By 1993, alternative rock had arrived in a big way, and surprisingly, Canadian veterans Rush
were game, releasing their most honest and organic rock & roll record in over a decade with Counterparts
. Opener "Animate" is straightforward enough, but doesn't even hint at the guitar ferocity and lyrical angst of "Stick it Out," a song which undoubtedly polarizes Rush
fans to this day. Intellectual melodic rockers like "Cut to the Chase," "At the Speed of Love," and "Everyday Glory" are also present (and less shocking), but diversity continues to rule the day with Geddy Lee
's bass taking charge on the amazingly somber "Double Agent" and the giddy instrumental "Leave That Thing Alone." Pure hard rock resurfaces on "Cold Fire," but it is the largely acoustic "Nobody's Hero" which provides the album's most gripping moment with an impassioned plea for HIV consciousness and understanding.