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Name: Bill Hoar
November 6, 2006
Rush's 1978 release Hemispheres, firmly established the Canadian trio as a Progressive Virtuoso band extraordinaire. Following 1977's A Farewell To Kings, Hemispheres pushed the envelope of commercial viability, especially the side one title track about the battle between heart and mind, exceeding 18 minutes in length! Rush had created futuristic Sci Fi themed concepts with 1976's 2112 which was angry, raw and powerful. Hemispheres by contrast although somewhat dark, is a much more sophisticated sound where previously the guitar was more oriented to heavy power chording, took on a more textural role with lush chorused suspended chords and strong classical elements. All of the instrumental performances are nothing short of breathtaking, and in particular Geddy Lee's aggressive polyrythmic driving bass lines often synchopated in 16th and even 32nd note barrages are amazingly in opposition to his complex vocals of The Neil Peart lyrics. This is particularly evident on "Circumstances" which also is perhaps their only "biligual" song in their history with a bit of French in the lyric. In addition, the "Trees" is essentially a classical acoustic guitar piece that evolves into a powerful heavy classical rocker, that vilifies powerful entities by using trees as an analogy. One can apply this themed song to Big Government, Big Business, Big Religion and so forth. These lyrics are a hallmark of Neal Peart and have continued throughout Rush's long and distinguished career. The closing tune is an excellent instrumental classical oriented piece called "La Villa Strangiato" and showcases in particular Alex Lifeson, though Lee and Peart certainly get their licks in including a brief bass solo by Geddy. Overall Hemispheres rates very high in Rush's 17 album, to date, studio catalogue. It ranks up with Moving Pictures, Permanent Waves, Power Windows, and 2112 as one of their masterpieces. This album Rocks!
To listen to some soundclips from Hemispheres or to purchase it, click on: Hemispheres
Fly By Night
January 29, 2005
This is the first successful Rush album that drummer Neil Peart was on. Released in 1975, the album starts off with a song called "Anthem". Then continues with "Best I Can", "Beneath", "Between and Behind", and "By-tor and The Snow Dog", which is about a fight between good and evil. Of course naturally good wins. This next one is probably the best known song on the album, called, "Fly By Night". Then, "Making Memories" is one of the few songs written by all the members in the band. Next a song called "Rivendell", and ending with the "In The End". I got this album because I heard it was supposed to be one of Rush's best, and it is. If your the type of person who doesn't only get albums for how many greatest hits they have on them, I recommend buying this album.
To listen to some soundclips from Fly By Night or to purchase it, click on: Fly by Night
By Andrew Lynes
June 24, 2004
Moving Pictures was released in 1981 and served as a musical introduction for Rush into the 80s scene of music. Leaning away from their 70s style of epic storytelling, this is a dark album characterizing fear, rebellion, and oppression. The album first opens with the powerful song 'Tom Sawyer'. The guitars on this track are truly driving and resounding, and the drums provide a percussive beat that cant be replicated. The now famous drum solo after the guitar and keyboard solos is truly amazing. The song is about a modern day rebel and the lyrics really express that if you listen closely. After your hard rock experience with 'Tom Sawyer' the album moves to 'Red Barchetta', a song about a car in the future. This song has more of a progressive rock feel that Rush is known for putting out and the rhythmic electric guitar is very fun to listen to. There are also a number of riffs on Alex Lifesons Gibson that imitate the sound of a car revving its engine and they really create an atmosphere for the song. This song is also closely linked with another of their Ayn Rand inspired individualism songs called '2112'. The next song is 'YYZ', named for an area code in the Pearson International Airport in Toronto. The opening part played on the drum hat it actually part of the morse code the tower sends the plane during its flight. This song is an instrumental, and truly exemplifies the astounding skill of the three musicians in the band. 'Limelight' is the next track on the album, and the end of the first side on vinyl. Solid drumming and guitar make up 'Limelight', which is about the driving oppression of the public on a celebrity. Theres also a great guitar solo with a stellar whammy bar effect on the end. Turning over the record, you can find an indirect sequel to 'Limelight', called 'The Camera Eye'. An intense song with a long keyboard intro that helps set the dark mood of the song throughout, 'The Camera Eye' is a masterpiece of new age Rush with tons of synthesizers. The next song is called 'Witch Hunt (Part III Of Fear)'. For anyone who knows Rush songs, no previous albums held any parts I or II. This is because the trilogy was designed to be released backwards, in accordance to how people perceive fear. 'Witch Hunt' is the most blatant, singular act of fear and oppression, as the title suggests, and thus is comes first. The song has a solid guitar leading it and powerful vocals by Geddy Lee. The last track on the album is 'Vital Signs', a unique song in the fact that it is part rock, part reggae. The intro is very 80s, with a guitar riff leading the way with a reggae undertone. Later on in the song, when the chorus rears its head, the full reggae tones become apparent. Moving Pictures now counts among my one of my favorite all time albums, and it is a must listen for any Rush fan interested in their more new age music, or any philosopher interested in musical interpretations of the likes of Ayn Rand and many others.
To listen to some soundclips from Moving Pictures or to purchase it, click on: Moving Pictures
I heard that this was one of the classic Rush albums, so I bought it. I listened to it, and sure is. All the songs are very good and Lee's vocals are aboslutely outstanding. The album was released in 1976. When I first heard it, I was very impressive that only 3 guys were playing on all the tracks.
The first song contains a whole medly of songs called "2112". The song is broken down into different sections these sections are "oveture, The Temples of Syrinx, Discovery, Presentation, Oracle:The Dream, Soliloquy, and the Grand Finale". That whole set clocks to 20 minutes. The whole other side of the album contains 5 more songs, no longer than 4 minutes. These songs are "A Passage to Bankok", "The Twilight Zone" (my favorite), "Lessons", "Tears", and "Something for Nothing". Neil Peart (the drummer) wrote most of the material on this album and Lee and Lifeson helped co-write a couple of the songs.
So, all in all, a classic album that has only 6 tracks, is still very impressive
To listen to some soundclips from 2112 or to purchase it, click on: 2112
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