What would you be willing to give now to watch and listen to "Moving Pictures" played live from beginning to end by the legendary power trio "Rush"?
So the double album / DVD / Blu-ray "Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland", which was released on November 8, 2011 will takes as close you can get to there.
This entire album was recorded and filmed, from start to finish, at the "Quicken Loans Arena" in Cleveland, Ohio, on April 15, 2011, during the "Time Machine" tour. At the center of the crazy setlist played during the show that included 26 songs spanning over two and a half hours, you will find all the songs from "Moving Pictures" played in one sequence.
As is well known, the year 2011 marked the 30th anniversary of "Moving Pictures", which is considered by many to be the band's best album.
In order to celebrate three decades of this great album, the band chose to go on a tour that will honor this classic album, from beginning to end.
Anyone familiar with the band's history knows that the city of Cleveland played a very significant role in it. DJ Donna Halper from Cleveland's WMMS Radio was the first person to play "Rush" music in the United States, thus contributing greatly to the band's publicity. Under these circumstances it was only natural that the band would choose to record this mythical live performance in the city where it all started and in front of the fan base that accompanied them from the beginning. The band even notes this on the back cover of the album, in which they thank Donna Halper for being the first to believe in them.
As befits the name of the album, it includes songs from all of the band different periods and is a kind of "time machine" that stops at all main "stations" in its career.
The show opens with the iconic "The Spirit of Radio" to the applause of the enthusiastic audience, with a slightly slow version in which it is evident that Geddy Lee's voice has aged a bit, but it still does not detract in any way from the incredible energies this band has.
From there we jump ahead in time to the hit "Time Stand Still" from "Hold Your Fire" in which the band being aid by Aimee Mann's sampled voice. From there we continue over the years to "Presto" which is hardly found in the band's setlists and then we start a kind of a "ping-pong" game that the band plays between the albums "Counterparts" and "Snakes & Arrows" that accompany the following four songs: "Stick It Out" from the album "Counterparts" of the grunge period, "Workin 'Them Angels" from "Snakes & Arrows" and back again To "Counterparts" with the instrumental track "Leave That Thing Alone" and from there back to "Snakes & Arrows" with "Faithless" which bassist Geddy Lee declares to be one of his favorite songs.
The journey through time continues throughout the album with hits like "Closer to the Heart" from "A Farewell to Kings" which gets an exciting acoustic opening called "O'Malley's Break" by Alex Lifeson and an interesting ending with different rhythm and tonation, "Freewill" with the groovy bass part in the middle which is even more bouncy than ever, "Subdivisions" from "Signals" with the mesmerizing keyboard sound and also songs like "Marathon" from "Power Windows" which the band does not often play in shows.
"Rush"'s Time Machine "has proven on this album that it also knows how to fly forward in time and not just backwards, with the show's setlist including the two new songs "BU2B" and "Caravan" which will be included in the band's excellent concept album "Clockwork Angels", which will be released only a year later and unfortunately will also turn out to be the last from the power trio.
And one can of course not ignore the representation of the classical band era with "2112" which gets a tremendous performance and "La Villa Strangiato" which this time opens in a comic way in the style of "Polka".
And of course it is impossible without Neil Peart's traditional drum solo this time called "Love For Sale" and getting the subtitle "Moto Perpetuo". Almost 9 minutes of terrifying and virtuoso drumming by one of the greatest drummers ever.
The setlist of this excellent live album ends where it all started with the song "Working Man" from the debut album which gets a special reggae version. A song played by broadcaster Donna Halper in rotation, time after time, until "Mercury" record company decided to sign the band on a recording contract.