Boomkat Product Review:
Kate Bush’s ‘80s High Pop benchmark still slays nearly 40 years later, transcending generations with an exemplary payload of power anthems and lofty pop suss spurred by her extraordinary use of LinnDrum rhythm programming and Fairlight CMI synth-sampler
Resplendent here in its 2018 remaster, Bush’s 5th studio album ‘Hounds of Love’ was her 3rd self-produced long player. It portrays the immeasurably influential artist fully at grips with the cutting edge technology she was introduced to by Peter Gabriel during recording of his eponymous 1980 LP, and which previously helped define the shape of her albums ‘Never For Ever’ (1980), and particularly ‘The Dreaming’ (1982), where she fully took control of the production and honed her tekkerz on the notoriously difficult Fairlight CMI synth-sampler that afforded her microscopic control of the sound design.
Between recording sessions at her home studio in summer 1983, several in her spiritual homeland, Ireland, in spring ’84, and extensive overdubbing and mixing during the next 12 months, Bush produced a stunning A-side spawning peerless pop bullets ‘Running Up That Hill’ and ‘Hounds of Love’, and the evergreen ‘Cloudbusting’, plus the conceptual B-side suite collected as ‘The Ninth Wave’. Under a title lifted from Alfred Tennyson’s poem ‘Idylls of the King’, Bush wreathed seven songs into a seamless post-prog-operatic cycle weft with inspirations from Arthurian legend, traditional Georgian song, Irish folk, horror films, and metaphysics, that would come to epitomise her ambition and vision with its practically unprecedented expression of love and romance from a female perspective.
Endless bouquets due.