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Rush - Permanent Waves CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

4.28 | 2123 ratings

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5 stars Rush's 1980 release of Permanent Waves showed a shift in musical priorities for the group and can be considered the first transitional album into a more radio-friendly environment, but still retaining strong progressive rock elements. It also showed the continuing transition of making keyboards a more dominant instrument in the group's sound. This had been evolving steadily on their previous two releases, A Farewell to Kings (1977) and Hemispheres (1978).

While this shift kept the group from composing 10+ minute-long epic (something I surely miss from the later Rush years of the 1980s and 1990s), it attracted a whole legion of fans with their radio hits The Spirit of Radio (appropriately titled!) and Freewill. Entre Nous was also a beautiful example of the effective blend of keyboards into this new, more compact style of Rush's music; a precursor of what would appear on several albums throughout the 1980s and into the early 1990s.

Still, Rush continued to display their talents on the slightly longer songs, like the killer Jacob's Ladder and the amazing Natural Science. Production improved and Lee's vocals continued to mature. The end result is another five-star masterpiece. It may not have the epic-like qualities of prior albums, but it surely makes up for it with the improved production, skilled musicianship, and better vocal deliveries. Highly recommended.

progaardvark | 5/5 |


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