Rush
Rush


3.5
great

Review

by Brendan Schroer STAFF
June 1st, 2013 | 156 replies | 7,028 views


Release Date: 1974 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A fun little debut that showed Rush's hard rock influences; just be aware that this is nothing like their future progressive rock cornerstones.

Chapter I: The Start of Something Special

Canadian rock trio Rush have become a household name in the music world, garnering an exceptionally faithful fanbase and boasting more platinum-certified records than most bands could even dream of having. However, while the better part of their career has been spent making universally-celebrated progressive rock records, the beginning of their musical journey was a bit different. Since drummer Neil Peart wasn't in the band yet and thus didn't influence the band in a more sophisticated direction yet, this line-up of the trio happened to be more influenced by their blues-rock roots. In this debut record by them, you'll hear plenty of Led Zeppelin in Cream riffage throughout their compositions. So how does this record hold up? Surprisingly, it's pretty damn solid.

Okay, it's not even close to the band's best work, but there are a few glimpses into the band's future. The biggest praise would have to go to the band members' individual instrumental talents. Even drummer John Rutsey does a really above-average job on the record and pulls off some great fills in the album's more complex (or fast) songs. Even before their prime, Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson were rife with talent, especially on the closing highlight "Working Man." The extensive solo section of this piece is wonderful, showcasing a mix of blues, 70s hard rock/metal, and a few hints at the band's future prog-rock suites. Speaking of which, that whole song completely blows most of the album out of the water. The verses are extremely heavy for 1974, and the alternately ascending and descending guitar/bass work going on in the chorus is infectious. But fear not, there are other great moments on here. "Need Some Love," despite being only about two-and-a-half minutes, packs quite the speedy hard rock punch in that amount of time; meanwhile, the song "What You're Doing" has a bluesy riff that would make the aforementioned Led Zeppelin proud, while containing punchy drum work from Rutsey and a nice meaty guitar sound from Lifeson. There are a few interesting experiments on this record too; the biggest one is the intro to "Before and After." The song starts out in a very serene way, almost as if you're entering a garden or a forest of sorts. The clean guitar work from Lifeson really highlights this tune, and once the bass and drums enter the picture, they only further illustrate this image of peace and quiet joy. However, all of this is halted once the song erupts into one of the best rockers of the record. Geddy Lee's vocals sound especially loud and dominant, and the syncopated rhythm adds to an already-solid hard rock song.

Unfortunately, the problem with all of this is that, by the fifth or sixth song on the album, it gets a little boring. Most songs sound very similar after a while, and there's not much variation on the blues rock sound. On top of this, there's no extra instrumentation on top of the normal guitar/bass/drums line-up, so there's not much to speak of in terms of additional ornamentation throughout the record. Especially around the middle, a few throwaway tracks like "In the Mood" and the aggravatingly long power ballad "Here Again" pop up. Also, I hate to say this, but Neil Peart's absence on this record is truly felt after some time listening to it; after about the second or third time hearing the record, you start to think about how much Peart's future inclusion into the band benefited them in the end. That's not to say John Rutsey's a bad drummer by any means, but he does lack the charisma and technical ability of Rush's future bandmate.

However, I'd still consider this a great album because the songs that work do really, really work. This is the sort of record you spin when you want to just have a good time and not worry about super-technical progressive rock anthems. If you enjoy Cream, Led Zeppelin, or early Queen, then you'll really enjoy a lot of the material on this album. However, with Rush's next effort Fly by Night, Neil Peart would enter the picture and the rest would be rock history.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
FiveLeavesLeft
Staff Reviewer
June 1st 2013



9836 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Alright, so this will be my next discog review. I'll be alternating between the discog review and new releases (features and stuff), so stay tuned :]

DrHouseSchuldiner
June 1st 2013



5643 Comments


Rush lives!

jtswope
June 1st 2013



2018 Comments


Working Man is classic Rush. Good review.

SmersH
June 1st 2013



404 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good record... not my fave, but Working Man and Finding My Way make it worth it.

Well done review!

dannyboy89
June 1st 2013



11945 Comments


Lifeson dominates this album. One of my all-time favourite bands.

Their first three had a classic hard rock vibe to them. It wasn't until 2112 when they would become a full blown prog band.

Sonic and KILL should pop up soon.

dannyboy89
June 1st 2013



11945 Comments


you start to thing about how much Peart's future inclusion


Only grammar error I noticed. You're on a roll Necrotica.

ViperAces
June 1st 2013



12393 Comments


working man is really good. never heard the rest

Nagrarok
June 1st 2013



8170 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Straight ahead to the Rush discog? You're feeling motivated. Nice work.

NocteDominum
Contributing Reviewer
June 1st 2013



6988 Comments


Posd dude, talk about solid!

NeroCorleone80
June 1st 2013



28693 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good debut

Digging: Howlin Wolf - Howlin' Wolf/Moanin' in the Moonlight

FiveLeavesLeft
Staff Reviewer
June 1st 2013



9836 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks for the comments! Rush is one of my favorite bands, so I figured this would be a great new discog to try reviewing. I think this one may be a bit tougher to accomplish than the Queen one, though

Titan
June 1st 2013



4815 Comments


'Need Your Love'

Need Some Love


'throwaway tracks like "In the Mood"'

this was an early classic and early live staple for the band

KILL
June 1st 2013



71266 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

great review, before and after and working man rock ass

Digging: David Axelrod - Song of Innocence

facupm
June 1st 2013



7325 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Nice review, and a long discog to go

"This one will br tougher than the Queen one"
Yeah cause Rush> Queen

NeroCorleone80
June 1st 2013



28693 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

^ By a long distance

NightProwler
June 1st 2013



6337 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Excellent review for a great album. Well done!

Digging: Every Time I Die - From Parts Unknown

dannyboy89
June 1st 2013



11945 Comments


Guys, guys. Don't compare apples to oranges! Both
bands were great in different ways.

That's like saying King Crimson was better than Led
Zeppelin. An absurd statement.

Though I will admit to thinking that Queensryche>Guns
N' Roses.

FiveLeavesLeft
Staff Reviewer
June 1st 2013



9836 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

"Guys, guys. Don't compare apples to oranges! Both
bands were great in different ways."

Agreed. I love both about equally. The reason this'll be a tough discography is because all the epics and shit :P

demigod!
June 1st 2013



44133 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

hey baby its a quarter to eight!

Digging: Failure - Magnified

bach
June 1st 2013



12270 Comments


Let's jam man

Digging: Autumn's Grey Solace - Within the Depths of a Darkened Forest



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