Monday, September 26, 2022

With every nerve aware, here are my Top 50 Rush songs of all time

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With my favorite Canadian rock band back on the road — approaching 60 years old, each of them — I am back into a groove of listening to Rush. I’ve been listening to Rush since 1980. I wrote about it extensively when they played in Baltimore in April 2011.

And since I’ve always presented my favorite songs by my favorite musical artists, today I present my Top 50 songs – in a very specific order.

These are some liner notes and odes to my favorite lines in my favorite Rush songs. And if you’re a casual Rush fan, here are some “new” songs for you to check out. I didn’t include any songs from Clockwork Angels simply because it’s too young to be put into perspective against the rest of the catalog.

I love me some Rush…


50. The Pass – Something has to be last in line and I really like this song. “Rebel without a conscience, martyr without a cause…”

49. Grand Designs – I love most of this album. “So much style without substance, so much stuff without style.”

48. The Body Electric – Always loved the drum and bass intro to this one. Old school, underappreciated.

47. Digital Man – “He picks up scraps of information, he’s adept at adaptation. Because for strangers and arrangers, constant change is here to stay…”

46. The Enemy Within – “It takes a little more persistence
to get up and go the distance…”

45. Mystic Rhythms – “The more we think we know about the greater the unknown. We suspend our disbelief and we are not alone…”

44. Earthshine – A beacon in the night.

43. By-Tor And The Snow Dog – They busted this one out a few years ago and the crowd went nuts.

42. Roll The Bones – “Why are we here?”

41. Fly By Night – Overplayed on the radio, I know you’ll think I have this one a little low but it’s never been my favorite.

40. Working Them Angels – Best of the more recent material for me.

39. Working Man – Another one that classic rock seems to like and this was the song that made them a viable U.S. band.

38. Nobody’s Hero – Took a lot of courage to write this one. I like musicians with courage. I like this song.

37. Driven – Incredible bass lines in this one that’s a hard charger.

36. Overture (2112) – Classic, timeless, spacey.

35. Temples of Syrinx – Love the crowd reaction to this one.

34. La Villa Strangiato – Some say the hardest song in rock and roll to play.

33. Stick It Out – “Don’t swallow your anger, don’t swallow the lies…”

32. Witch Hunt – “Quick to judge, quick to anger, slow to understand. Ignorance and prejudice and fear walk hand in hand…”

31. Big Money — Got no soul.

30. Jacob’s Ladder — “The clouds prepare for battle…”

29. Middletown Dreams – “Dreams transport desires, drive you when you’re down…”

28. Manhattan Project — Dropping the big one.

27. In The Mood — “Hey baby it’s a quarter to eight…”

26. The Analog Kid — “When I leave I don’t know what I’m hoping to find and when I leave I don’t what I’m leaving behind…”


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  1. Nice list, Nestor. I think you put Manhattan Project, A Passage To Bangkok, and Subdivisions too low, but I’m happy to see you giving some love to Vital Signs! That’s probably their most underrated song. I’d put Witch Hunt much higher too. My #1 would probably have to be a tie between Red Barchetta and Limelight. I know Limelight was really overplayed by 98 Rock in the early 80s, but it’s such a great song it doesn’t matter.

  2. Oh, and by the way, Working Man is a great song, but I’ve yet to come across a really good quality copy of it. I know it’s off their first album, so a great copy probably doesn’t exist. But it’s rather annoying listening to such a great song with such muffled guitar chords and drums.

  3. I would have certainly included Cygnus X-1,Bastille Day,Hemispheres and A Farewell to Kings…Losing It is also a classic as well…

  4. BTW as far as the “lyrics” to Xanadu are concerned,the city was described by Marco Polo, and in this particualr song Neil relates to the famous poem by Coleridge; Kubla Khan. Having had to read it in English Lit in college its rather surprising and refreshing to find it as a subject in a prog rock song. But of course that was always Rush, great intricate music, deep and interesting lyrical topics…never about chicks, partying etc. A passage to Bangkok was as close to a “drug” song as they got, and its pretty hard to compare it to any of the usualsex, drugs and rock and roll stuff that others wrote. An intelectual take on a base subject.

  5. I agree with your No 1 Nestor. I still get chills listening to that song especially driving down a country road with the top down!

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