494. Rush - Moving Pictures (1981)
1. Tom Sawyer
2. Red Barchetta
5. Camera Eye
6. Witch Hunt
7. Vital Signs
What can I say? I got some flack for my previous review of Rush's 2112 and this album is actually better. While still being pretty bad. Rush have now embraced electronica a lot more that in previous albums, but they embraced it in much the same way as they were being embraced in the mid-70's nothing is particularly new here.
Geddy Lee's voice is most definitely the worse thing about the album, making YYZ the only bearable song in the bunch, as it is an instrumental. Lee just has such an outdated and over-emotional singing style that even if he has overcome some of the shrillness from the 2112 era it is not much better.
The lyrics remain pompous but not as laughable as in 2112, at least there is no silly Sci-Fi concept here, thank God for small mercies. I am really happy to let this album go, however and as it is the last Rush album on the list I hope never to have to listen to their over-blown pompous crap again.
2. Tom Sawyer
3. Red Barchetta
4. Vital Signs
Work on the album began in August 1980 at Stony Lake, Ontario. "The Camera Eye" was the first to be written, followed by "Tom Sawyer," "Red Barchetta," "YYZ," and "Limelight." "Tom Sawyer" grew from a melody that Lee had been using to set up his synthesizers at sound checks, then was forgotten until they were searching for a part in that song. The intro for "YYZ", the IATA code for Pearson International Airport in Toronto, was inspired by the airport Morse code sent out by a beacon at the lake. Then at Phase One studios with producer Terry Brown, they began recording demos. "Tom Sawyer" and "Limelight" were then polished in October by playing them live on a warm-up tour (although both songs had slightly different arrangements on the album than were played on the tour). Then they started the main recording at Le Studio in Quebec. "Red Barchetta" was recorded in one take, while others took many. They had problems with equipment failures and finished three days behind schedule.