Yesterday I was given a masterclass on how to produce and perform a rock show. Rush, the Canadian power trio finally made it to Ireland. For me, it was a long wait... Over 25 years since I first discovered their music. It was either Tom Sawyer or Red Barchetta. Whatever song it was, it was from the album Moving Pictures. It was worth the wait! It couldn't have been scripted better. The Time Machine tour, is the tour where they are playing the whole of Moving Pictures, non-stop.
The setlist was exactly as expected, and for the people outside looking in, this might sound boring and predictable, but for most Rush fans is what makes the band so exciting to watch. While you may know what song is coming next, you still don't know what to expect. And when you get a chance to see performances of songs like La Villa Strangiato... There are no words that can quite describe the experience.
The attention to detail is extraordinary. The movies at the beginning and end of the show are just fantastic. The "Jesus Mary and Joseph" from O'Malley was received with a chuckle from the audience. The moving lightning rig was amazing. And even things like the sampling of Aimee Mann's voice in Time Stands Still, or Alex Lifeson playing the bass pedals for the keyboard solos in Subdivisions and Red Barchetta. Fantastic!
I have been playing the bass as a hobby for many years, so being able to see Geddy Lee perform live, was a treat in itself. Wow!
It wouldn't be a Rush concert without the drum solo. There are no words to describe it! I'm sure this will be released as a live DVD at some point, so my advice is to go an buy it.
For those interested in the guitars, Alex played manly Gibson Les Paul's, many of them with tremolos. The PRS's are long gone, although he did use one for one of the songs. He used a 12 string acoustic (Martin I think) for the intro on Closer to the Heart. He also used a strat and a tele for a song each and finished the set with a white Gibson ES-335.
Geddy, used a couple of Fender Jazz Basses, both with maple necks. Not that common these days, but I have to admit that I much prefer maple over any other neck on my bass. It is incredible the sound that he gets out of that thing!
As for the chimpanzees, they played an Epiphone Les Paul, and a Squire Jazz Bass!
The picture is from Alan Moore's Audioaperture flickr's stream.