I’ve been deemed Rush fan #1451; I received my numbered collectors’ edition copy of Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab’s remaster of Rush’s 1980 disc, Permanent Waves, yesterday. This completes MoFi’s treatment of what I (and many) consider Rush’s golden era: PeW, Moving Pictures, and Signals. I own the MP and Signals Ultradiscs that were released over a decade ago. I wish I had the 2112 Ultradisc; I should have bought it when it was originally at retail.


I listened to it last night on headphones. I didn’t do a blind listening test against my copy of the original Mercury issue of the CD, but it did seem to sound a little clearer. Of the three albums in the aforementioned trilogy, Signals needed the most help, but the others already sounded pretty great. I was surprised to see an Ultradisc produce Replaygain values in the -5 dB’s, but I supposed that’s to be expected nowadays. The Mercury issue of the album has RG values in the -0.9 dB area, and the MP Ultradisc actually has a slightly positive RG value. Both of these indicate plenty of headroom.

The packaging has changed considerably from the other two Ultradiscs. The new one comes in a cardboard gatefold package with a minimal (but faithful) booklet and the gold CD in a soft sleeve. I’ll put pictures out on Flickr soon.

Am I glad I dropped almost $1/music-minute on this? Not yet, but I think I’ll get there…