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Rush - Exit... Stage Left CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

4.04 | 592 ratings

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2 stars I really don't care for Exit....Stage Left, it dosen't offer a full concert (they could have released a 2 disc set, but they didn't) but, it has some good points, and some pretty bad points. One thing I might like to say is that it really sounds like an audience recording, and not taken directly from the soundboard, like All the Worlds a Stage. There are really good songs, with some good performances, but some aren't that great, which amazes me, because its not the performance. Its really the sound quality. It dosen't have any depth, or any, well, emotion, lets say, to it. I will now rate each song on a scale from 1-10. 10 being the absolut best, and 1 being the absolut worst there can be.

Spirit of Radio- The guitar is really the main problem with this song. Its bearly even there, and it gets drownded out of the mix by the drums, bass, keyboards, and vocals when being played. The only really good part about the opener song is that the bass, and Geddy, sound really nice. The vocals are captured almost perfectly, showing Geddys vocal skills, but does not show that Alex is a prominate player in their live performances back in the 1980s. 4.5/10

Red Barchetta- An okay live track, but it really dosen't standout in the CD like some of the other songs do. It really dosen't capture the recorded version, I don't get the spark that I usually feel when I listen to it on R30, or any other one. The bass, again, is really the most direct instrument being played at the time, with Alex being a little more upfront in this song, but not completely. Neil sounds pretty nice, the drums are very good, nothing to complain about with that portion of the song. The vocals are the drowning instrument, because when Geddy sings, it blows everything else. 7/10

YYZ- Probably one of the better tracks, behind A Passage to Bangkok and Xanadu really. The guitar is much more upfront than that of the previous songs, which amazes me to pieces. The one thing that ticks me on this record is that the quality ranges from great to bad, but this is one of the good tracks on the record, with the drum solo, one of the better ones. The bass solos are really great in this one, and the guitar solo is great as usual. 8/10

A Passage to Bangkok- Definatly the best from this record, no competion except for Xanadu coming in at a very close second. There is much more pop feeling to this song, its greatly captured, with the roiling basslines, again, being the highlight of the show. This was taken from a show in the Permenant waves tour, as with Closer to the Heart, Beneath, Between and Behind, and Jacobs Ladder. I really like having this one on the record, because its one of the stronger tracks from the record. 10/10

Closer to the Heart/Beneath Between, and Behind- Pretty good, but the acoustic is pretty low in the mix, for the Closer to the Heart portion of the songs, for the most part. The songs, themselves, are played really well live. I did mention, in A Passage to Bangkok, that this was one of the song that they played in their Permenant Waves tour, which was taken from soundboard. This isn't the most memorible set of tracks, but its pretty nice, for the most part, as I can say. 7.5/10

Jacob's Ladder- I've never cared for this song, and I really never will, but the serenade at the beginning really just hooked me on the live version. I really like how Geddy introduces the song, in his lazy voice, as I would like to call it, This is Jacob's Ladder. The live version is actually played very well, nothing to complain with the performances, because Rush always gives a good, tight, and consistant performance. But I really just can't stand to listen to this song, I really just can't do it, actually. 5.5/10

Broon's Bane/The Trees/Xanadu- The reason I linked these together is because they make a really good flow and feel with each other when listened together. This has to be the second best set of tracks, along with Bangkok being the first. The songs are all played very well that night, and Broon's bane really sounds nice, linking with The Trees makes it even better. 9.5/10

Freewill- I really don't like this live back in the 1980s. It sounds really way to poppy, and unenergetic to actually be a Rush song, it really dosen't give the feeling that I get from the studio version, actually. The bass sounds pretty good for the most part, but, astoundingly, the performance isn't really all that great, so that is why I'm going to rate this lower. 3/10

Tom Sawyer- This isn't really a gem or anything live, I just view it as Tom Sawyer being played. The sound really isn't that bad or anything its just that its to generic to actually be very enjoyable, because I really get that its uncomfortable for them to play. I don't know how I get the feeling, but I don't think that they enjoy playing it, so it turns on them. 4.5/10

La Villa Strangiato- This is another pretty strong track from the live recording. The instruments sound really nice on the recording. Geddy says some pretty funky stuff at the beginning of the second solo, but its actually pretty funny. I still really don't get the depth that I do get from some of the other songs that are on this, but it gets the job done for being an energetic and live performance. 8.5/10

I really question why bands release incomplete concerts, and this really is no keeper.

Rushlover13 | 2/5 |


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