Ohhhh What a RUSH! The Rush Discography Project: “A Show Of Hands” (1989)

September 19, 2013 § Leave a comment

Rush - A Show Of Hands

After 4 albums you get a live album featuring music from those 4 albums. You know this, I won’t bore you.

The thing is though, that the Rush live albums seem to be the ones that I enjoy the most – they skimp on the songs that aren’t as good, typically, and the sheen that ruins a lot of their songs is mostly gone. It’s like being further away from the band makes it seem like they actually have some crunch to their instruments.

And don’t get me wrong, this has a ton of synth time, it has a really boring Neil Peart solo, but for the most part, the band chooses the best songs of this era for this collection, and it stays pretty enjoyable.

Kicking it off with “The Big Money”, “Subdivisions”, and “Marathon” is a great way to win me over, as those are 3 of my favorite songs from the era – but then PLOP right into the crap that is “Turn the Page”, “Manhattan Project” and “Mission”. The first one still sucks, I just hate that song, but MP sounds pretty cool here. I said before that the song itself SOUNDS rad, it’s a catchy number if you just ignore the lyrics entirely, which I’m choosing to do here, because they’re less audible – makes it enjoyable. And “Mission” almost wins me over, but not quite.

“Mystic  Rhythms”, “Witch Hunt”, “Force Ten” and “Time Stand Still” come towards the end and those are all great tracks. Shame they have to still close with “Closer to the Heart”, but whatever, by this time it is just fun.

And that’s why their live albums work, because that’s what they are. The guys having a good time, playing big ol’ stadium shows. The recording is never great, but that works in their favor. If I were to get rid of all the Rush albums, I’d probably just keep the live ones to encapsulate their eras. They might just be better anyway.

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