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Progressive Rock DVD/Video Reviews

Rush

Clockwork Angels Tour DVD

Review by Greg Olma

Rush no longer belong only to the die-hard prog fans. Ever since the Beyond The Lighted Stage documentary and their induction in the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame, they have become a household name and their celebrity seems to continue to rise. Often in these situations, musicians seem to rest on their laurels and put it on autopilot, but not Rush. They go and release one of their best albums in years Clockwork Angels and then tour with a string section (a first for Rush). For a band that has very little in the way of older live videos (I’m talking 1970s, folks), they are making up for it with a live release after every tour since Vapor Trails. In keeping with previous releases, this is a full concert from the Clockwork Angels Tour along with four extra tracks (in the bonus material section) that were played during the tour. The big question is whether or not Clockwork Angels Tour is worth getting if you have already have the plethora of earlier concert DVDS. My answer is “yes” to both old fans who have everything and new fans who may just be getting into the band. The reason for my recommendation is that the quality of the visuals on Clockwork Angels Tour is better than any of their previous material. Granted, technology gets better each year and Rush certainly take advantage of that by employing the equipment to capture the action on stage. The sound is also great but the DVD is where this concert shines.

The tour focused on the Clockwork Angels album so you get most of the record performed here on the DVD. Older fans may be a little disappointed by the set list but if you have been following Rush, you know they tend to really promote their latest record. That’s not to say that you don’t get older tunes; keep in mind that this is a long show broken up into two sets. They do go back and perform part of side one of 2112 along with tracks from Permanent Waves, Moving Pictures, and their later records. If you are like me and check out the band on each tour, you will notice that they try not to duplicate too many cuts from tour to tour. What makes this tour special is that the band is playing with a string section to augment their sound. This is a first for the band, and it does add to the sound. Visually, they are on stage but kind of tucked in the back of the stage behind the band. It is a nice addition but I think that we won’t see that again, so Clockwork Angels Tour is a good documentary of the event. All in all, this is a visually stunning concert film that makes a great addition to anyone’s collection.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2014  Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

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