Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage

If you like Rush, you’ll really enjoy this in-depth documentary. It’s like a Rush history/diary of evolution, since their inception up to about 2010. Luckily Rush continues today as one of “those bands” that have reached legendary status alongside such luminaries as Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd.

I don’t need to go over this point by point but would like to discuss some highlights…The music is great. They play songs throughout every era of the band up through 2010. There are live tracks as well and footage from when they were playing in high schools in Canada in the pre-Neil Peart days. Two of the clips come from Canadian TV shows that happen to catch the band before they were signed by a label. The way the band came together is really enjoyable to watch. The three of them seem to form a perfect musical bond that’s ever lasting (I’ve been in bands, this is not easy to do).

The musicianship and craftsmanship of their music is also discussed and turned out to be one of the more inspiring moments in the doc for me as a musician. The first difficult song I learned to play was “Tom Sawyer”; that song along with the Moving Pictures and 2112 albums changed my life as a bass player… As I said, Rush is just one of “those bands”.

The band is very candid during their interviews which is refreshing. There’s no pretense. Even Neil Peart (who admits he is not the most social guy in the world) talks openly about everything, including how he dealt with his wife’s death, Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson discuss this topic with equal openness.

Some of the people interviewed include: Jack Black, Les Claypool, Billy Corgan, Kirk Hammett, Taylor Hawkins, Vinnie Paul, Gene Simmons, Trent Reznor, Sebastian Bach and more. Matt Stone from South Park pops in here too.If you’re not familiar with the band and just enjoy good, progressive, smartly written rock, take a look at this documentary, you just may find a new band to add to your list. If you’re into Rush, don’t miss this film…

reviewed by Sean McKnight