Rush: Original Mercury CDs vs. 1997 Remasters

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Andrew T., Feb 20, 2005.

  1. Andrew T.

    Andrew T. Out of the Vein

    I enjoy the music of Rush, and I was wondering: Do the 1997 Bob Ludwig remasters of titles from their Mercury catalog sound better or worse than the original CDs from the '80s?

    I bought Permanent Waves, Moving Pictures, and Signals in their 1997 Mercury "Rush Remasters" incarnations before I discovered this forum. I didn't think they sounded bad at all at first, but the more I've listened to them, I've found that they sound rather bright and harsh on my ears (especially Permanent Waves.) Before I buy more of their music, I'd be curious to know what the consensus is.
  2. Dave

    Dave Esoteric Audio Research Specialist™

    The originals are better to me. Sadly, the best Rush masterings are the Japanese first pressings and only a few are really good. For Moving Pictures get the MFSL and for Signals get the 25·8P-5169 Japanese 1st pressing for the best sounding versions.
  3. hdsemaj

    hdsemaj Active Member

    Ventura, CA, USA
    I have the MFSL's of '2112', 'Signals', and 'Moving Pictures'. All sound great to me. These however are the only versions I have ever had so I haven't been able to do sound quality comparisons.
    I did just a few days ago get the original 80's version of 'Permanent Waves' off ebay. Sounds great IMHO. YMMV of course.
  4. Tim H.

    Tim H. Active Member

    Cottonwood AZ
    If you find the remasters harsh & bright, I think you'll find the originals more-so. The MFSL's are the way to go for MP, Signals & 2112, but compared to the original cds (which I played the hell out of) I prefer the remasters - more bass, more depth, a fuller sound - at least to my ears.
  5. nosticker

    nosticker Well-Known Member

    Ringwood, NJ
    Be wary of some original Moving Pictures pressings that have songs upcut(missing the beginning) and downcut(the end). Even the songs that fade up are truncated.

  6. Dave

    Dave Esoteric Audio Research Specialist™

    In all seriousness Dan, the MFSL is unbeatable so far for Moving Pictures and the N. American releases are very non-impressive on CD from a sound quality/mastering point of view.
  7. HeavyDistortion

    HeavyDistortion Active Member

    Baltimore, MD
    I have the original West Germany CDs of several of Rush's early releases, and prefer them over the latest remasters, which sound overly bright to me. Also, I agree that the MFSL of "Moving Pictures" sounds excellent.

    Ed Hurdle
  8. mark renard

    mark renard Active Member

    I have a British pressing of the Exit Stage Left 97 remaster. Same catalog number as the American release. It sounds bass heavy. Anyone know if it is identical to the North American pressing?
  9. Dave

    Dave Esoteric Audio Research Specialist™

    I'm purely speculating, but I would guess they're the same based on the same catalog number. I haven't heard a decent version of Exit Stage Left yet. All versions sound bass and top heavy to me so far.

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