I will admit to being a great fan of the “Sixteen Stone” album, one of the major albums of the 1990s grunge era. The following album “Razorblade Suitcase” was not bad either, but then things spiraled downwards pretty quickly. Bush went out with a whimper when guitarist Nigel Pulsford left the band a couple of years ago, shortly after their last album “The Golden State” bombed.
Now comes “Zen x Four” a DVD-CD combo. The DVD (13 tracks; 56 min.) compiles the 11 videos from Bush’s first three album. There are some great ones, and some ridiculous ones too. Writes Nigel Pulsford in the entertaining liner notes: “Low point was being up as a baby, placed in a womb and covered in goo for the “Greedy Fly” video by some crazy German director”, haha! There is also an unnecessary “making of” segment on the Chemicals Between Us video and the Science of Things album.
The CD (9 tracks; 49 min.) is a very interesting collection of live tracks. (And, contrary to what the Spotlight reviewer states, the track listing here on Amazon in 100% correct.) The initial 3 tracks are acoustic, live radio-show tracks, in particular “Comedown” shines. The remaining 6 tracks are from the December 1995 “KROQ Almost Acoustic Christmas” concert. It shows Bush at their peak: theu have by then toured the “Sixteen Stone” songs to no end, and sound very tight. There is no weak track here, and the energy is amazing. Check out the 7+ min. version of “Bomb”, but also “Machinehead” and closer “Little Things” are outstanding. Please note that all tracks on here are from the first album only.
An obscure outfit called Kirkland Records issued this combo and with it, one gap in the Bush catalogue (a live CD) has been more or less taken care of, but it is incomprehensible that there still is no proper greatest hits compilation on Bush. The Smashing Pumpkins, Alice in Chains, Stone Temple Pilots, even Nirvana, all have their “Greatest Hits” album. When will Bush issue theirs?