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Charted: March 7, 1981

Rating: 4.210 (average of 7 ratings)

Genre: progressive rock

Quotable: “undeniably one of the greatest hard rock albums of all time” – Greg Prato, All Music Guide

Album Tracks:

  1. Tom Sawyer
  2. Red Barchetta
  3. YYZ
  4. Limelight
  5. The Camera Eye
  6. Witch Hunt
  7. Vital Signs

Total Running Time: 39:53


sales in U.S. only 4 million
sales in U.K. only - estimated 60,000
sales in all of Europe as determined by IFPI – click here to go to their site. --
sales worldwide - estimated 4.06 million


peak on U.S. Billboard album chart 3
peak on U.K. album chart 6

Singles/Hit Songs:

  • Limelight (3/14/81) #55 US, #4 AR
  • Tom Sawyer (3/21/81) #44 US, #25 UK, #8 AR
  • Vital Signs (3/28/81) #41 UK

Notes: --


Rated one of the top 1000 albums of all time by Dave’s Music Database. Click to learn more.

Moving Pictures
“Not only is 1981’s Moving Pictures Rush’s best album, it is undeniably one of the greatest hard rock albums of all time. The new wave meets hard rock approach of Permanent Waves is honed to perfection – all seven of the tracks are classics (four are still featured regularly in concert and on classic rock radio). While other hard rock bands at the time experimented unsuccessfully with other musical styles, Rush were one of the few to successfully cross over. The whole entire first side is perfect – their most renowned song, Tom Sawyer, kicks things off, and is soon followed by the racing Red Barchetta, the instrumental YYZ, and a song that examines the pros and cons of stardom, Limelight” (Prato).

“And while the second side isn’t as instantly striking as the first, it is ultimately rewarding. The long and winding The Camera Eye begins with a synth-driven piece before transforming into one of the band’s more straight-ahead epics, while Witch Hunt and Vital Signs remain two of the trio’s more underrated rock compositions. Rush proved with Moving Pictures that there was still uncharted territory to explore within the hard rock format, and were rewarded with their most enduring and popular album” (Prato).

Review Source(s):

Last updated April 28, 2008.