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Kate Bush - Live At The Hammersmith Odeon CD (album) cover


Kate Bush


Crossover Prog

4.12 | 47 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars The Tour of Life

Just 28 magical shows in 5 weeks, and she never toured again.

Lucky are those who witnessed the brief live incarnation of rock's strangest bird. After two phenomenal albums before her 20th birthday, Bush worked intensely hard to bring her vision to the concert stage. She trained feverishly for her dance routines while working night and day on the stage direction. The goal was not to present another rock concert, but to do something that hadn't quite been done before. The band was largely relegated to the background, while Kate, costumes, and some amazing dancers were brought to the fore of the dimly lit, theatrically infused stage. Bush wore an early version of the wireless head mic so as not to let it get in the way of her dancing.

Musically the show is nothing short of delicious, featuring highlights of her very solid first two albums. Sadly what is present on both the CD and DVD releases reflect less than half of the full shows. Like the debut album the live CD opens with "Moving" which is the most beautiful song I've ever heard. It brings a tear to me eyes every time as "Wuthering Heights" does during the show's emotional climax. The competent Brian Bath and Del Palmer bring Kate's songs to a very warm place, organic, not harsh, with that 70s glow that I love. Kate would not stand for this sound much longer, she would soon move into her more experimental phase where the old boys were shown the door in favor of more exotic and advanced musicians, though of course boyfriend Palmer would remain in Kate's circle. Peter Gabriel would become her friend, collaborator, and a large influence on Kate, and I believe she influenced his work as well. This hour long disc features romantic ballads and occasional rockers, but to revel in the Tour of Life masterpiece you have to see this, not just hear it. Find the video or the laserdisc and experience one of rock's greatest moments.

What Kate and EMI are thinking by not reissuing this concert is beyond me. They are daft on this decision to be quite frank, whatever their reason. The Tour of Life is one of progressive music's great achievements and a true masterpiece of rock. It should be released in its entirety, with all footage restored in glorious sound and picture quality. Let it happen before I die God, if you're listening.

Have a taste of the magic, three minutes you won't regret soon:

Finnforest | 4/5 |


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