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Rush - Grace Under Pressure CD (album) cover




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3.69 | 1121 ratings

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Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer
4 stars 'Grace Under Pressure' - Rush (7/10)

Put simply, this album has some of the best Rush songs in their repetoire. 'Grace Under Pressure' is very much an album of the times. The 1980's were looking a bit bleak and weathered. The music was bad, the economy was bad, and things on the political side of things were not looking too well either. What was the result was a highly politically-driven Rush album. There are a couple of songs on here that are direct cautionary warnings to war; appeals for peace.

In the spirit of peace and fear of destruction, 'Distant Early Warning' was born.

When one listens to this album and observes the spirit of the music, it's important to realize that the state of the world back in those days is not too fargone from our own. While the western world was worried about the Soviet Union, it is now concerned over the threat of terrorism, and North Korea. Self-annihilation still hangs wearily over our heads, and this music appeals DIRECTLY to that fear.

Musically speaking, 'Grace Under Pressure' is essentially an extension of 'Signals,' with a larger emphasis on guitar. Every once in a while, there is something unexpected thrown into the mix (such as a Ska-sounding theme on 'The Enemy Within') but if you have listened to any other Rush material from the 1980s, you should know what to expect. The music is however, a little bit darker than what you would normally expect from the band.

The only thing preventing 'Grace Under Pressure' from being yet another true Rush classic is the presence of a few weaker tracks that really seem to detract from the album's overall effectiveness as a unit. The songs 'Kid Gloves' and 'Red Lenses' in particular damage the album's quality. However, that's only a quarter of the album. The other six tracks range from being good to fantastic... 'Grace Under Pressure' even has some classic Rush tracks, such as the opening 'Distant Early Warning,' the electronic-prevalent 'Red Sector A' and the powerful 'Between The Wheels;' all three of which deserving the highest of praise.

'Grace Under Pressure' may not be as consistent as some of the true masterpieces Rush has dished out over the years, but it's definately a good, if not great album. Four stars.

Conor Fynes | 4/5 |


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