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Rush - Counterparts CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.76 | 856 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Counterparts isn't an album I'd put in the front rank of Rush's discography, but it's still something of a return to form, firmly reversing the trend towards irrelevance and self- plagiarism that the band had been drifting into since Grace Under Pressure. This time around, the band's experiments in incorporating modern alt-rock ideas into their sound from Roll the Bones are brought to fruition, accomplishing the blend in a much more graceful and natural way than that album ever did.

The opening number, Animate, finds Rush sounding more energetic and forceful than they had since Signals, and I have to give Neil Peart credit for Nobody's Hero - a slice-of-life song which expresses Peart's shock both at the AIDS-related death of a friend and a murder that took place in his home town. (I particularly like how the opening lines take the position that straight people shouldn't be embarrassed of socialising with and supporting their LGBT friends.) However, whilst the album has a more or less strong opening, I find the material here isn't quite polished enough to sustain it for the entire 54 minute runtime.

It might be tempting to blame CDs for this, and I do believe the expanded time constraints compared to vinyl offered by CDs have prompted some bands to include poor tracks on their albums for the sake of filling out the running time, and there are plenty of albums out there which could be improved if their creators stuck to a 40 minute running time and trimmed the fat. But I don't think that's the case this time around; the fact is, Rush were coming out of a creative slump here which preceded the shift from vinyl to CDs, and whilst the better songs on here are entertaining enough, the band's classic songs blow this material out of the water. Rush were moving in the right direction at this point, but they hadn't recovered fully yet.

Warthur | 3/5 |


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