Lush – “De-Luxe”

Lush – “De-Luxe”

Let’s land the wayback machine in 1990, and look at the first video – or videos – from Lush. They released their debut mini-album Scar in July of 1989 and despite it being well-receieved, they didn’t record any promotional videos for it. They saved that honour for “De-Luxe”, the opening track of their follow-up EP Mad Love, which came out in February 1990.

Miki Berenyi recalled the making of it to The Von Pip Musical Express as follows:

I remember us going to some field in the middle of nowhere and spending an entire day up a tree freezing our collective nuts and tits off (it was February). We got hoiked up into the branches and had our instruments precariously balanced around us. It actually doesn’t look that high up in the video but I swear, it was pretty dizzying and we nearly toppled off on several occasions.

Sometime around teatime we got a break to get the feeling back in our limbs before they sent us back up again. Steve, however, was past the point of tolerance and went sprinting off like a rabbit from a trap muttering something about how there was no way they were getting him up that bloody tree again.

Miki Berenyi, Lush
LUSH – A Video Retrospective With Miki Berenyi @ The Von Pip Musical Express

Scar, Mad Love, and their next EP Sweetness & Light were all compiled in reverse-chronological order at the end of 1990 as Gala, which is generally if incorrectly regarded as their debut album. A second video directed by Howard Greenhalgh with relatively big-budget visual effects was recorded for release to the US market, as the release was their first introduction to foreign markets; the single got as high as 14 on the Billboard Modern Rock charts.

About the second version, Berenyi said:

I’m guessing we must have filmed this after we got licensed to Warner Brothers in the US, for the Gala release (Scar, Mad Love and Sweetness and Light were not available there as individual releases – only on import). So we made a new video for “De-Luxe”.

I’m struggling to remember the details, but I think we were a bit reluctant about making it. We felt like we’d already made a video for the song, why did we have to make another one? Well, I guess it’s pretty obvious… Warners wanted something more MTV-friendly so basically you get about 80 per cent of the video featuring me, then about 18 per cent Emma and about 1 per cent each for the boys! I think it’s called TARGETED MARKETING.

That said, it was kind of fun to make. We were introverted and indie and so not into playing up to the camera that they had to employ every trick in the videomaker’s handbook to make it look interesting. Thus: flames, underwater swishing, strobes, projections, spinning platforms, cross fades, multi-imaging… THE LOT!!!”

Miki Berenyi, Lush
LUSH – A Video Retrospective With Miki Berenyi @ The Von Pip Musical Express

No explanation about leaving all the black space around the frame for most of the clip, though. Maybe they ran out of money?

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