Kate Takes Flight
Mike B. | 11/22/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This remarkable debut album from Kate Bush was an immediate sensation in her native England and throughout Europe. "The Kick Inside" set the template for what would follow - literary, cinematic lyrics with sweeping orchestral arrangements - all sung dramatically in her inimitable soprano. The first single "Wuthering Heights" topped the British charts for weeks, and "The Man With The Child In His Eyes" was another big hit. She proved equally adept at ballads, rockers ("James And The Cold Gun"), and reggae ("Them Heavy People").
Kate had a lot of time to perfect this, which is an interesting story. Pink Floyd's David Gilmour took an early demo tape of these songs to the EMI label, which signed her up even though they knew they had to wait a couple years for her to finish school. The label didn't want to risk someone else getting her under contract. When finally released in 1978, Kate was 19 - and a star was born!
She must have been a fan of Steve Harley and Cockney Rebel when growing up, since two members of that band became important in her career. Keyboardist Duncan Mackay played on her first 3 albums, while drummer/percussionist Stuart Elliot remains on board to this day. It's known she liked David Bowie, and studied mime with his old teacher Lindsay Kemp. The only tour she's ever done (in 1979) was a choreographed, highly theatrical spectacle reminiscent of Bowie's '74 "David Live" tour. After a time, Bush began singing in a lower register. She re-recorded "Wuthering Heights" with this lower voice and put it on her greatest hits "The Whole Story". I'm partial to her original hit single version, which can only be found on "The Kick Inside". I still consider it to be one of the most magnificent singles ever made.
The five albums she recorded between '78 and '85 are my favorites. "Lionheart" was good, but stuck a little too close to the successful formula of its predecessor. Kate introduced some world-music flourishes into "Never For Ever", and densely layered electronic soundscapes for "The Dreaming". Her fifth album "Hounds Of Love" incorporated some Irish elements. All are wonderful, but this precocious debut is the place to start. It's a masterpiece."
Carlos A. Marsh | pasadena, ca. | 09/10/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"i have been a kate bush fanatic since 83 so i dont know why it took me so long to get this cd. it must have been because i didnt have AMAZON.COM when i was amassing my cd collection. or i thought that the classics WUTHERING HEIGHTS and THE MAN WITH THE CHILD IN HIS EYES were enough for me on her compilation cd. but no, i was very wrong. and i am so very happy to have this. one of her most accomplished collections(a lot of her albums are not every song friendly) and for it being her very first at such a young age. oh my! i love it. i love her. only quibble- when are her cd's gonna get the remastered treatment?"
Amazing debut of the legendary voice and piano...
sensative psycho | Parker, CO | 10/18/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Recorded in 1978 when Kate Bush was just 19 years old, "The Kick Inside" is a timeless album of songs that are far too real and vast for the media they were recorded on. It is sensual, daring, funky, and at times haunting. Such a strong debut, which followed the dramatic and unforgettable first single "Wuthering Heights".
Being a natural talent, Kate is a phenomenal songwriter. The lyrics within "The Kick Inside" show maturity beyond her age(some of the songs were written when she was just 13, including "The Man With The Child In His Eyes", which was the second single). Her words are much more potent and effective when sung with such a powerful, yet innocent, voice.
As with most of Kate's albums, every song plays a cohessive role. To skip a tune or two would be missing out on the entire picture, and you will feel the same after a few good listens. The opening song, "Moving", fades in with whale song, then a deep bass line brings in Kate's opening lyrics, followed by a slow to mid-tempo groove accented by piano, which carries the rest of this excellent song. "Kite" rolls along with reggae styling over a carnival undertone. "James and the Cold Gun" is the fastest song here and it rocks with a great guitar riff. Also, the title track acts as a perfect ending to the album. It is filled with melancholy.
What cannot be overlooked is Kate's beautifully played classical-style piano. With each song she hits all the right notes, whether it be modestly within the music or when the piano takes the lead.
As a whole, "The Kick Inside" will seep into your heart and bury itself deep in your soul. It was clear back in 1978 and it still stands...there will never be another Kate Bush.