Rush
Hemispheres


5.0
classic

Review

by sonictheplumber STAFF USER (107 Reviews)
October 2nd, 2010 | 86 replies | 7,028 views


Release Date: 1978 | Tracklist


11 of 14 thought this review was well written

Some people say that while Rush is a great band, they have no classic album. They say; sure, everybody can boogie down to songs like "Working Man" and "Limelight", but the only album worth buying is a best-of compilation or a greatest hits record.

People who say this obviously haven't heard their 1978 magnum ***ing opus, Hemispheres.


In 1978, progressive rock was no longer at the forefront of mainstream music. Bands like the Bee Gees and Foreigner were ruling the airwaves, and bands like The Clash and The Buzzcocks were critics' darlings, so not much room was left for former giants like Jethro Tull and Yes, who were now being referred to as dinosaur rock bands, and while dinosaurs are indeed pretty cool, this was a negative remark that referred to the age of the band. It was even at the point where legends such as The Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin weren't even considered cool anymore, whereas three to four years ago these bands ruled the goddamn planet. With the sudden hatred for guitar solos, lengthy songs, and lyrics about books you read, what was a band like Rush, who thrived on these things, ever to do?

They did what the band has always done best: Whatever the *** they wanted to.

While some may say the band recorded their wankiest, most over-the-top proggy album as a major Canadian "*** YOU" to the Robert Christgau's of the world who couldn't appreciate a song unless it was titled "White Riot" or "Blitzkrieg Bop", I'd like to thank that this was just Rush playing what they wanted to play. And that is exactly what they did.

Beginning with Cygnus X-1 Book II: Hemispheres, the band crafts a song that destroys even the likes of 2112 in sheer complexity and rocking-out-ness. Here you will find riffs and intricate time signatures and changes that sound like a 1970's Canadian version of Tool with a wackier sense of humor. The lyrics are a continuation of Cygnus X-1 from the band's previous album, A Farewell To Kings, and they manage to be even more geeky and ridiculous, and to this listener, that means better. In fact, this is indeed my favorite Rush song. It combines everything that is/was ever good about the band. Neil plays drums like Satan on speed, and the almost robotic precision of Alex and Geddy's guitar and bass, respectively, are mindblowing. The song goes through six different sections, each with their own special parts, and although classified as a prog rock song, truthfully, this is pretty close to pure heavy metal. The riffs are as heavy as Sabbath, but they still keep that Yes/Genesis sound that made them so good to begin with, and Geddy's shrieks are as funny and as great as ever. Clocking in at eighteen minutes, it shouldn't disappoint any fan of progressive rock.

From here on, this is usually the part where a Rush album goes downhill. But nay, Rush had a mission with this album. With the next song, "Circumstances", they play more progressive hard rock, with complex riffs and trademark proggy drums in the vein of Mastodon or Tool, but it's still catchy enough to be liked by even the most simple of music listeners. The next song, "The Trees", is one of Rush's best singles, and it's also probably their funniest song, lyric-wise, especially if you don't get the metaphors that Neil uses (if there even are any, I don't even give a ***). It begins with some of the prettiest acoustic playing you will ever hear, and just turns into a catchy rock epic from there.

But these middle tracks, phenomenal they may be, cannot even compare to one of the finest (and most admittedly self-indulgent) instrumentals ever recorded, "La Villa Strangiato". It begins very atmospheric and mysterious-like, bringing up the question "Is Rush gonna be serious?". The answer is no, when the strangiato "theme" comes into play, which shows Rush at their silliest. Clocking in around nine minutes, the song is epic and soaring, it has light moments and heavy moments, and you can hear influences from this tune in many bands that would come later, from Iron Maiden to Tool to Primus.

Hemispheres is a perfect album. It honestly has no flaws. Unlike every other Rush album, there is not a single song worth skipping; it's wanky but not boring, and it's self-indulgent and pretentious at times, but at least it's fully aware of how ridiculous it is. Hemispheres is a beast in rock music history, and while often over-shadowed by other more famous Rush albums like 2112 and Moving Pictures, don't let Rolling Stone magazine fool you: Hemispheres is Rush at their very best.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
KILL
October 2nd 2010



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

FUCKIN FUCK YES HOLY FUCK i'll read it in a sec bro just finishing off operation mindcrime

Digging: Invisible - El jardin de los presentes

Lakes.
October 2nd 2010



26822 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

half point off
they do have no classic album

Digging: BABYMETAL - Babymetal

KILL
October 2nd 2010



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

shut it lakes youre ruining the rush

botb
October 2nd 2010



9648 Comments


really really fanboyishly written.

Lakes.
October 2nd 2010



26822 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

sorry KILL forgive me plz

NeutralThunder12
October 2nd 2010



8742 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

fanboy review but alright

now THIS is a fucking awesome Rush album

KILL
October 2nd 2010



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

best review ever

Terrifyer
October 2nd 2010



3403 Comments


good review

Irving
Staff Reviewer
October 2nd 2010



7167 Comments


It may be fanboyishly written, but if that was necessary to convey how awesome an album is, then I'm all for it. I enjoyed reading the review, and it deepened my interest in trying out Rush sometime (I haven't had the opportunity/finances to lol). Pos.

Nice work sonic.

Also, you're a machine for just PUMPING out these reviews one after another lol.

Digging: Ty Segall - Manipulator

KILL
October 2nd 2010



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

faggots negging already ugh

NeutralThunder12
October 2nd 2010



8742 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

the trees is sexy

KILL
October 2nd 2010



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Let the truth of love be lighted
Let the love of truth shine clear
Sensibility
Armed with sense and liberty
With the heart and mind united
In a single perfect sphere

beautiful

Jesuslaves
October 2nd 2010



4655 Comments


wtf kill snap out of it

LepreCon
October 2nd 2010



3903 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Album is tits

Digging: Overkill - White Devil Armory

KILL
October 2nd 2010



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

what you mean jesus

Jesuslaves
October 2nd 2010



4655 Comments


i mean you quoting lyrics and saying 'beautfiul' is very unlike you

KILL
October 2nd 2010



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

i have emotions too man i cant thrash 100% of the time i gota have breaks

Jesuslaves
October 2nd 2010



4655 Comments


no sir

KILL
October 2nd 2010



71454 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

trust me man i tried thrashing 24/7..in the end i got really pissed off at everyone and everything so i had to go cold turkey for a while it sucked

LepreCon
October 2nd 2010



3903 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I thrashed for a week straight one time. Four people ended up in hospital.



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