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Rush - Caress Of Steel CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.54 | 1205 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
4 stars CARESS OF STEEL is the album by RUSH that I have put the most effort into listening to in order to appreciate more. Upon my first listening of their third album I was somewhat underwhelmed since my exposure to classic RUSH was well after these first albums were released so of course it's hard not to compare this to the series of masterpieces that would soon follow. Apparently others were underwhelmed as well explaining the lackluster sales when released and the range of opinions ever since. All this dedication and persistence has paid off for me. For a long time I would have rated this a 2 star album and I spent many years ignoring this release altogether but in the last couple of years I have decided to explore this album a lot more since I was inspired by the many differences in opinion that it has received.

The first thing everyone notices upon first listen is how different the two sides are. The first side is old RUSH with the Zeppelin-inspired hard rock tracks "Bastille Day," "I Think I'm Going Bald" and "Lakeside Park." These songs were always inferior for me when compared to the first album and the hard rock anthems on "Fly By Night." But after accepting them for what they were, my attitude changed towards them. The second side is RUSH's first major experiments with long epic progressive tracks in the forms of "The Necromancer" and "The Fountain Of Lamneth." These two tracks are very interesting in how you can hear snippets of future masterpieces in the making. There are chord progressions that remind of tracks on 2112. There are nylon classical pieces that remind of A FAREWELL TO KINGS, etc. These two sprawling works are not quite as good as the more refined classics on the next four albums but nonetheless they have really grown on me.

Although this album is not perfect and really a training ground for the albums that follow it is still a decent album in its own right that has taken me very many listens to appreciate as much as I do now. This will hardly ever trump any of the albums from 2112 to Moving Pictures in popularity but I simply can't imagine any RUSH fan's collection complete without this album that provides a glimpse into the evolution of their sound. For that reason alone I recommend this album but I have also grown to really enjoy all the songs on it. I would highly recommend to listen to this periodically as it has a quirkiness that tends to alienate initially but does reward after perseverance. I am not at all disappointed in taking the time to get to know the intricacies of this album. I have had a hard time deciding if this is a 3.5 star album or a 4 star album and even now it seems like it's somewhere in between, but this is RUSH and I love this band so i'm gonna go for the 4.

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |


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