Monday, February 21, 2011

The Devil At the Movies: Rush Beyond the Lighted Stage

I can not claim to be the biggest Rush fan on the planet. I think they were at their best from the inception to probably around the early eighties. But I do enjoy music documentaries and in fact used to watch VH1's Behind the Music when I could.So when that series declined and the announcement from my current favorite documentarian Sam Dunn (if that is even a word)I was looking forward to seeing it. Let's take a look after the jump.

This film was different then previous Dunn/McFadyen productions as the duo do not narrate but in fact let the interviews do the chronological talking. Many people in the rock and metal world were interviewed such as Kirk Hammett,Vinnie Paul,Trent Reznor,Billy Corgan,Mike Portnoy,Gene Simmons, and Sebastian Bach among others. The band also obviously play a prominent role in the narration as well as the people behind the scenes like managers past and present and record execs.

There are no tales of sex, drugs, and rock n' roll in fact quite the opposite. All the members came from good, solid upbringings and were just dudes that wanted to play music. Geddy Lee at the end makes mention that everyone was warned about how boring the band really was. But actually it was pretty refreshing to watch history unfold without the stereotypical things that plague bands throughout their career.There was discontent over musical direction and of course the monumental tragedies that hit Neil Peart's life that almost disbanded the band.And the fact they were able to overcome this obstacle is a testament to the devotion these guys have.

Overall the film was a fascinating account of how these guys from Canada came together and made some of the most complex yet accessible music and yet have garnered one of the biggest fanbases in rock history. All without critical acclaim or many major awards. The fact that they have not been nominated for Rock Hall of Fame status is mentioned more then once and hopefully this film will change that mindset. I'm pretty sure the Rush faithful have already viewed this movie but if you're a casual Rush fan or even just interested in music history check this DVD out. I really came out of this appreciating Rush more as a band and especially as people. You should too.

1 comment:

Shannon McD said...

Being a loyal Rush fan, I have received my fair share of scoffs. Being a chick, doubly so. Thanks for giving this documentary a once thru. I was happy to see the music world respond so emphatically. They have always been a musicians band. Mainstream isn't their playground, which is good because the monkey bars smell like Gaga.