Folks, I have to tell you: Mike, Our Brother Lebrain sent me this pile of Rush CDs in a Box Of Awesome, pretty much everything from 1974-1989, give or take a couple!! I KNOW! When they arrived, I fell over. As would anyone. So much greatness. I cannot thank him enough. And I am about to disappear into RushLand. Very very happily so.
Oh, and for the record (puns always intended), this was released in the year in which I was born.
So. RUSH. Let’s give ‘er!
Finding My Way is a classic. You know this song. And what a great track, by way of an introduction! It rocks, it’s bluesy, it has great energy. I love the bit at 3:40 or so. Just a great collection of elements.
Need Some Love is a short track, and comes right out of the gates with fast rock, simple chords and verve. The chorus rolls back a bit but that restless music underneath doesn’t relent. The instrumental bit at 1:30 kills. Yes! If you don’t play air guitar to this, something in you is busted.
Take A Friend is bluesy as hell, slinking along with menace. Lifeson shines, here. Those fills make the track, and then he takes off into the solo… yeah! It all sounds a bit southern rock, and a perfect snapshot of its era. Perfectly awesome.
Here Again is the obligatory slow song. Not that there’s anything obligatory with these guys, but it’s their first record so fair enough. Really bluesy late-night feel to it. It throbs. Real smooth. Love it.
What You’re Doing is another well-known classic. As I played this for (probably) the zillionth time (I’m more used to the live version on Chronicles), all I could do was rock the fuck out. Huge riff, great track. Pure rawk.
In The Mood is yet another bluesy rocker we all know well. The lyrics are a bit cheesy, but the tune is so burned into my brain. Cowbell! It’s a fun song, on the lighter side. Great guitar work again.
Before And After is exactly that. Before is a pretty instrumental, a sweet slow build. You could be forgiven for not even believing this part of the song was them. It all starts to get a bit heavier gradually, and then at 2:17 it takes off into a great, heavy chunky After part of the song. Yum!
And finally we have Working Man. What a massive track. MASSIVE. Even radio can’t kill this one with overplay. Always loved this one. It’s one of those songs. Check the guitar starting at 2:10, in fact the whole bit from there to 5:17. AWESOME. This was built for concerts.
Whew. Now, lots of people say they hear Led Zeppelin in all this, and that John Rutsey’s drumming is no match for Neil Peart’s, but whether the influence is there for real or not isn’t necessary information. As for Peart, well, I think Rutsey’s drumming here fits the songs perfectly. This was a completely solid band from the get-go. Hot damn.
In sum: \m/ \m/
Thanks heaps, Mike!