Rush (2015) Hot
Written by Central Electronic Brain     December 17, 2015    
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Rush - Rogers Arena, Vancouver (Canada) - 17th July 2015

Thirty-two years since my first Rush show I finally find myself in the holy trinity's home nation for my 59th show (who's counting!). It's been well-publicised that this will be their last major tour of this magnitude and quite possibly THE final tour so I was obviously extremely excited!

At precisely 7:45 the lights go down and 'The Anarchist' kicks off the show with some superb riffing from Alex Lifeson. Without any pauses we're into 'Headlong Flight' and treated to a mini drum solo from Neil Peart. The stage is awash with all manner of lighting and mock stagehands, dressed in red jumpsuits a la 1981's 'Moving Pictures' album, are tinkering with the stage set (washing machines, a popcorn machine, old gramophones and an oversized brain to name but a few). Next up are 'Far Cry' and 'The Main Monkey Business' from 2007's 'Snakes And Arrows' release and thus it's becoming evident that Rush are "regressing" – working back chronologically through their extensive back catalogue.

Geddy Lee then introduces 'One Little Victory' and again it is clear that each song/tour is being represented by elements of the lighting/backdrops from that particular era. We move into the nineties for 'Animate' and Lifeson lays down a sublime solo. 'Roll The Bones' includes a mini film where actors Paul Rudd, Jason Segel, Peter Dinklage and guitarist Tom Morello are lip synching along – hilarious.

'Distant Early Warning' is as good as ever and then the eighteen thousand strong audience is treated to a truly special song: 'Losing It' from 1982's 'Signals' album. The song has never been played live until Toronto a few weeks earlier and Ben Mink of FM fame (the Canadian version) who played electric violin on the studio opus joins the trio for a never to be forgotten moment. 'Subdivisions' brings the first set to a rousing close.

'Tom Sawyer' starts the second set followed by 'YYZ' and the crowd are going wild, especially when the arena is lit up with lasers. The excitement continues with 'The Spirit Of Radio' and 'Natural Science'. Next up is another special moment 'Jacob's Ladder' which has not been played live since 1980.

The special moments continue with snippets of 'Cygnus X1 Books 2 & 1' interspersed with a longer drum solo from Peart whose R40 drum kit has been swapped during the intermission for a throwback replica kit. 'Closer To The Heart' has the crowd in full voice before the next treat; the whole version of 'Xanadu' complete with twin neck guitars for both Lifeson & Lee...absolutely awesome! A stonking '2112' brings the show to a close.

The encore consists of 'Lakeside Park', 'Anthem', 'What You're Doing' and a lengthy workout of 'Working Man' where Lifeson tears up the fret and you can literally see the sweat dripping from it! Two and a half hours of the best entertainment EVER.
If this is the final tour then what a way to bow out; totally on top of their game and with their fans in total adulation.

Az Chaudhry

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