despair"

The review is as follows:

KATE BUSH, "The Red Shoes" (Columbia)

This plunge into Bush's sensual world sometimes leaves the listener gasping in awe at the lush musical landscapes spawned by her unfettered romanticism, but also sometimes gasping for breath in the rarefied despair of a troubled heart. On her first album in more than three years, Bush still finds solace and even pleasure in romance despite the bruises left on her soul, giving "Red Shoes" (due in stores Tuesday) its artistic tension.

What works best is a trio of songs fraught with such passion and angst that Bush seems possessed. "And So Is Love" is an exquisite meditation on what it's all about, spiced with bluesy irony from Eric Clapton's guitar. "The Song of Solomon" is a disconcertingly delicate stroll through the fires of lust punctuated by the Trio Bulgarka's eerie vocals. "You're the One" is an aching portrait of rejection and resignation, with Bush's voice drowning in pain against Gary Brooker's looming organ and Jeff Beck's emphatic guitar.

Bush keeps her balance by composing music that's never complacent, always exploring fresh dimensions of her wide-ranging vision and musical interests. Her stretch on "Red Shoes" ranges from Brit pop to a startling collision of Minneapolis funk and Eastern European choral music (on "Why Should I Love You," an unlikely collaboration among Bush, Prince and the Bulgarkas).

Despite occasional weaknesses for the overly majestic and girlish flirtations, Bush positively glows when hissing anguished intimacies into your ear or howling terms of endearment whose actual intent may be someone's internment.

Rick Mason/ St. Paul writer


From: mojzes@tiger.vill.edu (brni)
Date: Thu, 4 Nov 1993 05:34:56 GMT
Subject: TRS in the City Paper Nov. 1993

hi there,

just thought i'd type up what they said in the City Paper about kate:

"Though much of her reputation is still based on her initial incarnation as precocious '70s artpop princess, Kate Bush didn't really come into her own until the early '80s, when she discovered synthesizer technology and began infusing her lyrical flights-of-fancy with recognizably adult emotional dynamics. Notwithstanding a few characteristic excursions into lyrical preciousness, the Red Shoes (Columbia) is one of Bush's most impressive efforts. Tracks like "Lily" and "The Song of Solomon" (on which she actuually makes the couplet "Don't want your bullshit/Just want your sexuality" stick) display an emotional toughness that's a marked contrast to the flowery fragility of her "Wuthering Heights" days. Her seamlessly eclectic musical settings are as evocative as ever, and herdistinctive vocal trill has matured from gimmicky affectation into a uniquely expressive instrument."


Date: Thu, 04 Nov 93 13:39:35 CDT

Northwestern's daily newspaper had an insert yesterday called "U. The National College Magazine" and it had the following review of TRS:

5 stars possible

Kate Bush made a bold statement of vocal and lyrical style with her 1978 debut, TKI, and remains triumphantly unique eight albums later. TRS is more proof that this woman loves her work.

Songs of inspired passion and intimate storytelling will delight long-time Bush fans as the disc flirts with disco, soul, progressive-rock and Caribbean sounds, all of it dramatically colored by Bush's boisterous, gleeful, sometimes painfully expressive voice.

In "Rubberband Girl" and "Eat the Music", Bush sings with youthful abandon and frivolity, then moves defiantly into sophisticated introspection in "Moments of Pleasure" and "Lily". This mixture of open femininity and internal reflection is Bush's specialty, and previously unfamiliar American listeners should find TRS a good introduction.


Date: 05 Nov 93 16:56:55 EST
From: Marcel Rijs <100276.2176@CompuServe.COM>
Subject: Dutch TRS review Nov. 1993

Hi everyone,

My first time on this list and an exclusive rightaway! This (translated - I figured most of you're not too good in reading Dutch) review is from the local newspaper from The Hague, Netherlands (where I live).

Here it comes: From: Haagsche Courant, 5th November 1993.

KATE BUSH 'Red shoes'[sic] - EMI

One hears so much pain on 'Red shoes', Kate Bush' first album in five [sic] years. "I feel like life has blown a great big hole through me", sings the English musician in 'Lily', and that a little what happened. The recent dying of her mother Hannah, to whom the album is dedicated, and the separation from her childhood friend Del Palmer, who *is* still involved in the productionprocess (en probably will be in the future), can be heard in a series of emotional compositions. She presents a broken heart, which doesn't leave the listener unmoved, like in the 'bare' 'Moments of pleasure', in which her glorious voice, plunged in piano and orchestra, uses a series of notes touched by emotions. [Bad translation, I think. He means that the notes she sings are sounding like they were gnawed by her tears, or something like that.]

There are references to God in the erotic 'Song of Solomon', but the most fragile Kate can be found in 'You're the one', which deals directly with the separation. Her feelings of despair are coloured by the Hammond-solos of Gary Brooker, the guitar of Jeff Beck and the weepsome backgroundvocals of the Trio Bulgarka, who are placed less on the foreground on 'Red shoes' than on 'The sensual world', but who are more impressive.

Kate Bush is no longer busy making musical sketches, but paints without lay(er)ing notes too thick. Bright compositions arise this way, which show a rich form of 'world music' , without ever losing the Bush-stamp. The jigs and reels in the cheerful title track for instance, the by folkmusic of Madagascar influenced 'Eat the music' or the multi-voiced question/answer-game in the merry 'Constellation of the heart'.

That the musical content of 'Red shoes' is being taken care of by the 'creme-de-la-creme' of the music industry says a lot about Kate, but it also provides a balanced musical decorum, in which only Prince (in 'Why should I love you') may have had too much space.

By Hans Pit.


Date: Sun, 7 Nov 93 12:45:49 -0800
From: ed@wente.llnl.gov (Ed Suranyi)
Subject: Rolling Stone reviews The Red Shoes!! Nov. 1993

Rolling Stone is probably the most important American rock music magazine. That doesn't mean it's the best, but it is the most well-known and has by far the largest circulation.

They didn't review "The Whole Story", except in passing. They didn't review "The Sensual World" at all. But in the Nov. 25 issue, they review "The Red Shoes". Actually, the same "article" reviews both that and Jane Siberry's "When I Was A Boy". To ease the suspense, I'll tell you right off that TRS got three and a half stars, while WIWAB got four (out of five). Not fantastic for TRS, perhaps, but not awful either -- and that's pretty good, considering the track record of this magazine. And what the review says is perhaps better than the number of stars indicates. It's by Richard C. Walls. Here it is:

On her first album since The Sensual World , in 1989, Kate Bush continues in the manner of that album's verbal directness while displaying a melodic sense that's in peak form -- there are more hooks on The Red Shoes , both subtle and obvious, than on any of her releases since The Dreaming , in 1982. Bush seems content now to dress her songs in simpler -- though still occasionally antic -- colors. The result is offbeat pop that refines but doesn't sacrifice her signal eccentricity.

While the music has settled down somewhat, Bush herself remains rambunctious, and it's a saving grace. A sighing remembrance like "Moments of Pleasure" or the purple pleas of "Big Stripey Lie" could have the cloying aura of pressed flowers if they weren't put across with conviction and a tendency to really belt. "And So Is Love" is typical of Bush's aggressively sad torch songs, built of simple phrases theatrically enunciated and enhanced by dramatic support from guest Eric Clapton.

It's not all fainting hearts on Shoes , though. The mood ranges from the pure pop of "Rubberband Girl" to the exuberant reel of the title cut (an homage to the classic film), from the wistful verse and funky chorus of the Prince collaboration "Why Should I Love You?" to the West Indies-flavored "Eat the Music." The Red Shoes is a solid collection of well-crafted and seductively melodic showcases for Bush's hypercaberet style.


From: klaus@inphobos.wupper.de
Date: Wed, 17 Nov 1993 14:00:09
Subject: Die Woche #46 - The Red Shoes review Nov. 1993

My weekly newspaper reviews one CD each week. "The Red Shoes" received a positive review this week. Attached, you'll find the short original german text, followed by an english translation.

"Die Woche", No. 46 (german weekly newspaper)

11. November 1993

"Modernes Leben", Seite 25 (Modern Life, page 25)


The Red Shoes (EMI)


Vor jeder Vollmondnacht klettern Kate Bushs Verehrer in die Baeume, die das Haus der Englaenderin umgeben. Sie hoffen, dass Kate mit einem Rudel befreundeter Kobolde an ihnen vorbeitanzen wird. Bisher vergeblich. Zu ihrem Trost hat Kate Bush nach vier Jahren ein neues Album gezaubert, auf dem sie wie eine Elfe singt und wie eine Hexe tanzt. Zudem pflegt sie Freundschaft mit einer Bande boeser Trolle, die sich Eric Clapton, Nigel Kennedy und Prince nennen. Diese Gnome treiben immer wieder Schabernack. Doch Kate ist eine maechtige Fee. Und deshalb ist "The Red Shoes" wieder ganz bezaubernd gelungen.

Christoph Dallach

Each night when the moon is full Kate Bushs admirers climb the trees surrounding this englishwomans home. They hope Kate will dance by them with a swarm of friendly imps. Of no avail so far. For their solace, Kate Bush has conjured up a new album after four years, on which she sings like an elf and dances like a witch. Moreover she befriends a bunch of sinister trolls calling themselves Eric Clapton, Nigel Kennedy and Prince. Those gnomes are always playing pranks. But Kate is a mighty fairy. And that's why "The Red Shoes" turned out so enchanting.

Christoph Dallach


Date: Fri, 19 Nov 93 18:51:20 EST
From: UK04160@ukpr.uky.edu
Subject: The Baltimore Sun Nov. 1993

For those who care about published reviews only: I've finally encountered a bad review of TRS. To keep our transcriptions of reviews fair, here it is:

KATE BUSH: The Red Shoes

* 1/2

Even though it generally takes four years for Kate Bush to put an album together, what results is usually worth the wait. So why does THE RED SHOES seem such a misstep? It isn't as if Bush has lost her knack for odd-but-catchy pop songs. The title tune spins its slightly circular theme into wonderful, ear-catching arabesques. But too many of these songs lead nowhere, relying more on flashy production and high-profile guests than on melodic inspiration.

-J.D. Considine, The Baltimore Sun


Date: Sun, 21 Nov 1993 23:47:21 -0500 (EST)
From: Peter Byrne Manchester <PMANCHESTER@ccmail.sunysb.edu>
Subject: REVIEW: Newsday on TRS Nov. 1993

The Newsday reviewed TRS today, Glenn Kenny (freelance, not staff) writing under the head "Red Shoes Don't Make It."

England tends to nurture its artistic eccentrics more tenderly than America; characteristically, the nearly unclassifiable songstress Kate Bush is a superstar there and merely a beloved cult figure here. For that cult, her every utterance is an event. And there's been a long wait for the latest; "The Red Shoes" is her first album in four years. That gap is not surprise, since the reclusive Bush is such an obsessive sound sculptor--she was one of the first recording artists to take creative advantage of sampling technology. Her improbable soprano, combined with her predilection for decorating conventionally structured songs with all manner of exotic aural filigree, make her an often compelling pop maverick. But "The Red Shoes" is one of her most ordinary-sounding records. Could be the times have caught up with her, or just she's been holed up in the studio too long. Whatever the reason, the result is a record that, while entirely listenable, does not deliver the stunning surprises of her previous work.

"The Red Shoes" takes its title from the classic 1947 Michael Powell/Emeric Pressburger film (soon to be a Broadway musical) about a willful ballerina whose life is consumed by her need to dance. Again, it's no surprise that Bush is attracted to this theme; the characters in her songs are always in deep thrall to something--most recently, sex (witness her last two proper albums, "Hounds of Love" and "The Sensual World"). But unlike Madonna, Bush maintains a certain decorum--no coffee-table books of nude pictures for her, thanks. Even at her most frankly carnal (as in the new album's "The Song of Solomon," which contains the line "Just want your sexuality"), she sounds circumspect.

The record is as beautifully crafted as anything she's ever done, but often seems to subsume the oddball elements that gave her earlier productions their strange allure. "Rubberband Girl," "Eat the Music," and the title track are quirkily involving, but a good deal of the rest falls flat, relying on time-tested ingredients. "Why Should I Love You?" begins well enough, with the haunting eastern European vocal stylings of the Trio Bulgarka, but once guest star Prince kicks in on keyboards, guitar and bass, the song becomes a stale funk jam. "You're the One" features former Procul Harum singer/pianist Gary Brooker imitating the organ stylings of former bandmate Matthew Fisher, while guitarist Jeff Beck does Jeff Beck. She deploys the familiar trappings of classic rock with aplomb, but the track remains a disappointing album closer; familiarity is the last thing we expect from Bush.

[As to "disappointing album closer," I have a suggestion, Glenn.... But let it go.]

On a brighter note, The New Yorker has added a new weekly feature in the "Goings On About Town" calendar pages called "Record Store Arrivals," "A highly selective list of new releases we're curious to hear." Kate Bush "The Red Shoes" is included in the list for November 15 (along with Queen Latifah, Jody Watley, Teenage Fanclub, Otis Redding, "Incredibly Strange Music," and "No Alternative," p. 20). Cocteau Twins' "Four Calendar Cafe," released the same week, didn't make it until this week's issue, November 22.


Date: Thu, 25 Nov 1993 11:34:00 +0100
From: uli@zoodle.RoBIN.de (Ulrich Grepel)
Subject: musikexpress/Sounds (German mag) 12/93

Hi, the German magazine musikexpress/Sounds, issue 12/93, has three Kate Bush mentions:

p. 60, 'expressgut'

[TRS album cover, 3x3 cm, next to it:] KATE BUSH Die nachdenkliche Fee lockt auf "Red Shoes" den Zuhoerer tief hinein in den verschlungenen Irrgarten ihrer Gefuehle.

[English translation:] KATE BUSH On "Red Shoes" the thoughtful fairy lures the listener deep into the winding labyrinth of her feelings

p. 66, 'Seelen-Surferin'

[b/w photo of Kate in black dress sitting on a white box wearing red shoes, the shoes are of course NOT b/w, album cover too:]


Ein Klang-Irrgarten mit rotem Faden


The Red Shoes (EMI 827277 2)

Man muss sie hassen oder lieben. Kate Bushs Musik, zu der man kaum ein indifferentes Verhaeltnis haben kann, vertraegt keine ploetzlichen Stil-Wandlungen. Und ist es nur konsequent, wenn sie sich auch auf dem neuen Album - immerhin vier Jahre vom letzten Werk entfernt - der gewohnten und bewaehrten Zutaten bedient. Dabei beginnt "The Red Shoes" zunaechst mit leisen, fuer Bush-Verhaeltnisse froestelnd unpathetischen Toenen: "Rubberband Girl" ist eigentlich nur an ihrer schwebenden Stimme als Bush-Song zu erkennen, so schnurstraks springt das schlichte, kleine Popwerk auf den Punkt. Keine Bange -wie dieser Opener charmant zu falschen Schluessen verleitet, so lockt die nachdenklikche Fee Kate im Laufe des Albums ihre Hoerer immer wieder auf neue Pfade tief hinein in ihren Seelen-Irrgarten, der diesmal nur mit Hilfe eines textlich/inhaltlichen roten Fadens reibungslos durchschritten werden kann. Religion, Philosophie, ewige (rethorische) Fragen nach Leben und Sinn stehen im Vordergrund.

"And So Is Love", der zweite Song, schlaegt mit Hilfe von Eric Claptons millimetergenauen Gitarren-Licks schon wieder einen stilistischen Haken. Doch Clapton gibt unter Kate Bushs bunter Musikerschar nicht allein den Ton an. Suedamerikanische Gitarren, die gleichzeitig an keltische Klaenge erinnern praegen "Eat The Music", und zum ersten Mal stellt sich die sphaerische "Bush-Faszination" ein, dieses Gefuehl, den Boden unter den Fuessen zu verlieren und auf fremden Schwingen davonzufliegen. Selbst Egozentriker wie der ehemalige Klassik-Violinist Nigel Kennedy fuegen sich nahtlos dem Zauber wie in "Big Stripey Lie" oder dem kurzen und knackigen solistischen Hoehenflug beim Finale "You're The One". Zusammen mit Procol Harum Keyboarder Gary Brooker beschwoert er hier Bilder aus vergangenen Tagen, als Menschen wie Brooker noch Rockgeschichte schrieben und nicht als bleiche Denkmaeler durch die Studios schlichen. Auch dieses kleine Verdienst gebuert Kate Bush, deren unnachgiebig durchdachte, nie hingeschlampte Kompositionen keine Routine zulassen.

Hin und wieder verlaesst sie sich gern wieder auf das Folk-Trio Bulgarka und seinem wehmutig nostalgischen Balkan-Sound, der einst zu Kate Bushs Markenzeichen wurde. Selbst wenn dann Mit-Exzentriker Prince dazustoesst, traegt diese schwingend aesthetische Bruecke noch: Bei "Why Should I Love You" demonstriert der Alleskoenner, dass er durchaus Einfuehlungsvermoegen fuer andere Klangwelten als seine eigenen besitzt. Wahrscheinlich trafen sich die beiden auf der spirituellen Ebene, denn Red Shoes ist Kate Bushs bis dato am meisten von religioesen Themen gepraegtes Album - und auf dem Gebiet ist Prince ja bekanntlich auch sehr bewandert. Vieles hat Kate Bush in ihre "roten Schuhe" gestopft, und man sollte sich ausreichend Zeit nehmen, um alle Facetten zu entdecken. Ein ernsthaftes Album, dem man die lange Arbeit anmerkt. Kate Bushs Anhaenger werden genau das zu schaetzen wissen. (wt) * * * *


A sound labyrinth with a thread [this isn't translatable into English - we say 'roter Faden' (= red thread) for 'thread']


The Red Shoes (EMI 827277 2)

You have to hate her or love her. Kate Bush's music, to which you can barely have an indifferent relation, doesn't tolerate sudden changes in style. And it's only consequent, when on the new album - after all four years from her last work - she also uses the usual and proven ingredients. At the same time "The Red Shoes" begins with soft, compared to earlier Bush frosty unpathetic tones: "Rubberband Girl" is actually only recognisable as a Bush song due to her floating voice, that straight the plain, small pop-work jumps to the point. Don't worry - as well as this opener leads charmantly to wrong conclusions, during the album the thoughtful fairy lures her listeners again and again on new paths deep into her soul labyrinth, that this time can only be striden through smoothly with a textual/contentswise [red] thread. Religion, philosophy, neverending (rethorical) questions about live and sense are standing in the foreground.

"And So Is Love", the second song, already stilistically darts sideways again with the help of Eric Clapton's exact-to-the-millimeter guitar licks. But Clapton does not have the greatest say in Kate Bush's colorful crowd of musicans. South American guitars that at the same times remind of Celtic sounds, are shaping "Eat The Music", and for the first time the spheric "Bush-fascination" comes in, to feel the ground falling beneath your feet and to fly away on foreign wings. Even egocentrics as the former classical violinist Nigel Kennedy fit in seamlessly into the magic like in "Big Stripey Lie" or the short and crisp solistical high flights in the final "You're The One". Together with Procol Harum keyboarder Gary Brooker he enchants pictures from days long gone, when people like Brooker wrote rock history and didn't creep through the studios as pale monuments. This little merit also is Kate Bush's, whose intransigently thought-out, never sloppy compositions do not allow for routine.

Every now and then she's relying on the folk-Trio Bulgarka and its melancholically nostalgic Balkan-sound that once became the trade mark of Kate Bush. Even when co-excentric Prince joins this swingingly asthetic bridge still holds: With "Why Should I Love You" the all-rounder demonstrates that he absolutely is able to feel into other sound worlds than his own. Probably the two met on a spiritual plane, because up to now Red Shoes is Kate's album that is most shaped by religious themes - and in this subject Prince is well known to be well-versed. Kate Bush stuffed many things into her "red shoes", and you should take plenty of time to discover all facetts. A serious album where you can tell the long work. Kate Bush's followers will appreciate exactly that. (wt)

[Werner Theurich]

p. 95, 'Promi-Tip'

Robert Smith - Die zehn Lieblingsplatten der Cure-Heulsuse

[The ten favourite albums of the Cure's cry-baby]


From: Scott Telford <s.telford@ed.ac.uk>
Date: Fri, 26 Nov 1993 11:40:24 GMT
Subject: The Independent Nov. 1993

From the November 14th issue of The Independent on Sunday's "Night & Day" colour supplement:

Daft as a Bush

by Tom Hibbert

[bit about playing records backwards, throwing yourself out windows and Phil Collins deleted]

Kate Bush exudes Englishness of a different kind. Croquet and gingham and scones on the dainty patio. She is our dottiest dame since Margaret Rutherford and she is, to use an overworked and undervalued word, unique.

Her new LP, The Red Shoes (EMI 1047), named after the flitty Forties ballet flick starring Moira Shearer (only 'our' Kate would think of this), does not disappoint. There is nothing here that *quite* compares with her most splendid songs -- 1980's Breathing and 1986's The Big Sky [yay! -st] -- but The Red Shoes is a triumph nonetheless. She still sings like the slightly crazy girl on the lacrosse team alarming the opposing Vicarage XII -- on the boisterous title track she goes quite superbly bonkers.

Her music is exotic and clever -- not *clever*-clever, you understand, just imaginative: one moment she's sweeping us off on an unlikely touristico visit to Guinea-Bissau or somewhere equally West African (Eat the Music), the next she is weeping o'er the pianoforte (Moments of Pleasure).

She is the only woman in the universe who could hope to get Lenny Henry and Prince performing on the same song (not necessarily a good idea, but Why Should I Love You? does work). And, most important of all, her lyrics are still utterly potty...'Oh big stripy lie moving like a wavy line.' What *can* she mean?

Kate Bush's only mistake, the first of her glittering career, is to invite the fiddling goon Nigel Kennedy to scrape his Strad on the LP. Play him backwards, play him forwards, play him in any direction you care to, Nigel's 'hidden' message is ever the same:


Excuse me while I throw myself out the window...


From: josh@phoenix.lehman.com (Josh Whitehouse)
Date: Mon, 29 Nov 1993 21:14:54 GMT
Subject: New York Press Nov. 1993

November 24th Edition of New York Press (New York's Free Weekly Newspaper) has a review of TRS , reprinted here w/o permission.

Kate Bush Smiles in Her New Red Shoes

by Peter Gambaccini

Just as I can't understand why so many people have a problem with the estimable Hillary Clinton, I don't get the critical barbs often aimed at the inimitable Ka te Bush. Even in flattery she's called "pretentious," as if incorporating Emily Bronte and Lord Tennyson and a passel of psychobabblers into her material with often seamless skill were inherently a bad thing. I understand that the Great Books don't carry the weight they once did, but I always maintained that having a long literary syllabus at one' s command was a good thing.

In a tv retrospective of Saturday Night Live' s early days, Paul Shaffer suggested that the most bizarre incident of his time as the show's musical director wa s when a very young Bush writhed on his piano, dramatically and terpsichoreally enacting "The Man With The Child In His Eyes," which she'd written at the age of 16. Shaffer's act, of course, is the essence of inauthenticity, so consider the source. Still, despite endless SNL reruns, I don't believe her segment ever aired again.

Bush is a genius. Geniuses do overreach. Some of her stuff is awful, paint-peeling noise. I question certain of her choices. One thing I love about civilization is that we can disagree about such things without strafing each with automatic weapons fire. Bush connects about two out of three times, and a .667 beats not only John Olerud's batting average but the average pop artist's two or three acceptable cuts per CD.

Her "Love and Anger," a stunner MTV never plays anymore, is about third on my alltime video list (behind R.E.M.'s "Shiny Happy People", and Midge Ure's "Dear God"). "This Womans Work", with the couplet "Ooh, it's hard on a man, his work is over," is the chillingly apt backdrop to the scene of Kevin Bacon fretting out Elizabeth McGovern's difficult childbirth in She's Having A Baby". It almost makes you forget how pedestrian the rest of the film is.

I was a sucker for her banshee vocal as the ghostly Cathy on "Wuthering Heights." She re-recorded a more human voice for the song on her compilation The Whole Story . "In the Warm Room" convinced me to have sex with someone I was waffling about; "Wow" has become my anthem to anyone who amazes me; I sing "Lionheart" to my cat.

Bush has used Bulgarian women's choirs and African drummers and David Gilmour's guitar to magnificent effect. Her malleable and expansively ranging voice pairs with her studio wizardry to give her the most astonishing vocal control of any recording artist extant. She steps so far in front of the dense sonic landscape on "Suspended in Gaffa" that you figure she's left the speaker and must be in your apartment.

The Red Shoes (Columbia), here after a four-year wati since The Sensual World , adds to her stature and could add to the size of her American audience. It's accessible. It's not terribly polysyllabic. The obscure cultural reference points are fewer than in a Dennis Miller monolog. Parts of it are just darn pretty. At 35, Kate Bush has produced her most gleeful album in a decade.

The 1993 Bush gives us instant smiles with "Rubberband Girl," which, I dare say, is just plain fun. A clever analogy spins out as she details her life. She's inflexible; she'd like to bounce back, to snap out of it, like a rubberband. "Those trees bend in the wind," she notes, while "I try to resist." It's rendered to a jaunty beat. No Ph.D. required to grasp this one.

Kate Bush always manages to be steamily exotic without being the least bit smutty. There's this thing called subtlety, see. I won't quote the lyrics of "And So Is Love" at length out of context, but her terrible sexy tease is the explicit detail she leaves off the end of every line. It sounds like an infuriating device, but it's brilliant. It's another of her unabashed testimonials to the primacy of true feeling; in affairs of the heart, Kate Bush always means business.

Eric Clapton guests on "And So Is Love." He belongs, but he's not the star--it's her show. "Why Should I love You?" is different. Prince co-arranges, shares vocals, and plays his customary array of instruments. The result is exactly what you'd expect. It's okay, but it was never in my dreams.

"Moments of Pleasure" probably will inhabit my dream state. Direct and piercing, it's only Kate at the piano and Michael Kamen's orchestrations; it's achingly, unbearably exquisite. She recalls a dive off a rock at the beach, snow on a New York balcony, and a favorite saying of her mother, whose relatively recent death informs much of The Red Shoes . With all the feeling she can muster--and she can outmuster anyone--Bush affirms "Just being alive, it can really hurt/And those moments given are a gift from time/Just let us try to give the moments back/To those we love, To those who will survive."

Bush has customarily shunned interviews and the p.r. mill, insisting that all she needs to say is in her music. I'm always reminded of Peter Handke's novell, A Moment of True Feeling . There are more of those moments, deeper and honestly proferred to us, in The Red Shoes that in piles of product gracing the airwaves. If the gorgeous and affecting "Moments of Pleasure" doesn't suffice, we're dead.

Elsewhere, she lightens up a lot. In "The Red Shoes," a girl dons the fabled footwear and can't stop dancing. And you can dance to it, and to "Eat the Music," which is vaguely Mexican and so laden with fruit imagery that you'll get hungry.

The Red Shoes has its misses. Her "Song of Solomon" isn't as riveting as the Bible's, and "Big Stripey Lie" is a nifty title for an ugly tune. But what's most often apparent is that Bush, who rarely does concerts, brings such care and expertise to her production. In the course of a single track, she is first one voice and then an altogether different one, singing from geographically distinct locales in the aural mix. In "Top of the City," she pauses perfectly between vocal steps, jsut as anyone mak ing a climb to such a lofty pinnacle would have to.

In "You're the One," a finale that brings together Jeff Beck and the Trio Bulgarka without a stumble, she cogently observes the futility of trying to sort out what's yours and what's mine after a breakup; almost all of it is ours, materially but, more importantly, metaphysically. She can gas up the car and load it with her things, but "you're the only one I want," she repeats again and again. At the end, farther away, she's calling out "Sugar? Honey?"

Pedestrian notions rendered in simple terms, perhaps. The Red Shoes is as plain-speaking as Kate Bush gets. But not pro forma, and even the small words have been selected with great care and precision. From the most serene bliss to the most desperate urgency, no singer locates as many spots on the emotional spectrum as Bush does.

Every one of Bush's albums contains songs I couldn't live without, but The Red Shoes is a rewarding chance to begin to accept her as your personal, uh, genius . "You see, I'm all grown up now," she sang in 1989 on The Sensual World 's "The Fog". No, you're all grown up now .

On to The Red Shoes Reviews, Part 3

"The pull and the push of it all..." - Kate Bush

Reaching Out
is a
Marvick - Hill
Willker - Mapes
Grepel - Love-Hounds