With their records now charting in the US and UK, what must have been a confident Rush flew to Wales and Rockfield Studios to record A Farewell To Kings, their fifth studio album. It represents a substantial leap in their development. The title track opens, and it’s a typical Rush construct: Propelled by Neil Peart’s masterful drumming, Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee hammer away until Lifeson’s lead guitar takes full-flight. The epically constructed “Xanadu” takes the concept of 2112 one step further; Lee also doubles on keyboards, providing a new augmentation to the band’s sound.
Following the release of their last album in 1975, Pink Floyd had spent 1976 sinking hundreds of thousands of pounds into their Britannia Row Studios, where Animals was recorded. The bulk of the album had already been written before the session; "Dogs" first appeared in 1974 as "You Gotta Be Crazy," while "Sheep" was previously "Raving and Drooling." Roger Waters again dominates the picture, providing the album's grand and Orwellian concept.