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Lush Stories

Personal recollections written by Lush fans, friends and family, most of them long before the rise of Facebook and Twitter.

The Guestbook also contains many great Lush stories.

A college mate of Miki and Chris, Dave Baker, has written a 46 page photo book about the early days of Lush. In addition to Dave's wonderful recollections, it includes photos from Lush's road trip in the student union van to their first gig outside London, along with an afternoon on Brighton beach before the show; Miki's handwritten lyrics and guitar tabs for a few songs; postcards from Miki and Chris on the road; flyers hand drawn by Miki; and much more.

A long-time fan recollects the occasions he spent time with the band members over the years. There are many stories throughout this site that show Miki's kindness and generosity, but these recollections top them all.

Guy Marshall is a true fan of Lush who's been to THIRTEEN Lush shows, the most of anyone I know. Click on the photo to read his reminiscences from those shows along with his collection of Lush memorabilia which includes 45 photos, 4 set lists, 7 flyers & ads, 6 tickets and lots more.


A fantastic story from Ron Wade's Vinyl Re-Spin project on Medium. He recounts going to Lush shows in Detroit back in the day and hanging out with the band, including the time he gave Emma and Phil a ride to the local video store to pick up some X-Files videos. It also features photos with Miki 20 years apart, in 1996 and 2016!

Ron's "Vinyl Re-Spin" project is "a quest to track down and re-acquire 97 autographed albums that he used to own." Be sure to Follow him on Twitter for occasional updates on his progress!

Read about Daniele's day with Miki & Emma in Milan, Italy, 1996


Read photographer James Lance's reminiscences
and see 93 beautiful photos from this 1991 show.

There are some truly great stories here. They are not in any particular order but generally the newest submissions are at the top. So, please look through them all otherwise you might miss some gems!

I’d like to share with you a couple of signed items which I was able to get after the demise of the band. I never got to see Lush live which I’ll always regret but was lucky enough to meet Miki on a couple of occasions at gigs in London, and Emma and Phil also at one of those gigs.

13/02/1998 – GusGus at ULU

This was a showcase gig for 4AD to present 3 of their new electronic signings. The show was opened by Cuba, followed by Thievery Corporation and headlined by the Icelandic nine-piece GusGus. I remember it being (like most gigs at ULU at the time) very loud. After watching Cuba I went to the side of stage bar/kitchen area and spotted Miki (with her distinctive red hair) sitting with a load of people. It took virtually the whole of the interval for me to pluck up the courage to go and speak to her, but when I did she was really friendly. I told her how much I liked Lush and how upset I was that they were no more and she kindly signed my GusGus ticket. It was a brief encounter but I was buzzing afterwards and don’t really remember much of the Thievery Corporation set as a result. I do remember them being loud, with the two producers sat at the back of the stage nonchalantly pumping out bass driven dubby goodness while two mc’s enthusiastically toasted along. By the time GusGus took to the stage I’d got my head back together and enjoyed it thoroughly. Miki was by the door of the side stage area watching the band.

29/07/1998 – Locust at ULU

This was a Mark Van Hoen showcase. The line up consisted of Emma’s new band Sing-Sing (the reason for me going), Mojave 3 and Locust. Following the Sing-Sing set I again went to the side stage area to the bar and spotted Miki (I had kind of expected her to be there for Emma’s big night) and again approached her and said hello. She recognised me and was really friendly again. She signed my Locust ticket and called over Emma who also did the honours (including hyphenating the band name!) and introduced me to Lisa who also provided an autograph – what lovely people! Phil was also there and I briefly said hi but Emma steered him off before I could ask for his autograph. It was such a buzz to see all three remaining members of Lush in the same place, but sad that Chris wasn’t around also and that the band had split. On that poignant note I went off to watch the other two bands and it turned out to be (and still is) one of the best gigs I’ve been to. I’d never heard either Mojave 3 or Locust before, but both were really amazing, especially Mark Van Hoen’s video backdrops. Wonderful stuff.

- Sam H.
August 2011


I read the second to last fan story where Miki said the Internet is a waste of time and pissed myself laughing. I think I helped provoke that comment. Some time early in 1996 Lush dropped into IRC for a chat session. We were all waiting patiently in the chat room for hours before they were due to show. Precisely when they showed up the IRC channel imploded and everyone was booted off except Lush and myself. I froze and couldn't come up with anything to say. Eventually I asked Miki why she smokes and she replied, 'because it makes me look big and cool.' And that was about it. Lush's first Internet experience and I made it suck. :( That was my only brush with Lush unfortunately as in '92 when they came here I was underage and still at home. And they were due to come at end of '96 but well that was not to happen.

- Peter R.


Back in '92 I went to Israel on vacation. I was already a fan of the band, owning most of their releases and Spooky had just come out. I had a friend who lived in Tel Aviv and I used to take out the latest releases for him to listen to. However he wasn't keen on female vocalists so I decided to leave the Lush album back in the UK. When I arrived in Israel, I was stunned to see that Lush were due to be playing 3 gigs. Since it was unusual for a British indie group to play in the country, I persuaded my friend to go to the first gig with me.

The gigs in Tel Aviv took place at a club in the industrial area of the city. There was probably around 150-200 people there and Lush played an excellent set. After they had finished, I noticed Miki wandering around the club so, my friend and I, both from London, introduced ourselves. Miki was trying to find cigarettes and my friend, a smoker, was able to oblige. We started chatting but were soon surrounded by locals. So Miki kindly invited us both 'backstage' where we met the rest of the band and had the opportunity to help ourselves to the copious amounts of alcohol that were on offer. It transpired that their manager, Howard Gough, came from the same area of east London as me. At the end of the evening my friend and I were invited back for the next gig two days later.

We went along not expecting to be remembered but, true to their word, our names were on the door and we were allowed in. After the set, we asked to see the band backstage to thank them and we were invited in again. This time we were invited to spend the night with some of the band and the entourage, who were going out. I recall my friend initially giving several people a lift back to their hotel, though I can't remember who was with us. As he pulled the car up and the others got out, my friend told me that he couldn't join us as he had to work the following morning and it was already around midnight.

In the hotel I made excuses for my friend. Then a guy turned up in a stretch Merc and we spent all night coasting from bar to bar around Tel Aviv and Jaffa. I recall that our last port of call was a bar called Cafe Baghdad. One of the crew went off to get the morning paper, where there was a review of the previous evening's gig. I think we eventually finished around 7am and I ended up sleeping on the floor in Howard Gough's hotel room.

Aside from producing excellent music, my recollection is of a wonderful group of people and it was a pleasure to be able to spend some time with them.

- Marc N


I met Chris thru their A&R person at Warner Bros. records here in the states. I spent several Reading Festival weekends with him at the festival and hotel. I had numerous label meals with him. I saw Lush 13 or 14 times. I also was able to spend my birthday with him in Chicago when they played the Metro. We both loved Iron Maiden, Metallica and I managed a punk band he loved "The Meatmen." He loved their single "College Radio Loser". We talked about music & football (soccer) a lot. He taught me how to shot beer bottle caps and he was one of the nicest & funniest people I have ever been around.

One thing I remember clearly about him is the fact every time I saw him, I smiled and had a great afternoon, evening, weekend, whatever...it all rocked with him. We laughed and told bad jokes. I remember the last time we talked. It was on the phone at a hotel in Reading. We were all at the festival like we had been for years, but Chris wasn't with us this time. Ironically, he was on tour in the states and I was in the UK. He was on a tour he didn't like and wanted to be at Reading with us badly. There were 4 or 5 of us in the room and we talked to him for hours. I told him I was coming back in October for Metallica and I had tix and passes and we were going. That seemed to cheer him up a bit and we said bye and see each other in October in London. Well, I called him numerous times when I arrived and no one knew where he was. I talked to Miki and left a message for him. He didn't pick up his ticket for Metallica, which was disappointing.

I remember the night of October 17th, we were eating Thai food in Swiss Cottage. Sally, a friend of Chris, and all 8 of us eating, came in and said Chris was found dead this morning in his parents house. I was staying with Malcolm who was a really good friend of Chris' and we cried and drank all night. My flight left the next morning and I was in shock for the next few weeks.

I think of Chris often...use to think of him everyday for the first few years, but I think of him several times a week now. I truly wish I'd had one more hour with him. I miss him so much and am so grateful for having him in my life the times he was. You always ask yourself if you saw it coming or if you missed obvious signs. I did see it once or twice, but thought it was just being moody. All I know is I am a better person for knowing Chris Acland.....friend and drummer extraordinaire.

Sean Duffy
June 2008


Well, I've actually met Emma three times. The first was at the Luminaire in Kilburn, the first Sing-Sing show I went to. I actually just said hello to her. On that occasion I had a long chat with Lisa. I was quite nervous about meeting Emma, as I've been a fan for so long. I think she wasn't feeling well on that day, because we literally just said hello to each other, and there were loads of other people around vying for her attention.

The second time I met her was last summer at that show with Robin Guthrie. I went up to her when she arrived outside the venue and introduced myself. I thought she probably wouldn't remember me from the Luminaire, as it was really dark inside. We actually ended up talking about the weather, as it was really hot that day!

The third time I met her was at her house. You know that Lush logo, the pink round thing on the front of Lovelife? She was selling it on eBay! Except, I didn't know she was the seller! It was pickup only and the seller lived in Cricklewood, London, so I did wonder at the time if she might be the seller, who else would have one! Anyway, no one else even bid on it, so I got the item! I was really delighted when I found out she was the seller! I was quite nervous about meeting her, so I was glad I'd met her a few weeks earlier at that show because it didn't seem quite so nerve wracking. Actually, it was really nice to meet her that way because I was able to have a long conversation with her....Anyway, she's a really lovely person. She made me a cup of tea, how many people can say that a celebrity they really admire has done that!

- Jen G. of PVSG


Many years ago, I think in 1987 I was in the (I think) the Sir George Robey and sat with my friends having a beer, waiting to go next door for some gig.

Back then I used to carry loads of crap in my pockets..tape recorder, tabs, money, spare tapes, and while I was out at these kind of gigs I would always end up carrying around loads more fanzines and records I would pick up during the night. On this particular night..I had just got fed up with being so bogged down..so I wanted a night without lugging around sodding tape recorders or being pressured to buy all this stuff, that I really wasn’t that arsed about.

So anyway...who comes up to our table..but Emma selling her now legendary fanzine ’Alphabet Soup’. Emma goes ’It’s crap but it’s only 5p’. We were quite taken a back by this! ’It’s crap?!’ and in response ’Yeah’..So this thrilling conversation went on for a while. I was resolute not to buy anything that night..especially a fanzine who’s very editor described it as being ’crap’ and there was also alot of sales pressure from Emma as well.

Anway about 2 minutes later someone else came upto me and said ’I hear you want to buy a fanzine?’..which was Miki. Which was confusing at first, because I thought it was only Emma selling the fanzine..so this was like a double act. So I had this long ’argument’ with Miki, why I didn’t want to buy ’Alphabet Soup’. In the end...I sort of won. Miki looked really dejected and I felt really crap, because they were being so alright and just trying to sell their fanzine, which I would always of bought any other night and it was also the cheapest I had ever come across, plus they were just doing it for the love of it.

..so looking abit guilty..Emma went ’Go on’..so I did! All 5p.

..later on when I was pissed and going home on the tube..I reached into my pocket and thought..’what the heck is this?’. So I read the fanazine. Alas though at the time where I was staying was a very ’right on’ vegan flat and publications using words like ’cunt’ or ’twat’ many times..was very much frowned upon. Which is totally ridiculous when you consider who wrote it in the first place. So I ditched it before I got home.

I’ve never seen anything on the net anywhere about this fanzine..but to this day is still very much talked about. I wish now of course I had kept my copy..

- Mick
April 2010
[message left on this website's Guestbook]


Note for my cousin Chris, who was my hero and inspired me to get into the drums (still got his old kit from very early Lush days) note to all who were at the memorial in Kendal last year and saw my sketch band play alongside the other much more credible punk bands (nice lyrics Larger) and prime drumming Kez. Still think about you often Chris and always appreciating your magic drumming on De-luxe, miss our Christmas japes too. Nice to see there are still Lush fans remembering.

- Thomas Acland


.....I got the [subway poster of the Split album cover] at their gig at Prince's old Glam Slam club. The speakers blew out after about the fourth song and I guess the band and the band's management felt bad so they started handing out goodies like CDs, promos, posters, shirts and food and drink from their dressing room to the people in the pit. When the band found out that the PA system wasn't going to be able to be fixed that night, they rescheduled the concert for the following night. I was cool with that because that meant another night of Lush and I got the subway poster. Plus, I met Miki the following night and bought her a beer. She was at the back of the club, I think with a bodyguard, but the bodyguard wasn't right on top of her. Anyway, she was checking out the opening band, That Dog (the night before, Weezer opened) and I just went up to her and gave her a beer and told her I really love the band and she and Emma were the reason why I started playing guitar. She was sweet about it.

Anyway, flash forward a couple years later. Lush is at the Tower Records on Sunset Blvd in West Hollywood and they're doing an in-store concert and signing for Lovelife afterwards--for 100 fans. I get there early in the morning, get my wristband that ensures me I can get in later that night and show up around 9pm with the 99 other fans. The gig is amazing—I was upfront, eye-level and they did about 5 songs. Afterwards, we all get in a line and make our way to a long table where all four band members are signing things the fans bought. That's where I got that poster signed. Emma and Phil were pretty quiet, smiled and said hello. Chris and Miki were great though. They joked around with me and then I said something stupid to Miki like, "Miki, do you remember me? I was the guy who bought you a beer at Glam Slam on the second night while you were checking out the opening act."

Then Chris said, "Yeah, and now he wants you to pay him back, so pay up you miser." Of course, the band laughed—it was a great moment for me because I loved the band so much.

Of course, the sad part was that I heard over the radio one night that Chris was found dead the day before. The news hit me like a ton of bricks. So depressing.

- Michael A


One of the best moments in my life (music-related or otherwise! LOL) was when Miki replied to my interview questions for my music fanzine Stratosphere way back in 1994. I had noticed that Lush was going to play the Trocadero in Philadelphia, and I couldn't go to the show, so I dashed off a hand-written letter of questions for the band members, with a cover letter to the club, and sent it, hoping that somehow it would reach the band.

Over three months went by without a reply, and to be honest, I was hoping for a reply, but not expecting one. Then one day I opened my mailbox and found a mysterious envelope with stamps from Finland, and my heart skipped a beat - and then, upon opening said envelope, I actually screamed out loud in amazement (and I am not a demonstrative person, under normal circumstances), because lo and behold, it was my question list for Lush, and it was filled out all over with Miki's hand-writing! If that wasn't enough of a thrill, Miki had also enclosed a few photos from their tour! Ah, I remember it all like it was yesterday..."

- Jen of Stratosphere Fanzine Yahoo Group


I started dating a girl in June, 1996. She knew I was a HUGE Lush fan, and she surprised me with tickets to the [Asylum in Toledo, Ohio] show on August 24th. My birthday is August 25th, and this was my 25th birthday present! I'd been to the Asylum (a theatre converted to a large dance club) several times, so I was very excited to see them for the third time, in a local setting. The Eels opened for them (they were great, BTW), and when Lush came on, there simply was only 100 or so people there (maybe 150.) I was able to stand about 15 feet away from center stage, with everyone clear as day, right in front of me. The best part for me was how they sounded exactly like they did on their albums - they really played well. The girlfriend is now my wife (of almost 10 years) and to this day, she said that of all of the many concerts she'd seen, that the Lush show was definitely one of the best. It will always be very special to me, and knowing that they only played a few shows after that intimate experience, makes it all the more incredible to me. I'm certain that my first birthday present from my wife will always be the best.

- Steve Molloy (Orri~)


I caught Lush live twice, met Miki at the bar and said "would you like a drink" she said "yeah..” then "no, f**k it , I’ll buy you one." I said "No!" Anyway I got her and Emma a pint of cider, Chris came over and said Hello and they said thanks for your support, hugged me, and went off to finalize the gig. And they were ACE!!!! Saw Miki after the gig and she shouted, "Enjoy?" and I shouted "Amazing" and it was thumbs up and waves! Just nice people with a talent, I always remembered what a down to earth normal bunch they seemed... I don’t think they realized how good they actually were.


....I was fortunate enough to interview her for a magazine I used to write for, and I got to spend the afternoon with Phil and Emma. (I didn't get pictures with them) She was extremely nice and really cool to the fans after the show. (I got my stuff signed then.).....I don' have the interview anymore--Orbit Magazine was a monthly free magazine on newsprint. We went out of business in 2000. I wish I'd saved the tape.....
I don't remember a lot of the questions, but I do remember asking them about touring with the Goo Goo Dolls--specifically, why were they doing it--it seemed like the wrong mix of bands.  Miki responded that they were talked into it by the record company and would have rather toured with Elvis Costello, because the crowds would have been more receptive. That's why she signed the set list for me "We've come on tour by mistake"


I met them all at a concert back in 1993 in support of Spooky. Miki was nice, as was Phil - he's sexy if I may say so myself. LOL

- Raz


They were doing a signing at Rough Trade records (RIP) in San Francisco in 1990(?) Saw them perform that night at The Edge in Palo Alto. It was them, Ride and either Slowdive or My Bloody Valentine, I can't remember. What I do remember is that it was so loud, so feedbacky (coupled with The Edge's horrible PA system) that, no joke, my friend and I couldn't properly hear for two days after. Bloody brilliant show however.

Was lucky enough to interview Miki and Emma some years later when I used to work for a small music video show. Both sweet as hell. They had brought along a Gameboy and all three of us took turns playing Mario Brothers. Fun!

- David W


I saw Lush 8/31/96 at the Trocadero in Philadelphia. It was only my third concert ever I think. I didn't know much about Lush, someone said they were good and I was aching to see any concert I could at the time. I had only heard a few songs from Lovelife and thought they were good so I figured what the heck.

Being only 16 years old I had to beg my parents to drive me there. They didn't want to because it was a school night I think. But I made up a story and said I won tickets on the radio and couldn't turn down an offer like this and they finally caved in. If they hadn't I don't think I would have ever forgave them!

The opening band was the Eels and they were really cool, I always thought so. We waited for Lush to take the stage for over an hour and everyone thought something was wrong. Seems Miki had a case of diarrhea. Before the last song before the encore (Ladykillers) she said would again rush again to the toilet.

I remember the show like it was yesterday. The atmosphere, the lighting, the music was ethereal. It was what Lush did best. It was the only show I've ever been to where I felt intoxicated in the music and not on a chemical substance.

I craved more Lush in the months after the show and was hoping they'd tour again. Then you know what happened. Kinda forget about them for a year or two after that and focused on other bands, but eventually I returned to Lush's music more than ever. Especially when music in general went downhill in '98 or so.

But when I look back at all the concerts I ever saw, and there were MANY, this was probably the best with a few close seconds. It is something I will never forget.


I saw them thrice in 94 at Manchester Uni (I think) and 96 at Liverpool Lomax and Manchester again and I spoke to Miki, I was a bit drunk and I think I bought her a pint of cider, she was very gracious, I think Chris was around too at Manchester but a mixture of cider and the years have made it all a bit muggy. Three of my fave gigs ever though! Great Memories.

- Andy Von Pip of the VPME blog
and We Miss Miki website


I'm old enough to have seen Lush live twice. The first time was (if I remember well) at the Pavillon de la Danse (Paris: I'm French) circa 990. Miki didn't have red hair at that time but was prettiest than ever... I was standing at first row, I know what I'm telling you about! Steve Rippon was playing bass that year, a few weeks after "Gala" release. I was dazzled by this show, it helps me to recall how good their music was (that's why we were there, after all). The second Lush gig I went to occurred at the New Morning club in 1994 I think. I can remember Miki Berenyi coming through the audience straight from the bar (did anyone notice her there?) to the stage, walking quietly with a thoughtful expression on her face (AND red hair), she looked the more concentrated. They played their last album plus older Guthrie-produced material. No one jumped at her neck when she was coming amongst us (we were no more than 50 or 100), this was no time anymore for any kind of phoney Beatlemania. Nice. it was a stab on my heart when I've heard the unexpected and tragical end of Chris Acland two years or so later.

At the Lush show at Maxwell's I got the set list signed. I was standing in front of Emma, and it was real easy to get the list. After their set, they just hung around the club, talking to fans, signing things, having pictures taken - it was great! Miki is definitely the most outgoing. I don't think that there was one person there that she didn't say something to! Miki does have a cool attitude... Miki and Emma are both incredible song writers.

- Aaron


The remaining accounts come from Starlust's Lush Page. I can't vouch for their authenticity but there are some great stories here, especially the one from Chris' sister-in-law. I left the names since they were already published.
A couple years ago, on the Spooky tour, I followed Lush around Italy and Germany (as best I could, mind you!) At one show in Germany, the opening band were complete crap. They were using an accordion to complement their guitars! While I was remarking to myself about the nauseating qualities of this band, I looked over and Miki was standing right next to me, looking as confused as I was. I said to her, "Whatever you guys do, don't use an accordion." she replied, "It's fucking dreadful, isn't it?!" Then we smoked a cigarette and she thanked me for coming all the way from Italy to see them.
During the show, one of my t-shirts got ripped off, so after the show, I caught Miki just as she was going to the back and asked her since I came all this way and my shirt got nicked, could she give me a rebate? She came back out with TWO shirts, and Emma's guitar picks! I'll never forget that Lush rule.

Did you know that Miki is the computer type but she only plays game I know this because I saw an interview with her in Amiga power! She also wears black knickers I know this because when I last went to see them she got the guitar caught on her skirt and it came right up. That's all I got to say.

-Stuart Dawson.


I'm Ruth Acland, Chris' sister-in-law. I'm married to his older brother Francis.

I don't know what to say, except that I decided to see if Lush was still around, or if they had anything to say about Chris that I somehow haven't already heard about.

I last saw my dear brother-in-law May of '96, when we were visiting England after my father's death. Chris seems alright to me; I hadn't an inkling there were any problems. He was always such a sweet brother-in-law to me, and he paid me the single biggest compliment when he said he wanted to marry someone like his 'sister-in-law'. For once I had done something right in my life, and I totally approved of Grace. She was a sweet girl and I thought 'this might be the one'.

We used to receive postcards from Chris from all over the United States and the world. Of course, I still have those postcards. They were always cheerful and upbeat, but he did speak a lot about being tired and always seeming to be in a hurry.

Anyway, I decided to check up on Lush or Chris on the internet, to see if there are any clues as to why he did what he did, or what the source of his unhappiness was. Francis and I invited him to stay here with us in Iowa if he needed to get away for a while. He was always welcome to stay with us; Chris had his special 'open door' policy here at our old Iowa farmhouse. However, he did stay with us for about a week in the autumn of '92. I first met him at our old place, another old farm house, and we were immediately bonded as family.

I will always miss Chris. He was a sweet friend and fun uncle. I wish I knew what more I could have done for him, or if there were any signs that things were wrong. I wish desperately that he was still around. He is sorely missed by his sister-in-law.

-Love, Ruth Acland


The reason I'm writing this however, is that your page reminded me of when I saw them at the 9:30 club (here in Washington D.C.). In between songs Miki changed guitars and asked the crowd, "Do any of you use the Internet?" A bunch of ppl boo'ed and then she said, "Neither do we, it's a bloody joke, it's a waste of time."
You might not believe me, but she really did say it... It freaked me out when I heard it, being a net-citizen, myself... But the show was still great :)

- Unknown.

I was at an amusement park and I met Miki. She signed my jeans and I asked her to marry me. That's it. My life's really pathetic?

-Mike Bowers





 Dedicated to the memory of Chris Acland   

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