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Rush - Moving Pictures CD (album) cover

MOVING PICTURES

Rush

 

Heavy Prog

4.41 | 1853 ratings

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Mr. Mustard
5 stars Moving Pictures is the quintessential Rush album. This is the one most people think of when they talk about Rush, and for good reason. Like the previous album, Moving Pictures sees a slightly more commercial sound mixed with the prog that was so dominant on their previous few albums. For this reason, I consider this album a perfect representation of both their past and future sound, and is easily the climax of Rush's career.

The album starts off with perhaps the band's most well-known song, 'Tom Sawyer.' How can anyone not like this song? It is everything Rush is about up to this point: complex but catchy melodies, lively bass and guitar, and super dynamic drum playing.

'Red Barchetta' is another up-tempo song where everyone offers something truly amazing on each instrument. I especially like the lyrical content with its rich imagery courtesy of Peart.

'YYZ' shows off the instrumental prowess of the band. The guitar is heavy and crunchy and the drums are rhythmically satisfying, but it's truly Geddy who shines here. His bass tone is like no other, and some of the bass lines he plays are simply brain-melting.

If 'YYZ' is Geddy's song, than 'Limelight' is surely Alex's. I see this song as a last homage to Lifeson's fantastic guitar playing which would be less and less impactful as the synth started taking over. The opening riff is one of his greatest, as is the solo.

The 'Camera Eye' is Rush's last attempt at a longer "mini-epic" type song. The song has unquestionable energy throughout, in part due to the flawless rhythm section in Geddy and Neil. And of course Lifeson comes up with some great guitar riffs and solos throughout. What I like especially about this song is how they are able to make so much out of so little yet still make it interesting.

The remaining two songs are a clear sign of the direction the band is headed in. Though they are definitely not bad per say, but they don't have the same energy of the first half of the album. 'Witch Hunt' is probably the biggest antithesis of the core Rush sound. It's dark, slow and slightly haunting. There are a lot of synths on this on this one which is reminiscent of what most post-Moving Pictures albums will sound like. Vital Signs is based around a killer bass riff by Geddy, but the guitar reveals a hint of Reggae as well.

Overall, Moving Pictures is the last great Rush album. After this their sound would become dominated by keyboards, and the songwriting would take a plummet. While the first half of this album is flawless, the second disc doesn't reach the same type of level, and as a result is not as good as Hemispheres or Permanent Waves. Regardless, Moving Pictures is an obvious must have for Rush fans and prog fans alike.

9/10

Mr. Mustard | 5/5 |

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