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Rush - Hemispheres CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

4.37 | 2483 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
5 stars RUSH are so good with these side long suites, I wish they had done more of them. This one is their third and maybe their best. The style of "Cygnus X-1 Book II Hemispheres" is similar to 2112, but this one seems to flow better and is less extreme in the contrasts of the light and heavy passages. This long song is a continuation of the last song on their previous record "A Farewell To Kings" where our subject has gone into the black hole. In this song he seems to be a witness of a battle of the gods as they decide how the people of earth should live. The argument is between Apollo and Dionysns, wisdom verses love, the mind verses the heart. Until Cygnus comes into the argument and suggests a balance between the two. I have to tell you that this record was a soundtrack for my last year of highschool that I didn't quite finish. I was a glassy red-eyed kid who was into music (RUSH) and having fun. So this music means more to me than I can explain with words. And this long song is my favourite from this album. It makes me feel like I do when I listen to "Natural Science" or "Jacob's Ladder". It goes beyond being just guitar, drums, vocals, bass and a song to something that is a part of me and something I treasure.

The "Prelude" for some reason conveys sadness to me, but not in a bad way. Geddy's vocals are at their best and the guitar and the melody are just amazing.The song is full of mood shifts and tempo changes as one would imagine with an 18 minute epic. From scorching guitar and Geddy screaming to a spacey, dreamy soundscape with synths, strummed guitar and gentle vocals. I haven't mentioned Neil but he's simply the best at what he does. I never tire of this song.

"Circumstances" is a flat out rocker with some wicked bass lines and Geddy screaming in two different languages. "The Trees" opens with acoustic guitar and the birds are singing but "There is trouble in the forest..." and this pastoral soundscape doesn't stay that way for long. "La Villa Strangiato" is my favourite instrumental of all time ! Yes it's self indulgence but who doesn't like to indulge themselves once and a while, especially if this is the result ! Pure genius. Complex yet so accessible.

In the liner notes they thank their kid musical brothers MAX WEBSTER as well as UFO. They have also mentioned in interviews that this was by far the hardest album for them to make in part because it was so complex.

Mellotron Storm | 5/5 |


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