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NEVER FOR EVER

Kate Bush

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Kate Bush Never For Ever album cover
3.96 | 189 ratings | 20 reviews | 33% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
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Studio Album, released in 1980

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Babooshka (3:20)
2. Delius (Song Of Summer) (2:51)
3. Blow Away (For Bill) (3:34)
4. All We Ever Look For (3:48)
5. Egypt (4:12)
6. Wedding List (4:15)
7. Violin (3:15)
8. Infant Kiss (2:50)
9. Night Scented stock (0:51)
10. Army Dreamers (2:58)
11. Breathing (5:29)

Total Time: 37:23

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Kate Bush / piano, keyboards, vocals, harmony vocals
- Paddy Bush / harmonica, mandolin, balalaika, bass (vocal), sitar, vocals, vocals (bckgr), Koto, Banshee, Saw, Mando, Delius
- Ian Bairnson / guitar, bass (vocal), vocals
- Brian Bath / guitar (acoustic), guitar, guitar (electric), vocals (bckgr)
- Andrew Bryant / vocals, vocals (bckgr)
- Kevin Burke / violin
- Stuart Elliot / drums, Bodhran
- Larry Fast / keyboards, Prophet synthesizer
- Martyn Ford / orchestra
- John Giblin / bass, bass (electric), Fretless bass
- Roy Harper / vocals, vocals (bckgr)
- Preston Heyman / percussion, drums, vocals (bckgr)
- Gary Hurst / vocals, vocals (bckgr)
- Duncan Mackay / keyboards, fairlight
- Max Middleton / keyboards, Moog synthesizer, Fender Rhodes, string arrangements
- Mike Moran / keyboards, Prophet 5
- Alan Murphy / guitar (acoustic), guitar, bass (electric), guitar (electric), bass (acoustic)
- Del Palmer / bass, bass (electric), vocals, Fretless bass
- Morris Pert / percussion, Tympani [Timpani]
- Roland / percussion
- Adam Sceaping / violin, string arrangements
- Jo Sceaping / Lironi, string arrangements
- Adam Skeaping / viola
- Joseph Skeaping / Lironi

Releases information

LP EMI CDP 7 46360 2
Original Release: 1980 LP (Gatefold Cover)/Cass
Remastered: 1990 CD (no extra tracks); 2005 CD (Japanese release - no extra tracks)
1984 - CD EMI America E2-46360 (1984)
LP EMI 794 (1980)
CD EMI America CDP7463602 (1980)
EMI 17115 (1980)
CS EMI America E4-46360 (1984)
CS Alliance 46360 (1991)
CD Alliance 46360 (1996)

Thanks to fishy for the addition
and to ProgLucky for the last updates
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Hounds of LoveHounds of Love
Import
Emi 2011
Audio CD$6.94
$4.88 (used)
50 Words For Snow50 Words For Snow
ANTI Records 2011
Audio CD$12.32
$9.69 (used)
The Sensual WorldThe Sensual World
SBME SPECIAL MKTS. 2008
Audio CD$2.82
$0.01 (used)
The Kick InsideThe Kick Inside
Parlophone 1997
Audio CD$2.77
$1.73 (used)
The Whole StoryThe Whole Story
EMI 1990
Audio CD$4.66
$0.54 (used)
The Red ShoesThe Red Shoes
Sbme Special Mkts. 2008
Audio CD$3.75
$0.80 (used)
The DreamingThe Dreaming
Import
Fish People 2011
Audio CD$8.25
$9.57 (used)
Never For EverNever For Ever
Parlophone 1990
Audio CD$4.28
$4.00 (used)
Director's CutDirector's Cut
Fish People 2011
Audio CD$5.18
$4.61 (used)
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KATE BUSH Never For Ever ratings distribution


3.96
(189 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(33%)
33%
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(43%)
43%
Good, but non-essential (20%)
20%
Collectors/fans only (3%)
3%
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)
1%

KATE BUSH Never For Ever reviews


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Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by richardh
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars This is Kate's third album and shows her increasing maturity as an artist.The songs are excellent and the high quality arrangements and top notch production work of the first 2 albums is still intact.However I don't see any great progression in the ideas ,just another fine song based album.Better than the the first 2 but not eneough for 5 stars.

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Send comments to richardh (BETA) | Report this review (#56788) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, November 18, 2005

Review by Raff
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Kate Bush's third album could only be described as romantic, in the best and truly literary sense of the word. From the fantasy-tinged cover to the imaginative subject matter of the songs, this is an album that emphasises Kate's attraction to the mysterious and the uncanny, sometimes even the darker side of life. Oddly enough, though, the often disturbing lyrics are accompanied by hauntingly beautiful, folk- influenced music. On most tracks Kate's voice still sounds elfin, enchantingly childish as it did on her first two albums - though there are frequent hints of maturity in the deeper, almost growling tones adopted in songs such as the opening "Babooshka", a tale of jealousy and madness, and the revenge-themed "The Wedding List".

Among the highlights of the album, together with the above-mentioned tracks, there are the poignantly sweet "Blow Away", a reflection on the afterlife which offers tribute to many dead musicians; the lilting, melancholy "Army Dreamers", about those young people with no perspectives who are lured by the military life and often end up losing their lives; and the intense, dramatic "Breathing", featuring David Gilmour on backing vocals and dealing with the fear of a nuclear holocaust.

"Never for Ever" is definitely a step ahead of the first two albums and an excellent introduction to Kate's most creative phase in the early '80s, culminating with her masterpiece, 1985's "Hounds of Love".

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Send comments to Raff (BETA) | Report this review (#57037) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, November 19, 2005

Review by greenback
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars This is one of the most progressive albums of Kate Bush: when someone questions the progressive dimension of her music, then this person should carefully listen to this album: this record is sufficient enough to classify her music as, at least, "prog related". There are omnipresent excellent piano parts. Kate's lead vocals are colorful, nervous and never monotonous, as always. The bass is quite present and complex enough, sometimes fretless ("Breathing", "Babooshka"). The electric guitar is sometimes surprisingly hard rock, but usually it is not too exuberant. There are very good keyboards and they are often subtly played in the background, however not really floating: a pleasant mix of piano, Fender Rhodes and some more modern floating keyboards like the Fairlight and Prophet synthesizers. "Egypt" has a funny keyboards pattern a la Tomita. The Moog on "Wedding list" sounds a bit like the "Brand X" of the seventies. For the first time, Kate's music is psychedelic, a bit like 10 CC's "I'm not in love", on the last part of "Breathing": interesting!

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Send comments to greenback (BETA) | Report this review (#57088) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, November 20, 2005

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Sid Vicious?

For her third album, Kate called in a veritable army of musicians, so it is strange that the over-riding impression is of sparse piano and voice based songs. Here we have 11 short track, some of which are segued together while others stand alone.

In general terms, I find the music hard to get excited about. Even when you become attuned to Bush's unique high pitched vocal style, it can still become wearing after successive songs. The music can be challenging beyond the confines of standard singer songwriter fare, "Blow away" (which name checks late artists such as Sid Vicious, Buddy Holly and Sandy Denny) for example is reasonably complex in terms of the time and mood changes, but they are so condensed in the 3 minute framework, that there is little room for development of the themes. Track after track follows a similar pattern, to the extent that the apparent complexity becomes almost predictable.

Clearly, a great deal of thought and effort has gone into each piece, in terms of arrangement, lyrics, and composition. Rarely however does Bush's voice become anything other than the dominant sound. It is only really when we reach the final track, "Breathing" that we find any real development, and even then it is in the form of vocalising.

Don't get me wrong, there are some very pleasant songs here, from the perfect pop of "Babooshka" (a huge hit single) to the delicately reflective "Army dreamers". Bush's relationship with prog though is in a similar format to bands like 10C.C., she takes well composed pop, and perfects it through complex arrangements.

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Send comments to Easy Livin (BETA) | Report this review (#111948) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Review by Matti
COLLABORATOR Neo-Prog Team
4 stars With this third album KB started to show her real capacities and appear as more mature musicmaker. On her first two albums she gave a bit girlish (after all, that's what she still was), head-in-the-clouds image of herself, her musical stories dealing mostly with intimate feelings without much connection to the 'outside world'. Here her palette is wider, and also now she began to use electronic instruments (e.g. Fairlight) as well as folklore expertise of her brother Paddy. The key word is nevertheless "romantic" but in the deeper sense than before. The album cover - drawn by a respected book illustrator - was planned by Kate: all kinds of animals and nightly creatures burst from under her dress in a very symbolic manner.

I'd like to use the song-by-song approach this time (I'm reading a biography on KB which helped me to understand some ideas on songs). 'Babooshka' doesn't need much introducing, it's THE hit of this album. The way it turns directly into the soft dreamy soundscape of 'Delius' shows the art rock /prog-related leanings. Frederick Delius was an English composer who lost his health before his creativity and who needed the aid of others, mainly Eric Fenby whose name is mentioned in the lyrics - if one can call the male character's mumbling lyrics. The track, together with 'Night Scented Stock' (which has only wordless multi-layered vocals) is the closest to instrumental Kate has done, if I'm not forgetting something now. Then comes 'Blow Away' about the idea of heavenly meeting of dead musicians. It's dedicated to a man who accidentally died during the stage setting.

Light-mooded 'All We Ever Look For' is to me quite boring; it should be half shorter. 'Egypt' is a highlight, haunting and shamelessly romantic wailing of exotica. 'Wedding List' is an edgier song telling of a wedding that ends up in killing. In it Kate operates with her vocals very powerfully. The next crazy, would I say punkish song 'Violin' is not my cup of tea.

'Infant Kiss' is a controversial song: it's easily interpreted as pedofilian, but Kate was inspired by a story of a dead man's spirit living in small boy's body. The nanny gives the child a goodnight kiss and the man in the boy's body answers with an adult passionate kiss and messes up the nanny's emotions. At the end of the album comes two more single-released tracks, both with a serious message: 'Army Dreamers' is musically naiive and pretty but is actually very political, about British military activities outside the country ("B.F.P.O" = British Forces' Post Office) and the Irish accent makes the message clearer... 'Breathing' interprets the fear of a nuclear disaster and is one of her most touching songs. The protagonist is an unborn baby. An anecdote: during the recording someone from EMI heard the "out... in... out... in" part and thought she was doing a sexual song!

Never For Ever has qualities that makes me want to grace it as a masterpiece, but since she was to do even better and since here are two songs I'm not so fond of, I give "only" 4 stars though it feels to be too little for this excellent and very creative work. Progheads really should give Kate Bush a chance, and this is one of the key albums.

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Send comments to Matti (BETA) | Report this review (#116436) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Leave us something to breathe"

From the moment we see the fantasy cover and the elaborate artwork within the gatefold we know that Kate is going for another stratosphere with this release. It is obvious she had more time here than on the previous album. The cover shows a cornucopia of fantasy creatures shooting out from under her cloud dress as if she is giving birth to her own world which she does musically on Never For Ever.

We start with a nice single in Babooshka telling the story of a cheating husband and a wife's ploy to catch him. But it is the second track Delius (Song of Summer) where Kate ups the ante and moves to new levels of expression. Musically and lyrically, Delius and the following Blow Away (For Bill) and All We Ever Look For are so out of this world. Layers of bass and piano compliment the delicate vocals and the mood is really something I can't articulate. Just.special, like a mini-suite. These are tracks which have great personal memories for me, they were a soundtrack for a time when I was falling in love.

Egypt follows and is a solid track with bizarre instrumental drama leading to some cosmic Kate yelping. Violin is classic Kate rocking and pushing the theatrical limits (so far) of her vocal weirdness. The band is rock solid backing her here and we get a nice guitar solo by Alan Murphy. The Infant Kiss is a return to the simple beauty of earlier work but with some nice strings. Night Scented Stock is wordless vocal piece leading into another standout track, Army Dreamers, a commentary on war which would be one of Kate's memorable videos. The closing track is Breathing and this is one of Bush's most dramatic works. Absolutely gorgeous and full of dread all at once with stunning arrangements and a bombastic finish.

Kate was now an established artist of mindbending quality and she still had more tricks up her sleeve. This is her album for the romantics in the crowd, you know who you are! At the same time, the album has not held up as well as her first two gems, or her next one, thus the slightly lower rating.

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Send comments to Finnforest (BETA) | Report this review (#119756) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Never For Ever is the third album from Kate Bush and itīs been a couple of years since Lionheart came out. It was a wise decision to take a break from recording and gather inspiration. The Kick Inside and Lionheart are both wonderful albums but they were both released in 1978 and with such a tight schedule you might fear that Kate Bush would run dry. That didnīt happen. Never For Ever is an equally wonderful and memorable album and doesnīt leave any doubt that Kate Bush was still the queen of intricate and innovative pop music.

The album starts with Babooshka which is a very special song to me. Despite the lyrics about infidelity and the despair of love this is me and my wifeīs song and we both love it as we also both love Kate Bush. There are very few artists that we share our love for so Babooshka is very special to us. Whenever we put this album on and Babooshka comes out of the speakers we both sing and shout along. Delius (Song Of Summer) is the next song and itīs very quit song following the full on pop assault that was Babooshka. Delius (Song Of Summer) is the song here that points most towards the eighties with the electronic drums/ sequenced drums/ drum machine. Itīs a very beautiful song and it reminds me of some of the quiter moments on Hounds of Love.

There are lots of other memorable songs here but Iīll mention Blow Away (For Bill), Violin and Breathing for standing out a bit. There are only excellent songs on Never For Ever though.

The musicians are great as usual and Kate Bush is in top form and sings both like an angel and like a femme fatale at times ( Wedding List). The lady is outstanding.

The production is a bit more eighties sounding than the two previous albums but it still has a somewhat soft seventies sound.

So this is the third in a row of beautiful and excellent albums from Kate Bush. This might not be very progressive but on the other hand itīs innovative enough to be called semi-progressive IMO. Kate Bush is without a doubt my favorite female artist and with Never For Ever she proves herself again. This one is highly recommendable as are her first two albums The Kick Inside and Lionheart. I will rate Never For Ever 4 stars for being another excellent album from a very special lady.

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Send comments to UMUR (BETA) | Report this review (#168282) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, April 21, 2008

Review by The Crow
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars After the little deception of Lionheart (it was too similar to The Kick Inside, but less inspired...), Kate Bush made a better effort... But again without reaching the levels of her debut album!

The first thing that comes to my mind listeing Never for Ever, is that it's more experimental... Like the two previous Kate's albums, the tracks are a mixture between a personal pop very piano oriented (Army Dreamers, All We Ever Look for...), with some rockier ones (Violin, Wedding List...) and some folk elements. But like I said, the piano is again the dominant key in her compositions... But in this third album, the experimentation has increased. In a lot of tracks, we have some weird noises, and the odd Paddy Bush's choirs are also very important to make the dinstinctive feeling of the album.

But in my humble opinion, this album lacks some highlights... There is not a bad song here, but not a great one too. Lionheart is not as good in its integrity, but in this album we had Wow and Oh England My Lionheart, two marvellous songs. And being Never for Ever a better album, I miss some hit... But the songs are all good, and it's OK anyway.

Best tracks: Babooshka (experimental and catchy track...), Army Dreamers (the best mellow track...), Violin (I really like the Kate's singing here... She sounds like the instrument of the tittle!) and Breathing (a sensitive and beautiful ending).

Conclusion: in my opinion, this is far from being the best Kate Bush's album... It's easily surpased by The Kick Inside, and it's miles away from Hounds of Love. Nevertheless, it's a very worthy one... Here Kate showed new ideas, and althought the real evolution of her sounds was still to come, with Never For Ever she achieved some interesting things.

My rating: ***1/2

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Send comments to The Crow (BETA) | Report this review (#180539) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, August 22, 2008

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams
4 stars "Never For Ever" is Kate Bush's third album, and by my ears, her first truly progressive offering. While there was a sprinkling of prog in her earlier releases, this is where it comes to full fruition. Her orchestrations and instrumentations have matured here into a beautiful, lush, and highly inventive form, and her use of her amazing voice has greatly expanded since the last release.

Kate Dark side is expanded here in songs like "The Wedding List", with Bush portaying a woman killing a man at his wedding for revenge, the killing herself. Two other songs venture into political areas. "Army Dreamers" is about a young man killed at war, and "Breathing", about the aftermath of a nuclear blast. Who but Kate Bush could make a song about dying from ingesting fallout sexy? "In...Out...In...Out...In...Out...In...Out........"

And for great videos, look for "Babooshka" and "Army Dreamers", both on YouTube.

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Send comments to Evolver (BETA) | Report this review (#220328) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, June 08, 2009

Review by snobb
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars It is the first Kate Bush album I ever listened. It happened in early eightees when I got this second hand LP made by EMI Sweden. After first listening I was hypnotised!

Perfect melodies, beautiful melodies, unigue voice, very competent arrangements. But most important - this music had a magic in it! Acoustic intros, voice nuances, emotive and romantic, but never sweet - what a miracle!

"Babooshka", midtempo melodic balad, acoustic piano line - I love this song till now very much. "Army Dreamers" - another high point, with interesting lyrics, "Breathing " atmosphere song with interesting texture...

Till now, this is the best Kate Bush album for me! I can't accept easy their more new works ( too many synth sound, too pop-oriented). But this one is her masterpiece. May be not too proggy, but beautiful strange music.

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Send comments to snobb (BETA) | Report this review (#241632) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, September 26, 2009

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Metal Team
4 stars Kate's third album is another tour de force, maintaining the piano based pop magic of the previous albums but growing an arm and a leg in arranging the material.

Babooska is a delightful opener, great fretless bass and a number of sound effects reveal Kate's search for more sophisticated arrangements. Delius takes further steps into more experimental territory, playing with vocals, keyboards and drum computer. The result is magical. Blow Away is a delightful ballad that sticks closer to the style of the previous albums. All We Ever Look For is more adventurous again, featuring a whistled main theme and a few nods to Pink Floyd. Also Egypt has a spacey Floyd feel. It ended the perfect A-side of the original vinyl release.

The B-side is more uneven, The Wedding List is a charming small musical drama with a somehow unremarkable chorus. Violin is a fun punk tune with a funny lyrical reference to Siouxsie and the Banshees. It's clearly not Kate's specialty, it's too cute really. The Infant Kiss / Night-Scented / Army Dreamers is a wonderful suite of short romantic charm and beauty, the highpoint of the album. Breathing is a competent piece of music that shows the more proggy side of Kate.

Never For Ever is an excellent album with great compositions and interesting arrangements. A solid 4 stars.

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Send comments to Bonnek (BETA) | Report this review (#258619) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, December 31, 2009

Review by Conor Fynes
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars 'Never For Ever' - Kate Bush (7/10)

Pop- like virtually all types of music- can be innovated and developed upon. Kate Bush earns my respect for being able to write songs within the mandatory four minute pop cap that still touch me. Perhaps it is the rich way in which she arranges these compositions, or her unique, angelic voice, I find myself attracted to her music, when by any other standard, I should be turned away from it. With enough supporting musicians to man a military regiment, Bush's third album 'Never For Ever' is fairly standard Bush fare,and listeners who haven't liked her work in the past will not like it here either. However, for those- like me- who like what she does, this is a charming collection of songs that showcase her talents both as a songwriter and vocalist.

'Never For Ever' is best defined by its dreamlike fantasy feel. Even from the surreal album art, Bush's third album feels like the soundtrack to some Victorian fantasy, with plenty of nuances in the music that hide behind Kate's vocals. Despite the artistic tendencies that run throughout each of the eleven songs here, this is still- first and foremost- a pop album, and Kate's vocals are therefore the most important part of what the music is about. This is far from being a bad thing, due to the distinctive, unique, and gorgeous sound of her voice. Even looking past her penchant for strong, lush melodies, her higher register delivery is wispy, dramatic, and even seductive at moments. Still, I think that the best thing that Kate Bush's music offers is a full- blown arrangement. I would draw the comparison of a big budget blockbuster if it did not imply that Kate's music was shallow, but all of the tricks are really pulled out for this one. For the vast majority of the album, Kate Bush is being backed up by richly orchestrated instrumentation, and the focus on detail is what sets 'Never For Ever' apart from most pop records.

The one thing that doesn't sit so well with me is that there is only one track on the album that I would really consider to be a 'standout', that being the first track 'Babooshka'. That is not to say that the majority of the album is not good, it's just that most of it does not exude the sense of being 'classic' songs. Many of these songs also feel a tad short for their own good, even as pop songs. 'Never For Ever' really is a sweet, albeit short album though, and if I had artistic pop needs that needed to be satiated, Kate Bush would always do the trick.

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Send comments to Conor Fynes (BETA) | Report this review (#557346) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Review by Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars With Kate producing as well as performing this time around, Never For Ever diversified her sound somewhat, relying less on string arrangements and experimenting more with the structures of her songs. Synthesisers also start creeping in, and are used to particularly good effect on the closing Breathing. With lyrical themes ranging from infidelity to nuclear war, the album shows off Kate's talents as a lyricist well, and the music varies enough to keep interesting from beginning to end. Another quality album from Bush, which set her on a course of musical development which would continue through The Dreaming and the classic Hounds of Love.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#565457) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, November 10, 2011

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Team
4 stars Uncanny how she, Reminds him of his little lady, Capacity to give him all he needs, Just like his wife before she freezed on him...

"Never For Ever" is Kate Bush's third studio release that eventually made an impact on the charts after a slow start, hitting the UK number one, the first for a female artist at the time. It begins with the mighty 'Babooshka' that is wonderful to hear and even more wonderful eye candy on the film clip. The Kate seen on the 'Babooshka' clip was the goddess, Kate at her sexiest in Amazon Warrior attire, strangling cellos, and wielding a mighty sword in a glowing light; images that are indelible to the Australian conscious on rock shows such as "Countdown". The song itself is a real oddity for the charts, concerning a woman who wanted to test her husband, sending him letters signed Babooshka; "Uncanny how she, Reminds him of his little lady, Capacity to give him all he needs, Just like his wife before she freezed on him..."

Other songs on the album pale in comparison to the singles on the album, as always, but at least on "Never For Ever" there is a consistent quality and innovative experimental approach; 'Delius (Song Of Summer)' is a weird piece with progressive structure, based on the English classical composer, 'Blow Away (For Bill)' is a piano power ballad with delicate vocals that build heavier (a song dedicated to the late Bill Duffield, killed on a tour, and his death is linked to the demise of music icons Minnie Riperton, Keith Moon, Sandy Denny, Sid Vicious and Buddy Holly), and 'All We Ever Look For' has a jaunty rhythm and odd vocal theatrical style. It ends with a footsteps effect and weird sounds like someone opening a series of doors concealing secrets.

'Egypt' has an unusual chiming musical accompaniment and lyrics about pharaohs, Egyptian artifacts, and how she is in love with Egypt. It has an effective dramatic finale, building with bizarre sounds and menace, until a final keyboard solo. 'Wedding List', inspired by "The Bride Wore Black" movie, overstays its welcome but has some of Kate's oddest vocals and truly ominous musical style. Violins permeate the album but definitely are a component of 'Violin', with some more theatrical vox, with Kate squeaking, snarling and crooning as the mood hits her. She sounds a bit like Lene Lovich here moreso than most of her compositions. 'Infant Kiss' is a song inspired by the movie "The Innocents", the story of a governess frightened by her feelings for a young man possessed by the spirit of an adult. 'Night Scented stock' is a very short thing less than a minute, that almost feels like part of the previous track. It is basically a cappella vocal intonations multi layered and harmonious.

'Army Dreamers' is another killer single, hitting number 6 in UK, with a weird waltz style unlike anything on the charts at the time. Kate uses her famous chromatic vocals, sliding effortlessly up the music scale, following her own melody as the music bounces along. The lyrics are based on how war effects those embroiled in it, taken from the perspective of the mother who grieves for her son, killed but not in action, rather in the senseless practice of military manoeuvres. She is overcome by guilt over whether she had the power to prevent it. The film clip is memorable with Kate in army gear and camouflage makeup, culminating in soldiers being blown away by grenades.

'Breathing' is a great way to close the album as it was another single, hitting UK number 6, and one of my favourite vocal performances from Kate. The fretless bass and piano holds a disjointed time sig. The lyrics are potent from the perspective of a foetus recoiling from her mother's smoking that is slowly killing it. Also it focusses on the awareness of the foetus, who becomes alarmed by the nuclear fallout of a nuclear holocaust. We hear the voices of some personnel that enhances this theme, and the mood is bleak and questions is there something to breathe when the air is polluted. The film clip is one of Kate's best showing her rolling encased in a bubble, a symbolic foetus ready to emerge.

It ends this album with a dynamic track, and overall this is one of Kate's most consistent albums after two decent studio releases. I believe this was the beginning of greatness for Kate who was showing that she was not just a singles artist. The other songs on this album are also creative and worth a listen. 4 stars is a fair rating, and after this Kate was on the cusp of releasing her very best proggiest albums with "The Dreaming" and "Hounds of Love".

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Send comments to AtomicCrimsonRush (BETA) | Report this review (#808518) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Latest members reviews

4 stars Kate's inclusion here on ProgArchives is, to me, questionable and certainly debatable, but her penchant for creating many quirky, unusual, technology-leading "experimental" songs does make her a progressive artist--as are Brian Eno, Roxy Music, Talking Heads, Peter Gabriel, Tears for Fears, Co ... (read more)

Report this review (#1005006) | Posted by BrufordFreak | Wednesday, July 24, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars An early Kate Bush album (her second, I believe) and a good one at that. Top songs are "Babooshka", "Delius", "Infant Kiss", "Army Dreamers", and "Breathing" all of which are on my Kate Bush playlist on my Ipod. Her voice was in it's ascendency in 1980, when NEVER FOR EVER was released, and had no w ... (read more)

Report this review (#749385) | Posted by mohaveman | Saturday, May 05, 2012 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I must admit, this album took some time to grow on me but it was more than worth it. After enjoying this artist's first two releases, I eventually felt that Never For Ever was Kate Bush's best album to date. Repeated listens are recommended to capture its magic. The album has quite an eeriness to ... (read more)

Report this review (#326280) | Posted by Frankie Flowers | Friday, November 19, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This album, I think, shows Kate at the peak of her musical career. It is a clever combination of musical genius (eg The Infant Kiss/Night Scented Stock) and commercial success (the wonderful Babooshka/Army Dreamers!) The whole atmosphere of the album starts with the strangely, bizarrely, il ... (read more)

Report this review (#85089) | Posted by Ursula | Saturday, July 29, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I remember when I was 6 and my mom would put on Never For Ever, I always got excited when Babooshka played, and jumping around like an idiot to Violin was always fun too. Years later, I still love this album, it's a little weird like The Dreaming and a little pop orientated like The Kick Insid ... (read more)

Report this review (#69888) | Posted by | Saturday, February 18, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars One before and one after, a recording of transition between the folk prog to the experimentation, thanks (among others) Peter Gabriel for "open the windows", KT here has more compromised in the production, is there some arrangement that's remains music of Jan Hammer in the 7'th day of the crea ... (read more)

Report this review (#56748) | Posted by Dellius | Thursday, November 17, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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