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Rush - Signals CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.95 | 1229 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Signals shows Rush fully embracing the new synth sound introduced with Permanent Waves and Moving Pictures. This is one of Rush's darkest albums lyrically, which makes a nice contrast to the lighter sound. It's semi-conceptual, not following a story but rather focusing on the views of a teen of the edge of maturity. Despite the lusher sound, the band still plays ferociously and their performances never cease to be entertaining.

"Subdivisions" deals with society's pressure to conform, a common occurrence with high school cliques. "The Analog Kid" is the band's "memory lane" song, looking back at simpler times. "Chemistry" reflects the effects of love. In response, "Digital Man" shows the Analog Kid grown up in a world of technology that threatens the individual (in case you haven't noticed by now, this is a BIG theme in Rush music). Lifeson's solo here is killer. "The Weapon" continues the Fear saga begun on the last album (the band moves backwards from part 3). The man feels like "just another brick in the wall" as it were. Now the Digital Man attempts to change, making him a "New World Man." His dreams are crushed in "Losing It," which has a great electric violin. Still, not all technology is bad, as evidenced on the final track "Countdown," which salutes NASA and the launch of the first space shuttle. I guess Peart's love of sci-fi bars him from fully condemning technology.

This is the last album of Rush's golden era (starting with 2112), and it's a Rush classic. Peart never ceases to amaze not just as a drummer, but as one of prog's finest lyricists. Lifeson and Lee shine throughout, and Lifeson would be somewhat relegated to the back for the next few albums (though he still gave some great performances on every album).

Grade: B+

1800iareyay | 4/5 |


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