Thursday, 17 September 2015

Rush - Agora Ballroom August 26, 1974 & Electric Lady Studios December 05, 1974 (Bootleg)




Size: 171 MB
Bitrate: 320
mp3
Found in ?
Artwork Included

The Actual Name of the Recording studio is Electric Lady. Not electric Ladyland. 

Dec 1974 Show: Bad Boy stands out on this show. Here Again and Need Some Love are only found on these early broadcasts. This Trilogy of broadcast performances captures the very earliest Rush. You can hear the stripped down, three piece sound. Geddy's bass and vocals are raw, Alex is still in the forefront.


August 1974 Show: 12 days after Peart joins the band, but he is already featured at the end. Fancy Dancer was featured in the "bar" days, but never recorded on an album. Here Again and Need Some Love are only found on these early broadcasts. This Trilogy of broadcast performances captures the very earliest Rush. You can hear the stripped down, three piece sound. Geddy's bass and vocals are raw, Alex is still in the forefront.

If you like old Rush, you'll love this. Recorded in 1974, this CD has two shows with songs no later than Fly By Night. It also contains two songs that have never been officially released, "Bad Boy" (a cover song) and "Fancy Dancer" (an original song). This CD was actually taken from vinyl, as both these shows have been available as LP boots for some time (one is called "Electric"). Because they were taken from vinyl, some pops can be heard throughout the recording, but are not very noticeable unless you're looking for them.? The recording from Electric Ladyland is a soundboard -- it was actually recorded "live in the studio" -- and the quality is similar to Rush's first album. Everything is clear, sharp and very RAW; you can barely hear the polite clapping of the audience. 


The worst thing about it is that halfway through "By-Tor" the song is faded out! The recording from Cleveland is probably a soundboard, but sounds distorted, as if the recording level is set too high. The bass at times overwhelms the guitar. What's odd about this is during some songs ("Working Man" in particular) there is a peculiar stereo effect with Alex's guitar, as if he is magically moving from left to right and back again across the stage in a few seconds. The last two tracks are much quieter than the rest, and not as distorted. The popping is more noticeable during the Cleveland show than the NYC show. 

The packaging is simple, and a short essay by "Marathon Man" graces the back of the booklet.? Inside the company indulged themselves and listed other bootlegs that they manufacture. On the back is a neat black & white photo of the band from "the early days". "Fancy Dancer" is listed incorrectly as "Can't You See" and may fool quite a few. Overall a solid raw recording, one worth having especially if you're in to early Rush. If you are a fan of later recordings, you'll probably want to pass this by.? Counterparts it is not!

Even at this early time point in the history of Rush, the performance value and musicianship is top notch. The sound quality is surprisingly very good for a recording that has previously been floating around as a bootleg. 


The bonus tracks do not sound as good unfortunately. The majority of the disc is from a show from August 26, 1974, which is approximately 5 months after their debut album was released. 

Sections of the songs "Fancy Dancer" and "Garden Road" appear in the "Beyond The Lighted Stage" film, and since I heard them there, I had hoped to get a copy if this performance. An early, and much shorter version than we are used to of Neil Peart's drum solo appears here as well (he had joined the band only weeks before this performance). The audience sections between the songs have been edited, to give the CD a tighter feel, but some of the edits are distracting. That's my only real complaint about this release. Otherwise, it's a must have for the hardcore Rush fan.


Rush - Agora Ballroom, Cleveland, Ohio, USA, August 26, 1974 and
Rush - Electric Lady Studios, New York, New York, USA, December 05, 1974

Geddy Lee - bass, vocals
 Alex Lifeson - guitars
 Neil Peart - drums

01.  Finding My Way  05:07
02.  The Best I Can  03:06 
03.  Need Some Love  03:21
04.  In The End  06:13 
05.  Fancy Dancer  03:54 
06.  In The Mood  03:18
07.  Bad Boy  05:37
08.  Here Again  07:53
09.  Working Man  09:13 
10.  Drum Solo  02:54
11.  What You're Doing  04:26 
12.  Garden Road  03:03

Bonus Tracks
13. Anthem  04:21
14. Beneath, Between & Behind  03:06
15. Fly By Night  02:46
16. Donna Halper Interview   05:31

(This is the best version i have heard so far, must be 20 versions of this bootleg, ChrisGoesRock)

1. Rush 1974
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