Kate Bush’s first live tour in almost 35 years entitled “Before The Dawn” may well go down as one of the pinnacles of modern music and over the past few weeks in London, review after review has proven that this may well be the case.
This was always going to be a special night. As someone that listened avidly to Kate Bush whilst growing up, the opportunity to see her live was one that simply could not be missed. And… she did not disappoint. This was not any ordinary concert, it was a full throttled spectacle and an experience unlike anything else.
The moment Kate came onto the stage there was a roar of appreciation from the crowd as she launched into ‘Lily’, not one of her better known songs but no one minded as people needed time to adjust to the fact that here was Kate Bush, LIVE!
Once adjusted, the familiar sound of ‘Hounds of Love’ spilled out across the auditorium. This was almost too much for the 3,500 fans who sang along to the entire song including assisting Kate’s accomplished backing singers with the noise of the barking hounds.
Kate’s voice was remarkable. The years have not diminished its power or effect. Kate had chosen to stay true to the original version of her classic hit and this was certainly appreciated by her loyal fans.
Images courtesy of The Independent UK
‘Running up that Hill’, another firm favourite, and ‘King of the Mountain’ rounded off the introduction before Kate began The Ninth Wave, the main part of Act 1, taken from the second half of the Hounds of Love album. The concert now turned into something resembling a West End production telling the story of a woman lost at sea. There were video effects picturing Kate drowning at sea, a simulated helicopter looking for her and acres of fabric undulating to reflect the ocean.
Act 2 is A Sky of Honey taken from the Aerial album. It contrasted sharply with Act 1 as we are taken to a summer’s day, dreamily transfixed by birds and the ever changing light and clouds as the day progresses. The Act ends with trees crashing down from above including one that pierces the grand piano on stage. The musicians grow wings and are transformed into birds. Finally Kate herself is similarly transformed before the lights go out to the sound of the audience’s ecstatic applause.
Kate then re-appears for her encore, playing the piano whilst singing ‘Among Angels’ before inviting the whole team back onto stage for us to show our appreciation. She’s not quite done though. We are treated to the massive hit, ‘Cloudbusting’ which rounds off an epic performance.
This was never going to be “The Whole Story”, Kate’s greatest hits. That simply would not be her. Sure, I would have loved to hear her sing ‘Babooshka’ or ‘Wuthering Heights’ but I left feeling elated and moved. It is doubtful that Kate will give another tour and whilst she still has some dates left, as they are all sold out, you may now have to wait for the DVD!