Bush: Gavin Rossdale (guitar, vocals); Nigel Pulsford (guitar); Dave Parsons (bass); Robin Goodridge (drums).
Additional personnel: Winston (vocals); Gavyn Wright, Perry Montague-Mason (violin); Bill Hawkes (viola); Frank Schaefer (cello).
Recorded at Sarm Hook End, Berkshire, England and Abbey Road, London, England.
"Swallowed" was nominated for a 1998 Grammy Award for Best Hard Rock Performance.
Bush is now a household word in rock and roll, but 5 million records later, with its two-year-old debut still in the Top 100, the British band's blustering alternative rock hasn't lost its bite or its cynicism. Several songs on the band's second record will pummel you with blistering guitar feedback, burly bass lines and pounding drums, while the slower tracks will drag you down into the deepest recesses of rock melancholia.
If there's one thing for certain on RAZORBLADE SUITCASE, it's that Bush is attempting to record its disillusionment with as much fidelity as possible. The band gets a good push toward that goal from Steve Albini, whose production magnifies the band's desperate edge. The songs twist and turn in a prickly verse-chorus-verse format, in pursuit of a comforting closure that doesn't always arrive. Gavin Rossdale's wavering tenor shoots a dose of internalized turmoil straight into the heart. And when Rossdale sardonically rasps, "we're all the confusion, we're all the rage," it's clear the band's success hasn't dulled its edges. Bush's righteous bitterness, along with its forceful, uncompromising musicality, gives RAZORBLADE SUITCASE sharp teeth.
Q (1/98, p.111) - Included in Q Magazine's "50 Best Albums of 1997."
Q (2/97, p.97) - 4 Stars (out of 5) - "...like all half decent bands on their second album, Bush are evolving into their own men with a hugely appealing sound that is distinctly theirs....Ultimately, RAZORBLADE SUITCASE is SIXTEEN STONE with more confidence...and what seems to be a deliberate attempt to push out the corners of their own envelope..."