Test for Echo is the sixteenth studio album by Rush, released in 1996. The last album produced by Peter Collins, it marked the return of a more complex and progressive sound. It was also the last album that would be released by the band for 6 years, due to the personal tragedies in Neil Peart's life.
Fan and critic reception was mixed to negative, with the consensus being that while there were a few good songs, the album for the most part sounded very uninspired and that Rush was "on autopilot" for this album. Along with Caress of Steel, it is regarded to be the weakest installment in Rush's discography.
- "Test for Echo"
- "Half the World"
- "The Color of Right"
- "Time and Motion"
- "Dog Years"
- "Carve Away the Stone"
- Geddy Lee - lead vocals, bass, synthesizer, sequencer
- Alex Lifeson - guitar, keyboard, mandola
- Neil Peart - drums, percussion, hammered dulcimer
Carve Away the Tropes:
- Call-Back: A line from "Dog Years" calls back to the album art for "Signals" with a dog sniffing a fire hydrant.
- Instrumentals: "Limbo".
- Lighter and Softer: Compared to the especially heavy Counterparts. Nevertheless, the album isn't entirely devoid of heaviness ("Driven" and "Time and Motion" particularly).
- New Sound Album: The most progressive album the band did since Moving Pictures.
- One-Word Title: "Driven", "Totem", "Virtuality", "Resist", and "Limbo".
- Rearrange the Song:
- "Resist" went from a slow rock song to an acoustic number during the Vapor Trails and R30 tours.
- This was done in order to give Neil a break after his drum solos, as the song was usually scheduled to be performed not long after (if not immediately after).
- Title Track: "Test for Echo"