Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Lush - Lovelife


Here we go, hanging out in Camden/ Drinking with my girlfriends on a Saturday night

Every time I think of this CD, the opening words to Ladykillers just run through my head on repeat.  I. Love. This. Album.  I used to have the chorus from Ladykillers as my email signoff.  Ciao! has gotten me through many a dark day.  Single Girl was me many a time.  If ever I'm feeling blue, Lovelife is certain to cheer me up.

Of course, the band came to an early end after this album, when their drummer committed suicide.  A point a recent commenter on an article in the Guardian about the death of former Stereophonics band member Stuart Cable chose to call "the curse of the 90's indie drummer" also mentioning Space and the Wonderstuff.  Kind of gruesome, but it makes you think...

VERDICT: TURN IT UP (I know the score I've heard it all before)


While Mine clearly has a great love for this album, I must confess that *gasp* I don't know it that well.  In the very early 90s, I had friends who were huge fans of just about everything 4AD (hi Nadine and Tim) but by the time this album came out, they'd moved away and I'd was more interested in lo-fi and slacker rock than the Brit-pop stylings of Lush.

But there was a time when shoegazer was a big thing with my friends and I and Lush, along with bands like Ride, Curve, Pale Saints, Charlatans, My Bloody Valentine and, particularly for me, Swervedriver (see our review of Mezcal Head here) were played and discussed with much fervour.  In fact, friendships were made and lost depending on which shoegazer band you liked or hated.  Such was our completely irrational, unfounded belief in the power of such bands.  (I'm feeling a little smug as the only survivors of that period were my favourite - Swervedriver.  Who's the cool one now, huh?)

For the most part, Lovelife lives up to its reputation for being one of the classic mid-90s British albums, with those gorgeous soaring harmonies and jangly-pop stylings.  I particularly like the opener, Ladykiller, Single Girl and the vaguely trip hoppy Last Night.  But the big surprise and the track of the album for me, is Ciao!, a duo between lead Lushette, Miki, and Pulp's Jarvis cocker.  Worth the price of the album, this one.
VERDICT: TURN IT UP particularly track 7

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  1. Oh Blimey! Where do I start? Lush are my all-time fav band where everything just came together perfectly. I discovered their debut EP ‘Scar’ by accident and fell in love when they were virtual unknowns – quite the best way. They bring together everything I hold dear; female vocals, soaring harmony, spiky rhythms, indie guitars, two opposed writers and melodies that make great use of the semi-tone.
    Actually, despite housing some great songs (most of which you have mentioned) ‘Lovelife’ is not my favourite Lush album. I would go for ‘Split’ or ‘Spooky’ or even the collection of all their early EPs, ‘Gala’. In addition, all their single releases have fab extra tracks – I have an album worth of them as a playlist on my ipod. So, a quality band who didn’t just release rubbish but who were largely ignored by the public – and to end in such a way is plain tragic.
    I could go on…and on…but most of it is in my book! I’m off to play ‘Sweetness and Light’. Bliss.
    Thanks for going where most bloggers dare not and giving Lush a fair report.

  2. MO, you're welcome, and now I have to add earlier Lush albums to the ever-increasing list of music I need to buy. Does it ever end? If I spent the rest of my life listening to all the music I want to listen to - would I be able to fit it all in? (Brain strain)

    So nice to find a fellow lover of "female vocals, soaring harmony, spiky rhythms, indie guitars" but I'll leave YourZ to wax lyrical about semi-tones. Classical piano training left nary a scar on me...