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Rush - Power Windows CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.54 | 940 ratings

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Queen By-Tor
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Uh oh, the 80s finally caught up with the Rush boys...

...but is it a bad thing? Not necessarily! This is a surprisingly strong release from Rush, albeit a bit different from their classic era. It seems that after whipping out the guitar in Grace under Pressure the boys decided to put it away behind the synths again, if this time less than on Signals. Musically, Rush starts to dance on the borders of Rock, Prog and New Wave, creating a fairly interesting mix. None of the songs dip under 5 minutes as well, making for some fairly solid compositions. It's clear here, though, that the times have changed, but Rush was always good at adapting.

The album starts off on an off note. THE BIG MONEY is a song that will surely make the prog fan's ears bleed if they're not prepared for what's coming. One guitar chord, then synth notes scream in an 80s fashion as Geddy shouts big money goes around the world!. Not exactly the swords and Shields stuff that made Rush so famous. However, as is the case with most Rush music, the music itself is enough to save this song. Geddy's bass line on this one alone is enough to make any critical audience stop and think, 'Oh, okay, they still know what they're doing... you guys scared me, though.' The next track, GRAND DESIGNS, is along the same sythed path. Starting out with a synth riff that's a bit more pleasing to the ear than the last, this song starts off a bit more.. calmly. It's a great track as well, likely one of the standouts on the album, and also one of the more progressive points. Better playing by Lifeson on this one, if still low-key. Geddy is one again the focal point, however, as his bass and voice are really the two things that drive the song.

The rest of the album is also littered with gems. The dark and eerie MANHATTAN PROJECT is the next song up. Lyrics based on the Hiroshima bombing leave one with a sense of unease as Neil tells the story of the race to build the bigger bomb. MIDDLETOWN DREAMS is a song with the same amount of darkness, if with a little bit lighter subject manner. TERRITORIES is another track worth the listen, a tale of patriotism and '...greener on the other side' school of thought.

There are a couple classic Rush tracks to be had yet. MARATHON is easily the best song on the offering. Once again driven by Geddy's bass and voice this is a track that's midpacedly blissful to listen to. EMOTION DETECTOR is another great, if lesser known, with some great lyrics accompanying a very well arranged musical section. However, aside from Marathon, the next best thing on this album would have to be the coda MYSTIC RHYTHMS. Another very dark track with interesting lyrics tat's bound to catch the ear of the prog-head.

Concluding now.

3 stars is what this album gets! Good, not amazing, but good. Fans of 80s Rush will delight in this one, fans of only their 70s stuff will likely be thrown off. For everybody else the album is hit and miss. You might love it and you might hate it. Recommended for those who want something good in the 80s.

Queen By-Tor | 3/5 |


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