I finally bought a copy of Rush's remastered 2112 this Christmas, waiting on a Space Mountain-like line at BestBuy. Every store should have a display of Rush reissues near the registers for $7.99 a pop! Think of all the gum and People magazines sold at supermarkets-- why not Rush CD's?
Of course, no bonus tracks here. It's hard to imagine anything extra in the world of Rush... sort of like getting a free beer at Yankee Stadium. C'mon, not even an alternate take of "Something For Nothing?" How about a demo of "Temples of Syrinx?" Not a fucking chance.
Anyway, the record still kicks ass after 30 years. Our favorite trio of Canadians were walking on thin ice after Caress of Steel (a good argument against releasing two albums in one year) back in 1975, and Mercury issued a short and simple edict: NO MORE (REALLY) LONG SONGS! I heard that Hugh Syme made his own private plea to Geddy to "take it down a notch or two," but who knows...
As we all know, the boys brought home the bacon with 2112. Still a fair amount of shrieking by Mr. Weinrib going on, but this album marks improvements on all fronts: sound, skill, songwriting and simplicity. The "2112" suite can be understood by any 14-year old with a brain (check your yearbooks!), and rocks pretty darn hard as well. Try explaining the "Fountain of Lamneth" to your stoned buddy during trig class. Hell, just try listening to it!
The fellas also made a nice move with side two's "Lessons," which begins like a weird outtake from Eat a Peach. Here's where Rush really starts to distinguish themselves from the rest of the prog pack: good pop songs that aren't necessarily hit singles. You used to get the feeling that a guy like Greg Lake or John Wetton really had to bust his ass to write that one catchy radio song on the album, and that's why he let the rest of the schmucks pick up the slack for the instrumental stuff. Rush stopped making that mistake with 2112.
"Grand Finale" kicks major Solar Federation butt with no regard for songwriting or anything else. Welcome to the NFL, boys! Your locker's down the hall next to Al DiMeola, John McLaughlin and that Jeff Beck character if he stops chasing the skirts. I even wrote a letter to Jimmy Carter back in '78 requesting that our national anthem be replaced by "Grand Finale". I suppose replacing "O Canada" would have been more appropriate, but I had no way of contacting P.M. Trudeau at the time.
Worth buying? Does Ayn Rand wear red lipstick? Of course, you idiot.
Rating: 4 out of 5
FUN FACT: An effort was made in the late 70's to "sync up" 2112 and Willy Wonka & The Chocolate Factory a la Dark Side of the Moon/Wizard of Oz. I've certainly never tried it, but I guess I can picture Gene Wilder hopping around to the tune of "A Passage to Bangkok"...
Grenache for one / WED 4-26-17 / Hostility in British slang / Cuneiform discovery site / Extinct relative of kiwi / Second-largest Arabic speaking city after Cairo / Degree of expertise in martial arts / Fifth-century invaders of England / US president who becomes president of future earth on Futurama / SIster chain of Marshalls / Candy often used in science fair volcanoes
14 hours ago