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Progressive Rock CD Reviews

Kate Bush

Lionheart

Review by Gary Hill

Kate Bush’s second release, this showed hints of some of the powerful music that would show up in her catalog down the road. It’s a strong disc, but not every track is great. Still, there are enough highlights to make it worthwhile. I already reviewed the song “Wow” on my look at The Whole Story. For the sake of consistency that review is copied from there.


This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2009  Volume 4 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Symphony In Blue

This comes in with a mellow kind of pop meets folk approach. The vocals are incredibly high pitched. They are really in stratosphere. This is a fun sort of tune, but not the meatiest thing here. I'm not really all that enamored with it. It's not bad. I just doesn't really grab me. There are some hints of jazz here that are cool.

In Search Of Peter Pan
Bush’s vocals are waiflike here, but not quite as astral as on the previous one. The music here is gentler in a lot of ways and this really reminds me a lot of Renaissance. It’s a pretty cut that has some great textures and sounds throughout.
Wow
Combine the more playful side of Kate Bush’s music with a rather Beatles-like symphonic nature and then throw in some of that theatric element and you’ll have a good idea of what this song is like. We get a bit of “When You Wish Upon A Star” at the end. 
Don't Push Your Foot On The Heartbrake
I really like this track a lot. It’s one of the more purely prog rock cuts and there are some sections that are purely magical. I can hear some hints of the sounds that would come into Bush’s music further down the road. There are a number of changes and alterations and overall this is a highlight of the disc. 
Oh England My Lionheart
Here we have a much more folky – mind you that’s piano based folk – not acoustic guitar. It’s mellower and ballad-like. It’s also a tasty track. 
Full House
A more full progressive rock arrangement makes up this one. It rocks out more than a lot of the stuff here and is a tasty piece of music. I’d chalk this up as one of the highlights of the set. 
In The Warm Room
The arrangement on this is strictly piano and vocal. It’s rather jazzy, but I wouldn’t call it a ballad. That said, it is rather mellow. 
Kashka From Baghdad
The piano drives a lot of this one. That said, I love the rubbery bass line we hear at points. This is a fairly mellow cut that wanders into jazzy territory here and there. It’s pretty and poignant and another highlight of the set. 
Coffee Homeground
Quite playful and theatrical, this is almost more performance art than prog rock from my way of looking at it. It’s an interesting track, and rather fun – and even a little Beatlesesque at times. It just doesn’t do a lot for me. 
Hammer Horror
Bouncy and fun, this is sort of like a more pure prog rock take on the types of sounds and textures we heard in the last number. It’s a cool rocker and a highlight of the set. It’s a great way to close things out in style.
 
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