Remember when Bush first crashed on the scene in 1995 with “Everything Zen”? Everyone couldn’t get enough of handsome dark-eyed grunge boy Gavin Rossdale and his gravely, angry-edged voice, his vaguely smart and ambiguous lyrics, and that dirty guitar excitement. Bush rode the wave of a new sound that, while not exclusively their own, they found a way to wear comfortably.
And then years went by, and the band diminished, album by album, until… POOF! Gone. Gavin did a memorably cool song, “The Current,” with the Blue Man Group in 2003, giving us reason to be hopeful for his new solo CD.
Which brings us to Wanderlust [Interscope]. The lyrics are clichéd, smarmy and sentimental (”How far will you go / how deep is your love / your body’s bruised / and on fire”). These overly-smooth, overly-produced, poppy tunes are more Switchback than 16 Stone. God help us. Garbage’s Shirley Manson does some backing work, but we didn’t notice where.
Gavin Rossdale does absolutely nothing new, nothing cool in Wanderlust-- but at least we can say that he’s still really, really cute.