Alternative whines of Bush get Deconstructed into electronica rhythms

Record

Review

Joey Guerra

Entertainment Editor

Bush: Deconstructed

(Trauma/Interscope Records)

Ok, so I'm not the biggest fan of Bush, those sleepy-eyed alternative pretty boys who scored big with the albums Sixteen Stone and Razorblade Suitcase.

Seeing them live was like sitting through a marathon coffee-grinding event, only it didn't smell that good.

With Deconstructed, Bush's foray into the underground dance realm via remixers like Goldie and Tricky, the boys try to create a few sounds that might make you wanna move your feet.

And surprise, they do, for the most part.

"Everything Zen," the song that launched Bush into the hearts of grungy teenagers everywhere, is featured in two versions or, rather, variations on each other. Aggressive beats and distorted vocals are par for the course on both cuts.

Actually, those techniques come into play on many of the songs which, after a while, tend to ground into repetition.

Still, songs like "Swallowed," which is featured on the soundtrack to the film The Jackal, "Synapse" and "Bonedriven," benefit from new arrangements and become something a little more than just whining alternative riffs. The intensity within the original songs is played up nicely.

Blocky, heavy beats and ambient soundscapes seem to be favorites for these remixers, especially on tracks like "Personal Holloway", "Insect Kin" and "Comedown".

That's all well and good, and the production is tight and effective for the most part, but you can't help but notice a certain similarity to one of the electronica super-groups of the moment: Prodigy.

Tricky and Goldie may fall into the same realm as these guys, and are innovators in electronica, but the similarities to tunes on Prodigy's The Fat of the Land cannot be denied.

What's worse, it's not even up to par. The sounds come off like some sort of demo-outtakes from the far superior sounds of Progidy.

Still, it's a bit ridiculous to expect true innovation and creativity from a remix album. For what it is, Deconstructed offers an interesting look at a band that has been largely one-note.

If Bush is looking for a unique sound, they may have found it with "Mouth," the album's first single which is also featured on the soundtrack to the upcoming An American Werewolf in Paris.

Coupled with lead singer Gavin Rossdale's coolly detached delivery and a rock riff, the electronic underswing creates an affecting and sexy sound.

It's unlikely Bush will completely dive into the underground dance scene, but this single proves these guys have the potential to move far beyond the bland retreads of buzzy radio stations. It's a glimmer of promise and style that will keep my ears open for a while.

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