EDITORIAL: A YELP AND A BARK FOR KATE

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C. Harlan

Connor Harlan, Editor-in-Chief

Kate Bush, the recluse of a thousand different faces, is an English woman of many interests and talents. Kate struck commercial gold in the late 70’s with her smash hit “Wuthering Heights” that appeared on her debut, “The Kick Inside.” This track is commonly cited by fans to be representative of the artist’s discography, but I see the canon of Kate Bush to play out differently. As an artist commonly cited for her eccentricity, this song, as well as the album it appears on, are quite tame. The follow up record, “Lionheart,” is similarly tame and is at points, downright uninteresting. Kate Bush’s true artistic vision wasn’t given proper fulfillment until her 1980 record, “Never For Ever.” This album is a rather icy reflection on the cold war that combines Bush’s acrobatic vocal style with the lavish production of many famous prog rock greats like David Gilmour. I see this as her true debut, and her first two albums to be prehistory. They aren’t bad, but Kate went on to prove herself as not just a pop songstress, but also as an experimental music titan. Albums like “The Dreaming” are outright weird offerings that eliminate all signs of commercial potential in favor of odd soundscapes and jarring melodies. Her 1985 album
“Hounds of Love” is seen as her masterpiece, with one side being full of concise and catchy pop tunes, and the second side being a mini-concept album about a man afloat on a boat in the middle of the sea. It may be my favorite record of hers, and her excellence doesn’t stop there. After this, she released two more albums before taking a sabbatical from the music industry until her return in 2006 with the album “Aerial.” Kate has been steadily producing music since her return to making albums, her most recent being a beautiful live collection of songs. Kate Bush is an iconoclastic pop star with an excellent discography that I connect with in a big way.