Intro / Bastille Day 5:18
Lakeside Park 4:35
The Necromancer 13:39
By-Tor and the Snow Dog 10:55
Working Man 14:46
The Digital Dan
(Audio - 5.5)
The Holy Grail of Rush shows has finally been found. This show comes from the 11-15-75 performance at the Rockford Amory in Rockford, Illinois. It is the first and so far only Caress of Steel tour live recording to make its way into circulation. This production is taken directly from the analog master tape, so no generational loss here.
Now not everything is perfect with this recording. The vocals a quite buried and almost non-existent at times during the performance. But by the time Lakeside Park is finished, the sound gets much better. The guitar is mixed pretty well and the drums are decent enough. The tape itself ran slow in some parts and fast in other parts of the recording. This was compensated for as well as could be done as the majority of the recording runs at the correct speed. Those sections that don't are only off by an ever so slight margin that most people will never notice. There is one 3 second tape eat 3:45 into By-Tor. The crowd noise around the taper isn't too obnoxious and at one point it is quite funny. During the mid section of By-Tor someone yells "That's the way Geddy. Show'em who's boss!".
The real treat of this performance is a full version of the Necromancer. Not the tunicated version on the '77 tour. This version is worth the price of admission alone and is a must have for all old Rush fans. The version of By-Tor and the Snow Dog is also the longer jam version with Alex's solo before it got shortened as the opening to Xanadu in later tours. All in all, an incredible show that no Rush fan should be without. Special thanks to Powrcord for taping this show and allowing us to freely trade this to any and all Rush fans. As with all Digital Reproductions recordings, it's only available via free trade and never for sale. Just visit the trading links section to find people that will gladly trade this recording for free. (1999-12-01)
(Audio - 5.5)
After waiting some time for a legitimate CARESS OF STEEL recording, I didn?t know what to expect when STAINLESS STEEL came around. I must say that I was pleasantly surprised with the sound quality and, more importantly, the setlist! Although Geddy?s vocals are hard to hear during the first few songs of the set, the sound quality improves and we are treated to a full live version of ?The Necromancer? which is reason enough to get a copy of this show. It is somewhat chilling to hear Geddy introduced ?Lakeside Park? as the band?s latest single considering the band?s more recent feelings about this song. There is a brief Neil Peart interview at the beginning of the show during which he comments on the lack of success Rush was having during the DOWN THE TUBES TOUR and the recording closes with the announcer talking about merchandise availability for the opening act, KISS. Now that we have a legitimate recording from a CARESS OF STEEL show where Rush is the opening act wouldn?t it be nice if someone could locate a recording of a CARESS OF STEEL show where Rush was the headlining act! (2000-01-01)
(Audio - 5.5)
FINALLY!? Someone coughed up the Caress of Steel/Down the Tubes tour boot!? (we knew they were out there!) This one starts off with Neil reminiscing about the Down the Tubes tour and why it was called just that and segues immediately into Bastille Day.? Since Rush was the opening act for a lot of shows at this time? (Kiss on this particular outing) they were playing shorter sets than we have become accustomed to and therefore this one clocks in at just under 60 minutes.
Overall the sound isn't too bad!? Just a bit of hiss, a little distortion and occasionally you lose track of Geddy's voice, but it's really not too shabby! Not too much of a problem hearing all the instruments. The cymbals gets lost every now and then, but nothing to really complain about (hey, they all can't sound like Mirrors!)? One problem that comes to mind is there is a minor tape "eat" during By-tor, but it's not too drastic. It's a very listen-able show!
The best part of the disc (in this reviewer's opinion) is you get the WHOLE Necromancer!? All 13:39 of it! That's the one we've been waiting for! (well those of us old, hard-core, longstanding Rush fans that wore out 2 copies of Caress of Steel anyway) One thing that also stands out in my mind while listening to this, is the fact that they are sounding more like a band. At this point Neil has been with them for over a year and they have 2 albums under their belt, so things are tighter and they are coming across like one unit, which I've always thought was one of their strong points.
This show is definitely worth getting if you like older Rush, and a "must have" for those of us that are collecting!? Hopefully, this will start a trend and more of these shows will surface! (2000-01-01)
This production was released as the 1999 Digital Reproductions - X-mas Gift to Rush Fans.?? (1999-12-01)
(Audio - 6)
A Holy Grail show for the Rush community. Who'd have thought that 30 years later a Caress of Steel bootleg would finally find its way to the light of day?? Preparing myself for the worst in terms of sound quality, I was rather pleased by the results. I've heard worse Rush shows for sure. Still, don't expect rave reviews if submitted to 'Sound & Vision' - there is a fair amount of overload on the vocals and an overall distance to the recording. But you can hear all the instruments and can tell Ged is shrieking in English. Due to the singular historic nature of this bootleg, diehard Rush fans will certainly want to check this one out.
"Yeah Geddy! You show 'em who's boss!!" Classic indeed. (2008-03-04)
(Audio - 7.5)
The sound, isn't actually all that bad. The guitar sound really nice in "Bastille Day" as with all of the other songs. The drums are kind of there, but still a little lost in the mix. The bass is booming, but its hardly noticable during the loud guitar noise. Geddy, thats the real problem. Geddy is almost no-existant during most of the show, but whats weird is that when he talks to the crowd, his voice is loud, and full and clear. Another reason I rated this so high is that is a real rarity. There is only one show that Caress of Steel bootlegs are, and its this one source right here, so take it or leave it. Highly recommended to collectors, but I don't think that casual bootleggers will care for this boot that much. As with all digital reproductions releases, only trade, and do not buy any bootlegs from anywhere. (2008-11-17)
(Audio - 7)
Although the sound quality isn't impressive, the real value of this bootleg is historical. If you're ever been hungry for a Caress Of Steel tour boot, this is the one to get. Better than this, only a COS headlining set recording! (2009-08-07)
(Audio - 5)
Ahh, Caress Of Steel, live. Such a concept seems too good to be true - and partially, it is. Only get this if you're a real CoS diehard like me, because, frankly, the sound is pretty awful. It sounds like the show was recorded from inside a loaf of bread on the other side of town. The vocals are practically non-existent. Might make a good karaoke track, though?
Still, it's the only Tubes tour show available.
Why can't we find a soundboard of this somewhere? Or a 01/15/76 recording? That's my truest wish as a Rush fan. (2010-05-19)