By Denis Armstrong - Sun Media
Original Article - <a href="http://jam.canoe.ca/Music/Artists/R/Rus ... 16759.html" target="_new">Click Here</a>
Posted From - <a href="http://jam.canoe.ca/Music/" target="_new">JAM! Music<a>
OTTAWA - Never did I ever think that in 2007, I would see two prog-rocks from the '70s, Genesis and Rush, smoke Scotiabank Place in the same week.
But dreams, both good and bad, do come true to those who wait, and last night the trio from Toronto cranked out a solid three-hour rush of conceptually obtuse but nonetheless hard-driving set that put the progressive in prog-rock.
A sell-out crowd of 10,200 -- by rough count 10,000 guys and about 200 girlfriends -- turned out to see bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee, guitarist Alex Lifeson and drummer Neil Peart, take one more kick at a few of the old classics as well as tunes from their surprising new Snakes & Arrows album.
You would think that after 35 years together, 18 studio albums that have sold more than 35 million copies, that the band would be running out of ideas or reasons to play.
But at last night's gig, Rush were downright impatient to put on a good show, mixing some ambitious playing and dazzling visual distractions while the boys seemed just like the neighbours next door.
Real Canadian hosers.
As was evident last night, the hard-jamming band still has a lot going for it. For nearly three hours, they cranked out about 25 tunes, long and familiar head-banging instrumentals and power ballads, beginning with Limelight and Digital Man.
And yes, there was three live racks of rotisserie chicken grilling live on-stage beside Peart's drum kit, though I couldn't get close enough to actually smell them.
Fiftysomething frontman Lee was low-key throughout the first half of the show, muttering the odd joke about being 50something. After that, he kept to strong playing and the occasional strut and jig, preferring to let the video inserts, including an intro by Dave Thomas and Rick Moranis as SCTV's original hosers, Bob and Doug McKenzie, keep the fans amused.
For an hour, Rush focussed on jamming out testosterone-testing tunes including Circumstances, Freewill, Between the Wheels and Dreamline, as well as The Main Monkey Business and The Larger Bowl from the new album, showing the band hasn't lost their touch with those incomprehensible, yet strangely compelling lyrics.
For the hardcore fans -- are there any other kind, really? -- last night's gig showed that while the band has perhaps mellowed with age while still looking surprisingly fit, their playing power hasn't diminished. Lifeson and Peart demonstrated outstanding musicianship while Lee showed he is still absolutely the best wailer in the business.