One of my favourite albums, although, there are other albums by Rush that I do like better (2112 and A Farewell to Kings). The musicianship on this album are on par with many later Rush albums; the sound is somewhat heavier and bluesy than later recordings. The sound is almost opposite to that of the mid 1980's albums such as Signals or (more so) Grace Under Pressure as there are no synthesizers used. Even the lyrics, while very different from the literary lyrics of Neil Peart, are still good. While later lyrics focus on themes of fantasy, the occult, etc. the lyrics here are based more in everyday life.
The debut seems to pick up a lot of negativity however. When compared to many other albums released in this time period, it is a great album. Critics would argue that the album is a "rip off" of Led Zeppelin but I cannot agree with that. Geddy Lee does not sound like Robert Plant and Alex Lifeson does not play guitar like Jimmy Page. Both bands play the same type of hard rock, but for someone to call this album a "rip off" would lead me to believe that they have never listened to the entire recording or are not familiar with the music of Led Zeppelin. To call this album "ripped off" would be like calling all heavy metal albums "rip offs" of Black Sabbath.
I would strongly recommend this album to both fans of Rush's music as well as anyone just looking to get a great early 70's hard rock album to listen to. A number of the tracks from here are still heard regularly on classic rock radio (In The Mood, Working Man, Finding My Way) but the album is great in its entirety as there is not a bad song on it.