Rush - The 1982-1987 albums POLL

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Even though Rush had used synths a fair amount on previous albums, these are the albums which divide some fans, claiming the keyboards got in the way of Alex Lifeson's guitar work. But which is the finest of the crop?

Poll Results

OptionVotes
Signals 15
Grace Under Pressure 12
Power Windows 8
Hold Your Fire 0


...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Thursday, 26 June 2014 22:54 (seven years ago) link

does anyone under, say, forty still claim these albums are divisive because the keyboards interfered with Alex Lifeson?

guess that bundt gettin eaten (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 26 June 2014 22:56 (seven years ago) link

No snark intended. I just think this argument was won years ago.

guess that bundt gettin eaten (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 26 June 2014 22:56 (seven years ago) link

Even at the height of my personal Rush mania, I didn't like Grace Under Pressure much. Out of the other three, I think Power Windows is the most consistent album but "Subdivisions" is the best track on any of them.

Johnny Fever, Thursday, 26 June 2014 22:57 (seven years ago) link

Started the poll because I've just finished watching Beyond The Lighted Stage, and was browsing a couple of Rush forums earlier, and there still seems to be a cool reception towards these albums from some (with the possible exception of Signals). I personally don't have a problem with the amount of keyboards on these albums, fwiw. I'm having a hard time choosing between Signals and Power Windows.

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:01 (seven years ago) link

Head says Grace, heart says Power Windows. Going with my heart.

The whole synths vs. Alex argument is ludicrous as there's tons of amazing guitar work all over these albums.

odd proggy geezer (Moodles), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:03 (seven years ago) link

Grace for me, just for "Red Sector A."

Humorist (horse) (誤訳侮辱), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:08 (seven years ago) link

>>Head says Grace, heart says Power Windows. Going with my heart.

Couldn't have said it better myself. Ditto.

BlackIronPrison, Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:10 (seven years ago) link

The whole synths vs. Alex argument is ludicrous as there's tons of amazing guitar work all over these albums.

― odd proggy geezer (Moodles), Thursday, June 26, 2014 11:03 PM (40 seconds ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

I absolutely agree. 'The Analog Kid' is probably the most obvious example (great riff and a solo as frantic any Lifeson solo beforehand), but there's numerous others. Lifeson has always played what's most suitable for the tracks, as skilled as he is.

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:10 (seven years ago) link

I enjoy Grace Under Pressure plenty, but 'Red Lenses' has to be my least favourite track the band had recorded by that point.

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:13 (seven years ago) link

I think the keyboards are great, but the drums are horribly recorded on PW and HYF. They sound like they're coming out of a trebly transistor radio.

"Distant Early Warning" is probably my favorite song on these records, but I prefer Signals as a whole over GuP.

Montgomery Burns' Jazz (Tarfumes The Escape Goat), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:13 (seven years ago) link

Dubious fashion sense aside, the footage of the Grace Under Pressure tour absolutely kills...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjRy8hd5Kd8

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:20 (seven years ago) link

"Red Sector A" live from the 2013 tour, with string section:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7u31rG0Jek

Humorist (horse) (誤訳侮辱), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:35 (seven years ago) link

The whole synths vs. Alex argument is ludicrous as there's tons of amazing guitar work all over these albums.

otm

guess that bundt gettin eaten (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:37 (seven years ago) link

I loooooove the guitar playing on these, never understood the complaints. The "Turn the Page" solo is so cool. Around the 3 minute mark:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_RnEK6GvM0o&feature=kp

Anyway, voted "Power Windows." But "Grace Under Pressure" is such a dark, neat record.

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:47 (seven years ago) link

I love the riff on 'Kid Gloves'. There's excellent rhythm/arpeggio work all over these records.

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:50 (seven years ago) link

And yeah, "Analog Kid" guitar is super nuts. I love how Alex found a way to balance all the Andy Summers stuff with actual solos, which is more than Summers generally managed in the Police. (I blame Sting.)

3:30:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6JRykXDP2Yk

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:51 (seven years ago) link

Don't forget 'The Body Electric', that has a neat solo too!

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Thursday, 26 June 2014 23:54 (seven years ago) link

I love new wave Rush. Voted Grace Under Pressure - I saw the tour at Irvine Meadows. Annoyed that I didn't see Power Windows tour - my college friend was was super into Rush said that one was the best.

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 27 June 2014 08:56 (seven years ago) link

Live "Analog Kid" clip from 2012 kills

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 27 June 2014 08:57 (seven years ago) link

I've said it before, but the thing I may love most about Rush shows is watching fans air drum, air guitar and air bass simultaneously, all while singing along. That's what you get when every song is so tightly composed and performed. The fans know every note, and they just freak out like they're having a seizure.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 13:11 (seven years ago) link

power windows but i fw all of these. can't imagine hold your fire will get any votes but its a sentimental favorite

ciderpress, Friday, 27 June 2014 13:40 (seven years ago) link

voting Signals. All of these records suffer from a bit of heavy-handed "we are introducing ourselves to the 80s" production -- but then something about Rush was always "80s", even on their 70s records. Hard to pinpoint exactly, tho very easy for me to imagine the cover kid from Power Windows listening to Rush in his bedroom at any given moment in the post-home computer age.

Signals is the record that takes the 80s-friendly sound, and most organically integrates it into the already (extremely well) established Rush sound. Grace Under Pressure isn't too far behind, tho I wasn't into it at the time. I think it's aged a lot better than Power Windows or Hold Your Fire, both of which suffer from many songs that just aren't that fun to hear, and, er, rush too eagerly to embrace the sound of their era.

(all this said, I think Stewart Copeland was one of the worst things to ever happen to Neil Peart. Anyone accusing Copeland of stealing licks from reggae and ska drummers should try to find any kind of groove in Peart's approximation of his beats)

Dominique, Friday, 27 June 2014 14:14 (seven years ago) link

I sort of appreciate Peart's robotic approach to Copeland's aggro drumming. Copeland is so sloppy and wild and inconsistent, which is to his and the band's benefit. Peart is all about precision, which I think works in his favor, because Rush songs are so detail-minded, and rarely interested in groove, as such (though recent Rush delves into that a bit more). I doubt Copeland could do Peart's parts in "The Enemy Within," for example, but copping from Copeland allows Peart to dance around his style while making it his own. Same with Lifeson and Summers. I also think the '80s production is a red herring. It's just the switch from squelchy, thick analog synths to digital synths, I think, and maybe the choice of guitar effects. But there's little nearly as bad as what some of their contemporaries were up to, in terms of marshmallow drums and horrible guitar tones. Probably because Rush is such a personality rich band that there wasn't a lot of room to mess around with tech (triggered samples and whatever on GUP, PW and HYF aside). Even then, Peart (who is often doing the triggering, usually finds a way to integrate them rhythmically, like in "Mystic Rhythms," or "The Big Money."

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 15:57 (seven years ago) link

the only real coloristic objection I have to new wave Rush is the thin, brittle stereo reverb effect Lifeson started using on iirc HYF and Presto. It just sounds shitty.

I would have expected Rush produced by Rupert Hine to sound fucking FANTASTIC but those sound much less appealing to me than the earlier new wave rush outings.

OutdoorF on Golf (Jon Lewis), Friday, 27 June 2014 16:05 (seven years ago) link

See, I like the brittle Lifeson, not only because he stills rips out awesome solos, but because '80s Rush is so busy (yes, even for Rush) that if he was thicker and distorted it would sound like the band fell out the back of a moving truck. He's one of my fave guitarists because he's egoless enough to fit in there without getting in the way. Even before these albums, listen to his uber-Summers approach to "Vital Sounds." Just out of the way, but absolutely essential.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 16:17 (seven years ago) link

I used to listen to "A Show of Hands" a lot, based on how old I was when it came out, and it's interesting to hear the band at its most '80s essentially sound like the record live, minus only a hair of the presumed cheese. They found a way to make it work, imo.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 16:20 (seven years ago) link

He's one of my fave guitarists because he's egoless enough to fit in there without getting in the way.

totally, i have come to prize this musical quality more and more as I get older, or if you like, downright old at this point. Summers had that savoir faire in spades. I feel like Can was an entire BAND of players who knew how to stay out of the way.

OutdoorF on Golf (Jon Lewis), Friday, 27 June 2014 16:30 (seven years ago) link

hold your fire is good but everything is somewhat overshadowed by "time stand still" and "prime mover" which are perfect

can't decide between signals and power windows

emo canon in twee major (BradNelson), Friday, 27 June 2014 17:28 (seven years ago) link

He's one of my fave guitarists because he's egoless enough to fit in there without getting in the way. Even before these albums, listen to his uber-Summers approach to "Vital Sounds." Just out of the way, but absolutely essential.

― Josh in Chicago, Friday, June 27, 2014 4:17 PM (1 hour ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

Yeah, this is totally OTM. There's absolutely no doubt as to Lifeson's technical skill, but he never overplays and always plays what's suitable, and it's been like this for all of Rush's career. Even when he's soloing, he knows exactly when to cut loose (e.g. 'The Analog Kid') or when to play something restrained and highly melodic (e.g. his solo on 'No One At The Bridge' from 'The Fountain Of Lamneth').

In fact, some of my favourite Lifeson guitar moments are just simply when he's playing arpeggiated riffs, like on 'Red Barchetta' or the middle section to 'The Trees'.

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Friday, 27 June 2014 17:53 (seven years ago) link

I've heard Power Windows being described as "cold-sounding", and I have to disagree with that. I think it sounds "big", "elaborate", "sonically deep", but not "cold".

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:10 (seven years ago) link

Ha, "Vital Signs," not "Sounds.

Dawn of the '80s!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yh5RSv52g6U&feature=kp

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 18:12 (seven years ago) link

"cold" is not pejorative!

guess that bundt gettin eaten (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:14 (seven years ago) link

something about Rush was always "80s", even on their 70s records.

Really? Fly by Night seems as 70s as it gets to me.

EveningStar (Sund4r), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:15 (seven years ago) link

xpost And even if "Power WIndows" were somehow heard as "cold," it is without the band's most outwardly emotional album. "Grace Under Pressure" is kind of cold (by design; "You know how that rabbit feels/going under your speeding wheels") but also dark. "Power Windows" much less so. "Hold Your Fire" sort of continues in that vein. I suppose something like "The Pass" on "Presto" is the apotheosis of emo Rush.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 18:16 (seven years ago) link

"cold" is not pejorative!

Hey, be cool or be cast out.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 18:16 (seven years ago) link

Indeed, "cold" isn't pejorative, it's just not the feeling that I get from the record. Like, 'Grand Designs' and 'Manhattan Project', to name two, feel really warm to me.

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:18 (seven years ago) link

and Josh OTM about Power Windows being an outwardly emotional album.

...and the trees are all kept equal by hatchet, axe and SAW! (Turrican), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:19 (seven years ago) link

I suppose something like "The Pass" on "Presto" is the apotheosis of emo Rush.

It only struck me a couple of years ago that this song could be read as a statement about Christianity.

EveningStar (Sund4r), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:19 (seven years ago) link

Our own Adrien did a great job on this: http://www.stereogum.com/1685666/rush-albums-from-worst-to-best/list/

Of the 20 albums his order is Signals (2), Grace Under Pressure (5), Power Windows (10), Hold Your Fire (13).

I totally agree, although I voted Grace because I felt it's always been unfairly underrated. I was excited for Power Windows when it came out but it doesn't hold up as well over time.

Fastnbulbous, Friday, 27 June 2014 18:21 (seven years ago) link

xpost Huh. I always thought it was a hang-in-there teen suicide parable. But I suppose there could a literal reading of "Christ what have you done."

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 18:23 (seven years ago) link

Yeah, I'm always partial to Grace Under Pressure for sentimental reasons, but no question, that record and Signals are great. Power Windows never gets enough respect.

A. Begrand, Friday, 27 June 2014 18:28 (seven years ago) link

xpost Huh. I always thought it was a hang-in-there teen suicide parable. But I suppose there could a literal reading of "Christ what have you done."

Yeah, I always heard it the first way - and I think that statement is definitely in there too. I heard it on the radio one day and thought that the last line might also refer back to "someone set a bad example/Made surrender seem all right".

EveningStar (Sund4r), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:28 (seven years ago) link

I always thought the "Christ what have you done!?" cry was a first person reaction to someone's suicide. Like, an anguished "I knew you felt bad, but there were other solutions, why did you have to do that?"

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 18:39 (seven years ago) link

Yeah, that was how I heard it at first. The literal reading does seem in keeping with some of Peart's other lyrical themes, though.

EveningStar (Sund4r), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:42 (seven years ago) link

Drummer and lyricist Neil Peart: "There was a lot I wanted to address in that song, and it's probably one of the hardest ones I've ever written. I spent a lot of time on it, refining it, and even more doing research. There was one song previously, called 'Manhattan Project' where I wanted to write about the birth of the nuclear age. Well, easier said than done, especially when writing lyrics, you've got a couple of hundred words to say what you want to say. So each word counts, and each word had better be accurate, and so I found in the case of the Manhattan Project, I was having to go back and read histories of the time, histories of the place, biographies of all the people involved, and that's not without its own rewards, but it's a lot of work to go to to write a song - having to read a dozen books and collate all your knowledge and experience just so you can write, you know, if it says the scientists were in the desert sands, well, make sure they were and why, and all that. So with this song it was the same. I felt concerned about it, but, at the same time, I didn't want the classic thing of 'Oh, life's not so bad, you know, it's worth living' and all that. I didn't want one of those pat, kind of clichéd, patronizing statements, so I really worked hard to find out true stories, and among the people that I write to are people who are going to universities, to MIT, and collecting stories from them about people they had known and what they felt, and why the people had taken this desperate step and all of that and trying really hard to understand something that, fundamentally, to me is totally un-understandable. I just can't relate to it at all, but I wanted to write about it. And the facet that I most wanted to write about was to demythologize it - the same as with 'Manhattan Project' - it demythologized the nuclear age, and it's the same thing with this facet - of taking the nobility out of it and saying that yes, it's sad, it's a horrible, tragic thing if someone takes their own life, but let's not pretend it's a hero's end. It's not a triumph. It's not a heroic epic. It's a tragedy, and it's a personal tragedy for them, but much more so for the people left behind, and I really started to get offended by the samurai kind of values that were attached to it, like here's a warrior that felt it was better to die with honor, and all of that kind of offended me. I can understand someone making the choice; it's their choice to make. I can't relate to it, and I could never imagine it, for myself, but still I thought it's a really important thing to try to get down."

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 18:46 (seven years ago) link

Well, he doesn't comment on the last line there. I thought that the whole story of Jesus's martyrdom might be part of the 'mythology' that he's trying to take apart. Just a thought, though (although apparently many people on songfacts saw it that way too:P), especially since it seems unlike Peart to write a heart-on-sleeve exclamation. I'm not actually sure what Peart's intent was wrt that line. It's OT in this thread so maybe there's somewhere else we should discuss it?

(I like singles from this era but don't listen to the albums all the way through.)

EveningStar (Sund4r), Friday, 27 June 2014 18:59 (seven years ago) link

Isn't The Weapon from Signals? Oh, I get it, that's from the Grace Under Pressure tour

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 27 June 2014 20:26 (seven years ago) link

has to be signals for me but only barely over Grace. Power Windows I like a lot, Hold your Fire I never bought back then for some reason so it's still a very unfamiliar album to me. Signals was the first Rush album I ever heard though and the first I ever owned. I sing Subdivisions in my head to myself every day.

akm, Saturday, 28 June 2014 01:36 (seven years ago) link

I'd like to think that Lifeson had also run across John McGeoch, but I've always thought there was a hidden Siouxsie influence in how Rush was structuring songs around this time.

Have much more mixed feelings about the Edge these days - was actually put off by his segment in the It Might Get Loud. Classic case of being adrift and unfocused once you have all the gear money can buy. I went through a phase of listening to a lot of 1991/1992 live bootlegs and being happily surprised whenever he cuts loose and makes a statement, but nothing since has the excitement and urgency of say War. There's a great bit in the movie when Edge is playing "I Will Follow" then Page jumps in and instantly it's Led Zep.

Elvis Telecom, Friday, 4 July 2014 21:11 (seven years ago) link

Is that the bit where Page and White watch a bemused Edge and you can practically see them pretending to be impressed?

Josh in Chicago, Saturday, 5 July 2014 01:51 (seven years ago) link

Lifeson's solos when I saw Rush were the high point of the show for me - they were so engaged and present, just gorgeous and exciting

Now I Am Become Dracula (underrated aerosmith bootlegs I have owned), Saturday, 5 July 2014 02:34 (seven years ago) link

one of the (many) great things about rush is that they've always been totally open about pretty much everything (and haven't had cause to regret it).

could lifeson play rings around the edge? perhaps, but that doesn't mean he couldn't learn anything from him. and the same thing with geddy and peart, who seems to be always honing his craft.

learning stuff is never a negative

mookieproof, Saturday, 5 July 2014 02:49 (seven years ago) link

Lifeson definitely has a gearhead side to his playing that probably came a lot from guys like Summers and The Edge.

― odd proggy geezer (Moodles), Friday, July 4, 2014 12:46 PM (10 hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink

He'd ready done a shitload of kickass stuff before either guy put anything on wax

Prince Kajuku (Bill Magill), Saturday, 5 July 2014 03:41 (seven years ago) link

. . . therefore he should ignore them

mookieproof, Saturday, 5 July 2014 03:44 (seven years ago) link

I see what you are trying to Do and don't buy it. I'm merely saying lifeson may have been influenced by those guys , but when all is said and done they would be lucky to shine his shoes. Just like Bradshaw should be kissing greene's and lambert's and ham's ass for eternity

Prince Kajuku (Bill Magill), Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:00 (seven years ago) link

musicians should only be influenced by people that are better than them rite

Neanderthal, Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:05 (seven years ago) link

Lifeson shoulda pulled up next to Edge in a go-cart and been all "yo I play better'n you bitch"

Neanderthal, Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:05 (seven years ago) link

Yes you've pinned downy exact thoughts. I'll let you post my comments for me from now on. You definitely have the intelligence suggested by your name.

Prince Kajuku (Bill Magill), Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:09 (seven years ago) link

lol you've been Awfully Good since the whole ade 'fiasco' but now you've gone Too Far

mookieproof, Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:10 (seven years ago) link

I feel bad for you. You're a moron. You seem to dislike me but I have no clue who you are. You're kind of meaningless

Prince Kajuku (Bill Magill), Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:11 (seven years ago) link

Not you mookiproof. That was meant for Neanderthal. Xpist

Prince Kajuku (Bill Magill), Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:12 (seven years ago) link

Xpost

Prince Kajuku (Bill Magill), Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:12 (seven years ago) link

cool opinions bro

Neanderthal, Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:13 (seven years ago) link

I have no problem with mookie even though we often disagree

Prince Kajuku (Bill Magill), Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:14 (seven years ago) link

<3

mookieproof, Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:14 (seven years ago) link

I'll try to clarify. Even if Lifeson is "influenced" by the Edge, I don't think he's influenced by the Edge's playing so much as by the Edge's use of effects. As opposed to, once again, a technical master like Summers, whose playing and trademarks (and effects) you hear all over Lifeson's playing. That said, I think there are a host of guitarists influenced by the Edge in the same way, because as far as actually playing goes, there's not much to the Edge. Nothing wrong with that. I like U2. But I know the Edge was influenced by Stuart Adamson, and not only can you hear that influence, you can also hear, in Adamson, how a more technically accomplished guitarist might benefit from some of the same tricks the Edge invokes.

But anyway, yeah, back to Lifeson, he's the rare musician - and again, maybe it's his relative of ego - who seems really open to new ideas and approaches, even if you don't necessarily hear it in his playing, Almost like being influenced by a book or movie; maybe it affects how he plays but not how he sounds.

(U2 would be a lot cooler if the Edge every once in a while could unleash a Lifeson-esque gonzo solo. This is yet another example of Summers influence, but imagine if the Edge was capable of sneaking a solo ike the one that starts around 2:25.)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kuqSjKgq3Sk&feature=kp

Josh in Chicago, Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:15 (seven years ago) link

Neanderthal however is a chump who is like a flea that you just can't get rid of no matter how hard you try. Annoying as fuck but ultimately harmless.

Prince Kajuku (Bill Magill), Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:15 (seven years ago) link

http://static.gigwise.com/gallery/flea-naked.jpg

Neanderthal, Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:27 (seven years ago) link

I'll try to clarify. Even if Lifeson is "influenced" by the Edge, I don't think he's influenced by the Edge's playing so much as by the Edge's use of effects.

otm - he still comes across as Lifeson, just w/ different sonic flourishes

Neanderthal, Saturday, 5 July 2014 04:28 (seven years ago) link

David Gilmour much had done the cascading delay sound on "Run Like Hell" which was before The Police or U2. Robert Fripp had also done other delay experiments both with Brian Eno and in King Crimson. I'd imagine what those guys were doing was also in Lifeson's ear too.

I think a big reason for Alex Lifeson going for a guitar sound inspired by Andy Summers and The Edge's sound is that with Rush's sound getting more synth based it fit that mix. Those old Oberheim and Roland synths can take up a huge amount of real estate in a mix, don't think was really as much need for that humbucker crunch from the earlier records. Rush if anything was pretty gear whorish and I'm sure the 80s rack guitar gear was pretty appealing in the same way as the sequencers, synths and Simmons drums.

earlnash, Sunday, 6 July 2014 01:59 (seven years ago) link

Interestingly, U2 was never much of a synth band. The Edge was the synth. With the Police, the more synths there were, the less Summers there generally was going on. Like, what is Summers even doing on "Every Little Thing She Does is Magic?"

Anyway, Summers absolutely was listening to Gilmour and Fripp. he regularly cites Gilmour's acoustic work in particular and Fripp c. "Red." But the Edge? I still don't hear it. Fripp and Gilmour and Summers were all pre-Edge, and I can't imagine what the Edge brought to the Rush equation that all those other guys hadn't already brought.

David Gilmour much had done the cascading delay sound on "Run Like Hell" which was before The Police or U2.

FWIW, "Run Like Hell" was on "The Wall," which was 1979, the year after the first Police album, and the same year as U2's debut stuff. But sure, Gilmour had done plenty with echo and delay before that. So had others. but not quite in the same way as Summers or the Edge.

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 6 July 2014 02:14 (seven years ago) link

...and the demos for "Run Like Hell" come from Gilmour's 1978 solo album, and onwards and onwards back until you get to "One Of These Days"

Elvis Telecom, Sunday, 6 July 2014 02:41 (seven years ago) link

Have come around to the position that if Geddy had actually worked hard on his lyrics rather than assign the task to the new geeky dude with the obnoxious vocabulary, Rush would have been irrefutably the greatest band in the world.

Three Word Username, Sunday, 6 July 2014 07:43 (seven years ago) link

^^^does not dig that it's a parallax

how will the milf survive? (Jon Lewis), Sunday, 6 July 2014 16:38 (seven years ago) link

One of these Days is bass echo, no? Had Geddy written his own lyrics and used a bunch of bass echo...

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 6 July 2014 18:41 (seven years ago) link

Has anybody heard any of Geddy's solo album? I mean, the lyrics are kinda dumb, but it's really interesting hearing Geddy sing singable lyrics. The guy's good!

Three Word Username, Sunday, 6 July 2014 18:50 (seven years ago) link

four years pass...

nice list, didn't get your comment about Hold Your Fire.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Wednesday, 24 October 2018 02:52 (two years ago) link

two years pass...

Though I heard the previous two when they came out, I finally got around to listening to Hold Your Fire.
The problem with Lifeson being sidelined is not the lack of guitar per se, it's that when Geddy is doing most of the composing (on keys rather than bass), the songs are repetitive slogs through the same tired chord progressions meant to be "dramatic" or "inspirational". It's all buried under so much reverb that I can't even tell where the string section, brass band and choir might be hiding. Meanwhile, Peart's lyrics have abandoned narrative, and deal with abstract concepts in a clumsy manner.
Despite it all, I loved "Time Stand Still" at the time and still do.

Halfway there but for you, Tuesday, 13 July 2021 15:35 (three weeks ago) link

Signals doesn't seem like it belongs with the other albums on this list.

Grace Under Pressure is the clean break. I was a huge fan back in the day, but it's a weird album. Has a unique, downer vibe that contrasts with most other Rush albums.

Power Windows is the one that really grew in stature for me after getting back into Rush after a 10+ year break. It has a wholesome sheen, but there is so much going on in these songs - lyrically, structurally, sonically, melodically - I found myself really getting into even the "minor" songs. It might be their strongest album front-to-back other than maybe Permanent Waves and/or Moving Pictures.

Hold Your Fire has a couple of great songs, but overall it's minor compared these other albums. In retrospect it seems like they correctly intuited they needed to change things up after this.

Gun to my head:

Subdivisions
PW
GUP singles
Rest of Signals
Rest of GUP
HYF

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 15:24 (two weeks ago) link

Just when Neil couldn't seem cooler, seven of his cars for auction.

the body of a spider... (scampering alpaca), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 15:44 (two weeks ago) link

he owned every classic car

STOCK FIST-PUMPER BRAD (BradNelson), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 16:07 (two weeks ago) link

PBKR otm about PW

So who you gonna call? The martini police (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 16:26 (two weeks ago) link

Thanks, Alfred.

I'm probably not being charitable enough to HYF. I guess I would take the HYF singles over deep cuts like The Weapon and Countdown.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 16:42 (two weeks ago) link

Also, that Peart Lamborghini is one of the prettiest cars I've ever seen.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 16:44 (two weeks ago) link

Power Windows is more impressive than Hold Your Fire, but not especially likeable. I feel like this is when undistinguished filler really started to clog the albums: like I've heard the record a dozen or fifteen times over 35 years, and still have no idea how "Emotion Detector" goes. "Middletown Dreams" has a character described as "a little stout", and no other distinguishing features. "Grand Designs" is another big abstract lyric with no point.
"Distant Early Warning" is my favourite Rush song; something got knocked off balance for them in 1985 that traded power for bombast.

Halfway there but for you, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 16:45 (two weeks ago) link

PW is the best, HYF is 2/3 great. Grace Under Pressure is great and super dark. Signals and Perm Waves and MP 90% perfect.

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 17:04 (two weeks ago) link

like I've heard the record a dozen or fifteen times over 35 years, and still have no idea how "Emotion Detector" goes.

Crazy talk. Love that little riff that Alex plays at the beginning of each chorus and then the last 45 seconds just takes that and soars.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 17:16 (two weeks ago) link

Emotion Detector rules.

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 17:32 (two weeks ago) link

I just tried again, sorry, nothing. My emotion detector must be faulty.

Halfway there but for you, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 18:09 (two weeks ago) link

I ordered an emotion detector a few years ago!

Hasn't arrived.

So who you gonna call? The martini police (Alfred, Lord Sotosyn), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 18:13 (two weeks ago) link

I just tried again, sorry, nothing. My emotion detector must be faulty.

Pity, but thanks - I'm going to play Power Windows when I get home.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 20:41 (two weeks ago) link

Listening now and this has to be one of their most positive, anthemic albums.

Also, I just recalled my high school art project that included a painting with the lyrics to Manhattan Project.

Lol @ me, but the drop at "fly out of the shockwave" still gives me chills.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 22:40 (two weeks ago) link

Like, Marathon: the verses/lyrics are whatever, but that middle instrumental section is amazing (would love to hear Geddy's base isolated), which leads into a weird and wild Lifeson solo. This is architecture.

Carlos Santana & Mahavishnu Rob Thomas (PBKR), Wednesday, 14 July 2021 22:49 (two weeks ago) link

This guy rules:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q3nTy6wQ3Bk

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 23:01 (two weeks ago) link

or would

search for user tjh3113 marathon cover

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 23:02 (two weeks ago) link

and the masks were hanging on the studio walls

mookieproof, Wednesday, 14 July 2021 23:04 (two weeks ago) link

That link brought me to this tribute band. These nerds nail it:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SWgkyhM1-4

Josh in Chicago, Saturday, 17 July 2021 16:24 (two weeks ago) link


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