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Rush - Caress Of Steel CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.54 | 1205 ratings

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5 stars By early to mid 1975, the Canadian Prog trio Rush already had two albums under their belts (Rush and Fly by Night). Their debut (simply entitled Rush) did ok by record company standards but Fly by Night was a little different. They (the band's record label) were not too thrilled about it. Their record label was not buying the music that they were making as they pretty much wanted Rush to be a top 40 radio hit rock band. The band did not want to as they simply refused to conform to their record company demands. We then got yet another "odd recording," Caress of Steel was the result. With 1975's Caress of Steel, the band had pretty much arrived at a low point (in terms of sales and reception from critics and the record company). It was not doing so well. They even half-heartedly and jokingly dubbed their Caress of Steel tour the "Down the Tubes tour." However, it was not the case with everyday people listening to the band's music as the band was also gaining somewhat of a devoted and loyal following (this didn't become as evident until the next album). This album has tended to be somewhat of a divider between Rush fans though. Some love it, some hate it. How do I feel about it? Let's see. On to the actual review of the recording, 1975's Caress of Steel.

1) Bastille Day - The album opens up with the heavy and raucous track with Lee belting out the lyrics soon after. The bass, the drums and guitars are in full effect and I find it to be yet another perfect example of early Progressive Metal(I believe Rush to be the Fathers of the genre but it is certainly debatable) You could tell that the band was working hard to perfect this track. It has a great and memorable melodious chorus and ending. One of the tracks that made me fall in love with this band's music. 10/10

2) I Think I'm Going Bald - This track follows Bastille Day and it is yet another loud and raucous rocker. Although the lyrics are a complete cheesefest the metalhead in me is quite fond of the rocking nature of this song. Though a bit on the underdeveloped side I still enjoy it somewhat. It is my least favorite track on the album. 7/10

3) Lakeside Park - With this track we get something that sounds a little similar to something off of Fly by Night but also different, more refined and more melodious with Lee's bass carrying the song (for me at least). The ending to this track is absolutely outstanding with Lee sincerely singing the following lines: "Everyone would gather, on the 24th of May, sitting in the sand to watch the fireworks display. Dancing fires on the beach, singing songs together, though it's just a memory some memories last forever." You could tell that the band was trying harder. It's not super complex but I love this track. 10/ 10

Now we get to the most controversial part of the album. The part where some tune out. For me however, it's what makes the album quite an experience. On with the following 2 tracks no??

4) The Necromancer - When I first heard this Rush epic I was instantly amazed by it as I had not heard anything like it (not even by Pink Floyd, the band that pretty much started my Prog listening adventure). This track begins in a rather dark and foreboding manner with some Gilmouresque solos from Alex (It reminds me a bit of a track off of The Wall or Animals by Pink Floyd (this album was released a good 2 and 4 years earlier respectively though)) before becoming an explosive and very heavy track (Led Zeppelin and even Black Sabbath eat your hearts out). The band goes bonkers for a bit (with some piercing playing by Lifeson, Lee and Peart) before it calms down. The ending to this track is absolutely gorgeous. I find it to be yet another perfect example of early Progressive Metal. Rush are the Fathers of the genre I tell you.10/10

5) The Fountain of Lamneth - This track is the mammoth of the album and I adore it. Starts off with some beautiful acoustic guitar work from Lifeson before becoming yet another explosive track. Peart afterwards delivers a thunderous drum solo that I quite enjoy. The track then becomes a haunting number when it heads to the No One at the Bridge portion. The band delivers some fantastic work on this portion of the song (very, very epic). Personally, I find this track to be an absolute work of art. I knew that when I first heard this track I knew I found my type of music. I love, love, love it. 10/10

Overall, despite what the band says about it and despite what the record company and critics say. I find it to be an ambitious work of art that should be in everyone's prog collection. Highly recommended especially for those who like heavier progressive music. 5 stars!!

ProgMetaller2112 | 5/5 |


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