Rush: Classic or Dud?

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No one has asked this one yet (and I have a sneaking suspicion I know why, but I'll ask it anyway)...

What do you think of them crazy prog-rockin' Canadians, then? Super? Sucky? Somewhere in the middle? Please write your response in the form of a haiku.

Dan Perry, Thursday, 21 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

"Why I Like Rush: A Haiku" by Alex in NYC

Rush Rock Like No One Ex-Cept May-Be Pla-Ce-Bo Neil Peart, Wow, He's Good.

Alex in NYC, Thursday, 21 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Rush -- i get high on

you and my spacey invade

ers get by on you

Mark, Thursday, 21 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Hi points - the drum beat of "Tom Sawyer" (as everyone knows by now), & one of the best fake-Led-Zeppelins ever in "Working Man" (great gtr solo!). Other than that, they can go & read the complete works of Ayn Rand. (I'd rather attempt to eat the entire works of Ayn Rand).

duane, Thursday, 21 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Hilarious fact abt Ayn Rand: when she went round in the 60s giving lectures on how unfettered capitalism was the BEST BEST BEST, she wd wear a black cape covered in gold $ signs!!

mark s, Thursday, 21 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

As a band: dud. As a rite of passage: classic.

scott p, Thursday, 21 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I'd like Rush a lot more if they wore black capes covered with gold $ signs...

duane, Thursday, 21 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I think Rush sucks. Any band where the drummer writes the lyrics is bound to suck. Do you know what RUSH stands for? "Running Under Satan's House." I did learn something in school... "Anti-Christ Devil Child," "We Are Satan's People,""Knights in Satan's Service," etc.

andy, Thursday, 21 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

---------> "Je suis Le By-Tor."

"Non. Vous etes Le Chien d'Neige." <------------

"Les pommes frites! Mon dieu!!!"

Jean-Luc Godard, Friday, 22 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

The good woman claims to like Rush, although I've never seen any evidence of this.

Dirty Vicar, Friday, 22 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

The only Rush track I've heard is 'The Spirit of Radio' from 'The Permanent Waves alb (1980). It was the nearest thing Rush had to a hit single in the UK (top thirty?) Now I don't know what Canadian radio was like back when this single was released, but English pop radio at the time, which for me basically meant Radio One, was horrendous. The 'Breakfast Show' was the station's prime time biggie, only entrusted to Radio One's biggest 'personalities'/tossers - Noel Edmonds, Dave Lee Travis, Steve Wright, all endlessly yakking over the few pop hits they played in-between their 'banter'. So the lyrics to 'Spirit of Radio', clearly written to suck up to radio station DJs, were not only v. horrible, but also a million miles from the truth. Here's the opening verse:

"Begin the day with a friendly voice/A companion, unobtrusive/ Plays the song that's so elusive/And the magic music makes your morning mood"

Dud for that alone.

Andrew L, Friday, 22 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

they were good before
Lee's voice dropped, and Lifeson
stopped using distortion

tarden, Friday, 22 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Rush are r0x0r, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Check out the k-kewl sartorial elegance displayed on the back cover of "2112" if you don't believe me. Stylee! Neil Peart's RAD, d00d (etc etc)


/<-r/-\/>, Friday, 22 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I am proud to say that I once voted Rush the greatest band of the 80's. They had a lot of good moments, 'Xanadu' appeared in Tommy Vance's poll for the top ten rock tracks of all time throughout most of the 1980s. I think they peaked with 'The Weapon' on Signals (1982). They differed from their contemporaries in being more interested in playing around with the time-signature of their tracks. But ultimately, in an oft repeated pattern, instrumental virtuosity ceased to be musically interesting and just became self-indulgent.

Conor Kostick, Friday, 22 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

But ultimately, in an oft repeated pattern, instrumental virtuosity ceased to be musically interesting and just became self-indulgent.

Are you describing your personal development or that of the band? Because, if anything, the band got less and less showy as the years went on. "Counterparts" (the last one I heard) was even "grunge" influenced, allegedly. Rush was my favorite band all throughout high school.

Kris, Friday, 22 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Hey, it's supposed to be a HAIKU, people !

Guitar mag gruel
Less smart than it wants to be
Pretty harmless now

Hey, gimme a break, I've never written a haiku before.

Patrick, Friday, 22 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Stoner's favourite

'Tom Sawyer' plays through art class

Turn that shit off now!

suzy, Saturday, 23 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Geddy Lee = King of the Mullet People

Kim, Sunday, 24 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

I'm in Canada I like said prog band less Than I did before

Dave M., Sunday, 24 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Truly dreadful, they Give "chops", prog-rock a bad name. Two good songs* -- rest's dud.

*( I reluctantly but freely admit that both Tom Sawyer and YYZ are both decent songs.)

Phil, Sunday, 24 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Oh dear, where did my line breaks go...

Phil, Sunday, 24 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Childhood memories
Older brother worships them
Despite this, they ROCK

Dan Perry, Monday, 25 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

Repeated listens
Render it annoying, eh
Still, sentimental

Sean Carruthers, Monday, 25 June 2001 00:00 (nineteen years ago) link

one year passes...
I'm so bored tonight that I'm reading vintage "classic or dud"'s, and I have to say that the stipulation of submitting answers in haiku format is pure, unhomogenized genius. More please!

Alex in NYC, Friday, 2 August 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Objectivist Rock a la Ayn Rand = DUD!

Jack Cole, Friday, 2 August 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Gen-i-us?" You would say that,
Since you started it!

Jeff W, Friday, 2 August 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link


da BA BA BA BA da-da

BA da BA BA BA...

Joe, Friday, 2 August 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Neil Peart squeals, righteous in his Objectivist zeal but all their songs suck

Shaky Mo Collier, Friday, 2 August 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

Drummers Who Write songs
Didn't make Hüsker Dü suck
it was Geddy's voice.

Mr Noodles, Friday, 2 August 2002 00:00 (seventeen years ago) link

two years pass...
They may be cheesy
But add rocking conviction
Who else but Rush eh?

piers (piers), Friday, 8 October 2004 04:13 (fifteen years ago) link

Rush sucks my big dick
Geddy lee is a scourge on Earth
prog rock motherfucks

The TAO that can be Posted is not the TAO! (The Tao that can be Posted is), Friday, 8 October 2004 04:42 (fifteen years ago) link

more rush haikus please

kyle (akmonday), Friday, 8 October 2004 04:48 (fifteen years ago) link

Andrew L missed the whole point of "Spirit of Radio"! TAO: Your second line would actually fit haiku conventions if you made it "Geddy is a scourge on Earth".

sundar subramanian (sundar), Friday, 8 October 2004 04:57 (fifteen years ago) link

Fly by night limelight
Too many notes played at once
Blame's on Toronto

Pleasant Plains (Pleasant Plains), Friday, 8 October 2004 05:26 (fifteen years ago) link

thank you sweet sundar, you are correct. that is what i meant to do. *tries to awkwardly plant a kiss on sundar's cheek and is promptly slapped on the face* ouch.

The TAO that can be Posted is not the TAO! (The Tao that can be Posted is), Friday, 8 October 2004 05:47 (fifteen years ago) link

Ayn Rand prog rockin'
Canadian eunuch squeals
You people so dumb!

Confucius, Friday, 8 October 2004 06:13 (fifteen years ago) link

moving pictures has
the very worst cover art
which is such a shame

subdivisions rocks
which counters all that i've been
told about this band

the lyrics are too
obvious but what can you
expect from hosers?

derrick (derrick), Friday, 8 October 2004 06:38 (fifteen years ago) link

'Limelight' licks are great
'Signals' is a true classic
The rest smells like wee

Rob Bolton (Rob Bolton), Friday, 8 October 2004 07:31 (fifteen years ago) link

Once I crossed the street
Geddy Lee almost hit me
In his Land Rover

Rob Bolton (Rob Bolton), Friday, 8 October 2004 07:32 (fifteen years ago) link

CLASSIC as long as this man was Prime Minister:

DUD thereafter

Myonga Von Bontee (Myonga Von Bontee), Friday, 8 October 2004 09:45 (fifteen years ago) link

[...wish I coulda found a picture of him riding on a train & flipping off protesters thru the window!]

Myonga Von Bontee (Myonga Von Bontee), Friday, 8 October 2004 09:51 (fifteen years ago) link

Rush is good
for opening up my pooper
so other men can do me

Good Dog, Friday, 8 October 2004 10:45 (fifteen years ago) link

. . . Or maybe not

If rednecks didn't like them
They'd be Kraftwerk-hip


Less boy or girl than
Alien; Precise

sundar subramanian (sundar), Friday, 8 October 2004 15:44 (fifteen years ago) link

fact checkin cuz to thread

sleep (sleep), Friday, 8 October 2004 16:02 (fifteen years ago) link

Songs(works) and arrangements: Classic
Lyrics and vocals: Dud

Geir Hongro (GeirHong), Friday, 8 October 2004 22:33 (fifteen years ago) link

I love Rush probably more than any other band....I don't think there BETTER than alot of bands, but they were a big part of my childhood....

Great band, I think.

M@tt He1geson (Matt Helgeson), Friday, 8 October 2004 22:50 (fifteen years ago) link

Young Black Teenagers
Seeking the phattest of shit
Sample Tom Sawyer

dlp9001, Saturday, 9 October 2004 00:01 (fifteen years ago) link

has anyone seen the episode of "trailer park boys" where they kidnap alex liefson?
i gained new respect for the man after watching that.

m0stly clean (m0stly clean), Saturday, 9 October 2004 13:44 (fifteen years ago) link

I have no haiku to offer which I why I didn't say anything before. But great, of course.

Ned Raggett (Ned), Saturday, 9 October 2004 13:46 (fifteen years ago) link

i was at a party with some guys who were really entranced with some kind of video of stevie ray vaughn stranglin' the blues back in the '80s. doo-rags. these guys were such geeks, glued to the tube while there were girls to hit on and barbecue to scarf. then they got into "moving pictures," talking about the "production values" and saying things like "you can't deny the musicianship," while trying to be "ironic" about the whole stinkin' thing. typical night with people in nashville trying to be hip about not being hip or whatever that convolution is. then, everyone got drunk the host attempted to explain the shaggs to these geeks and everyone *listened hard and they got it*!! ahh. so, rush sucks and that's it, that's just like being "ironic" about kiss or worryin' about montgomery gentry, i think (as in the video where that goober takes off his cowboy hat to reveal an expensive-looking doo-rag/headwrap of some kind), and only the man upstairs can say whether rush is great or not...yes, rush did a record of covers i understand includes a version of eddie cochran's summertime blues done like blue cheer! so, they have roots like the rest of us, cuz.

eddie hurt (ddduncan), Saturday, 9 October 2004 15:40 (fifteen years ago) link

LOL. Here's one that works.

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 17 February 2020 23:43 (four months ago) link

Primus will pay homage to prog-rock legends Rush this summer with A Tribute to Kings, a cross-country tour that will feature the Bay Area trio playing Rush's classic 1977 album A Farewell to Kings in its entirety, in addition to their own music.

"A little over one year ago, Ler Lalonde and I started kicking the idea around of Primus performing a series of shows featuring an iconic Rush album from our youth," says bandleader Les Claypool. "Being that A Farewell to Kings was the first Rush record I ever heard, and that it contains my all-time favorite Rush tune, "Cygnus X1," the choice narrowed quickly. Years ago I had done something similar with Colonel Claypool's Fearless Flying Frog Brigade, when we covered Pink Floyd's Animals in its entirety. It was an insane amount of work, but ended up being one of the most enjoyable live endeavors I've ever done. Dubbing the tour 'Primus: A Tribute to Kings,' it was originally scheduled to be performed in the Fall of 2019 but, when we were asked to support Slayer on their Final Campaign, the 'Tribute to Kings' tour was postponed.

Geddy, Alex and Neil had been superheroes to Larry, Herb and I in our teens, so when we all became pals while touring together in the early '90s, we were pretty delighted; partially because of the musical geek-out factor but mostly because the three guys whom we had admired so much from afar, turned out to be truly great, down-to-earth humans, and like us, a tad eccentric.

The 'Tribute to Kings' tour will be just as it is implied, a respectful and loving tribute to three spectacular musicians, songwriters, legends and friends."

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 18 February 2020 18:43 (four months ago) link

I love the sentiment but tbh I cant think of anything I want less lol

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 20:08 (four months ago) link

play la villa strangiato you wimps

mookieproof, Tuesday, 18 February 2020 20:16 (four months ago) link

I saw Primus a couple years ago, and they played a bit of Cygnus X-1. I'm strongly tempted to go see this.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 20:19 (four months ago) link

what about the voice of geddy lee? sean lennon?

reggie (qualmsley), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 20:32 (four months ago) link

Does tbe singing have to sound like Geddy Lee?

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 20:34 (four months ago) link

i wonder if les speaks like an ordinary guy

reggie (qualmsley), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 21:10 (four months ago) link

I know him, and he doesn't

Blues Guitar Solo Heatmap (Free Download) (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 21:21 (four months ago) link

Not sure Xanadu would be improved by the addition of slap bass.

the british empire's coming back, back back! (j/k) (Matt #2), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 22:21 (four months ago) link

Not sure i would expect that at all from Primus. Ive seen them do bits and pieces of various Rush tunes, and they are basically note for note copies. Granted, I have only ever heard them do instrumental segments.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Tuesday, 18 February 2020 23:05 (four months ago) link

play la villa strangiato you wimps

Josh in Chicago, Tuesday, 18 February 2020 23:13 (four months ago) link

I just read that there was a night in Vegas some years back when Rush and Primus were playing the same night, and both out of respect and as a courtesy to their fans, Primus pushed back the start time of their show so that their fans could go to see both bands. That's pretty cool.

Josh in Chicago, Wednesday, 19 February 2020 01:26 (four months ago) link

oh man what a great photo
how do we go there

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Tuesday, 25 February 2020 02:48 (four months ago) link

Something almost uncanny valley about this:

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 28 February 2020 02:38 (four months ago) link

Dag, check out these nerds:

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 8 March 2020 14:50 (four months ago) link

Was thinking about Peart again, and considered something curious. He's a massively creative drummer, with unique fills, great snare work, cool hi-hat bits, trademark ride patterns. And yet, despite having a double bass set up for pretty much his entire career, he's not really known for any interesting double bass work, is he? Single bass drum stuff, sure, but double bass? Not so much.

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 15 March 2020 21:30 (three months ago) link

He used it a bit, but pretty rarely.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Sunday, 15 March 2020 23:54 (three months ago) link

assuming it was for the drum solos mostly?

Blues Guitar Solo Heatmap (Free Download) (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 16 March 2020 00:13 (three months ago) link

One Little Victory starts with some double bass.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Monday, 16 March 2020 00:16 (three months ago) link

For sure. I know he did plenty of double bass stuff, but only in the most fleeting and perfunctory of ways. Whereas for a lot of other rock and hard rock (and of course metal) drummers, double bass gradually became the or at least a significant standard of drum virtuosity. Just surprised that Peart never incorporated more into his style.

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 16 March 2020 00:17 (three months ago) link

Like, I just googled and found this Drum magazine piece on the evolution of double bass:

Under a picture of Peart is says "Neil Peart was among a new generation of rock drummers to bring more sophisticated techniques to the double-bass vernacular." Was he? I play drums and I like Rush and I can't exactly point to where he does this, not much.

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 16 March 2020 00:20 (three months ago) link

I don't necessarily think he was ever chasing what other people perceived to be standard hard rock/metal "virtuosity"

Blues Guitar Solo Heatmap (Free Download) (upper mississippi sh@kedown), Monday, 16 March 2020 00:21 (three months ago) link

Well, yeah, duh. Back to my initial post, though, Peart was pretty exemplary on every aspect of his kit *except* the double kick, which was weirdly conspicuous. Obviously it was important enough for him to have a double kick in the first place, so it's surprising it doesn't have a prominent place in his playing.

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 16 March 2020 00:30 (three months ago) link

Their music hardly ever called for it? IMO. I credit that to his good responsive taste in ‘playing to’ Alex and Geddy’s music. I can’t think of many tunes in their discography where I feel double bass was ‘missing’, so to speak.

Master of Treacle, Monday, 16 March 2020 02:32 (three months ago) link

I totally agree. I'm not complaining or criticizing, wouldn't change a beat, just a notable facet (or lack thereof) in his playing. It's in there, of course, but usually just as fleeting parts of fills.

I mean, tbf, I think many drummers had or have giant kits for show. Peart actually used more of his kit than most. It was all there fore a reason, vs., say ...

Josh in Chicago, Monday, 16 March 2020 02:56 (three months ago) link

XP If Cocaine Was A Drum Kit...

a bevy of supermodels, musicians and Lena Dunham (C. Grisso/McCain), Sunday, 22 March 2020 03:42 (three months ago) link

Josh in Chicago, Sunday, 29 March 2020 22:49 (three months ago) link

two months pass...

So I wondered why Permanent Waves is the #5 album in Canada this week: Apparently, a 40th anniversary reissue was released a week or so ago with a bunch of live 70s material?

In other news, Alestorm apparently have the #7 album in the country. I remembered them as a goofy pirate-themed metal band about 10 years ago? I had no idea they were this big.

Feel a million filaments (Sund4r), Wednesday, 10 June 2020 10:12 (one month ago) link

New animated video tie-in

Jeff W, Friday, 12 June 2020 19:32 (four weeks ago) link

Interview going around with Alex more or less claiming that the death of Neil has made him completely disinterested in playing guitar. He seemed on the cusp of retirement anyway though.

Josh in Chicago, Friday, 12 June 2020 20:03 (four weeks ago) link

poor Alex :(

I ran a music trivia game at lunchtime at work today for fun, and made the fun discovery that one of our senior directors is huge Rush fan <3
He emailed me later in the day that he was going to go home and listen to Red Barchetta \m/
Rush brings people together!

terminators of endearment (VegemiteGrrl), Saturday, 13 June 2020 06:30 (three weeks ago) link

It's definitely between them and maybe the Cure as World's Biggest Cult Band.

Josh in Chicago, Saturday, 13 June 2020 13:15 (three weeks ago) link

now that the Grateful Dead have hung up their boots, I guess so.

assert (MatthewK), Saturday, 13 June 2020 14:10 (three weeks ago) link

Honest question, did/do the Dead have much of a following around the world? I have no idea.

Josh in Chicago, Saturday, 13 June 2020 15:26 (three weeks ago) link

I remember them playing Wembley Arena in London around 1990(?), and that's a 10,000 capacity venue. Might be because they didn't play outside of the US much around then though. PS I saw Rush play the same venue in 1981, my second ever gig.

we are the village green evacuation society (Matt #2), Saturday, 13 June 2020 16:01 (three weeks ago) link

there's something to the couplet theory ~

reggie (qualmsley), Saturday, 13 June 2020 16:03 (three weeks ago) link

Huh. I can get with that!

Josh in Chicago, Saturday, 13 June 2020 16:34 (three weeks ago) link

Thanks, now I'm watching people do Rush covers online. This bass nerd remains my fave:

As he says, I don’t know what he was thinking - writing this bass-line with the knowledge that he’d have to sing over it, but that’s why he’s one in a million."

Josh in Chicago, Saturday, 13 June 2020 16:45 (three weeks ago) link

Only quibble with couplet theory is I'd pair Snakes with Vapor Trails, Clockwork Angels stands alone.

Mario Meatwagon (Moodles), Saturday, 13 June 2020 16:59 (three weeks ago) link

Huh, obviously Aimee Mann is on "Time Stands Still," but the laugh at the beginning of "Force Ten" is apparently a sample of her as well, as is (I never noticed this) a brief vocal part (maybe backwards) on "Open Secrets" (around the 4:00 mark).

Man, I miss Neil Peart.

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 25 June 2020 03:52 (two weeks ago) link

("Time Stand Still;" thanks a lot, beer)

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 25 June 2020 03:54 (two weeks ago) link

permanent waves was remastered recently, is the non-extra version of it on this 40th anniversary set any different?

j., Thursday, 25 June 2020 04:28 (two weeks ago) link

Did anyone actually have a problem with the mastering on the original release?

Feel a million filaments (Sund4r), Thursday, 25 June 2020 04:31 (two weeks ago) link

you never know what little lifeson fiddlies they might uncover

j., Thursday, 25 June 2020 04:34 (two weeks ago) link

Speaking of fiddles, I was watching a little Lifeson tutorial on the intro to "Spirit of Radio," and he self-effacingly describes it as a Celtic sort of thing. And now every time I hear it, yeah, it's totally this Celtic sort of thing.

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 25 June 2020 04:40 (two weeks ago) link

Wasn't that intro meant to be mimicking radio waves?

tired of waiting for icu (Matt #2), Thursday, 25 June 2020 08:51 (two weeks ago) link

Loosely, I think. But when describing it from a melodic/technical standpoint (since he was teaching) he used "Celtic,' which is probably more useful than "radio waves."

I found some other good stuff to explore, namely the tour books posted (I hope all) online, where Neil, at least, gives little making-of accounts. For example, I learned (and maybe knew already) that Alex programmed all the drum parts in the band's demos, which Neil would sometimes use for inspiration, and also that Neil sometimes went into each album with an overarching theme (as opposed to concept). For example, a lot of the lyrics of "Power Windows" hinge on (duh) notions of power. He writes:

Having enjoyed writing around the central theme of "Power" last time, I decided to try something like that again, this time working with the theme of "Time". I set to work first on "Time Stand Still". I'd been thinking about this for some time now; how so often the richness of a period of time or an experience seems to lie in looking back at it. Or conversely, sometimes you might know that you are enjoying a wonderful time, but just wish you could make it last longer. I'm sure you know how that goes. But as I set that one aside after a while, and went on to work on other ideas, it was strange to see that what I had thought was my theme suddenly turned itself into something else -- without even asking me! With the development of ideas for "Second Nature" and "High Water" the theme suddenly changed to "Instinct", or perhaps "Temperament" -- the idea of primeval or subconscious drives. Well okay, I thought, if that's what my brain wants to work on -- go ahead!

Josh in Chicago, Thursday, 25 June 2020 12:58 (two weeks ago) link

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