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Kate Bush

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Kate Bush The Red Shoes album cover
2.77 | 189 ratings | 12 reviews | 5% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1993

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Rubberband Girl (4:45)
2. And So Is Love (4:18)
3. Eat The Music (5:11)
4. Moments Of Pleasure (5:17)
5. The Song Of Solomon (4:28)
6. Lily (3:53)
7. The Red Shoes (4:02)
8. Top Of The City (4:15)
9. Constellation Of The Heart (4:47)
10. Big Stripey Lie (3:33)
11. Why Should I Love You? (5:02)
12. You're The One (5:52)

Total Time: 55:27

Line-up / Musicians

- Kate Bush / vocals, keyboards, piano (4,5,8,9), Fender Rhodes electric piano(8,12), guitar & bass (10), co-arranger (11), producer

- The Trio Bulgarka / vocals (5,11,12)
- Dimitri Penev / vocal arrangements (5,11,12)
- Colin Lloyd-Tucker / vocals (7,9)
- Lenny Henry / vocals (11)
- Danny McIntosh / guitar (1,5-9)
- Eric Clapton / guitar (2)
- Prince / guitar, keyboards, bass, vocals & co-arranger (11)
- Jeff Beck / guitar (12)
- Gary Brooker / Hammond (2,9,12)
- Paddy Bush / mandola (7), valiha (3), fujara (6), whistle (7), singing bowls (6), bow (7), vocals (3,7,9)
- Justin Vali / valiha (3,7), kabosy & vocals (3)
- Nigel Kennedy / violin (8,10), viola (8)
- Nigel Hitchcock / tenor & baritone saxes (1,3,9,11)
- Neil Sidwell / trombone (1,3,9,11)
- Steve Sidwell / trumpet (1,3,9,11)
- Paul Spong / trumpet (1,3,9,11)
- Michael Kamen / orchestration & arrangements (4)
- John Giblin / bass
- Gaumont D'Olivera / bass (7), drums & percussion & Fx (10)
- Stuart Elliott / drums, percussion (1,3,5,7)
- Charlie Morgan / percussion (5)
- Del Palmer / Fairlight programming, mixing & recording
- Lily Cornford / spoken voice - mantra (6)

Releases information

Artwork: Peacock Marketing & Design

CD EMI United Kingdom ‎- CDEMD 1047(1993, Europe)
CD Fish People ‎- FPCD005 (2011, Europe) Remastered from analog backup tapes

Thanks to chopper for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy KATE BUSH The Red Shoes Music

KATE BUSH The Red Shoes ratings distribution

(189 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(5%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(16%)
Good, but non-essential (46%)
Collectors/fans only (28%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

KATE BUSH The Red Shoes reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by chopper
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars In defence of this album, it's not as bad as some people would have you believe. I prefer it to "The Sensual World" but it's not as good as "The Dreaming". Rubberband Girl - The first single from the album, if I remember correctly. A bouncy little number (excuse the pun). A good start to the album

And So Is Love - Slows things down a bit. A reflective number featuring some tasteful guitar from Eric Clapton.

Eat The Music - This has a kind of South American feel to it. Another up-tempo number with some great vocal work and horn section towards the end.

Moments Of Pleasure - one of my favourite Kate tracks, similiar in feel to "This Woman's Work". A very emotional ending and some nice lyrics ("every old sock meets an old shoe"). Brilliant.

The Song Of Solomon - features the Trio Bulgara, but not one of the best songs on the album.

Lily - another slightly below par number in my opinion.

The Red Shoes - the title track is an Irish jig number.

Top Of The City - another atmospheric number, great drum sound.

Constellation Of The Heart - slightly poppy number.

Big Stripey Lie - written with Prince, this is a bit of a wierd one. A love-it or hate-it kind of track.

Why Should I Love You? - Kate goes funky. Features a great keyboard riff and Lenny Henry on backing vocals. One of the best tracks on the album.

You're The One - a slow track to finish off the album. Another atmospheric one.

Probably still suffering in comparison to the almight Hounds Of Love, this is still a good album. Overall I would like to give it 3.5 stars, but I'm going to round it down to 3.

Review by Raff
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars As much as I love Kate Bush, this album was a huge disappointment to me. I listened to it over and over again, trying desperately to get into it, but to no avail. Mind you, I'm not the kind of person who got horrified by her collaboration with Prince - he's not my favourite musician by any means, but I see myself as a very open-minded person, and if the results are good, then who cares? Unfortunately, though, "The Red Shoes" is very weak, especially if compared with Kate's monumental '80s achievements. As always, the musicianship on the album is excellent, she sings wonderfully and the lyrics often rather intriguing - but somehow all these factors don't gel together, and the result is a definitely boring, far from memorable record. In my opinion, the only really great song on it is "Song of Solomon", with the Irish-flavoured title-track and "Moments of Pleasure" also worthy of mention. The rest, however, is quite forgettable. If this had been Kate's last album, she would really have gone out with a whimper - luckily for us it was not so.
Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "To those we love, to those who will survive..."

The Red Shoes was something of a comeback after The Sensual World. Kate seemed to have found some new energy and passion. The sound was big and the production was ambitious. She also released a very Kate-like video to go with the album and proved again that she can still dance.

While now less "progressive" and more conventional rock, the songs within succeeded quite well. "Rubberband Girl" and "Eat the Music" were positively alive and joyful. "And So is Love" and "Moments of Pleasure" were melancholic yet lovely. I found the vocal performances on those songs to be very touching. The title track is quite good with its anxious energy. "Big Stripey Lie" is quite weird and cool with that eerie descending into the depths feel. "Constellation of the Heart" is really the only clunker on board and should have been dropped on the editing floor.

Red Shoes has improved with time in my eyes and I now consider it essential Kate. It is just as good as the art rock singles from side one of Hounds, and it slaughters albums like Aerial and Sensual World in immediacy and passion. Kate had nothing to be ashamed of here and I think many of her fans missed the boat when they wrote this off.

Review by Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Excellent release from Kate Bush. Not sure why but for this reviewer her music gets better and better and The Red Shoes is no exception to how her sound and music matures over the years. No-one is going to argue that it would not eclipse Hounds Of Love but it is definitely up there in terms of quality. The low point on the album is the single IMO ' Rubber Band Girl', good psych prog though, I guess it is mean't to drive the listener nuts with the repetitive chorus. After that though the polished sound of the album kicks in, great production. The title track is great lyrically as well as musically, poignant would be a good description ( reminds me of A Coral room) off Aerial. Other great songs are the sombre ' And So I Love', 'Moments Of Pleasure' and the closing ' Your'e The One'. I get the feeling KB wants to be taken even more seriously here on The Red Shoes, ' Rubber Band Girl' excluded and is a natural progression The Sensual World. John Giblin as usual on bass gives that distinctly important ingredient to the KB sound. An almost everpresent with her music. Four solid stars.
Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars The Red Shoes is the seventh studio album from Kate Bush and her last before her long ( and much needed) hiatus. Kate Bush previous album, which was released in 1989, called The Sensual World didnīt excite me much despite itīs potentially interesting title, and I can only say the same thing about The Red Shoes.

The music has become even more superflous and trivial than was the case on The Sensual World. During the opening song Rubberband Girl Iīm even reminded about Madonna. Thatīs how low Kate Bush had sunk on The Red Shoes. There are virtually no highligts on the album and much too many lowpoints. The worst is probably Eat the Music with its disgusting calypso mood. Top of the City is my favorite here even though it sounds like a second rate version of the songs from Hounds of Love. Itīs the only song on The Red Shoes that gives me just a tiny bit of satisfaction. The album ends with the banale love ballad You're The One. Itīs almost impossible to believe that Kate Bush was once the master of sensual love ballads when you listen to this cold and generic song.

The musicianship is as always top notch even though nothing out of the ordinary is being played. Kate Bush delivers her worst and most uninspired vocal performance of her career on The Red Shoes. She sounds so indifferent and burnt out.

The production is a mess. Terrible empty sound.

Even though Iīm really annoyed with The Red Shoes itīs not a definite 1 star rating in my book. There are moments like the above mentioned Top Of The City that saves the second star for The Red Shoes. But my recommendation is that you stay away from this album until youīve listened to everything else that Kate Bush has done, because the chance that youīll be as disappointed as me about The Red Shoes is very big. 2 stars and Iīm stretching.

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
2 stars Ladies and gentlemen, introducing BRITNEY BUSH!!!

OK, it's not quite that bad, but it is bad. Despite the big names on this release, like Clapton, Beck, and Prince, Kate Bush's handlers at Sony/Columbia Records have succeeded in removing just about any trace of originality from what was once one of the best performers on the major labels. Even her sexuality, which previously oozed deliciously from track after track, here comes of plastic and forced.

After listening to this for the first time since it's original release, it is no surprise to me that I waited over two years to get her most recent CD, Aerial.

Review by Warthur
2 stars Something of a career nadir, The Red Shoes was produced during a period of instability and tragedy in Kate's life, with a number of bereavements taking their toll. Not even a swathe of high-profile guest stars can save the album from being the plastic, soulless disaster which it is. For the first time in her career, Kate no longer seemed to be calling the shots and following her own vision; instead, she appeared to be chasing current fashions as opposed to dictating them, particularly on songs such as Rubberband Girl which seemed to be aimed at the sort of quirky female singer-songwriter Tori Amos market which Kate had created and moved on from in the first place. Easily the least essential of Kate's albums.

Latest members reviews

3 stars Starts strongly by very mid 80's sounding song and quite catchy melody "Rubberband girl" - it could actually be as well come from Madonna. The rest of the album is more reflective and has greater depth while not immediately always accessible. There are fewer proggy elements than on previous albu ... (read more)

Report this review (#2337694) | Posted by sgtpepper | Saturday, February 22, 2020 | Review Permanlink

2 stars THE RED SHOES, from 1993, is by far the lowest rated album by Kate Bush on this website. And for good reason. Instead of the using charming mix of fun funky numbers, screaming numbers, and quiet numbers, that make Kate so great, we have a bland mishmash of what seems like Kate copies. Going th ... (read more)

Report this review (#451618) | Posted by mohaveman | Tuesday, May 24, 2011 | Review Permanlink

2 stars When The Red Shoes was released, I had high expectations after Kate Bush had released two really good albums: Hounds of Love and This Sensual World. For the third time she had taken her time to make an album. About 55 minutes later these expectations were cut down to size. The opening track, ... (read more)

Report this review (#267248) | Posted by someone_else | Saturday, February 20, 2010 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Kate's most commercial album, but also her weakest. There are exceptional moments: "Moments of Pleasure" is beautiful, and "Big Stripey Lie" an incredible experiment, whilst her lyrics are heartfelt and moving throughout. However, for the first time ever there appear to be tracks which are "fi ... (read more)

Report this review (#59407) | Posted by | Wednesday, December 7, 2005 | Review Permanlink

2 stars For me, the most dated, anonymous and least interesting album of her career. Following her innovative work on 'The Hounds Of Love' and 'The Dreaming', 'The Sensual World' seemed to suggest that KB had found herself in something of a creative rut. Her production techniques hadn't progressed fr ... (read more)

Report this review (#56599) | Posted by | Wednesday, November 16, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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