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Rush - All the World's a Stage CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.85 | 513 ratings

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3 stars This album started a tradition that would continue till the end of the millennium, in which Rush would release a live album every 4 studio albums.

All the World's a Stage presents a pretty decent selection of songs, actually the best of their developing stage. Well, mostly I guess. "Bastille Day" is a pretty energetic opener, and "Anthem"'s power can't be overstated. "Fly By Night", on the other hand is a song I've never been able to like, although it's thankfully interrupted by another not-very-interesting "In the Mood". "Something for Nothing" revs the engine up again, but the slower "Lakeside Park" brings things down again.

The next part of the album is a trimmed version of "2112", lacking "Discovery" and "Oracle". I am ok with bands reworking their material during live performances; it gives known songs a new perspective. But I really don't like it when they just butcher their own songs. Anyway, the remaining parts of the epic are performed majestically.

From Fly By Night comes another great rendition of the band's first epic, "By-Tor & the Snow Dog". Oh that middle part is so 70's... I love it. Then "In the End", its full-band entrance finds Geddy's bass guitar beautifully replacing the lead guitar. The "Working Man/Finding My Way" medley features an amazing drum solo with "the Professor on the drum kit" giving lessons on how to pound the kit with a clockwork prevision balanced with an artistic talent. The show is encored by "What You're Doing".

As I wrote before, the track selection here is pretty good. I would have preferred to listen to live versions of some other songs, instead of "Fly By Night", "In the Mood", and even "Bastille Day" and perhaps "Lakeside Park" too, but that's just me.

Regarding performance, everyone does an amazing job. Youthful vigor permeates the whole thing. My only complain would be Geddy's voice, which is even higher pitched than in the studio versions, and it can get a little annoying to hear after a few rounds.

The quality of the sound also leaves much to be desired, but I guess the band and crew were still in their developing phase by now, and ended up learning from their mistakes.

judahbenkenobi | 3/5 |


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