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Rush - 2112 CD (album) cover

2112

Rush

 

Heavy Prog

4.11 | 1989 ratings

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Josef_K
4 stars Since Caress of Steel got pretty much rejected by the public, Rush had to change something. Though they bravely kept the side-long epic format, and focused instead on making it more direct, both musically and lyrically, as well as putting only single-esque songs on Side B. The surrealism of "Fountain of Lamneth" is gone on this album, as is the fantasy of "The Necromancer". Instead, we have an astonishing amount of irony and anger beneath the 2112 concept, only matched by the raging Roger Waters lyrics found on "Animals" imo. The social commentary from Peart is really on top level here.

This album is less adventurous than Caress of Steel, but way more confident, mature and simply made for commercial success. Just like they would do on several albums later (especially Moving Pictures), Rush here manages to do exactly what they want, and still please their audience. Personally I do prefer Caress of Steel because of the more abstract and personal theme in "Fountain of Lamneth", but this album is obviously directed at larger scale success without leaving out any of the signature mid-70s Rush vibe.

In fact I despised the 2112 story during the first few listens, I thought it was way simplified and standard, but eventually the nuances in the story became clear to me and the fact that the story wasn't simplified, I was the one simplifying it. Sure, I did so also since I was in love with "Fountain of Lamneth" (still am) which remains superior, especially conceptually, but I went too far, to put it mildly.

With the exception of "Moving Pictures", this is the most cohesive Rush album I have heard, yet it does not lack variation either and it just never gets boring. All the B-side songs are good, from the slightly goofy "Passage to Bangkok" to the mellow "Tears", the up-beat "Lessons" and the simply great "Twilight Zone" and "Something for Nothing". These songs are though not really progressive, but that doesn't matter to me and shouldn't to you either. It's hard rock, and it's damn good hard rock, with some depth to it at times and some nice humour at other times, all delivered with extreme dedication and technical accuracy. A most delightful album.

Josef_K | 4/5 |

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