- Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
- Video Codec: AVC/MPEG-4
- Resolution: 1080i/60
- Audio Codec: English LPCM 2.0 Stereo
- Subtitles: English, Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Spanish
- Region: A
- Rating: Not Rated
- Discs: 1
- Studio: Eagle Rock Entertainment
- Blu-ray Release Date: September 28, 2010
- List Price: $19.98
Click thumbnails for high-resolution 1920X1080p screen captures
(Screen captures are lightly compressed with lossy JPEG thus are meant as a general representation of the content and do not fully reveal the capabilities of the Blu-ray format)
By now most music fans are probably familiar with the Classic Albums television series that takes seminal albums in rock history and dissects them, often bringing together the original artists with the original producers.
This Classic Albums release from Eagle Rock is unusual in that it does not focus on one album, but on two classic albums from the Canadian Prog-Rock trio Rush. The band’s pivotal 1976 prog-rock opus 2112 and their 1981 commercial smash Moving Pictures are the focus of this documentary. First on tap is 1976’s 2112, a progressive breakthrough for Rush, with an opening track that, when released in 1976, took up an entire album side. With lyrics from drummer Neil Peart inspired by Ayn Rand, the album would become a platinum breakthrough and prove their record company wrong, freeing them from the commercial a&r pressures of label executives.
The documentary then follows the strand all the way through to the band’s 1981 commercial breakthrough Moving Pictures. By 1981, gone were the marathon sessions and in were shorter, concise songs, laden with hooks, but still filled with all the technical prowess and cerebral studiousness. Even if one is not a Rush fan, chances are one is familiar with Moving Picture’s hits like “Tom Sawyer” or “Limelight.”
In Classic Albums tradition, the members of Rush, Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, and Neil Peart, are interviewed, allowed to play parts from the familiar pieces of these two monumental albums, and the multitracks are broken down for an intimate look into the albums’ production. This is a must-have for Rush fans.
Rush: 2112 + Moving Pictures Classic Albums comes with a solid 1080i/60 AVC/MPEG-4 high definition encoding. Archival footage is, obviously, not of the same quality as the new, HD-recorded material, but the HD footage is sharp, lacking in video noise, and lifelike.
The audio is a simple LPCM 2.0 Stereo mix. The dialogue in the interview segments is clean and the musical segments sound open, airy and have lots of “punch.”
The supplements are all in 1080i/60 and consist of nearly an hour’s worth of additional scenes from the special not originally aired in the program, including more performance segments and interviews by the band members. It’s almost like an entire additional episode of Classic Albums and definitely worth watching.
The Definitive Word
I don’t know how much replay value these Classic Albums documentaries have, considering much of the information they offer is well known, but for fans of the bands, in this case Rush, it’s still worth owning, particularly to see how one (or two) of your favorite albums came together.
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