P2-22547 Hemispheres
Produced by Rush and Terry Brown
Released on November 1978
US CHART POSITION #47 . . . GOLD RECORD (12/14/78), PLATINUM (12/1/93) . . . UK CHART POSITION #14
Find it at GEMM
P2-22547 cover
[high resolution scan]

G iven wisdom, given love, balance between the two is the answer. That’s the message of “Hemispheres,” an 18-minute Greek tragedy that, despite its allusion to “Cygnus X-1,” is more of a followup to 2112. Rush has always had trouble with the extended epic format; they write brilliant five- and six-minute songs, but they never seem to create enough music to support multi-part suites. The same themes are re-cast from part to part, disappearing in time only to reappear louder somewhere later. And that’s my knock on “Hemispheres” -- it would have made a great six-minute song, but over eighteen minutes the music becomes too self-referential. Maybe the answer for Rush is to follow the approach of other prog acts, and fuse different songs together as parts of a single epic, rather than stretching a single song to cover multiple parts. As a result, the album’s balance shifts in favor of side two, all of it classic Rush. “Circumstances” is the kind of punched-up pep talk that Rush would re-visit on “Freewill,” “The Trees” is the engaging offspring of “The End,” and “La Villa Strangiato” might be the best instrumental workout of their career. Hemispheres is ultimately half of a great album, not the sustained brilliance of Permanent Waves or Moving Pictures, but deservedly a staple in any balanced repast of Rush.


    I. Prelude
    II. Apollo (Bringer of Wisdom)
    III. Dionysus (Bringer of Love)
    IV. Armageddon (The Battle of Heart and Mind)
    V. Cygnus (Bringer of Balance)
    VI. The Sphere (A Kind of Dream)
  2. CIRCUMSTANCES    3:41
  3. THE TREES    4:46
  4. LA VILLA STRANGIATO, including...    (Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson/Neil Peart)    9:35
    I - Buenos Nochas, Mein Froinds!
    II - To sleep, perchance to dream...
    III - Strangiato theme
    IV - A Lerxst in Wonderland
    V - Monsters!
    VI - The Ghost of the Aragon
    VII - Danforth and Pape
    VIII - The Waltz of the Shreves
    IX - Never turn your back on a Monster!
    X - Monsters! (Reprise)
    XI - Strangiato theme (Reprise)
    XII - A Farewell to Things

    Music by Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson and lyrics by Neil Peart unless noted. Arrangements by Rush and Terry Brown.


GEDDY LEE -- bass guitar, Mini-moog, Oberheim polyphonic, Taurus pedals, vocals
ALEX LIFESON -- six and twelve string electric and acoustic guitars, classical guitar, Roland guitar synthesizer, Taurus pedals
NEIL PEART -- drums, orchestra bells, bell-tree, tympani, gong, cowbells, temple blocks, wind chimes, crotales
Pat Moran -- engineer
Declan O'Doherty -- engineer
Terry Brown (with invaluable assistance from John Brand) -- mix engineer
Hugh Syme -- graphics, art direction
Bob King -- art direction
Yosh Inouye -- cover photography

return to RUSH discography

CAN 1978 Anthem LP/LPPIC ANR/PANR-11014 gatefold cover, avail. as pic disc
US November 1978 Mercury LP/CS SRM-1-3743 gatefold cover
UK November 1978 Mercury LP/CS 9100 059 gatefold cover
BRA/GER/NET 1978 Mercury LP 9111 005 gatefold cover, picture sleeve
  1978 Mercury LPPIC SRP-1300 picture elpee
US   Mercury LP/CD/CS 822 547 lyric sleeve
US   Mercury CD P2 2547 Columbia Record Club reissue
CAN   Anthem CD ANMD 1080 digital remaster
US May 6, 1997 Mercury CD/CS 534 629 digital remaster
RUS   Kankard CDX RSHCOLCD-7 repackaged w. SIGNALS


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