Train 044 Trans-Mongolian Railway – Russia’s Pastel RailwayStations #1
The journey from Moscow to Irkutsk in Siberia takes 4 days and during that time the train stops at various points to pick up supplies, drop people off and pick up new passengers. Don’t forget, the Trans-Siberian is a working train, not a tourist trip, and so there’s always something going on onboard.
One thing that really caught my attention during the endless stretches of mile upon mile of birch trees, was just how lovely the stations are. You could be pulling into some small town in the middle of nowhere where the buildings are nothing but grey and uniform, but suddenly you get to the station and you’re confronted by pastel-coloured, art deco inspired architecture. Admittedly, Novosibirsk & Yekatarinburg are the 3rd and 4th largest cities in Russia so you might expect some impressive buildings but all along the line, at small stations like the middle picture above, the same design and architectural styles were being used.
The Russians are obviously very proud of these stations, and rightly so, and have deliberately ensured that the first things that a visitor to the area would see is something very colourful and impressive. The architecture inside these buildings is pretty impressive, too.
Rush on their Hemispheres Tour at the Liverpool Empire, May 1st 1979
I was fortunate to see many of the top rock bands of the late 70′s at the Empire, a really cool theatre that allowed you to get close to the action with little to no security in front of the stage and minimal interference in what you were allowed to take into the gigs. In my case, I used to take my 35mm SLR camera and telephoto lenses with me if I was going to be sitting in the Circle area as I knew I could get some good shots from there.
Rush were a particular favourite of mine and here we are, nearly 35 years later, and they’re still going strong, unchanged in line-up in all that time. Their set design and lighting has changed significantly, though! Why did everything seem to be so dark those days?
As an added bonus here’s the setlist from that night and what I find interesting is how popular and how often played, still, so many of these songs are.