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SteveG View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Grace Under Pressure: Rush
    Posted: February 09 2015 at 14:50
GUP seems to divide Rush fans. It's a drop down in quality to some after Signals, while others view it with almost equal in regard to Signals. What's you take on Grace Under Pressure?

Edited by SteveG - February 09 2015 at 17:40
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 09 2015 at 14:54
I think I slightly prefer it to Signals.  I mean, there's no beating Subdivisions or Analog Kid, but after that, Signals can be a bit tedious to me.  GUP is consistent pretty much all the way through.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 09 2015 at 15:25
I don't think P/G is a drop in quality, at all. Every song is lean, mean, to the point and the quintessential 80s Rush sound is there, undiluted. Yes, Geddy plays a Steinberger and not a Rick, but hey, his lines are killer ("The Enemy Within"!), either way. "Afterimage" and "Between The Wheels" are worth the price of admission alone, but every single song kicks azz.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 25 2016 at 17:25
I like it; for me, though, it's the last acceptable Rush album.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 25 2016 at 18:19
At the time, it felt like a huge slap in the face.   Grace Under Pressure indeed, but what "pressure"?   And this was "graceful"?   It wasn't just the overgroomed and flatly-produced music either; the whole look of the album was alarming with its gloomy grey tones and the band's weird new homoerotic haircuts.  

Something awful had happened between Signals and this one.   It might've been Terry Brown's absence or maybe someone convinced them to step into the new world of rock, but whatever it was it indicated just how far prog rock had slid down the hill.   A very bad year for a lot of longtime Rush fans, 1984 was.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 25 2016 at 18:31
Both Signals and Grace are huge letdowns after that run from '74 to '80, but they're also the best albums they've released since Moving Pictures.  Signals is the end of the road for me - side 2 with the Weapon, New World Man and Losing It is the last prime slab of Rush; still, Signals was a big drop off and Grace doubled that fall.  
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 25 2016 at 19:11
Signals is a brilliant record.

"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought."   -- John F. Kennedy
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 25 2016 at 19:25
Originally posted by jackson1066 jackson1066 wrote:

I like it; for me, though, it's the last acceptable Rush album.
This is scarily close to the truth. I'm glad Clockwork Angels came along to lessen that to some degree.    To answer the question, GUP is a little more fine tuned than the one it followed - that's for sure.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 25 2016 at 19:42
I think it's an okay record. It's not as good as the albums from the 1978 - 1982 period, but it has some nice songs, particularly "Distant Early Warning", "Red Sector A", "The Enemy Within", "The Body Electric" and "Red Lenses", the latter being my favorite song on the album.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 25 2016 at 20:50
^ It does have a few sparse moments
"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought."   -- John F. Kennedy
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 26 2016 at 01:15
The album contains my favorite Lifeson solo. Kid Gloves' solo is Alex's personality summed up; fun energetic, and full of life.

The album is great, but I love every album these guys have ever made, so it me be a bit bias. Still prefer HYF to anything they put out in the 80s, and could make a solid argument as to that album being Geddy's best bass performance, but thats for another thread I suppose.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 26 2016 at 01:50
Gosh - I haven't listened to this album for years - Red Lenses is my pick from this (very good) album. I recall my buddies giving me sh*t that it sounds like The Police...........
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 26 2016 at 09:55
If you could HEAR ice, it would sound like GUP...

I do love it though. I found it a little harsh on the ears at first, and a complete change from Signals with the guitar coming screaming to the foreground in the mix, but still offset with synths and electronic percussion.

It's a pretty consistent album and Between the Wheels and Afterimage are among my top Rush songs.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 26 2016 at 10:37
Hate the production,  but love the album.  If it were produced more like the three albums that came before it, it would be legendary.  Despite the production, GUP, along with Hemispheres, are my favorite Rush albums.  

The "dark" theme doesn't bother me, because it works.  Afterimage is definitely my favorite from this album, though the first three songs are some of Rush's very best work.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 09 2016 at 12:08
Originally posted by Atavachron Atavachron wrote:

At the time, it felt like a huge slap in the face.   Grace Under Pressure indeed, but what "pressure"?   And this was "graceful"?   It wasn't just the overgroomed and flatly-produced music either; the whole look of the album was alarming with its gloomy grey tones and the band's weird new homoerotic haircuts.  

Something awful had happened between Signals and this one.   It might've been Terry Brown's absence or maybe someone convinced them to step into the new world of rock, but whatever it was it indicated just how far prog rock had slid down the hill.   A very bad year for a lot of longtime Rush fans, 1984 was.


Totally agree. Surprisingly dull and depressing in mood for a rock album, and Rush album especially after 1982īs  "Signals" positiveness. Very cold as well. I like also cold passages in music but GUP is just booooring in everything. Grey album. The fall of "new" prog (post-70īs if you like) is right there. Personally great times for me but not for prog. Strange feelings then... I give 4 stars to "Signals" but 1 to GUP

"Signals" actually is a brilliant album, since my first experience with Rush music and that dark haired girl who played one c-cassette for me, over thirty years ago... Great times ... somewhere out of the memory ... nostalgia you know Smile 


Edited by Son.of.Tiresias - April 09 2016 at 12:20
You may see a smile on Tony Banksī face but thatīs unlikely.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 09 2016 at 13:20
Originally posted by Blacksword Blacksword wrote:

If you could HEAR ice, it would sound like GUP...

I do love it though. I found it a little harsh on the ears at first, and a complete change from Signals with the guitar coming screaming to the foreground in the mix, but still offset with synths and electronic percussion.

It's a pretty consistent album and Between the Wheels and Afterimage are among my top Rush songs.



^Bolded part is so perfect....

An awesome album, their last great one in my opinion.  Much more consistently interesting and rocking than Signals.  It is very hard hitting and heavy but in a cold, calculated way that Blacksword noted.  It did and still does seem so intricate.  Great concert too, I remember it well.  3rd row I believe.  But some of the criticisms about production and mood are certainly fair.  I think both work to the album's ultimate advantage though, looking back.

I agree with David about the haircutsLOL
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 09 2016 at 20:55
Originally posted by Son.of.Tiresias Son.of.Tiresias wrote:

Originally posted by Atavachron Atavachron wrote:

At the time, it felt like a huge slap in the face.   Grace Under Pressure indeed, but what "pressure"?   And this was "graceful"?   It wasn't just the overgroomed and flatly-produced music either; the whole look of the album was alarming with its gloomy grey tones and the band's weird new homoerotic haircuts.  

Something awful had happened between Signals and this one.   It might've been Terry Brown's absence or maybe someone convinced them to step into the new world of rock, but whatever it was it indicated just how far prog rock had slid down the hill.   A very bad year for a lot of longtime Rush fans, 1984 was.



Totally agree. Surprisingly dull and depressing in mood for a rock album, and Rush album especially after 1982īs  "Signals" positiveness. Very cold as well. I like also cold passages in music but GUP is just booooring in everything. Grey album. The fall of "new" prog (post-70īs if you like) is right there. Personally great times for me but not for prog. Strange feelings then... I give 4 stars to "Signals" but 1 to GUP

"It just has none of the qualities of your work that I find interesting. Abandon [?] it." - Eno
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 09 2016 at 21:15
It's strange, I'm not much of a Rush fan, but it's the late 70's/early 80's albums from them that are the only ones I frequently return to (although I don't have `Moving Pictures' yet). I've worked out I much rather them because they don't have the screeching singing of the 70's stuff, even though those albums are their most overtly `proggy'. But everything else - the upfront bass, the sleek synths, the interesting drumming and the more restrained singing of intelligent rock/pop arrangements is really rather good.

I think `Grace...' was probably the first Rush album I kind of REALLY liked, and with the exception of `Red Lenses' (some of the vocal spots are irritating, but the rest has cool instrumental fills here and there), I think it's a top-notch rock/pop album, and I seem to spin it a heap in the background at work, very easy to enjoy.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: April 10 2016 at 05:17
Originally posted by Rednight Rednight wrote:

Originally posted by Son.of.Tiresias Son.of.Tiresias wrote:

Originally posted by Atavachron Atavachron wrote:

At the time, it felt like a huge slap in the face.   Grace Under Pressure indeed, but what "pressure"?   And this was "graceful"?   It wasn't just the overgroomed and flatly-produced music either; the whole look of the album was alarming with its gloomy grey tones and the band's weird new homoerotic haircuts.  

Something awful had happened between Signals and this one.   It might've been Terry Brown's absence or maybe someone convinced them to step into the new world of rock, but whatever it was it indicated just how far prog rock had slid down the hill.   A very bad year for a lot of longtime Rush fans, 1984 was.



Totally agree. Surprisingly dull and depressing in mood for a rock album, and Rush album especially after 1982īs  "Signals" positiveness. Very cold as well. I like also cold passages in music but GUP is just booooring in everything. Grey album. The fall of "new" prog (post-70īs if you like) is right there. Personally great times for me but not for prog. Strange feelings then... I give 4 stars to "Signals" but 1 to GUP


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Direct Link To This Post Posted: September 09 2016 at 08:35
GUP is a funny record for me. I rarely listen to it these days because overall the songs just don't resonate with me. Can't really explain it more than that or better than that. It's not that I think they're bad songs, they are mostly just kinda meh for me. Well, except Between The Wheels which is one of my all time favorite Rush songs. 

Both Signals and Power Windows both speak to me a lot more than GUP


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