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MOVING PICTURES

Rush

 

Heavy Prog

4.41 | 1944 ratings

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The Quiet One
Prog Reviewer
2 stars Moving Towards a Softer Band?

Sorry if this review will provoke some shock for fellow Prog fans, but I still don't get how this is Rush's most acclaimed effort on the Prog realms. A Farewell to Kings was for me Rush's peak on the creative side of music as well as instrumentally, showing very well-constructed compositions and a fantastic bunch of musicians playing Heavy Prog in the truest sense, while Moving Pictures just seems Rush moving towards a softer sound, somewhat AOR-ish, and by no means progressive.

Don't get me wrong, Moving Pictures is by no means a bad album, it's production is top-notch and the songs, while not Prog, are clever and addictive semi-hard rock tunes with some synths here and there adding that 80's vibe we all know about, on the contrary of how they have been doing some records before, which they used the synths for a proggier sound. There is one notable exception, this is the well-known instrumental YYZ, with Alex's now well-defined guitar tone shining everywhere in a quite complex composition I must admit, also having Neil and Geddy doing a tremendous job. Definitely an instrumental that inspired future Prog Metal classics. But really that's the only tune I can found that Rush is still on it's peak like they were in A Farewell to Kings. OK, The Camera Eye does go through ''Prog borders'' but the verses are un-deniably cheesy and AOR-like, that you, well at least I, can't possibly consider it a Prog song, neither really a good rock song even if it does feature good musicianship.

On the other hand Tom Sawyer, Red Barchetta, Witch Hunt and Limelight are also pretty well-known tunes from Rush, these are very simple on composition and in musicianship, but simple is not really bad, but I do find bad when they mix hard rock with soft and cheesy 80's stuff. This is definitely not the case of Tom Sawyer nor Witch Hunt, these two are definitely great rockers with an effective use of synths, something Moving Pictures lacks overall. But the other two, even if being heavy every now and then just like The Camera Eye, they delve through bland and soft 80's stuff which is unbearable for me.

As a conclusion, not truly a hard rock album neither a prog one, yet it's catchy melodies and grandiose production can make it a pretty fine 80's rock album, but I'm not that fond of 80's rock, so for me it's pretty much the same with the already stated exceptions of Tom Sawyer and YYZ. I really prefer the more raw and rockin' Rush of the mid-70's up to A Farewell to Kings with Geddy's voice being by far more powerful, Neil's drumming more dynamic and Alex's guitar definitely rockin' harder.

Really can't say anything else, 2 stars, if you are looking where to start with this highly acclaimed rock band go for 2112, that'll blow up your ears unlike this one.

The Quiet One | 2/5 |

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