Jackie Listens to: Kate Bush’s Lionheart (1978)

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Kate Bush has another album in my Top 25, so I wanted to hear all of her albums.  This is the first I’ve heard of Lionheart, and I have to say I am constantly impressed with her work, but didn’t love this album.

An old boyfriend introduced me to Kate Bush since I expressed interest in Tori Amos, and it is an apt comparison.  Kate Bush‘s raw emotion and musical chops shine through on everything she touches, much like Tori Amos, and that is certainly true on this album, but Lionheart doesn’t seem to hold together as well as some other Kate Bush albums I’ve heard.  I love Kate Bush so much and I feel like this just isn’t her best work possible, which you don’t and can’t get all the time.  So it goes.

Standout tracks? I liked the classical lilt on Oh England My Lionheart, and the slow, understated In the Warm Room, but that was about it.  It just didn’t have that many memorable moments for me.  Wow stood out for all the wrong reasons, and it’s repetitious chorus left me more annoyed than enchanted.

Kate Bush is great.  I love her voice and musicality, but I give this album a pass unless you are so into Kate Bush that you just need more after listening to her other work.  I would recommend Hounds of Love or The Kick Inside.

 

Jackie Listens to: Bat for Lashes’ The Bride (2016)

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Bat for Lashes is Natasha Kahn, and I love her voice.  It’s otherworldly.  She could sing me a dinner menu and I’d be happy.  I am a big fan of her early work but this is the first time I have heard The Bride, especially as a full album (like I said, I usually listen to music frenetically, on random, following my passions, as it were.)  The Bride is meant as a concept album about a woman who loses her fiance to a car crash.  It tells a story and explores the concepts of love and loss, which is right up my alley.

The album is beautiful and cohesive, but has fewer stand alone tracks than Bat for Lashes’ previous albums, which isn’t a bad thing.  The album itself seems to be one grand statement, and though the tracks don’t flow into each other necessarily, it does tell one story.  The album takes on a more somber tone about halfway through, which makes sense from the concept.  Songs that I enjoyed especially were Joe’s Dream and I Will Love Again, but pulling out individual tracks from this album doesn’t seem to fit.  It is best listened to as a full album.  In the end, it is a well executed concept in Bat for Lashes’ signature style, ethereal and mystical.

In my humble opinion, it’s a good album but it’s not as good as her other albums, though it is ambitious and interesting, well worth a listen.  Check out some older stuff and if you’re into all that, you might dig this one too.  I do think it requires some interest in Bat for Lashes’ style to digest this album.