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Lush

Meshing dreamy, feedback-drenched guitars with airy, catchy melodies, Lush were one of the most prominent shoegazing bands of the early '90s. Led by guitarists Miki Berenyi and Emma Anderson, the British band earned a cult following within the British and American undergrounds with its first EPs, yet the group never quite attained the critical respect given to its peers My Bloody Valentine and Ride. Even so, Lush lasted longer than any other of their contemporaries (with the exception of the Boo Radleys), developing sharp pop skills as their career progressed. By the time of their final album, 1996's Lovelife, they had converted themselves into a power pop band with dream pop overtones, which resulted in the greatest chart success of their career. Their success was dealt a blow when drummer Chris Acland committed suicide in the fall of 1996, effectively bringing the band to an end.

Miki Berenyi, Emma Anderson, Chris Acland, Steve Rippon (bass), and Meriel Barham (guitar) formed Lush in 1988 in London, England. Prior to the group's formation, school friends Berenyi and Anderson had collaborated on a fanzine together, as well as played in a number of other bands individually. Anderson, who had been working as a DHSS clerical assistant, had played bass with the Rover Girls, while Berenyi had been a member of I-Goat, Fuhrer Five, and the Lillies. Berenyi's then-boyfriend, Acland had previous played with several other groups as well, including Panik, Infection, and A Touch of Hysteria. Barham left Lush soon after the band's formation to form the Pale Saints, and the remaining members began playing around London, quickly earning a number of fans, including Robin Guthrie of the Cocteau Twins. Guthrie helped the band secure a contract with 4AD Records, and they released their acclaimed debut EP, Scar, in 1989. Lush supported the EP with opening tours for Loop and the Darling Buds, and by 1990, they had graduated to headlining tours of their own.

Throughout 1990, the band's reputation in the British music press began to grow as they released the acclaimed EPs Mad Love and Sweetness and Light, played high-profile gigs like the Glastonbury Festival, and became favorites of the music weeklies' gossip columns. Gala, an album compiling their three EPs, became the band's first American release at the end of 1990. Lush spent most of 1991 recording their debut album, releasing the Black Spring EP in the spring. Rippon left the band during the sessions, and was replaced by Philip King, a former picture researcher for NME and a previous member of Felt, Servants, and Biff Bang Pow. Lush finally released their delayed debut album, Spooky, in the spring of 1992. While the album sold well, reaching the British Top Ten and topping the U.K. indie charts, it was criticized in the press for Guthrie's heavy-handed production. The band supported the album in America by appearing on the second Lollapalooza tour, but their dream pop wasn't well-received by an audience hungry for metal. Lush released their second album, Split, in the summer of 1994 to mixed reviews. Split was lost in the twin waves of Brit-pop and American post-grunge, even through the band's songwriting was more pop-oriented than ever.

After regrouping during 1995, Lush returned in early 1996 with Lovelife, an album that showcased a debt to the pop-single ideals of Brit-pop. The musical changeover paid off as "Single Girl" and "Ladykiller" became their two biggest hit singles, and the album became a British Top 20 hit; in America, it was their highest-charting album, even if it just scraped the charts at 189. Lush had completed their supporting tours and summer festival appearances when Chris Acland unexpectedly hanged himself in his parent's house on October 17, 1996. Devastated by his death, the remaining members of Lush went into a long period of mourning, eventually disbanding. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Comments

falch6
I finally heard a Lush song on my Lush channel!!
I saw them in 95 or 96 at the Palace in LA fantastic concert.
adventure_ra c e r
Saw Lush in L5Ps in Atlanta back in 1993. Great show. Apart from the large crowd, their Lalapalooza show wasn't bad either. They are definitely missed :-(
danielbroder i c k
I think robin was awesome to support lush, what a great sound they have
my favorite favorite guilty pleasure
There are not many bands that are a fabulous as Lush. You might one a decade if you are lucky... They made the nineties tolerable...
So many gorgeous songs, haunting. Saw them bravely belt away in front of thousands of indifferent Lollapalooza - i a n s who were lusting for the imminent arrival of Pearl Jam-- Lush shone with a feline, emerald light. Lush: all-time favorites of mine, and many others...
So sad about the drummer. I remember them playing on SNL and one of the cameramen kept zooming in on a sticker on Miki's guitar that said NO GUITAR CLOSE-UPS PLEASE. :)
I saw them in '96 in Chicago. Got them to sign my t-shirt. All of them except Emma, anyways. I still have the t-shirt. Haven't worn it since. I miss the bands of my late adolescence.
I was fortunate enough to see Lush on tour in Tampa Florida back in 1992...aweso m e ! Too bad about the drummer :/
scott304
If their harmonies don't bring tears to you eyes you aren't alive
Miki has resurfaced on a recent release called Seinking Ships. The track she is on is "We will drink wine" brilliant, good to hear her voice again!
harrisbm
I got trashed with miki after one of their concerts in detroit. She was a trip, i thought afterwards how appropriate their band name was. Wish they were still together.
My very favorite band on the planet - wish I could've seen them in concert just once. :-(
The finest girl band ever and one of the ten finest bands of the rock era, period.
Scar and Madlove EP's are their best work. Long live the Shoegazers!
Brought back good memories. I used to absolutely love Lush. I remember going to their show in Boston in 1996. And they introduced me to perhaps my favorite band of all time, Cocteau Twins.
fellowaitres s
Oh, yeah. Just us shoegazers.. . y u k yuk..don't worry too much about it...just another one of those pesky sticky things..but that is funny "shoegazer".
F**kin-a, I had no idea I was such a shoegazer. Actually, I suspected, but...you know...Love the Lush sound, especially the vocals and that flanged out guitar. Beautiful.
falch6
One of a kind band!! Awesome sound!!
what an awsome band name
toddbarasch
Long live LUSH!
warehouselov e 7 5
Lush is so amazing. So dreamy and flowing.
Undertow: One of my all time favorite songs... listening to the pre-LOVELIFE stuff leaves me in a constant altered state of mind.
I love Lush! Beautiful shoegaze/dre a m pop music! :)
Yes. Whatever. Seriously underrated, Lush was.
sharpless
Lush was my companion when I lived in Alaska 89-92. As I drove through the hair-pin curve mountain roads to get to secret hiking spots. I was mostly alone. Lush's ethereal whispers both haunted me and made me feel confident at the same time. Like some of you... Lush shaped my personality to this day...

"Shoe Gazer" as most of you know... refers to a derogatory quote from a music critic who did not appreciate the artists staring down at their effect pedals and not engaging the audience.
ultra-hate
LUSH,kick's total f-uckin' a-ss,i cant believe the drummer was such a little a-ss wimp and had to kill his self instead of talking to emma or miki about it.other than that,beautif u l music and lovely singing makes lush's creative and personal expression out to be a miracle when considering the boring,cheap and uninspired maistream music from america,musi c that has spoiled the direction of style,person a l i t y and genre.americ a ' s mainstream is ugly rat-leveled garbage that is afraid to be different
Sad Chewinggum
I loved this band. Anyone know what Miki Berenyi is doing now?
I never realized I was such a friggin shoegazer till I found Pandora. I do wear very stylish non-sneaker shoes though...lik e pilgrim shoes really, with the buckle and everthang. I got them at the Shoe Pavillion for sixty dollars. Yeah, if I gotta gaze at my shoes at least I'll make sure they are the coolest shoes.
sean5733
Standing front row at the first USA Spooky concert is a memory I WILL NEVER ever forget. Like a lightsaber, Lush cut to my soul and with Cocteau Twins & Dead Can Dance, changed my life forever. Long Live Royce Hall (DCD, destroyed in the Northridge Earthquake of 1994) We attended that concert and were far more blown away than any concert our cumulative group had ever attended...
Long Live Royce Hall....
This band replaced all the love in my life I never had.
michellecb73
I love Lush...it made me strong when I was weak.
One of the greatest shoegazer, britpop bands ever! BEAUTIFUL MUSIC....... . .

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