Rush – Prog Rock

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Monday  I wrote about progressive metal and Opeth. Rush has been referred to as a key influence in this sub-genre. Let me attempt to see why that might be true.

First of all I sort out my sentiments about Rush. I don’t own any of their recordings. They are a band I respect and recognize for their musical accomplishments. Still after all these decades their songs don’t come immediately to mind for me. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. My secondary purpose for writing about Rush today is to resolve the lack of familiarity issue so that I gain a better appreciation for their value.

I can imagine a devout Rush fan reading this blog post and saying, “Hey you dolt, don’t you know that Rush is the best band in the whole universe, get with the program will ya…”

I begin to listen to their top hits on Spotify. It hits me how ever present Rush has been on AOR radio station playlists. “Tom Sawyer” and “Limelight” strike familiar chords within my psyche. I find however I can’t listen to Rush in a lengthy fashion. Something about Geddy Lee‘s voice against the rock backdrop grates on me. I try my best to assimilate their sound but it permeates my consciousness to a certain layer and no more. Rush doesn’t stick to my ribs like other prog rock artists I enjoy.

So where is Rush’s command of progressive metal you might be asking? Well according to those who have studied this in depth they are saying Rush only evidences progressive metal leanings in a handful of songs, most notably their first single, “Finding My Way” and another single “Working Man” is metal (to a lesser degree). Rush’s definitive album is 1976′s 2112, that album’s 20 minute title track has metal/hard rock elements but the rest of the album does not.

Tomorrow’s prog rock artist (with more progressive metal chutzpah) is Deep Purple, stay tuned 😉

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