Rush: Geddy Lee (vocals, synthesizer, bass guitar); Alex Lifeson (guitar, synthesizer); John Rutsey, Neil Peart (drums).
An excellent survey of Rush's career from 1974 to 1987, this 2006 two-disc set presents a slightly altered pairing of the earlier compilations RETROSPECTIVE I and II. Although the 29-track collection's non-chronological order may initially seem perplexing, GOLD paints an excellent portrait of the revered Canadian power trio, moving from dynamic prog-rock classics ("The Spirit of Radio" and "Freewill") to more straightforward early tunes ("Fly By Night" and "Working Man") to buoyant synth-laden moments ("The Big Money" and "Time Stands Still," the latter featuring Aimee Mann on additional vocals). Although the near-legendary technical skills of bassist/singer Geddy Lee, guitarist Alex Lifeson, and drummer Neil Peart are fully on display, GOLD also showcases their collective ability to create remarkably engaging songs that meld pop, prog, and metal sensibilities. While listeners seeking a concise Rush collection will be well-served by THE SPIRIT OF RADIO (which includes many of the tracks here), fans looking for a more comprehensive offering should be pleased by GOLD, which arguably replaces CHRONICLES as the band's finest compilation.
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