Next up on Audioeclectica.com’s 2020 End Of The Year Lists, the Top 10 Vocalists The stipulation is that, an album/EP had to have been released this year.
Vote for your favorite in the comments section. At the end of the month, I will release the results of the readers poll.
This list is also in NO PARTICULAR ORDER!!!
01) Greg Puciato- Greg Puciato/Killer Be Killed 02) Billy Corgan- The Smashing Pumpkins 03) Lance Black- In Parallel 04) Philip H. Anselmo- En Minor 05) EL-P & Killer Mike- Run The Jewels 06) Kadeem France & Erik Bickerstaffe- Loathe 07) Jacob Bannon- Umbra Vitae 08) Gavin Rossdale- Bush 09) Chelsea Wolfe- Mrs. Piss 10) Anthony Paganelli, Lance Jackman, Jess Gowrie & Lennon Hudson- Horseneck
There are many bands that have tried to go back to their roots while still remaining relevant but, often the end result isn’t quite what it should be or it feels rehashed. That is not the case with the new album The Kingdom by Bush. Their new album is refreshing and a welcome back to what many loved about them in the first place. Let me start off by saying this is a full on rock album and Gavin and company have really delivered. If you’ve been waiting for them to get back to some good riff rock, this is the album for you.
From the time the album starts to till it ends, the consistency and balance of rock is there. Gavin Rossdale promised a “heavy” album and he along with his band have truly delivered on that. The album is chock full of riff heavy songs like “The Kingdom,” “Ghost In The Machine,” “Bullet Holes,” “Blood River,” and “Our Time Will Come.” There are also the more melodic heavy songs like “Flowers On A Grave,” “Send In The Clowns,” “Quicksand,” “Crossroads” and “Falling Away.” One of the more standout tracks is “Undone,” which has some similarities to the more mid tempo songs in the bands catalog but, it feels fresh and current.
The Kingdom is a bit nostalgic but, not in a bad way. It has the best elements of both Sixteen Stone and Razorblade Suitcase along with a bit of an Institute vibe. Also, Gavin working with Tyler Bates (who helped resurrect Marilyn Manson’s career with the great album, The Pale Emperor) has made a real impact and have made Bush relevant again in 2020. Another element that makes this album truly good are the performances by Chris Traynor and Corey Britz. Both of these guys have a very distinct style and it shines through on these songs. Most of the drums on the album were done by Gil Sharone (Current drummer Nik Hughes played on the title track and “Flowers On A Grave” and he did a killer job as well) and his work on this album is pretty damn stellar as well as usual. The songs on this album when played live will be huge. I can’t wait for the day that comes again. The only thing that feels off about this album is how the songs were put in order. Personally, I would have chosen the title track, “The Kingdom” to start the album off with.
If you have given up on Bush, this is the album that will definitely bring you back into the fold. If you are looking for a really solid rock album, this is one that you should really take a listen to.
I thoroughly enjoy making these Ultimate Set Lists. It’s quite fun to think of a dream scenario where you get to pick all the songs (well up to 25) for a live show. One band I’ve been listening to a lot lately is Bush. Mainly I’ve been listening to their new single “Bullet Holes” from the John Wick 3 soundtrack. It’s such a rad song that takes me back to the Sixteen Stone and Razorblade Suitcase days. Currently, Bush is out on tour with Live as both bands are celebrating the 25 year mark of their albums Sixteen Stone and Throwing Copper. I was intrigued to go to the show but, not sure I really want to knowing that the setlist for both bands are rather short and kind of dull. So, I went ahead and made my own Ultimate Set List for what I’d love to hear Bush play live.
Guideline 1: What line up of the band would it be
Guideline 2: Where would you want to see the show
Guideline 3: maximum 25 songs (In order of how the set should go)
Lineup: Gavin Rossdale, Nigel Pulsford, Chris Traynor, Robin Goodridge, Dave Parsons,
Venue: Wiltern Los Angeles
01) Personal Holloway
02) Little Things
03) The Gift
04) Insect Kin
05) The Sound Of Winter
07) The Chemicals Between Us
09) The Heart Of The Matter
10) Cold Contagious
11) Loneliness Is A Killer
12) Bullet Holes
13) Greedy Fly
16) A Tendency To Start Fires
17) Disease Of The Dancing Cats
20) Letting The Cables Sleep
On the unsung masterpiece that is Razorblade Suitcase by Bush, there was one single released that had a video that was absolutely badass. The song and video I’m talking about is “Greedy Fly.” The song was the second single from the album and the accompanying video really inhabited the song. The video was directed by Marcus Nispel, who directed videos for bands like Faith No More and No Doubt. The video has this sort of Seven meets The Crow vibe. In fact the video was shot in one of the same buildings in Downtown Los Angeles as Seven was. The videos dark and eerie cinematography is the perfect mood setter for the song. Plus this song just rocks.
Bush is back and it seems they have brought a “heavier” approach to their new music. Today the Gavin Rossdale fronted band released the song “Bullet Holes.” This track was co-written by Gavin and Tyler Bates (you might recognize him from his work with Marilyn Manson as well as his work on film scores like John Wick and Guardians of the Galaxy). “Bullet Holes” is also featured in the new John Wick film (John Wick: Chapter 3- Parabellum). This is definitely the sound that many older Bush fans have been waiting for. Bush plans to release their new album titled, The Mind Plays Tricks On You, this fall, and it features 4 songs co-written by Rossdale and Bates. In my personal opinion, after what Tyler Bates was able to do with Marilyn Manson on his The Pale Emperor album, I’m quite intrigued by what he can do with Gavin and Bush.
After the success of Sixteen Stone and Razorblade Suitcase, Bush started to mess around with their style. In late 1997, they released a remix album called Deconstructed. While it was a departure and it angered many fans, there were a few tracks on it that were pretty cool. One such was the reworking of “Mouth” which you might recognize from the movie An American Werewolf In Paris. The video for the song featured Julie Delpy who also appeared in the movie.
Bush- Mouth (The Stingray Mix) From Deconstructed:
Oh the 90’s, what a great time for music. Just like our parents had the 60’s and 70’s, we had the 90’s. The music and films at the time were totally representative of the changing culture. There were a few filmmakers like Richard Linklater and Kevin Smith that really dialed in on that. One such film which has now garnered a cult following, is Kevin Smith’s Mallrats. Not only was the movie funny and zeroed in on the culture, the soundtrack that accompanied it was pretty damn good. There was one song on it that I will always remember and that was Bush’s “Bubbles.” This song was released only on the soundtrack for Mallrats, though it now can be found on an expanded edition of the bands second album Razorblade Suitcase (which is quite a great album as well). Anyways, check out this song and enjoy!
Bush- Bubbles (from Mallrats):
It’s never easy to recreate the magic of a first album. You have your entire life to write your first record. After that what’s left? Some bands are able to carry on and continuously put out solid albums, some better than others. Then there are those that lost a step or two and struggled to get it back. This year is the 20th anniversary of the album Sixteen Stone by Bush. This is also the year of their newest album Man On The Run. While this album isn’t classic like Sixteen Stone is, Man On The Run is the best thing they have put out and done since Razorblade Suitcase. The writing is back to basics for Gavin Rossdale. His lyrics are mature and full of prowess. There is a bit of a sensual vibe to the way the words come out. musically its a far more cohesive album, that spans all genres of rock. One of the best tracks on the album “The Gift,” is a perfect example of this. The lead single “The Only Way Out,” is a prime example of Gavin grown up. The title track is a cool song with bits of swagger that almost sets the tone for how the album sounds. And for those that miss the rock check out “Loneliness Is A Killer.” The entire album is a gem. If you are a fan of Bush from way back, this is going to get you back into the band.
1994 was such a great year for music. So many amazing albums were released. Nine Inch Nails- The Downward Spiral, Soundgarden- Superunkown, Alice In Chains -Jar Of Flies, Failure- Magnified, Sunny Day Real Estate- Diary, Stone Temple Pilots- Purple, Pearl Jam- Vitalogy just to name a few. There was another album that was released at this time as well by a group of lads from England called Bush. In late 1994 their debut album Sixteen Stone was released. Despite the criticism of critics, and the constant comparisons to Nirvana, Bush were able to carve out their own piece of the pie. Sixteen Stone had great songs and not just the singles. Leading off the album is “Everything Zen” a track full of loud guitars and memorable hooks. Following was “Swim” and “Bomb” both of these songs blend melodies with loud distortion making them 2 of the best deep cuts on the album. “Little Things” and the very successful “Comedown” had the loud, melody, and then some. The song “Body” has a sweet opening that ventures into the blues territory then bursts into what Bush does so well. Next is the great “Machine Head.” The riff for that is extremely memorable as is the sing along. “Testosterone” and “Monkey” are good songs but definitely not part of the stand out nature of the album, though “Monkey” has a great guitar outro. “Glycerine” however is a stand out. This vulnerable songs strips the band down to make all take notice. The use of strings on the song as well really help to embrace the purity of the song. Closing out the album is “Alien” a truly overlooked track on an album full of great songs. I’ve always stopped the album there and never really bothered to listen to “X-girlfriend,” though its a short little diddy, it just never interested me that much.
Gavin Rossdale has the ability to write really interesting and thought provoking songs. Sometimes his lyrics are a bit out there but it gets the job done. Nigel Pulsford brought a nice tone to the group guitar wise but was always the more boring of them when you’d watch them live. Dave Parsons brought intensity to his bass playing and had a strong way of cutting through the distortion. Robin Goodridge played the drums like he was on a mission to really hammer home the beat. Sixteen Stone still holds up to this day. A couple years back Bush reconvened with Gavin and Robin and two others Chris Traynor (who previously played with the band when Nigel couldn’t tour) and Corey Britz, and released a new album The Sea Of Memories. Their latest release was a solid album that found Gavin and company ready to capture what was once theirs.