Kate Bush’s Second Coming
BY TIM MORSE
After a 35-year self-imposed retirement from the stage, Kate Bush returned to live performance in 2014 at London’s Hammersmith Apollo (formerly the Hammersmith Odeon) for a tour/residency of 22 shows Aug. 26—Oct. 1. Dubbed Before the Dawn, the series required a full year in pre-production, an A-list team of musicians and visual artists, with little expense spared to realize Bush’s extraordinary vision.
Contemporaries in that respect would be Peter Gabriel and Roger Waters (both influences on Kate), but she arguably superseded them with this production. Fans traveled thousands of miles for these performances, Bush’s first since 1979’s Tour of Life. The chance to witness this rare event firsthand was worth extending for, judging by the final two shows’ breathtaking artistry.
The presentation began much like any concert. Funky grooves from “Lily” serenaded Kate’s entrance to thunderous applause as the band launched into standalone songs from Hounds of Love (1985), Aerial (2005) and, surprisingly, The Red Shoes (1993). Her voice sounding strong as ever, any doubts over Kate carrying a three-hour performance quickly faded.
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