13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Dazzlingly creative, one of the bravest records of all time,
This review is from: The Dreaming (Audio CD)
From the crashing drums that announce Sat In Your Lap to the donkey braying that closes Get Out Of My House, The Dreaming is an astonishing and ground-breaking record. You'll hear it described as uncommercial, difficult and crazy - and to a greater or lesser extent it's all of these things - but, at it's core, it's one of the most creative and rewarding records ever made.
Bear in mind that Kate had just established herself as a major artist with Never for Ever. Most other artists in the '80s followed such a step by recording bland MOR records that guaranteed airplay and record sales. Not Kate. She nearly killed her own career by locking herself away and recording this record.
Weaving world rhythms, pop and progressive rock together, all ten tracks on this album are complex and original. Deeply percussive, the multi-layered tracks are topped with Kate's glorious and challenging vocals. The lyrics, too, are a step on from where she was before. She delves into her own psyche on tracks like Sat in Your Lap, but her penchant for storytelling is still here - There Goes A Tenner is a nostalgic look (!) at bankjobs, Pull Out The Pin deals with the Vietnam conflict, The Dreaming laments white man's impact on Aboriginal culture and features Rolf Harris on didgeridoo.
Indeed, Rolf's appearance is typical of the other thing that makes this album special. Yes, it's creative, yes, it's complex, yes, it purposefully sets out to break barriers down and is even pretentious in places - but there's a playfulness that runs throughout it as well. There's no better an example of this than the aforementioned braying at the end of the last track.
Be warned, though - this is an album you'll have to work at when you first buy it. If you're buying Kate Bush for the first time, choose Hounds of Love. For me, this is just as good an album, if not better, but it is less immediate. What is certain is that the two put together had an impact on pop and rock music that is often understated and both rank amongst the greatest studio albums of all time.