SRM-1-4013 Moving Pictures
Produced by Rush and Terry Brown
Released on February 1981
PLATINUM RECORD (4/27/81), 2x PLATINUM (10/12/84), 4x PLATINUM (1/27/95)
Find it at GEMM
SRM-1-4013 cover
[high resolution photo]

T he teenage science fantasies of 2112 came full circle on Moving Pictures. “Tom Sawyer,” “Red Barchetta,” “Limelight” and “Vital Signs” resonated with the band’s core audience (young people listening on headphones and elevating from the norm) even more than the philosophical Permanent Waves. Both albums contain great music, both vie for the upper hand in any discussion of the band’s best work, and both are must-owns for progressive rock fans. Geddy Lee was slowly introducing synthesizers into the mix, usually to ease listeners into the song and underscore spacier passages, but Moving Pictures is still analog Rush: the superlative rhythms and fiery guitar work are in full force. A sign of things to come appears on the closing “Vital Signs,” where Alex Lifeson’s guitar favors Andy Summers-like textures (in fact, The Police’s “Synchronicity” and “Tom Sawyer” are more than a little similar) and the concept of “signals” is introduced. But more typical of the album is the instrumental “YYZ,” a three-man workout so full of chops that it sounds like Frank Zappa (without FZ’s wandering noodle of an eye, of course). Like Permanent Waves, Moving Pictures puts its best features up front; as good as the first side of music is (with “Limelight” providing the knockout punch this time), the second side falters slightly. “The Camera Eye” never seizes on a compelling melody but just sort of plugs along, “Witch Hunt” starts out promising and then seems to hold something back. They’re not rough patches, only average songs on an inspired album. And when the band is at the height of their inspiration, as they are here, their music is a wonderful thing to behold. “Tom Sawyer” and “Limelight” were so powerful, they permeated the collective consciousness of teenagers around the world. Not bad for a little piece of plastic.

SRM-1-4013 back cover SRM-1-4013 lyric sleeve
SRM-1-4013 back cover SRM-1-4013 lyric sleeve


  1. TOM SAWYER    (Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson/Neil Peart/Dubois)    4:33
  2. RED BARCHETTA    (Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson/Neil Peart)    6:07
  3. YYZ    (Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson)    4:23
  4. LIMELIGHT    (Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson/Neil Peart)    4:18
  5. THE CAMERA EYE    (Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson/Neil Peart)    10:55
  6. WITCH HUNT (PART III OF "FEAR")    (Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson/Neil Peart)    4:43
  7. VITAL SIGNS    (Geddy Lee/Alex Lifeson/Neil Peart)    4:45

    Arrangements by Rush and Terry Brown


GEDDY LEE -- bass guitars, Oberheim polyphonic, OB-X, mini-moog, Taurus pedal synthesizers, vocals
ALEX LIFESON -- six and twelve string electric and acoustic guitars, Taurus pedals
NEIL PEART -- drum kit, timbales, gong bass drums, orchestra bells, glockenspiel, wind chimes, bell tree, crotales, cowbells, plywood
Hugh Syme -- synthesizers (6), art direction, graphics, cover concept
Paul Northfield -- engineer
Deborah Samuel -- photography

return to RUSH discography

CAN 1981 Anthem LP ANR-1-1030 lyric sleeve
US February 1981 Mercury LP/CS SRM/MCR4-1-4013 lyric sleeve, picture label
EUR/BRA/COL February 1981 Mercury LP/CS 6337/7141 160 lyric sleeve
US 1983 Mercury CD 800 048 lyric sleeve
CAN   Anthem CD ANMD 1082 digital remaster
JPN   Anthem CD AMCY-2296 digital remaster
WW June 3, 1997 Mercury CD/CS 534 631 original master recording


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