Originally Posted by trkdrmr
There was a grittiness to that era. Compare the sound of permanent waves of fly by night to the overdone (IMO) vapor trails. There is more edge, and more bite. I am also a huge fan of the underrated era from signals through Test for echo.
I think when all is said and done, the most slam comes from the 1st era. I was just listening to xm/sirius Rush deep cuts. They played everything from "lakeside park" to "Xanadu." The 1st era for me was the more primal in terms of both energy and visceral impact.
Ah, i liked the crudeness of the Rush-Hemispheres Era. There's some really good stuff in there. I Think I'm Going Bald is quite an underrated one in my opinion, as well as the first half of Before and After. (Seriously, I really want to find a way to loop that part of the song. It's so good.)
Here's a funny little story about I Think I'm Going Bald. Apparently at the time, Alex Lifeson (who had long beautiful golden tresses) was paranoid to the point of obsession about going bald. He used all sorts of hair products in the hope that it would never ever ever go away. For that reason and this
, I've officially make it Alex Lifeson's theme song.
Balding blondies aside, yeah, the Rush-Hemispheres era was good. Permanent Waves I kind of set on it's own. It's the transition from Rush's first era into the second. Now Moving Pictures to Grace Under Pressure, that stuff was also good, but I think a bit too popular among Rush fans.
But Power WIndows, that's where it's at. Power Windows is quite possibly their best album IMO.
After Presto, though, I think they started heading down hill. Each album of course has its own good songs, but as a whole, each album wasn't that great. Doesn't make them bad, they just weren't Rush's best stuff.