My Rush CD collection consists entirely of the original CDs. But, I also love video and so I purchased the recent 2112 re-issue specifically for the restored, 45-minute show from 1977. And the video is about what I expected (I'd seen Youtube videos before, so knew what I was getting). I don't really have any complaints about that.
But as far as the rest of the package...I find it a bit insulting. What we get is the 2112 album. I'm sure there are those who will claim the sound on this version is superior to others....but I don't hear it. I'm sure they'll use words like "rich" and "deep" to describe how it's better. And for those with an ear or appreciation for that I'm sure it's worthwhile. But I played the CD in my car at loud volume and it sounded great...just as it had the eleventy-billion times I've played it before.
But the 2nd CD is what truly bothers me. What we get are:
- a 19 second clip of Neil saying the "Attention all planets..." piece. Why anyone thought this would be interesting is beyond me. I thought this was an actual SONG when I saw the tracklist. Maybe some reworked version of the Overture / Grand Finale...something like that.
- Five mediocre covers that I'll listen to mabye 15 times in total (meaning each song 3 times). I've listened to them twice already....there might be a 3rd time but beyond that it's unlikely. As all the previous cover versions of Rush songs prove...they're a hard band to cover. The people doing these covers are high quality musicians. I was particularly interested in Steven Wilson's version of Twilight Zone. But NONE of them work; they simply make me want to hear the original.
- Two live songs taken from the Massey Hall dates.....that sound pretty much exactly like the versions originally included on All The World's A Stage.
- An unlistenable bootleg version of Twilight Zone performed live
- A commercial
Look, I get it. Rush is very popular and their fans will eagerly embrace just about anything the ban puts out. And no one forced me to buy this package. And I could have checked before buying to understand exactly what I was getting. But to me....to be putting out bootlegs, commercials and interviews is needlessly exploiting fans love of the band.
I just feel the way Rush goes about merchandising all their material the last 10 years or so is desgined to extract maximum revenue from fans....as opposed to being fan-friendly and giving them what they want in a more affordable package.
Couldn't the Landover video have been packaged in some way that didn't nearly $30? Couldn't the DVD-Audio mixes from the Sector series been released in a way that didn't cost a fan hundreds of dollars? For a band that long articulated the ideas of balance in life the marketing approach of the last 10 years seems in conflict with the band's overall message.
Proably just me.