Why Rush Is The Greatest Band
Why Rush Is The Greatest Band
From their first album to their latest, Rush has a plentitude of great songs. It is almost a miracle that these three connected and found each other after Tom Rutsey’s departure and stayed together and made what they have. Even so, the first album is a classic in it’s own way, with the synergy, the visceral energy of the Vocals, Guitar, Bass and Drums. For that time, though it was still the early 70’s, their first album had that particular sound that is a world in it’s own and which fans seek with every new Rush record. However, it was already on the first album. When Neil Peart became the Drummer for good, then the rhythms of course were more integrated and ultimately complex. The lyrics became more sophisticated and cerebral in all the right ways. Though Fly By Night was a more evolved album, their sound was like their first album.
Then there came Caress of Steel which was one of my favorites, yet it was recorded as a disappointment along with their tour, which really I found surprising, however as time showed was a plus for Rush fans because withe the disappointment of how Caress did, it gave a strong bit of fuel that resulted from that into the next album 2112 which is likened to a masterpiece. From the incredible sound effects that begin it to the domineering and classic guitars and the rollicking drum parts with Geddy’s wailing of the first 2 tracks opens a story of conformity and a struggle for freedom and evolution. It was also an album that stayed in the Heavy Metal or Hard Rock genre, but put them more into an art rock and progressive rock genre for the type of band they are. 2112 solidified the standing of Rush of a band to appreciate and take notice of. Many people who are fans of bands in the Early Metal and Rock genres had to take time and appreciate the songs of 2112.
When the next album came out: Farewell To Kings, would it be like 2112 part 2? Not at all for the most of it. Their first four albums were as well deferent from another yet the same with the musicianship and the sound was there. Farewell To Kings however, was like a new corridor almost a new slate, but it is a brilliant album and the sound was great like a finely made garment. Every song on that album was either good or great.
Right after the first song and a great song with the title track comes an excursion into real music and musicianship with the illustrious ‘Xanadu’ a song that is awesome and I’ll leave it at that and paints a picture into the frozen landscape of a journey to find something perfect on Earth and it’s temptations and danger. The production is exceptional. Then there is Closer To The Heart, a staple and classic with the last track “Cygnus X-1” That is intentionally strange in the beginning and by the middle and climax of it could have been a heavy metal song from any era including the 80’s.
The next after Farewell is Hemispheres with a full side long opus of Greek Myth woven into a battle of survival and Psychology. It is a brilliant mix of Greek myth with a timeless struggle between Heart and Mind, intellect and emotion which is likened to a battle to overcome a nervous breakdown with winding chords and scales and a peaceful resolution. The next songs that follow the opus are great: Circumstances, and the Trees which I think is one of the most unique rock songs up till now. Lastly, is the bizarre and ingenious La Villa Strangiato which for all that have heard it know it all too well. A plus 7 minute song that does nothing more or less than show off the brilliant musicianship which is at least part of the reason for their fans and highlights that Rush is in one part a musician’s band.
So where does the band go from what sounded like a highly experimental album with greek myths and ingenuity?
It turns into Permanent Waves. A brilliant masterpiece that takes the best part of guitar playing, intelligent bass and drums into a sound in itself that is basically a fantasy. Created for the modern era, the album sparkles and shines like metallic spacecraft. Some though thought it was too commercial, but I see it as inventive and excellently placed among the best albums until presently.
So, if Permanent Waves was not up to par for anyone, none most likely would deny the next album…Take a breath…
Moving Pictures a major change from Permanent. Within the last four albums, each one was completely different from each other and with Moving Pictures, a long with the goodness of the songs, their Sound seemed to have found it’s true self. With the sticky beats of Tom Sawyer and the tone of the guitar and the beefy brazenness of the bass and punchy staccato like Drums. The whole album seems to be saying “I am one unit”. Every song on it is good, some are classics and there is really nothing deprived from it with the thick and dark sound that encumbers it.
With Signals and every album after the songs are ,as they were, all different form each new album. Signals has a modern and a unique science fiction sound and released with it some songs which stand by themselves as particular melodies and songwriting that seems will never be repeated. Mainly “New World Man” “Subdivisions” and “The Weapon” as well as “Countdown” in my opinion. Then comes Grace Under Pressure…Another modern sound with some great songs often overlooked including “Distant Early Warning”, “Red Sector A”, “The Body Electric” and “Between the Wheels”.
I will briefly mention the remaining albums starting with Power Windows and it’s modern edgy pop sound but filled with solid songs that miss nothing like an electric symphony but in a rock format as an upbeat sounding album bursting with positive and pertinent themes.
The remaining of Rush’s albums never seemed to be surprising other than that with each album you would know it would be something else than the previous and each one: Hold Your Fire, Presto, Roll The Bones, Counterparts, Test for Echo, Vapor Trails, Snakes And Arrows, and Clockwork Angels. The Rush albums would just keep coming always with anticipation. Some prefer their earlier works to their more current ones, but I would say that in all of their albums new and old, that there is usually at least three good or great songs.
Looking back, if you pay attention, all of their more modern albums seem to fit with all of their previous albums. The unique style and arrangements of their more current one yield fruit into the kaleidoscope into the Rush saga. They seemed to have become more Rush with Snakes and Arrows and then even more with Clockwork Angels which I think most fans were waiting for. The sound is very Rush like and the songs are reminiscent of a similarity to Moving Pictures yet more up to date. In all their albums and their exploits and shows, I don’t think most bands put more of their ingenuity and individuality and musical prowess into their songs. They have been know outside their songs as funny and who they really are which is unique for the most unique band that has lasted as long as them and produced the kinds’ of one-of-a-kind groups of songs as they have. If You like Rush ,click here for download, you might also like Ox Cohen a big fan of Rush influenced by Rush.