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4.7 out of 5 stars
The Sensual World
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 14 October 2013
This was one of the first KB albums I bought, so perhaps that makes me a bit more biased towards this. But hey, good sound is good sound!

1. The Sensual World - a romantic bubble of a song. Based on James Joyce Ulysses. 10/10

2. Love and Anger - First of 2 tracks on the album that feature Dave Gilmour. This is a great track, with positive lessons to teach us. I love it! 10/10

3. The Fog - This is about Dr Daddy Bush teaching KB to swim. Achingly melancholic for some reason, yet sweet as well/ 8/10

4. Reaching Out - About hings that reach out. Cool! 8/10

5. Heads We're Dancing - About Hitler being a good dancer. Yeh, you did read that sentence right. Stand out track for me! Reminds me of the music on the Labyrinth soundtrack for some reason. 10/10

6. Deeper Understanding - This is about becoming obsessed with computers. So apt when you think of online addiction! Amazing, with futuristic lyrics. 9/10

7. Between a Man and a Woman - Good relationship song. Good one. 8/10

8. Never be Mine - Sad song, I think it is about Ireland? Not sure. Good though. 9/10

9. Rocket's Tail - Best track on here. The Trio Bulgarka really shine on this track, which is acapella for half the song, then bursts with Dave Gilmour's guitar in the second half. I always smile as I go past Waterloo Bridge :) 10/10

10. This Woman's Work - This song is about what men feel while their woman is in labour. Beautiful piano ballad, classic KB! 10/10

11. Walk Straight Down the Middle - Bog standard 80s mid tempo pop ballad. 7/10

Overall, a really interesting album!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 23 February 2004
I first heard about Kate Bush when Pat Benatar covered "Wuthering Heights" and since then I have learned a lot more about her innovative musical career. I think "The Sensual World" is clearly her best album on the strength of what are probably her two best songs: "Love and Anger" (with Pink Floyd's Dave Gilmour on Guitar) and "This Woman's Work" (orchestrations by Michael Kamen). If you think the latter was used effectively in the 1988 movie "She's Having a Baby," you should see Kate's music video. She is certainly one of the most evocative musicians of our generation.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 12 February 2005
Partly because her Best Of compilation only covers the period ending with her 1985 masterpiece Hound Of Love, forever fixing Kate's "official" canon as her first five albums, and partly due to the unprepossessingness of what one might (although I suspect only I actually do) refer to as Kate's "late-mature-period" works, The Sensual World has never resonated as loudly with the casual fan, the general listener, as her earlier classics.
After the stridency of HOL, TSW sounds almost like a retreat, an exercise in sensuous introspection. Many of the album's most successful moments (of which, of course, it has more than its fair share) are songs which announce themselves quietly, requiring repeated listens before the intricacies of their arrangements finally unravel themselves. Take, for example, 'The Fog', which sets off at a kind of electro-bossa nova lope, mixing in waves of strings and eventually electric guitar (interspersed with samples of speech) to create its haunting, hesitant, beauty.
Not every track is a success - 'Heads We're Dancing" is probably a folly too far - but when a songwriter is capable of crafting a creation of the simplicity and compassionate genius of 'This Woman's Work' and then singing it with the kind of Deep Soul-level of emotion which Kate seems to bring to every vocal performance, we can forgive her odd failure.
And when Kate does take risks more often than not they pay off: her use of the Trio Bulgarka is, in places, inspired - if you listen to the acapella first half of 'Rocket's Tail' I strongly suspect you're hearing the germ of Bjork's subsequent experimentation with Inuit choirs and more recent all-vocal album. As always, Kate is the master of space, giving her songs room to breathe - check out the short instrumental breaks in 'Never be Mine', or the ending of 'Deeper Understanding', for example.
Conversely, and proof of Kate's continuing development as a singer, is the feeling of claustrophobia evoked on the album's last track 'Walk Straight Down the Middle' as she sings "Can't move my arms/ Can't move my legs/ Can't say no I can't say yes...", seemingly through paralysed lips. Mesmerising.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 16 July 2000
The Sensual World is a remarkably beautiful album. Even though it has been released for over ten years, it still sounds vital and fresh.
There are certain songs on this album that make you feel emotional, as if something will burst out from inside of you. From "Love and Anger" to "Deeper Understanding" to "This Woman's Work", each song penetrates under the skin and makes you feel.
This album has been overlooked, and is overshadowed by Kate's grand "Hounds Of Love". It is true, "The Sensual World" is not a grand album. But it was never meant to be.
Kate still remains ahead and a genius.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 2 March 2013
Doesn't get better than this, then you'll have to put it into your collection . The title track itself IS so sensual, mmm yes.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 13 September 2014
It was always going to be hard to follow the hounds of love, after selling so well and then the Whole story compilation.The Sensual World, brings everything back down to earth, and Kate Bush recorded her most personal album to date. Although some fans found it not as good as her older albums, everyone appeared to be unanimous, with This Woman's work, a beautiful song which has become a firm favorite.
However this album contains some great tracks the title track is still beautiful, as is the the Fog. Heads were dancing is a great insight of having a dance with Hitler, well only Kate could write something like that. Rocket tail is fun, and Deeper Understanding, about a boy in love with his computer for me is still better here than on the directors cut.
This is a reissue and Amazon have labelled in wrong do not fall into the trap of this being a re-master it is not, it is the same audio as the original. Having bought the Directors Box set it clearly states only the Red Shoes is re-mastered, and checking the Directors cut version with the original CD there is no difference at all in volume or quality no matter what anyone says, so don't fall in the trap buying this thinking it has been re-mastered, Apparently one of the reasons is Kate is a lover of the Analogue sound, and therefore does not feel it necessary.
However expanded editions, perhaps with a little cleaning up work would be a step in the right direction. There are so many B sides and rare tracks which are hard to find, unless you shell out for This Woman's work box set, but that still has some rare tracks missing. I can only hope with all the interest with the recent dawn to Dusk tour Kate's back catalog gets the love it deserves
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 3 March 2014
Ethereal, mystical and majestic, the sensual world is as diverse in it's sound as it is in the subject of it's songs. There really is no limit to the ideas that kate puts to create these lush sonic soundscapes. The only criticism, and it is only a slight one, is that it has dated a we bit and sometimes there is to much going on in the mix to give it a coherent sound, but apart from these minor discrepencies this truly is a wonderful piece of this woman's work. Is it as good as Kate's previous offering the hounds of love? No but then again what is?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 13 February 2014
Kate is immortal! With a voice-range of four and half octaves, she cannot fail to take us into the realms of sheer enjoyment. I'll follow her up that hill anytime. I keep her album 'The Whole Story' by my bed for my daily rations of Kate. I can thoroughly recommend any of Kate's albums. Her song 'Lyra' from 'The Golden Compass' (based on the book Northern Lights) is possessively haunting, and I find myself playing the movie just to listen to that song as the film titles play out the disk....-- need I say more??
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 23 May 2013
I am a big Kate Bush fan, but all of my collection was either on cassette or vinyl, so I decided to update it. This CD was of excellent quality and great value for money!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 16 December 2003
With The Sensual World, Bush turned her songwriting gaze inside. With her earlier albums the songs were mostly external, strong narratives, some with political bents, some literary. With this album even the songs which use literature (the title track, based on the end of Ulysses) or historical (Heads We're Dancing, based on a story of someone who unknowingly met and liked Oppenheimer) do so to consider the emotional reaction of the subject. Twinned with this is a softening of the music, with a strong strand of Celtic influence. The use of the Trio Bulgarka singers is inspired, daring, and perfect.
The closest comparison to draw for this album would be Bjork's Vespertine - the sound of a woman of immense energy and creativity stopping to take stock, and look inside herself for inspiration.
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