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on 12 April 2011
For those of us who still mourn the failure of the SACD format, it's time to raise the flag for the saviour of high resolution music. And what better band to demonstrate the ability of the blu-ray format than Rush. Always known for their instrumental prowess as well as their knowledge and exploitation of studio technology it is almost as if their music has been crying out to be presented in this way. 2011 sees the overhauling of the Mercury years, last remastered in 1996. Some will question the need to revisit these albums again as the previous remasters were far from disappointing. But 15 years is a lifetime in technology and the changes that have taken place in this time have made the need to re-evaluate music in both an artistic sense and technological sense much more important then ever. CD is in it's demise (sadly and uneccessarily I believe) and SACD and DVD Audio captured a niche market but in reality they arrived 10 years too late and were unable to cut through the apathy of the music buying public.
Moving Pictures, being the biggest selling album of their career, was always going to be a good place to start. It kind of set a new style of music in motion for Rush with an added emphasis placed on keyboards but without pushing the major traits of their music to the back. It is a very intricately layered sound and even listening to the original LP there is so much detail for the listener to absorb. With the blu-ray format we are now able to experience a new depth of sound - 256 times the resolution of CD - and it stands to reason that those intricacies are now heightened to an astonishing level. Moving the sound into 5 channels has allowed the layers to expand and breathe and, in that respect, open themselves up to our awareness. I have listened to Moving Pictures so many times on LP, tape, CD, remastered CD that I thought I knew everything that was going on in there. How pleasant and rewarding to know that I can now play this album but find detail that I couldn't hear before. Imagine if you've been holding your breath and suddenly you let it all out. It's a bit like that here. Suddenly all that detail that WAS there but inaccessible is now there for the ears to take in. The Camera Eye in particular is the highlight of this disc. It is quite overwhelming and you literally do feel enveloped in the soundscape. No gimmicks have been employed. There's no ridiculous sound panning. Instead the extra channels have created an amazing clarity and accuracy in which every layer of the mix can finally be heard. Dynamic and pure is what I would call it. To still be enlightened to such an extent by a 30 year old recording is testament to the skill which Rush and Terry Brown employed in the studio but also to the skill and belief in recorded sound that mixing engineer Richard Chycki has displayed. Having displayed his skills with the remixed Vapor Trails tracks on Retrospective 3, here is a man who is an absolutely brilliant addition to the Rush team. Long may their relationship prosper because if this the beginning of the regeneration of Rush's most beloved of albums then I think my faith in music is about to be restored.
Difficult to realistically assess if the new CD remaster is better than the 1996 version. If anything it has a more analogue feel to it. The 1996 remasters were perhaps a little clinical sounding. Here we have a wider stereo spectrum and the added clarity this brings. Dynamics are intact as they should be on a Rush album. Mastered at Masterdisk where the original first issue Rush CDs were prepared in the mid 80s. However, on this occasion, Andy VanDette is the man behind the faders. He did a superb job on Retro 3 and will hopefully be responsible for the rest of the catalogue later in the year.
Should be a good year for Rush fans. The Mercury era albums never tire of being heard - they are each unique and every exploration in to any of them reaps new rewards.
Kudos to Universal for getting behind blu-ray audio (as they did with Tom Petty also). All the major labels should realise that a whole new market for catalogue exploitation has just opened up and I, for one, am excited for the future of recorded sound.
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on 13 August 2004
I can confidently say that for me 'Moving Pictures' is the best rock album of all time. Rush moved through several styles during the seventies, and by the time MP was recorded they had evolved into the most technically proficient rock musicians in the industry. Their songwriting had also evolved to a point where they became more concise with their tunes, less concerned with writing the lengthy prog epics of their 70's output. They achieved this without, in any way 'selling out' MP is a wonderfully produced album, which compliments the bands very tight playing. The album excites the listerner with the driving instrumental masterpiece 'YYZ', Inspires with the memorable 'Tom Sawyer' and entrances with the epic (only epic on the album) 'The camera eye' Rush have always been masters of creating exciting rock music. They also bring prog rock ideas to life and give them structure without compromising the more positive prog conventions - good musicianship, conceptual songwriting and being open to jazz and classical influences, but without the pomp. Moving Pictures is the point in their career when everything great about this unique Canadian band came together on one fine album. If you only ever buy one Rush album, let this be it.
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on 14 November 2001
Following the popular 'Permanent Waves,' Rush continued to build on their success that had been sown in the previous year. Although only seven tracks long, each one is packed with excellent musicianship and revealing lyrics. Standout tracks include the 10 minute extravaganza 'The Camera Eye' with its themes of paranoia and secrecy, and 'Whitch Hunt' detailing the superstitious nature of people towards their fellows. 'Limelight' is a high paced, energetic techno-rocker, and makes use of synthesisers which would be used to greater effect on later albums. Elsewhere, the instrumental, 'YYZ' shows the trio working fluidly as ever; Neil Peart's inventive drum work coupling with Geddy Lee's solid bass lines leaving scope for Alex Lifeson's thrilling guitar solos. As an album, Rush's greatest work was arguably this one, closely rivaled by '2112' & 'Permanent Waves,' and highlighting their underated sound and ability which are still largely ignored today.
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on 16 March 2007
I bought this Album when I was 14 and at 38 still listen to it regularly.

This was my introduction to Rush and in my opinion is the best by far.

It's an album that I never overplayed but find myself continuosly revisiting it time and time again and have never got tired of listening to it which I think emphasises how good it is.

This Album at the time was a very modern sound and still hold's its own emphasising it's impact at the time.

Pearts drumming is technically impossible and I still do the air drumming in the mid section of Tom Sawyer (I can't Help it).

You either Love or Hate Rush but the latter must have never heard this one. If you like good rock music (Not the Hair,teeth,Groin and Ego Stuff), musicianship, well thought out meaniningful lyrics and a dark undertone- this is for you.
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on 26 April 2011
I own the CD + bluray pack since several weeks now and already listened it several times.

The bluray multi-channel soundtracks sounds amazingly on my system (Onkyo TX-SR608 amplifier + KEF KHT-3005 SE speakers). Both PCM and DTS HD-MA tracks sound pretty identically and are a model of definition, instrument separation and equilibrium. I didn't notice significant differences between PCM and DTS HD-MA soundtracks; surround effects are well present but could be too discrete to some listeners (well this can be corrected by pushing up the volume of the surround speakers). Ortherwise, the high rez stereo PCM track is to forget as it doesn't offer more than a classical CD does (not a big problem as the multichannel tracks already make the job).

Nothing to say about the CD. It sounds exactly the same as the 1997 remaster.

In conclusion, I recommend the CD + bluray combo to every Rush fan who wants to discover again this fantastic album in 5.1 (a respectable and well-calibrated 5.1 system seems to be required to fully enjoy the experience). For those who don't have a 5.1 system, I see no reason to buy the Deluxe edition (either DVD or bluray combo) as the CD sounds exactly as the regular version of Moving Pictures (1997 remaster).
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on 8 June 2007
I bought this on LP squillions of years ago and after a while it crawled in a box and went to live in the loft. A month ago I bought it remastered on Cd and it totally blew me away AGAIN! It is played to death in my car and folks are starting to say 'Oh No Not THAT one again' Don't worry these are the ones that usually squeal each time Westlife are on the telly!

My son the wee whippersnapper who is into Razorlight, Arctics, etc generally despises my 'Dad-Rock' but even he was air-drumming to Tom Sawyer and YYZ et al. That speaks volumes for this album.

I cant think of another album where the first three tracks are so utterly fantastic. I'be heard all the Rush albums and nost are good to fantastic but this is THE album to get into this trio.

Check out Red Barchetta too!
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on 16 April 2011
OMG - Rush "Moving Pictures" in surround sound. Little twiddly bits at the start of The Camera Eye. Is that a typewriter I hear? And a ticker tape machine? And to think I could've been playing along with 'air typewriter' all these years :-)

Seriously though, as other reviews have stated, the mix here is jaw-droppingly good. The first half of the album has an expanded, rich sound with deep bass and crisp guitars - I didn't notice too much remixing of parts between the different speakers, but then in the second half those speakers are put to good use. You'll hear things you never heard before; the drums near the start of With Hunt bounce between front and back, left and right, as do the guitars at the fade-in of Vital Signs. The relative volume of certain musical breaks (e.g guitar solo on Camera Eye) seems much more prominent than on the orignal mix, and other differences seem simultaneously familiar yet altered - joy unbound!

OK, so if those Rush boys happen to be listening, they really need to continue the surround sound experience for the back catalogue. I reckon 2112 is the one the fans will want next, after that - take your pick!
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on 29 February 2012
Another mind-bending, opinion-splitting opus from the masters of the avant-garde and alt-progressive stdium rock excellence and bewilderment. Yes they've (kind of) done it again. The only Rush album I can protest as being a 'classic' (whatever that actually means these days) is the wonderful 2112. Permanent Waves came close and Fly By Night was a great album but nothing else stood out quite as much. Moving Pictures does. However I am loath to nominate it to such high echelons just yet as there are problems with it. And most Rush albums are all self-contained works of art that defy critique and end becoming different things to different people, even becoming better and worse as time passes.

So, in lieu of a critical review, this is what I think. 'Tom Sawyer'. while revered my many and seen as a classic it is, to me, very good at best. It is not a bad tune and is catchy and everything. But it is also such an immense change of direction. Keyboards were beginning to take centre stage. That wasn't a bad thing, just different. 'Red Barchetta' is slightly better. It goes on for a little too long but has a lovely jangly quality that I like. 'YYZ' is ok but as instrumentals go it didn't blow me away. 'Limelight' however did. It has the same vibe as 'Red Barchetta' but is miles better. In my mind it is a classic and I love it. One of my best tracks from the band. 'The Camera Eye' is their last 'over 10 minute' track. It's a shame it's not that good. It's ok, but I lost interest even after many listens. 'Witch Hunt' is much better. It's a nice brooding, dark, sinister pot-boiler of a song. And the reggae-tinged 'Vital Signs' works surprisingly well as a closer.

So a mixed bag. But a pretty interesting mixture. They do divide my opinion (which I'm aware sounds insane) mainly because of their diversity from album to album. To call them prog would be to do them and the listener a disservice. But also to call them pop or rock would not suffice. They are a band that writes and performs music. That is about as close as I can get to a definition of their sound. But if you are intrigued then this is probably the best album to start with.
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on 3 February 2013
If the above 2112 was a success Moving Pictures was embraced my millions with the opining killer "Tom Sawyer" which to this day is an all time fave Rush song and the rest of the album is an absolute gem. I won't go through each track but when you pop inn the bd an amazing screen will appear and the "fire" on the album cover will burn until you begin playing the album, brilliantly thought out!!! Once again the sound in 5.1 is outstanding. Feel free too to pump up the volume for maximum effect, and let yourself drift off to another world,
you will not be disappointed!!! Powerful stuff!!
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on 31 August 2005
In 1981 Rush recorded Moving Pictures which has to be one of the best in there catalogue. Contains one of there most popular songs 'Tom Sawyer' which is ok. 'Red Barchetta being my favorite on the album. YYZ is also a class instrumental despite that i do prefer the live version where Neil Peart has a drum solo which lasts for over three minutes. Anyway i find this band to be one of the best in rock, to be perfectly honest. Geddy Lee has a soft voice but is very passionate, and Alex Lifeson is a fantastic guitarist and the band as a whole are just very overlooked in the rock world apart from there fan base which extends all over. 'Vital Signs' which is the last track on the album is also one of my favorites by Rush. Along with 2112 this is one of my favorite rush albums.
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