Wed. Sep 27th, 2023

Ask any UK gig-goer from the provinces what mattered in 1977, and so they’ll readily observe that the yr was as a lot about AC/DC, Skinny Lizzy, and Rush because it was about Intercourse Pistols, The Conflict, and The Damned. For Rush, at that cut-off date poised to launch their fifth album, A Farewell To Kings, the zeitgeist was one thing of an irrelevance: in later years, the band would pay lip service to fashions with skinny ties, pleated peg trousers, and a surfeit of synthesizers, however for the second they have been working in a self-sustaining vacuum that mirrored, and fed, the frilly fantasies of a shocking variety of (predominantly male) youngsters.

Take heed to the Fortieth-anniversary version of A Farewell To Kings.

The Canadian trio traveled to Britain in June 1977 to undertake a brief UK tour and to report A Farewell To Kings in Monmouthshire’s Rockfield Studios. Within the Past The Lighted Stage documentary, bassist and vocalist Geddy Lee remarks, “To go over there was actually gratifying, as a result of all of our heroes have been English rock musicians.” Accordingly, inasmuch as Rush’s debt to Led Zeppelin is palpable, it’s additionally clear that Lee, guitarist Alex Lifeson and drummer Neil Peart have been finessing a imaginative and prescient of their very own by the point A Farewell To Kings was underway: particularly, a mix of daring, complicated riffing and fantastical lyrics (normally written by Peart), usually with historic or sci-fi themes.

Sooner or later, Rush’s lyrics would progressively migrate from the fantastical to the non-public, however A Farewell To Kings resounds with lofty considerations, whether or not it’s the Kubla Khan-inspired quest for immortality in “Xanadu” or the deep-space narrative of “Cygnus X-1 Guide 1: The Voyage.” Taken in such a context, it’s straightforward to overlook that the “dragons [who] develop too mighty to slay with pen or sword” from “Madrigal” are figurative ones, or that the radio-rock staple “Nearer To The Coronary heart” – Rush’s first UK High 40 hit single – is actually, “All You Want Is Love” by another title.

Maybe most significantly, the album is a vivid reminder that Rush in full circulation made an extremely cheering, uplifting, and fascinating noise. Regardless of style, you possibly can’t assist however be borne aloft by the ringing, craving, suspended chords of the title monitor, and the valiant “Xanadu,” nor certainly by Peart’s remorselessly clever, cathartic drumming: there may be actually no finer fetish for air drummers. They attraction to the a part of you that’s without end teenage; the a part of you that is still eager, excitable, and uncynical; the a part of you that relishes the inclusivity of standing shoulder to shoulder with thousands and thousands of different proud dweebs. If ever there was a folks’s band, Rush are these guys.

Purchase or stream A Farewell To Kings.

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