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Coming down off Rush

Geddy Lee

The Rush concert at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport was amazing, Wednesday evening.

There was an energy in the air building through out the day, until with a flash, the trio appeared on stage at 7:30.

It can be difficult to describe Rush’s music, they have evolved over the years. They started out as a Zeppelinesque hard rock power trio. Then became more progressive and experimental as their albums unfolded, they reached a peak with their album Moving Pictures in 1981. They don’t Jam much because when they perform their compositions, on stage or on record, they infuse an energy that is alive and technically perfect at the same time, rare and different from contemporaries who are either experimental jamming or performing rehearsed parts.

Geddy Lee, lead vocalist and bass player, has a vocal range that could be considered mid to high, very high. Back in the day I can remember he was voted best bass player for Bass Player magazine or Guitar Player, in the world. Onstage he has the uncanny ability to be singing, playing bass with one hand and keyboards with the other while simultaneously playing foot pedals, all while the music sounds perfect in energy and composition. He is an incredible model of balance and focus for musicians.

Neil Pert

Neal Pert, the drummer, writes all the words and comes up with concepts for the band. He is considered one of the greatest drummers in the world in large part because of his technical ability. No other rock drummer sounds the way he does, his fills are the most amazing as he inserts rhythms with a precision and clarity like no other drummer in rock, maybe some jazz dude can do what he does but I haven’t heard it.

Alex Lifeson, the guitar player supports his band mates like good musicians do. He gives space for the drum fills, he gives space for bass and melody. The concert halls are awash in his space. But then he steps up to the guitar hero throne and ripps killer solos. As a virtuoso himself he draws from many influences. He can play real clean or real dirty. He also has original techniques like his band mates. One minute he can sound like Jimi Hendrix or even more English and the next like Segovia.

Alex Lifeson

I got word that I would be photographing the event about a week before. I checked in at the Arena’s media reception desk. Security was tight. While I waited for my contact the band’s security questioned me, “who is this guy?”

I asked, as politely as I could muster, if I could go back stage and interview the band. They very politely said no. No prob, my pass got me everywhere else. I was given instructions as to what I could photograph and what I couldn’t.

The first notes of “Subdivisions” started playing and Rush appeared on stage before thousands of cheering fans. Rush is like magic because they are so tight and have a mastery of dynamics. They are a model of good behavior and yet cool at the same time.

They have a new album called Clockwork Angels, a great description of themselves I believe.

See more photos here.

check out this video if you are unfamiliar, from a previous tour, classic instrumental from Moving Pictures album.