Kate Bush Rolls Back The Years In Dazzling Return

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Kate's back

Kate Bush’s much-anticipated return to the stage wowed critics and fans alike – leaving those in attendance wanting more, more, more.

The 56-year-old, famed for her eclectic musical style and idiosyncratic voice, put on a spellbinding three-hour show in front of a sell-out crowd at London’s Hammersmith Apollo.

You wouldn’t have guessed it was her first live set for 35 years – she effectively retired from live performances after six weeks on the road in 1979 – as she belted out classics including ‘Lily’ and ‘Cloudbusting’.

An ecstatic roar from fans welcomed Bush on stage, while she received a standing ovation as she closed the show.

There wasn’t an empty seat in the house – and more of the same is expected as the ‘Before the Dawn’ tour continues throughout September. 

Pic: John Carder Bush/PA Archive/Press Association Images
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What the critics thought

Critics hailed the show as “spellbinding”, “stunning” and “incomparable”.

Five-star ratings were in plentiful supply across the board, with only a handful dishing less than full marks.
Jan Moir, writing in the Daily Mail, was blown away by what she witnessed.
“Certainly, her voice still sounds terrific,” she said. “Her music is still audacious and weird, but sometimes it is spellbindingly beautiful, too. Hers is a large scale spectacle, vividly realised and unlike anything else in town.”

Andy Gill, for the Independent, echoed much the same sentiments after the show.
He commented: “It’s quite stunning, undoubtedly the most ambitious, and genuinely moving, piece of theatrical pop ever seen on a British stage.”

James Cabooter, in the Daily Star, was equally impressed.

“An incomparable performance from a genuine one-off, Kate is in a pop bubble of her own paying no attention to contemporary trends - and the music is better for it,” he said. “Before The Dawn is an unqualified success. It’s wonderful to have Kate back.”

Pic: Yui Mok/PA Wire/Press Association Images
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Twittersphere reaction

Twitter was awash with comments as the action unfolded on stage.

Lily Allen was among the celebrities in the audience, while the likes of Madonna and David Bowie were also rumoured to be present.

Allen posted a picture of the stage ahead of the concert with the tweet: “K8 [bush symbol] @ Eventim Apollo.”

DJ Lauren Laverne tweeted: “I HAVE CRIED FIVE TIMES #KateBush”.

Illusionist Derren Brown wrote:  “At Kate Bush #beforethedawn. Magnificent, beautiful, vulnerable. And the love in the air here is just fantastic. What a night.”
Disappointed fans who failed to get tickets to the concert took to Twitter in their thousands to catch a glimpse of the action through photos taken by those in attendance. 

Pic: Yui Mok/PA Wire
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Before the Dawn tour

Bush’s ‘Before the Dawn’ tour will take in 22 nights running through September and into October at the Hammersmith Apollo.

Demand was so high that the singer had to add seven extra shows to the original 15 – which sold out in less than 15 minutes when they went on sale in March – and the additional batch were all gone in half an hour.

Tickets were reportedly selling for more than £1,000 outside the venue on the opening night. 

Pic: Yui Mok/PA Wire
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Kate Bush highlights

Wuthering Heights

The song was released as her debut single in January 1978. It topped the charts and remains her biggest selling single.
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Running Up That Hill 

The song was the first single from her 1985 album Hounds of Love. It was the most successful of her 1980s releases.
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Egos and Icons interview

In this Egos and Icons interview from 1993 Kate lifts the lid on her musical influences and creative processes. 
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Best albums

All nine of Bush’s studio albums and two compilations have been given a sales boost by the buzz the gigs have created.

Her 1978 debut The Kick Inside is going well in the Top 100, while 1989’s The Sensual World is also enjoying a resurgence.

The Whole Story, her greatest hits collection, which originally hit Number 1 upon its release in 1986, is proving extremely popular among nostalgic fans. 
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