It has been a while since I last saw my favourite band in the flesh, but now they are back in Europe with their Clockwork Angels tour. That last album was one of the heaviest and best the band has made in a long time, so I was really looking forward to this tour.
When I entered the venue I could see a huge video screen on which lots of videos were shown during the entire show. In fact the gig opened with a rather spectacular and funny video in which Geddy, Alex and Neal were being put together for the show as if they were robots… This night the set opened with Subdivisions, one of the best songs of the still underestimated album Signals and the rest of the first set (before the tea break) also consisted of “old” material. However due to the sound and the professionalism of this power trio, older songs like Grand Designs, Bravado, Force Ten or Where’s My Thing still sound very up to date and modern. Then it is time for Neal to prove or rather show that he belongs to the top three drummers of all times in his drum solo called: The Percussor; but for me it still is a redundant thing, as I rather would have heard The Camera Eye or The Pass instead… But, it is absolutely not necessary to nag because after the break the band even shines better with 9 songs from Clockwork Angels, which were played with the assistance of the Clockwork Angels String Ensemble. Highlights here are the amazing melodic track The Garden and Seven Cities Of Gold. But the real milestones for me this evening are exciting versions of the Rush classics Manhattan Project, Red Sector A, The Spirit Of Radio and the instrumental YYZ; with its opening beats based on the call sign of Toronto’s international airport.
Of course in the encores we are treated to Tom Sawyer and three parts (1, 2 and 7) of the classic 2112 album, which was released way back in 1976…. And then after more than 3 hours it was over, sad but true, for me this could have lasted 3 hours more… Conclusion: the set list contained of 28 songs, None from the first three albums, none from Hemispheres and A Farewell To Kings, one from Permanent Waves, three from Moving Pictures, two from Signals, one from Grace Under Pressure, four from Power Windows, one from Hold Your Fire, two from Roll The Bones, none from Presto, Counterparts, Test For Echo and Vapor Trails, just the one from Snakes & Arrows and nine from their last one Clockwork Angels. I sadly missed The Necromancer, The Camera Eye and The Pass, but…… he sound was amazing, the show was perfect and I am already looking forward to the DVD of this spectacular Clockwork Angels Tour. Rush is still the best prog rock band in the world and if a man is tired of Rush, he is tired of life!!
THE BIG MONEY
THE ANALOG KID
WHERE’S MY THING?
SEVEN CITIES OF GOLD
RED SECTOR A
THE SPIRIT OF RADIO
2112 PART 1 OVERTURE
2112 PART 2 THE TEMPLES OF SYRINX
2112 PART 7 GRAND FINALE
Review & photos: Martien Koolen