I hope I'm not getting off on the wrong foot by making my very first Rush Forum post an endorsement of Hold Your Fire...but...
I've never had a problem with the synthesizer as an instrument, so I'm not immediately allergic to this era of Rush as a whole, as it seems some are.
And if one doesn't recognize that most (if not all) Rush albums have at least a thin layer of melted "cheese" on top, then I think there may be some denial involved. I recognize that HYF has a generous helping of shredded cheese sprinkled over it, but it doesn't preclude my enjoyment of it.
I enjoy it *almost as much as Power Windows. It contains some songs that I like better than some songs on PW, and visa versa.
I like a lot of the lyrical content on this one. Very introspective, very human lyrics.
I'll go WAY out on a limb too, and say that I even enjoy Tai Shan (except for that bad nose-flute sample in the intro, which was waaay over used in the '80s).