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Old 09-09-2009, 06:41 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Kate Bush - The Kick Inside (1978)

Kate Bush - The Kick Inside (1978)

  1. Moving – 3:01
  2. The Saxophone Song – 3:51
  3. Strange Phenomena – 2:57
  4. Kite – 2:56
  5. The Man with the Child in His Eyes – 2:39
  6. Wuthering Heights – 4:28
  7. James and the Cold Gun – 3:34
  8. Feel It – 3:02
  9. Oh to Be in Love – 3:18
  10. L'Amour Looks Something Like You – 2:27
  11. Them Heavy People – 3:04
  12. Room for the Life – 4:03
  13. The Kick Inside – 3:30

Listen : Spotify


Me and Kate go a relatively long way back. The first time I noticed her was when me and a mate was at a nachspiel (after-party) at another one of my female friend's place. I was sitting on the couch while her overly drunk boyfriend was feeding me cold rice-stew with a ladle. And we were listening to Kate Bush's Wuthering Heights, although I didn't know it was her at the time. The song made a lingering impression, but the next morning at the pub, I couldn't remember who the artist was .. Somehow I rediscovered her some time later, could've been a year or two - I don't remember exactly when or how it happened. At first, I wasn't quite sure wether I thought her unique voice was truly beautiful or just strange, but I was intrigued. When I downloaded some of her music videos, the weirdness of Kate Bush really opened up to me. The girl seemed utterly crazy with her sometimes squeaky voice, wild eyes and often not-so-graceful dance moves, but somehow I found it all immensely and strangely appealing. Mesmerizing almost! I quickly became a fan of her very early works and I even bought a T-Shirt. Some of my friends still tease me about it (the bastards) .. However, that is now a while ago now and my relationship with Kate has sobered up a bit since then ..

So who is Kate Bush? Well, when she was little, she studied the violin and the piano. She also quickly started writing her own songs and was a bit of a prodigy. In her early teens, she was discovered by none other than David Gilmour. With his influence and recommendations, she signed a contract with EMI at a mere 16 years of age. She would spend the time between the contract and her debut album writing more than 200 songs as well as getting dancing lessons and finishing school. According to Kate Bush, recording her own album was a childhood dream and The Kick Inside supposedly contains songwriting material that she wrote all the way down to 12 years of age. The album was released when she was 19 and spawned several singles. With Wuthering Heights, she became the first female UK artist to reach Nr. 1 on the charts, immediately catapulting her into stardom. As her musical career developed, she became a shy celebrity who preferred to do her own stuff without being a public figure. As a result, over time she somewhat removed herself from the mainstream appeal of her first albums.

Album review

The two first tracks, Moving and The Saxophone Song are beautiful, fragile, feminine and sometimes haunting songs. Both are among my favourites and a great way to start off such a strong album. Strange Phenomena (which is appearantly about menstruation) and particularly Kite lightens the mood of the album with a more playful, youthful and in the latter, whimsical sound at times. Kite also features Kate Bush doing very extensive backing vocals in her own song, much to the listeners pleasure. The Man With The Child in his Eyes is another fragile and beautiful song written by her at the age of 16. The recording of the song was done under the supervision of David Gilmour and it's also the second single from this album. As such, they made a music video for it that you can watch below!

This very strong song is immediately followed up by her first single from the album and possibly Kate Bush's most famous song ever, Wuthering Heights. As I wrote earlier, it was the first single by a female artist to reach nr. 1 in the UK, making it a historical and unique pop song. Although I've heard it hundreds of times, it still has great replay value and I think it's a quite hard song not to like. The lyrics are obviously inspired by Emily Bronte's book by the same name in which the ghost of Kathy is standing outside Heathcliff's window .. The video does a good job of showcasing everything that is strange and at the same time appealing about Kate. Enjoy!

After Wuthering Heights, we enter the second half of the album. While not as strong as the first, there are still good songs. Feel it, although it sounds like a melancholic love song dominated by Kate's voice and her piano, sounds like it might be about sex. Oh, to be in Love is another fun track that has male backing vocals in the chorus and Them Heavy People is another whimsical tune about realising your potential .. I think. The album inevitably finishes with the title track The Kick Inside which is an absolutely lovely song and definetly one of my favourites from this album.

Review Summary

So why should you want to listen to this album? For one, it is a well-produced album with some wonderful songs by a an incredible artist. Secondly, it is truly unique and a collector's item for any person who is half-serious about his music collection. When they discovered Kate Bush as a teenager, they realised her potential and instead of forcing her talent, they nurtured it and gave it time to grow. When she bloomed, The Kick Inside was the first fruit of many from Kate Bush and for me, it is by far the sweetest. Producer Andy Powell has done a great job lifting and showcasing this teenage girl's amazing talent and the album feels like it captures her essence at that time. It's unspoiled, youthful, amazingly creative for a pop record and often quite feminine and innocent despite some lush orchestral arrangements now and then. Kate quickly matured after her debut and so some of the qualities of this record are quickly lost, leaving an overall feeling of fragile beauty when seen in the larger perspective from her discography.

I think this album has two ratings. If you know nothing about Kate Bush and only listen to it, I'd say it's a very good album and I would give it a 5/6. However, if you can appreciate it's amazing history and where it comes from, feelings of awe may haunt you at every track and quickly turn it into an excellent album. Since these reviews are all about my opinions and what I feel, I give it ..

Toretorden's Treasure Trove score 6/6

Favourite tracks Moving, The Saxophone Song, Kite, The Man With the Child in his Eyes, Wuthering Heights, The Kick Inside.

For such an album to come from a girl in her teenage years is nothing short of amazing. The Kick Inside makes Kate Bush an inspiration for every young artist out there.
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