Kate’s great.You can play spot the rip-off’s, and see the influence her style has had on many of today’s modern sirens and fucked up retro bitches. But this is not the time for cynicism, it’s a positive occasion.

My relationship with Bush has always been a patchy one. I virtually own no albums by her, bar Hounds of Love and Aerial.  I’ve never really bought any Kate Bush singles, apart from the ‘King of the mountain’, and if I’m honest, which I am, I can’t say that I’ve ever been a ‘massive’ fan of Kate Bush, although my devotion is growing. BUT!

She’s probably better than you.

She’s fucking amazing.  A dreamer. An innovator. A creator. A dancer. We need her. (He says, uploading pics of her in her leotard).The world needs her. The music industry especially needs her now more than ever (and not just to sell records). In an industry that whores the mediocre wares of KT Tunstall, Kate Mellua (is this Kate thing supposed to be some kind of homage?) and Lily Allen and every other thin clone bore with a guitar or piano,or a daft floral crown, Kate Bush leaves them all over the bog, heaving. And who’s the princess to Kate’s Queen. Bjork, Tori? But what are Kate’s secret ingredients that has made her influential? Her promo vids, her live shows, her image, her lyrics, her voice…of course it’s her songs…Her aura alone is much more than the tired and very tested image of an angst ridden skin and bone shape with make up, acoustic guitar, singing angst-ridden numbers they probably wrote in Starbucks. The quirks, the image and themes of her songs seem more authentic than Bat For Lashes. Kate has always been much more than that, set her sights higher. The sense of ambition has always manifested itself on a panoramic scale, hypnotic strings, synth washes and vocals. Her voice and music’s sensuality lulls the senses, rather than poking them awake with a sharp elbow and a fake rhythm and blues, ‘I’m really hurting’ mouth punching warble.

Perhaps where the older artist has even more to offer is the experience, imagery and themes her lyrics offer. Sure there’s a song about being lost in the cycles of a washing machine on one track on her Aerial, but with most of her songs there’s a lot more going on beneath the surface. There is always a lot of delving, diving and submersion going on with Kate Bush. It’s all about metaphors for birth, death, seclusion and love. Like the production, her songs are multi-layered affairs, and aren’t afraid to display that dirty word called ‘intelligence’. But you know that already. 

Another of Kate’s secrets for success and total and unreserved adoration from her fan base, is that she doesn’t whore herself in the media. The great thing about this is that it creates that mystique. Too many artists are obsessed about telling us about their problems, and going through every conceivable cliché in interviews, drink, drugs, falling out, problems making a difficult album, that it’s almost expected of them, and boy, does it bore us! Kate is herself, and like the nice person she comes across as, she doesn’t give anything away. Maybe there is nothing to give away.  It’s not glamorous or controversial but it’s honest…and hearing her talking about scrubbing out stains from the sleeves would be more interesting than hearing any other artist wail about their dreary, famous, pressured lives. 

I love ‘Aerial’. It has that long forgotten methodology of having good songs with a good strong production, and is executed spectacularly well. The songs, as I’ve said, have depth and are multi-layered affairs. With tracks such as ‘How to be Invisible’, ‘Somewhere in between’ and ‘Nocturn’ they bring that kind of abstract joy of feeling good to be alive, just from the warm air of an early summer that reminds you of your youth, or the light burning smell of a November eve drifting into your airways. Like these sensations, it feels both nostalgic and familiar, and like an ideal future, it carries with it so much hope for tomorrow. 

So yep. Kate rules.

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