Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography



Heavy Prog

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Rush Rush album cover
2.95 | 1217 ratings | 121 reviews | 6% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

Write a review

Buy RUSH Music
from partners
Studio Album, released in 1974

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Finding My Way (5:05)
2. Need Some Love (2:19)
3. Take a Friend (4:24)
4. Here Again (7:34)
5. What You're Doing (4:22)
6. In the Mood (3:33)
7. Before and After (5:34)
8. Working Man (7:10)

Total Time 40:01

Line-up / Musicians

- Geddy Lee / bass, classical guitar (?), lead vocals
- Alex Lifeson / acoustic & electric guitars, backing vocals
- John Rutsey / drums, percussion, backing vocals

Releases information

Artwork: Paul Weldon (initial printings resulted with a pinkish unintended discoloration)

LP Moon Records ‎- MN-100 (1974, Canada)
LP Mercury - SRM-1-1011 (1974, US)

CD Mercury ‎- 822 541-2 M-1 (1987, US)
CD Anthem - ANMD-1075 (1997, Canada) Remastered by Bob Ludwig & Brian Lee
FLAC (2015, Ponomusic) Hi Res download in 192kHz/24bit lossless files

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
Edit this entry

Buy RUSH Rush Music

RUSH Rush ratings distribution

(1217 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(6%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(20%)
Good, but non-essential (49%)
Collectors/fans only (21%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

RUSH Rush reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by chessman
3 stars I remember when this album first came out and my friend played it to me. I thought it was interesting, and, simply as a rock album, very good and listenable. The first Rush album I bought was Caress Of Steel, and then I bought this debut after that. It is a very good first album and doesn't have any bad tracks on it. The standouts are, of course, Finding My Way, and Working Man. Also, Here Again is very underrated. There was much promise on show here, even with Neil, and I recommend this to any rock fan, Rush fan or not. Admittedly, non-Rush fans may be put off by the stratospheric vocals of Mr Lee! But the music is excellent. Worth buying!
Review by daveconn
3 stars If you're in the mood for a little time travel, back when the heavy shadows of a certain ZEPPELIN crept over the earth into the cold North, this is the RUSH you're looking for. Mind you, I initially resisted the comparison -- it smacked of lazy criticism -- but ALEX LIFESON's guitar work sounds just like a PAGE ripped from ZEP's history, and GEDDY LEE's impassioned vocals are rooted (PLANTED?) in the same idolatry. (An exception is the monumental "Working Man", from which the sulfuric pall of SABBATH emerges.) In other words, despite showing signs of the musical elasticity that would become a RUSH hallmark, the band's debut doesn't step lightly. The trio instead takes their place in the first line of soldiers behind Ares himself, prepared to live and die by the hammer and the axe. Some fans (myself included) place their debut on the periphery because NEIL PEART and his fantasickal imagery had yet to arrive. Original drummer JOHN RUTSEY is no shirker, though, generating his share of mayhem in the final assault. The album doesn't lack for standout songs either: "Working Man" and "In The Mood" hold their ground, "Finding My Way" and "What You're Doing" rock out respectably. RUSH even steps back from the battle to reflect on "Before And After" before flying back into the fray, the first glimpse of an approach they would refine for "In The End." RUSH the artful assassins would come with time; here, the analogy might be a band of youthful beserkers with big designs in store. I'd stop short of calling this debut a diamond in the rough, but even the PEARTless RUSH proves capable of producing a few pearls.
Review by Menswear
3 stars This Rush album is not progressive per se, but a path in the right way. I heard so much about this album being a Led Zeppelin clone, and I have to mostly agree. But hey, you have to take your roots somewhere. Human beings need to look up to something and let's not blame Rush for being young and looking for a sound. Because for a first album, this one rocks and rolls from A to Z. Just good headbanging songs just waiting to be popped in a car stereo.

I really get a great kick at listening this record. It's just songs like you don't hear anymore. And Geddy's voice is clear, strong as usual and has that spark that only youth provides. But also the bass/guitar techniques are surprinsingly high, proving that Geddy and Alex always knew what they were doing and where they're going. These guys were barely 21 years old and believe me, I surely wasn't able to create such cool rock songs at that age.

Anyway, a somewhat mature start, pedal to the floor and throats burning by furious singing.

This is why I love Rush...always fresh.

Review by greenback
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Many people say that this album is a clone of the early LED ZEPPELIN stuff. I do not like the term "clone". Yes, it sounds like LED ZEPPELIN, but RUSH already have their own sound and style here. It is a brilliant debut, VERY "high inertia" & powerful rhythmic hard rock oriented, not prog at all. Neil Peart is not the drummer here: it is rather John Rutsey, who is later replaced on the next "Fly by Night" album. Rutsey does a great job, and he does not sound as technical as Peart: he is rather slow, very heavy and loud: perfect for the ZEPPELIN style here. Geddy Lee's Rickenbaker bass is very loud and sophisticated: one can notice he really works hard to produce an impeccable sound here. His lead & backing vocals are absolutely hysterical: he screams more than ever here, and it is very entertaining and pleasant to hear. Alex Lifeson's electric guitar sound is absolutely wonderful: razor, VERY heavy, loud and sustained! He only made this particular extreme hard rock sound on this record: very unique. On "Here Again", one can hear one of the HEAVIEST echoed guitar solo ever made in the whole hard rock history!! Imagine: this guitar solo is so heavy that you can hear some lower frequencies through its sound!!! Absolutely unbelievable! Lifeson also uses some outstanding Flanger effects, like on the intro of "Before & After": it is combined with a VERY present & bottom Rickenbacker bass to produce an unforgettable intro; he mostly uses a pronounced echo on the many excellent guitar solos of the album. ALL the tracks are at least excellent, very catchy and addictive! For any LED ZEPPELIN fan who likes straightforward powerful rhythmic hard rock, please, get this record ASAP!

Rating: 4.5/5

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Decent 70's hard-rock can be found from this debut album of the Canadian power trio. Neil Peart hasn't yet been crowned behind their drum kit, and there are no progressive elements in their music, but this might be an interesting collectible if you are a big fan of the band, or if you like more this kind of music (ZEPPELIN, BUDGIE etc.). "Working Man" is my favorite track from this album.
Review by Cygnus X-2
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Rush's roots were always blues based. Their idols were Cream, The Who, The Yardbirds, etc. This album is a prime example of these influences. This album is very bluesy, and has no connection with prog in any sense. Then drummer John Rutsey, while no Neil Peart, still did a fantastic job with the music they did. Some complain that this album sounds too much like everything Led Zeppelin had ever done, sure there are example of similar sounding stuff, and I only find it to be a minor inconvenience. The mentionable tracks here are Finding My Way, In the Mood, What You're Doing, and the ever popular Working Man. Lifeson's guitar work was not as complex or intricate as it would come to, and Geddy's bass and vocal work was good but not as good as it would become. If you can get past the Zeppelinisms, then you can find an enjoyable album. That said, it's really just for Rush fans and fans of this style of music, you won't find anything progressive about this album. For me, I give it a 3/5.
Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Having listened to Queensryche albums recently, it then triggered me to spin albums with heavy metal nuance and I grabbed this album. It's good to trace back on old albums of legendary band like Rush where specifically with this album the drummer was still John Rutsey - before Neil Peart joined the band. I only knew this album after I listened to my first experience with the band through "A Farewell to A King" - an excellent album. Musically, this album is a good hard rock band where the influences from Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple are very obvious. However, there is no single track that indicates the band's music is a rip-off at all. Some tracks with blues-rock style indicates obvious influence from Led Zeppelin. My all-time favorite is of course "Working Man" - the last track. Keep on rockin' ..!

Review by erik neuteboom
3 stars This album is pure energy and showcases the talents of guitarplayer Alex Lifeson and bass player/singer Geddy Lee. Of course the music has strong echoes from LED ZEPPELIN and CREAM but Rush did their best to find their own sound, on this album you can notice that the songs are powerful and melodic. After the departure of drummer John Rutsey, soon a certain 'professor on the drumkit' would push the band to their limits within a few years. The best track is "Here again" with that mindblwing, bluesy inspired guitar solo, GREAT!
Review by Tony R
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars Two of Rush's biggest early-influences were Led Zep and Cream.This pre-Peart line-up (John Rutsey on drums) had very little ambition outside of making heavy rock music at this time and Zep and Cream are the two bands I can hear when I listen to this debut album. This is not a Progressive Rock album, I must stress this. Caveat emptor.

Recorded during the night to reduce expenses and self-financed by the band,this record really had to struggle into existence.Saved by the patch up job done by future-mainstay, Terry Brown and the band's dogged determination to have an LP "out" and thus gain kudos amongst Toronto's thriving bar-band scene,there is a raw energy and urgency in the 8 cuts presented here.

Personally only Working Man,Before And After and Here Again are worth listening to-all the other tracks are OK,but if I want to listen to Zep-style rock,I'd rather it was Led Zep II-the real thing.

As I have stated-anyone looking for Progressive Rock will be disappointed. Yet there are seeds of progressiveness and the direction they would take in the future to be found here. For fans,completists and heavy rockers only though. Probably a 4 star heavy rock album.

Review by slipperman
3 stars Humble beginnings for a band that would go on to progress at a staggering rate. 'Rush' is the culmination of the band's years as a club act in their Canadian homeland, mirroring their influences quite clearly. 8 songs with a distinct Led Zeppelin, Blue Cheer and Cream flavor, emphasis on the Zeppelin! If you judge it against the band's future output, it won't hold up. If you judge it as an early '70s hard rock album, which is exactly what it is, it still comes up as somewhat average. It is certainly toppled by prime albums from Dust, Bang, Kiss, Black Sabbath, Sir Lord Baltimore and others of that ilk.

"What You're Doing" and "Working Man" kick huge amounts of ass, while "Here Again" and "Before And After" foreshadow the more textured elements the band would use more of in the future. "Take A Friend" is just a really nice song with great momentum that I find hard to dislike. "In The Mood" is the only glaringly bad spot, there's just no reason for boogiefied bar-rock like this to exist.

'Rush' was the world's introduction to Geddy Lee's otherworldly screech and Alex Lifeson's expert guitar work, and with some pretty big grooves on offer, it provides some good listening occasionally.

Review by The Crow
2 stars This Rush's debut it's only a correct 70's rock album, but almost nothing progressive here...

Here we can find songs in a very Led Zeppelin's style, like the first track Finding My Way, where Geddy Lee tries to sing like Robert Plant, like in the whole album. Songs like Take A Friend, Need Some Love and In The Mood are in this same way. Others like Here Again, are more bluesy, but never more original... Obviously, Rush were still trying to find their own sound in this work... And I miss a lot the Neil Peart drumming and lyrics in this album too...

Best songs for me: Finding My Way (good rocking songs, with great singing but not too original...), Before and After (with a beautiful guitar introduction...) and Working Man (with a riff that remembers me a little to Black Sabbath...)

It's not a bad album, but it's almost nothing original or surprising here and it's not indicate to prog lovers. Only for Rush's fans!!!

Review by Padraic
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars As has been said many times, Rush's debut finds them struggling to find an identity, with much of the tracks obviously Zeppelin inspired. Indeed, if I recall, Zeppelin's debut in 1969 had an enormous impact on Geddy and Alex, apart from Cream and the usual heavy blues suspects. In any case, those seeking progressive Rush will not find it here; instead, fun flat-out hard rocking tracks like "Finding My Way", "What You're Doing", "In The Mood", and of course the playground for live extended soloing, "Working Man", a radio favorite in parts of the US which helped launch their career. Even here, however, the talent of Geddy and Alex are unmistakable. Those who are new to the band should hold off on this, I view it as a passable record but really for Rush completionists. The introduction of Neil Peart makes their next album perhaps the "true" debut.
Review by Marc Baum
3 stars The best selling Canadian debut of all time! With this release, the world first got a taste of the now-famous Canadian prog-rock trio. However, the man behind the drums on this is not Neil Peart; this was right before they picked up Neil. Even so, this is still a good listen.

We begin to hear the molding of the all-so-familiar "Rush Sound" on this album. Alex's hard, 60's rock influenced riffs and solos, Geddy's smooth bass playing and even experimental drumming. This isn't the feel you'd get from Neil behind the set, but it gets the job done. Most of the songs on here aren't what we'd consider to be Rush classics, though; the only hit this album generated was "Working Man". But that's not to say the others aren't good: check out "What You're Doing", "Finding My Way" and "In The Mood" for some highlights.

After this, Rush became the trio we all know and love: Alex, Geddy and Neil. Even with the absence of Neil on this album, they still managed to make great music. Even it is all in all the least magnificant Rush album of the classic 70's. Check this out of you're a fan of classic rock and/or Rush.

album rating: 6.5/10 points = 67 % on MPV scale = 3/5 stars

point-system: 0 - 3 points = 1 star / 3.5 - 5.5 points = 2 stars / 6 - 7 points = 3 stars / 7.5 - 8.5 points = 4 stars / 9 - 10 points = 5 stars

Review by Certif1ed
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars A Rush of Page, Plant, Bonham and Jones to the head?

The opening bars will make you wonder where all of the Led Zep comparisons come from. On this, their debut, Rush show a mature and above all energetic style from the get-go, with good if inconsistent attention to detail and generally crisp execution - but a shortage of real progressive material and the continually emerging evidence of their main influence is what keeps this album from gaining the "Essential" mark and maintains it in the "Very Good 1970s Rock album" stable. The "copycat" label is not entirely unjustified, as some of those riffs sound amazingly familiar - but then the same could be said about the original source...

An almost saccharine-sweet flange and reverb drenched guitar passage from Lifeson is soon joined by Geddy Lee's fat bass, which lends a slight touch of aggression to the sound to take it into the bittersweet. The material develops and builds slowly and, to these ears at least sounds so far ahead of its time that I wonder why its prog nature is questioned at all.

When the big riff kicks in, the Led Zep comparisons suddely become apparent - but this is no mere clone, and there are also strong Deep Purple touches in here.

It's true that "Before and After" carries a standard song structure - but Rush play about with the format so wonderfully that we feel more open to anything they care to throw at us as the album progresses.

"Finding My Way" begins with a Zep-style riff, but quickly picks up into Rush's more unique style - and I'm suddenly put in mind of the later power-metal band Riot. This feels like a more standard rock song, but the drama is sustained and driven through texture and key changes that move surprisingly slowly, given the tempo of the song. Again, Rush play with the format, and develop a new idea in a surprisingly subtle way.

The tempo drops for "Here Again", showing a good consideration for presenting the material here as a complete album. An underlying blues feel is belied by the slightly awkward feeling in the arrangement. You can hear what Rush are trying to achieve, but the timing is mainly what kills it, and it comes across as under-rehearsed. Geddy Lee's emotive performance alas cannot save this low point - although I'd imagine that a die-hard Rush fan would forgive everything and just hear the great song underneath, which is understandable - unlike Lifeson's decidedly dodgy, aimless and in places, painful solo.

"In The Mood" is where the non-Rush fan might start to give up - if the previous song hasn't already done it. A standard little rocker on the surface, Rush nevertheless attempt to make it different to the run-of-the-mill, which is applaudable, but sadly doesn't really work. At least Lifeson's solo here has some direction, even if it's lacking in invention. The lyrics "I just wanna rock an' roll you woman, Until the night is done" indicate clearly where this song is coming from - emphatically non-prog.

"Need Some Love" is another simple rocker - but with a riff from hell around 1:30. A must hear for fans of 1970s rock (and why wouldn't you be, if you like Prog ;0).

"Take a Friend" is musically derivative, but Rush show attention to detail that was to become a hallmark of their developing style, with some interesting vocal harmonies and a commendably structured guitar solo. Rutsey does a passable Bonham impression to complete this Zep-fest.

You can pratically pinpoint the influence to the second album of that famous band in "What You're Doing" - an almost flawlessly executed piece of boogie that is enormously satisfying.

"Working Man", clocking in at 7 minutes closes as we began - a strong and original feeling piece that's almost in Prog territory, as interesting interspersions chop up the continuity of the riffs.

On the subject of riffs, it is the ubiquity of riffs on this album which place it firmly into proto- metal territory - in "Working Man", there is a Sabbath-like persistence and development that becomes a jam, in the traditions of hard rock bands such as Bakerloo and Cream with satisfyingly sustained build-ups and rhythm changes.

The burn-out is interesting too, as it carries a real flavour of spontaneity and everything that a great rock band does live about it - I could swear that some Motorhead songs end like this.

In summary, there are (probably) worse introductions to Rush, and if, like me, you like to examine a band's full history, this enjoyable debut will not entirely disappoint - but while it certainly enters Prog territory, it's not a Prog Rock album.

I suggest that if you're into Prog and not familiar with Rush (is there really anyone who isn't? ;o), then 2112 is a better starting place.

Review by obiter
2 stars Not a prog album but a fairly reasonable rock album.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing and it is perhaps possible to see a suggestion of where the band may go, but for me this album stands way out on its own: fairly straight forward early-mid 70s rock: no less no more. I can't really detect any prog in this album at all.

Working Man remains one of my favourite Rush tracks but perhaps that's because I'm working all the time and look forward to a cold beer when I eventually get home.

Review by Australian
2 stars When I first listened to this album I remember thinking that it was good, but there is nothing at all progressive about it. I still believe this, I fail to see any strong progressive music in this album but then again this is the first album by the band. "Rush" is without a doubt a hard-rock album and it is really quite un-unique work in terms of progressive rock. The band has taken obvious influences from hard rock acts from around the same period. Another very obvious feature of the album is that legendary drummer/percussionist Neil Peart was not in the band at this time, instead John Rutsey takes up the role. He is by no means a bad drummer, he is actually quite good but Rush isn't all that innovative without Neil Peart who is in many respects the backbone of this band.

This album just to me says Led Zeppelin, I can't listen to "Rush" without thinking of Zeppelin. The band always had a Led Zeppelin Esq sound but here, in the early days of the band these influences are at their peak. These influences, how ever strong did not restrict the band from forging their own unique style which shows up on this album is some places. Most notably these moments occur in "Finding my Way", and "Working Man", the rest of the album is really, to say it plainly un-unique. In terms of progressiveness mind you. As a hard rock album "Rush" isn't half bad and most, if not all the songs are good in that sense. Alex Lifeson's guitar is the main stand-point of the music and he really just takes over in places, not dissimilar to later Rush though.

1.Finding My Way (3/5) 2.Need Some Love (2/5) 3.Take A Friend (2/5) 4.Here Again (2.5/5) 5.What You're Doing (2.5/5) 6.In The Mood (2/5) 7.Before And After (2.5/5) 8.Working Man (3/5) Total = 19.5 divided by 8 = 2.437 2 stars Collectors/fans only

Despite the two star rating, "Rush" is quite a good album but due to the fact that it has almost nothing to do with prog, apart from the fact that is was a base from the band, I can't rate too high. This album certainly influenced later albums by Rush and really this set the band up for later fame and fortune which can only a few years later. I'd recommend this album to any Rush fan looking to see the start of this great and wonderful band, if not it's probably best that you do not spend too much money on this. To close, if you are going to get this album I highly recommend getting the re- mastered version!

Review by Mellotron Storm
3 stars 3.5 stars. There is definetly a ZEPPELIN feel at times due to Alex Lifesons guitar playing. It's no secret that Mr.Page is his hero and it shows in his playing. It's hard to believe this straight ahead rocker came out when prog was so popular in 1974 but then ZEPPELIN was their prime source of inspiration at this point.

. "Finding My Way" is a great way to start the record with the guitar building in the intro and Geddy screaming, RUSH had arrived ! This is so raw sounding. "Need Some Love" has some good drum work and guitar too, but the lyrics...ouch ! They would really steer clear of these kinds of lyrics for the rest of their careers. "Take A Friend" is all about Mr.Lifeson putting on a show ! Amazing guitar on this one.

"Here Again" is a really good song, sounding kind of bluesy with an incredible vocal performance from Geddy. A fantastic extended guitar solo too. "What Your Doing" is ok, with some catchy guitar melodies. "In The Mood' still gets a lot of air play on FM radio up here. This was their first radio friendly tune and the lyrics are pretty funny. "Before And After" is another one that's just ok, with Alex shining again. "Working Man" is one of my favourite RUSH songs period. The lyrics are meaningful and the intro with the SABBATH-like guitars are great ! A nice little bass solo from Geddy and John Rutsey does a really good job on the kit for this one. When I saw them play this song in Toronto I would have sworn they turned up the volume a few decibels, it was amazing.

Good debut with some memorable songs.

Review by Chris H
4 stars Ok, Ok, we all know that Neal Peart must be drumming for Rush to make a PROGRESSIVE masterpiece blah, blah, blah. I think people fail to realize that Rush's self-titled debut album was one of their best in terms of musical agreement. Rush was and should have stayed a harder, Zeppelin-styled group, as their first album shows that this kind of music is their strong point. "Finding My Way" starts off the album with a flurry of riffs and some very underrated drumming, and Geddy's voice is at it's peak on this whole album. Mostly every other song on this album is in the hard rock vein, which means Alex is slashing like a maniac the whole entire time, and producing some excellent results. "In The Mood" and "Need Some Love" are some of the most intriguing riffs to come out of the era.

Now don't get me wrong, this isn't a straight hard-rock album. "Here Again" and the beginning of "Before And After" feature some excellent progressive tones, but as expected, in the middle of "Before And After" a bomb drops and the rocking starts up again at some of its finest points. Geddy's bass lines might not be in the spotlight here, as Alex's playing was at the most exhilarating of his career, but they are still impeccable. "Working Man" is the album closer, and it is one of Rush's most accessible songs for progressive fans, because of its awesome ending. Plus, you cant beat Geddy's bass work at around 2- 3 minutes into the song. Every progger in the world may hate this fact, but I'm 100% sure they know that John Rutsey worked his butt off on this album and would have made some fine music with Rush had he stayed on board.

This album was a hard one to pick a rating for, because of it's peculiar song arrangement. Three hard rock songs are split up by a progressive song, and then two hard rock songs get split by a progressive opening and a hard rock ending. I would have much preferred to see "Working Man" and "Before And After" switched around. I feel that the starting and stopping breaks up the groove of the album, therefore I like to think of this not as a masterpiece of an album, but as a compilation of 8 individual masterpieces. It does not flow well enough to be a masterpiece, therefore it can only get 4 stars from me. Rush's best work!

Review by Prog Leviathan
3 stars A fun debut album from one of my all-time favorite bands. Rush's first release smacks of bluesy Led Zepplitude, and is a far cry from where they'd end up in future releases. Still, despite the fact that their legendary drummer hadn't yet joined ranks, "Rush" still cranks out some great songs-- and even some concert favorites. As a whole, Alex's guitar smokes, while Geddy's bass is equally impressive, but neither are as experimental as they will come to be down the road.

"Finding My Way" is impossible not to sing-along to, while "Working Man" remains powerful enough (despite the group's gigantic output through the past 3 decades!) to have closed their last two tours. While Geddy's libido drives the third big song which everyone remembers, "In the Mood", I prefer the often forgotten "Here Again" and "Before and After", both of which show off the band's early dynamics and songwriting which foreshadows the coolness to come once Peart joins.

All in all a great album for fans of the band, but a poor introduction for neophytes (those from outside the progressive world, anyway).

Songwriting: 2 Instrumental Performances: 3 Lyrics/Vocals: 2 Style/Emotion/Replay: 4

Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Might be hard rock's greatest debut album

I played this album a lot back in the day and still think its a great sample of bluesy and arse kickin fun. I think the best songs on this debut are Finding My Way, Here Again, and What You're Doing, because of the tasty big riffs that Alex is throwing around. It's fun to hear Geddy with vocal cords in full youthful glory and crank this album way up. The speed and power of Lifeson is something to behold here.

While I thought this album was sub-par *for Rush* for many years I have since seen the error of prog snobbery tendencies and left them at the curb. The first three Rush albums are among their best. Absolutely killer hard rock shelled out with the benefit of youthful endurance and power. They got more sophisticated, more measured, and more refined over time, but they never got any "better" than their first three album, if rawk listening pleasure is important to you.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars The end of a wonderful friendship!

The above is intended to relate primarily to drummer John Rutsey's brief time with the band which, in album terms, is covered by this their debut release. It also however refers to the fact that I will be turning my attention to some of the albums of Rush in my forthcoming reviews!

"Rush" is first and foremost a hard rocking, blues driven album. There is little here which could by any stretch of imagination be called complex or challenging. What there is however is a collection of high quality performances and the sound of a band playing well within themselves.

Geddy Lee's vocals are something of an acquired taste, the high pitched John Anderson range keys making the band sound like Led Zeppelin on helium. Indeed, we may as well get those Zep similarities out of the way now, as there is no doubt about their presence here. To be fair, they are more apparent on some tracks such as "What you're doing" (which reminds me of "Heartbreaker" from LZ's second album) than others. Alex Lifeson's guitar riffs can be very reminiscent of those of Jimmy Page, as can his lead guitar solos.

Each side has a 7 minute feature track. "Here again" is a slower reflective number, the guitar inflections and melancholy vocal emphasising the blues side of the band. "Working man" also starts out as a slower piece of heavy rock before Lifeson lifts the pace with a storming guitar solo reminiscent of one of Alvin Lee's finer (Woodstock) moments. Those who enjoy unadulterated, straightforward guitar soloing should give this one a try.

As debut albums go, "Rush" has a lot going for it. OK, it's not exactly prog, but it is a high quality heavy rock album.

Review by 1800iareyay
3 stars This is a high-energy, simple debut that does not even hint at what Rush would do down the road. The band pays obvious homage to their heroes The Who, Cream, and Zeppelin with this firmly blues-based hard rock. It may not be progressive, but it's rather enjoyable. Lee and Lifeson are already displaying some impressive chops, and Rutsey's no slouch; he just has the incredible misfortune of being the guy who warmed the seat for Neil Peart.

Lyrically, this album shows why Geddy and Alex let neil do all the writing once he joined. The only track with any good lyrics at all is "Working Man," a bona fide Rush classic that usually makes an appearance at live shows. "Finding My Way" and "In the Mood" are equally enjoyable, but their lyrics are like those on teh rest of the album. "Here Again" is some of the heaviest stuff you'll hear, especially for that time period, when only Sabbath had heavier licks.

Overall, this is a strong debut musically. The lyrics, however, are bland at best (with teh exception of Working Man). From this stage, nobody could have guessed that when Rutsey left, his unknown replacement would drastically alter the band's path.

Grade: C

Review by Nightfly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Rush have never been a band to rest on their laurels and have been through many different styles throughout their thirty plus years career. On this, their 1974 debut they were pretty much a straight Heavy Rock band with no sign of the Progressive elements they would soon be displaying in their music. There's no doubt and the band would readily admit that they were heavily influenced by Led Zeppelin at this point. But that's no bad thing; after all, if you're going to be influenced by someone it may as well be the best. The album is notable as their only one to feature original Drummer John Rutsey who would be replaced of course by Neil Peart for Fly By Night.

The album features a few early favourites that would stay in the live set for the next few years at least. Namely Finding My Way, In the Mood, What You're Doing and Working Man and they're all great examples of seventies Heavy Rock. I was really reminded when I saw Rush on the R-30 tour a few years back what a great riff Finding My Way has as it was used as the intro to the R-30 medley that they opened the show with. Brilliant stuff!

The rest of the album is pretty good too though, especially the more laid back, seven and a half minute Here Again which has a fine solo from Guitarist Alex Liefson. The album is well produced with a nice bottom end and the band play well throughout and although Rutsey could never match the chops of Peart he shows that he's a good solid player.

Not an essential Rush album then but it's an impressive debut many lesser bands would have killed to have made.

Review by progrules
3 stars It's funny that the carreer of the great Rush started off with this album. Because this debut wasn't anythink like the next 6 or 7 albums they made after this. It's almost as if it's some sort of mistake, like they were heading for the wrong direction and recovered that with their next albums.

What's this debut like ? It's a simple hardrock album, it's almost funny as if you shouldn't take this too seriously. But of course I do because it's probably meant as a serious release. If you listen to the second, fifth or sixth song of this album you'll understand what I mean. I can't suppress a smile when I hear these songs. There are some more serious tracks, like my personal fav: Here Again or Before and after or Working man. I think these are really good songs. All in all this is not bad at all but far from a classic or excellent album. So I can only give it 3 stars.

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Rush" is the eponymously titled debut full-length studio album by Canadian, Toronto based progressive rock act Rush. The album was released through Moon Records in March 1974. Rush was formed in 1968 when the members were still in high school, but the trio lineup of Geddy Lee (lead vocals, bass), Alex Lifeson (guitars, backing vocals), and John Rutsey (drums, backing vocals), who recorded this album, wasnīt fully established until May 1971. After honing their playing and songwriting skills on the local Toronto scene, Rush recorded the material for the album at Eastern Sound Studios, Toronto in early 1973 - November 1973. As no label showed interest in releasing the album, the band and their management opted to release the album themselves through their own label Moon Records. The original Moon Records vinyl version was only pressed in 3.500 copies. After the track "Working Man" achieved some radio airplay and the Moon Records vinyl copies sold out, Mercury Records picked the album up for a re-release.

Stylistically the music on the album is power trio hard rock. Guitar, bass, drums, and vocals...1, 2, 3, 4 straight ahead blues based rockīnīroll with an attitude. Led Zeppelinīs most hard edged material is a valid reference point. Itīs pretty basic vers/chorus structured music, and most listeners into that type of music should be able to appreciate the unpolished rawness and authenticity of the material. Rush were already at this point, a very well playing act. The instrumental part of the music is tight, hard rocking, and organic, and Geddy Lee delivers his high pitched vocals with a convincing snarling attitude.

The album is a self-produced affair and the band have created a raw and organic sound for their hard rocking music, which suits the material well. The songwriting is relatively consistent in quality although not all tracks stand out equally much, but overall itīs a decent and somewhat promising debut album (Iīd mention "Finding My Way", "What Youīre Doing", and "Working Man" as some of the standout tracks). In retrospect itīs also one of a kind in the bandīs discography, as they would already start incorporating progressive rock ideas on "Fly by Night (1975)", which this album is completely devoid of. A 3 star (60%) rating is warranted.

(Originally posted on Metal Music Archives)

Review by Guillermo
3 stars Another album which I listened to a very long time ago, in mid 1983. By that time I was in my last year in Prep School. The amateur-semi-professional band on which I was playing the drums then , a "Power Trio" with a cousin and one of my brothers, was then put temporary "out of action" due to school obligations and the fact that my cousin was tired of playing the bass and wanted to buy a guitar and become another guitarist in the band (in 1984 a bassist was found and our band became a quartet which mainly played original songs!). So, by that time my brother met two musicians which were more or less of my age and also were in the same school I was studying (to be honest, at that time I wasn`t a dedicated student, but I managed to finish my Prep School studies in the three years official period!). These two musicians (who also are brothers) were great fans of RUSH and they had all the albums of the band. My brother, five years older than me, went to play with professional bands which played covers in bars, for a time, and I went to "Jam" with these two teenager musicians for several months with the original aim to form a band which could play gigs, but it never came a reality (most of the time was spent on parties or in talking about some "philosophical and existential themes", lke many teenagers do!). The only RUSH album which I have listened until then was "Permanent Waves" which my cousin had in his LP collection. These musicians some months later found another (very good, by the way) drummer and called their band "Rasbora", a name taken from a kind of fish, I think. They composed their own songs, with lyrics written and sung in English (both were English language teachers) but their music was very similar to RUSH`s music, so among friends they were called Rushbora as a joke! (They weren`t very happy with that joke, but they weren`t very angry instead!). So, with these RUSH`s fans I had the chance to borrow from them and listen to several RUSH`s albums. This album was one of them.

After this brief autobiographical note ("Who cares?" "Is he really a "Prog Reviewer"?"), now I`m going to write a brief review about this album.

There was and maybe still is some people who criticizes a lot the early albums recorded by RUSH. Some people consider them as an imitation of the Heavy Metal style which bands like LED ZEPPELIN had in those days. I think that the comparison with LED ZEPPELIN is very apparent, but RUSH still had some originalty in their music, which since their fist album also had some Prog Rock influences. Geddy Lee`s vocals were not very liked by many people, me included, but with the passing of time this band developed their own style and became an even more original band. The thing that makes this album belong more to the Heavy Metal style was that their then drummer, John Rutsey, as a more Heavy metal oriented drummer than Neil Peart, who, in my opinion, still was heavy drummer, but his ifnluence as a more oriented Prog Rock drummer was very important, and his lyrics and conceptual ideas for their albums became even more important with the passing of time. So, in this first album, the band was more a Heavy Metal band very similar to other bands of that time.

The songs of this album are good, but some of them sounded even better when they were included in their 1976 live album with Peart called "All the World`s a Stage". There, these songs became Heavier and more Prog-influenced, particularly "Finding My Way", "What You're Doing" and "Working Man". Rutsey was also a good drummer, but like other bands, RUSH had to find another musician who complemented their style very well and to develop it more. With Peart, RUSH defined their identity better and became a better band, in my opinion.

Review by Queen By-Tor
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Humble beginnings from the progressive monsters.

Before Moving Pictures, before Permanent Waves, before A Farewell to Kings, Hemispheres and even before Caress of Steel, Rush was a hard rock band trying to break into the music scene. Often compared to Led Zeppelin in terms of sound and rockiness it's been rumored that the first time many heard Working man on the radio they called the station wondering when the next Zep album would be out. The comparisons aren't without reason, however, as this outing is actually very much like those Zeppelin boys. Geddy shrieks and Alex whips out heavy riffs while Rutsey bangs on the drums and the band makes some good hard rock. Progressive? No, not yet. It's experimented with and generally danced around, but there's nothing truly progressive here.

The album opens up with the usual Geddy scream of ''Yeah! Ho yeah!'' as Finding My Way starts quite fast. This is a good hard rock song that's a pretty good indicator of what's to come on the next album, but for now it's just a good rocker. Need Some Love is a fairly basic song with a pretty cool little drum thing going at the chorus, thankfully it's short and we're quickly onto the next song. Take A Friend is another very basic hard rocker. Good song, but nothing to be overly excited about and certainly not progressive. What You're Doing is a stab at some past record executives as is Queen's Death On Two Legs. Regardless, it's another rock song that is good at best.

So we have a lot of rock moments here. Anything progressive or poor? Let's dig deeper...

Poor moments? Well no, but there is a song that likely won't appeal to prog heads. In The Mood is a very radio friendly song that actually gets a lot of airtime in Canada. Is it a good progressive single like Tom Sawyer? Certainly not. It's likely the most basic song on the album, ''hey baby it's a quarter to 8, I fell I'm in the mood.'' Definitely not the high-brow stuff that we Rush fans are by now used to. This can likely be attributed to the lack of Mr. Lyrics, Neil Peart, but he won't be around until the next album.

Onto the finer moments of the album. While there may not be any true progressive moments on this album (indeed, not until By-Tor and the Snow Dog), there are some starts. Here Again and Before And After are a pair of songs that show the band taking a minute to slow down, write some longer compositions and just experiment. They still sound like some of the slower Zep stuff, but they're getting there. Is is the stuff that would likely push them into progressive grounds later on. It's not until the end, however, where the beacon of hope really shines. Working Man is what could be considered proto-heavy prog. A heavy song with hints of progressive-ness and with some great, not too self indulgent soloing right in there. This really was the start of the band, and it's kind of the precursor for the sound that they would eventually create on their second, third and even fourth albums.

Really, it's a shame that Peart couldn't be around right from the start, but that's okay, since not too long after this album he'll show up for an audition on a bike with his drums in garbage bags and blow away his competitors. Besides, Rutsey does a fantastic job for what they were trying to accomplish on this effort and he's quite often a very overlooked force in the early days of the band. So, in the end this album gets a 2. Rush fans will certainly enjoy this, as will Zeppelin-ers. Prog fans should skip this one and look more for the band's classic era albums. Fun stuff none the less and an interesting start to one of Canada's greatest bands.

Review by LinusW
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars With Rush being the second progressive band I came to knew, it feels natural to start by reviewing their nice to excellent albums. And that's an honest opinion. Sure. They aren't all Moving Picture, and some aren't even prog. What IS for sure is that every album deserves an honest listening, which many here at PA won't give them for reasons mentioned above.

Well, onto the album!

In 1974 the Canadian trio Rush releases their self-titled first album.

Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and John Rutsey presents a Zeppelinesque effort, but less blues-drenched and way more energetic. There's a lot of power in the music and Geddy sings aggressively throughout the album, which make the album a burst of energy more than anything else. Only Here Again and about half of Before and After with it's soothing guitar harmonics offers some well-needed rest.

The absence of Neil Peart is most notable when it comes to the lyrics. What can be heard on Rush is nothing more than what is typically heard on the random '70s hard rock effort. The drumming itself isn't at all bad, it matches the music just fine, and I can't even say I miss Neil.

To sum it up: Good ROCK album coloured by it's time topped with good musicians and a lot of intensity. A listening experience best described as some good fun!


Review by Sinusoid
2 stars More or less, this is the pure hard rock side of Rush for those who care very much about Rush. This fan holds some solace in RUSH since it was the first of their albums I've listened to. Even as relatively new band, the drumming and guitar work is impeccable.

However, Rush aren't really forging new ground yet. This type of hard rock is only a teensy bit different than stuff coming from Led Zeppelin, the Who or Free. Everything is ''correct'' in the hard rock sense including the lyrics, the feel, the macho-ness, the blues influences, etc.

It tires easily on any non-rocker. Most progsters like to discover new things each time they listen to an album repeatedly, but RUSH offers nothing of that sort. Rush would eventually take a more complex, cerebral approach (likely with the addition of Peart), but for now, they're just a rock band having fun. Not horrible by any means, but only Rush fans should have an interest in this.

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
2 stars The beginning of Rush

In Britain, progressive Rock was already in its absolute prime in 1974. Rush (being from Canada), however, seem to be wholly oblivious of the progressive Rock movement on this their debut album from that year. What we find here is rather strongly derivative, Led Zeppelin-influenced Blues Rock/Hard Rock that could easily have come out of Britain in late 60's. It would take Rush several years and several albums to gradually transform into a Prog Rock act, but not a single trace of that future development could be foretold on the basis of what can be found on this debut album. This is a clearly premature effort that sounds outdated and irrelevant today in relation to the albums Rush released afterwards and also in relation to progressive Rock in general or even Rock in general. Had this debut been their only album or if they had continued in this style forever, Rush would barely be a footnote in the history of Rock music. Thankfully, they developed considerably with future releases. Only for Rush fans and collectors this one

Review by rushfan4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The debut album by my all-time favorite band in the world. This album is the only Rush album to not have Neil Peart on drums, but John Rutsey does an admirable job in the drum seat. As the story goes, when a Cleveland, Ohio radio station first played Working Man, the radio station and local records stores were inundated for requests for the new Led Zeppelin song and record. Which is quite a compliment given the greatness of Led Zeppelin. My initial feelings on this CD were that it was quite different from the Rush that I had gotten to know and love. It is more straight ahead rock and roll or hard rock in the vein of classic bands such as Cream and Led Zeppelin. Funny enough it didn't really grow on me until years later when they dusted off tracks like Working Man and played them live. I pretty much enjoy all of the songs on the album with my favorites being Finding My Way, In The Mood, What You're Doing, and Working Man. Tracks such as Before and After start off with a nice instrumental which foreshadows a direction that Rush would head towards musically in the future. And even with this debut you can see that Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson knew how to play their bass guitar and lead guitar with skill.

Being that Rush are my favorite band, I have listened to this debut album far more often than a non-fan or casual listener might want to listen to it. With all of these listens I have developed a familiarity and comfort with all of these songs and they are somewhat special to me as they are the beginnings of the greatness that is Rush.

Read my review as you will, and take it with a grain of salt knowing that it comes from a Rush fanboy. This album could rate anywhere from 2 to 4 stars depending on your point of view. For most, it probably is only a 2 star album that only Rush fans would like. Quite frankly, it also could be a 4 star album, as I feel that it is an essential addition to my collection and to any Rush fans collection. But this review is for what I think of as the traditional prog rock fan and for that I think this album is better than a fan only release. Therefore, I am giving it 3 stars because I find it to be quite good, but for the traditional prog fan, it isn't essential.

Review by MovingPictures07
3 stars This is the beginning for one of the most influential classic prog and rock acts, with some blues-focused plain hard rock. This is a good album! However, it's far from what Rush would develop over the next 30 years of their existence.

1. Finding My Way- Great song! I really like the guitar on this one and Rutsey and Lee keep up quite well. If this is Rush copying Led Zeppelin, then I think Rush did a better job! That accusation always gets me; they're not copying Led Zeppelin. The only similarity is that this song and this album is blues and hard rock-based. Nonetheless, this is a great rocker most notably featuring outstanding guitar work. 8/10

2. Need Some Love- This song is shorter and simpler than the album's opener, but it's still a really enjoyable song. If you're in the mood for some hard rock, this song is perfectly crafted. Not prog, but a great track. 6/10

3. Take a Friend- The intro is interesting here, building up and then exploding into a style that is similar to the previous song. Lifeson's guitar shines once again; Lee and Rutsey are also definitely up to their game as well, despite this not being prog. It still features some good musicianship! Good track and I feel similarly about this track as I do the previous one. 6/10

4. Here Again- The same feel is continued here, though in a much slower form. This is my least favorite on the album, but it's still a decent song with some good blues/rock-based compositional skills and musicianship. Doesn't strike me as much and doesn't really explore anything groundbreaking, but a decent start for this ambitious trio. 5/10

5. What You're Doing- This is better than the song that preceded it. Early Rush were better generally when they simply rocked out and this song proves that. Powerful guitar riffs from Lifeson drive this song along with Lee's somewhat-echo vocals. Another solid rock song. 6/10

6. In the Mood- It is so interesting to see how Rush started out before Peart and this song is no exception. The lyrics here are definitely not later Rush! Nonetheless, this song is more in the vein of another shorter more blues-based track like Need Some Love, whereas the previous one was more rock-based. 6/10

7. Before and After- Another slower song! This time it's better than Here Again though, but I'm not quite sure how to explain it other than the fact that it strikes me personally with more efficiency. The band is still up to par and the structure of this song proves to continue the somewhat atypical elements to make this interesting and enjoyable, even if it isn't prog. 6/10

8. Working Man- This is more along the lines of Rush that we're accustomed to hearing. This is easily the best track on here and shows the potential that Rush really had in becoming what they did throughout the next couple albums. The guitar is fabulous here and this is early Rush at their best. Working Man is a perfect rocker. 9/10

This may not be prog but it is still one hell of an album that shows the very beginnings of a band that were going to go on to accomplish many things in the realm of music. There is definitely loads of potential here! If you want to rock out, check this out. For the casual Rush fan or someone who isn't into hard rock as much, you can skip this and still be fine.

The low point of Rush's career. and that's quite impressive!

Good, but not essential.

Review by crimson87
3 stars This is the first Rush album I have heard. It's far from being a bad release , just happens that when we put Rush's career in perspective , their debut does not have the characteristics of their progressive period. There are no sci fi epics , no thought provoking lyrics , no premiere drumming and no synthetizers. This is a typical hard rock album from the 70's.

However , since Led Zeppelin is my favourite non prog band and being this debut really zeppelinesque , I happen to enjoy this record quite a lot. Even more than the ones in their post Power Windows period. Here the instrumentation is simple and the lyrics deal with typical issues such as love , frienship and broken hearts. Much like some LZ releases. That being said , from the first time you heard the opening riff of Finding my way you can tell this guys had great potential , this songs are addictive and energetic enough to give you a good time. Some songs on this record will become permanent part of the band's live acts such as the blues based Working Man or the rocker In the Mood.

Even if it's a little unoriginal for 1974 and it pales in comparaison to their prog milestones , Rush debut is a very well crafted hard rock album that fullfills it's purpose.

Review by Conor Fynes
3 stars 'Rush' - Rush (64/100)

There seems to be majority agreement that Rush's self-titled started their career off on one of its weaker notes. I wouldn't contest that notion either; compared to the heady intellectualism of their peak era, the bluesy, Led Zeppelin-influenced hard rock on this one can barely compete. Be that as it may, I think it is unduly overlooked by a lot of fans- myself included. Back in high school, I bought every album of theirs I could lay my adolescent hands on. 2112 and Caress of Steel blew me away, Moving Pictures even moreso. Even Counterparts (which I'll stand beside as one of the most underrated rock albums ever, let alone of Rush's career) struck a lasting note with me. After giving the debut a few listens however, I dismissed it, and the CD ended up at the back and bottom of my shelf where the U2 and Aerosmith best-of compilations dwelled.

While my music taste has only grown more perverse and alienating in the years since, I actually find myself enjoying Rush far more than I did at the height of my fandom. There's not a lot of depth to their songwriting. The lyrics are probably best described as pedestrian at best. But couldn't the same be said for Led Zeppelin's early masterpieces? Decades later, and there's still a primal charm to unpretentious, no-frills rock music. The problem is that so many of the bands (both then and now) that go that route failed to say anything memorable with such a limited palette. Even if they would quickly abandon it for bolder pastures, Rush had no problem expressing their personality with a basic rock set-up.

Love or hate the album, Rush stands out from many of its amorphous hard rock contemporaries. While their influences are active in colouring the band's performance, Rush's sound on the self-titled was already distinctive, thanks in no small part to the voice of Geddy Lee. His singing is unique to the point of being an acquired taste; that's virtually unheard of in hard rock. His high-pitched wail has always been the potential dealbreaker with new listeners, and none moreso than here. I think the impish shriek Geddy's vocals lean on works for the music they were making here, but it would be a couple of albums still before he learned to make the most of his voice. As it happens, there are moments where it sounds like he pushes himself further than he should; some of the inflections on "Take a Friend" and "Here Again" have always rubbed my ears the wrong way. Regardless, the fact that you could already pick his voice out of a crowd of a thousand this early on only works to be the benefit of the music.

The easy highlight on the self-titled is Alex Lifeson. The thoughtful restraint and feeling he put into his playing on albums like Hemispheres has long since made him one of my favourite guitarists (not to mention a major reason why I decided to pick up the instrument for myself.) He doesn't offer the same laid-back sense on Rush. With the debut, he's all about pure riffmaking. "Finding My Way" offers one of the best opening riffs to an album in hard rock history. And, of course, it would be nuts to go without mentioning "Working Man", Rush's first de facto 'hit.' Call me crazy, but I hear echoes of Black Sabbath in "Working Man"- just replace Geddy with Ozzy and it might have fit on Paranoid or Sabbath's own self-titled debut.

Even when the songwriting isn't always that great, Lifeson's riffs (and leads) are a joy to hear. This segues me to the biggest issue Rush faced at this early stage. When the song writing is good, it's really good. The rest of the time, they don't seem all that phased by mediocre writing. "Finding My Way" is a great opener. "In the Mood" is a memorable pop track. "Working Man" is a heavy beast of a closer. The rest of the tracks help me remember why I wasn't a fan of the album in the first place. None of it is bad songwriting per se; just audibly uninspired. Keeping in mind that they would be writing epics about [&*!#] like space and necromancers a few years later, listening to Geddy unironically wailing about 'needing some love' is pretty lame. Ditto that for singing songs about how great it feels to 'take'(?) a friend. Do these guys know they would be doing full-blown prog rock a couple of years later? Jesus Christ...

I also promised myself I'd bring up Geddy Lee as a bassist. The most common wasted opportunity in rock music is a bassist who sounds content to mindlessly follow the chords of the guitarist. Unfortunately, that's the case more often than not in this sort of hard rock. Not only does Geddy pave his own way independent of Lifeson's thunder, the aggressive tone of his bass is perfectly suited to the music they're playing here. Unsurprisingly, the would-be weakest link is the drummer John Rutsey. He had to leave after an album due to touring complications related to diabetes. Although he holds up a decent beat here, he lacked the presence to keep up with the already-distinctive personalities of Lifeson and Lee. Running into Neil Peart was the best-possible thing to happen to them; a drummer that could not only keep up, but take charge of any aspects Rush lacked in somewhat- namely, the lyrics.

But what if that had never happened? Think of it this way: imagine a parallel universe where the Rush we knew never existed. Instead, three guys from Toronto had decided to make a bluesy, Zeppelin-influenced hard rock album before calling it quits, to start families and become high school teachers (or something.) If Rush was all we had to judge from what would become one of the strongest legacies in rock music, its qualities would undoubtedly be more apparent. Geddy's distinctive (if not always pleasant) voice and aggressive bass playing, Alex's energy and tone, and the riffs- by Gött- THE RIFFS! "Finding My Way", "In the Mood" and the almighty "Working Man" are great examples of mid-70s hard rock, and while it would take Neil Peart to elevate them to the next level, Rush's debut still stands as a pretty solid affair in its own right.

Review by The Sleepwalker
2 stars Rush's debut has a pretty nice cover. Unfortunately it doesn't get much better than the cover. This really must be one of the worst albums I own. The reason I bought this was because I knew one track that is on this album: "Working Man". Not knowing any other songs from this album I decided to buy it, and I was very dissapointed when I listened it. The album features some bluesy rock songs, clearly inspired by bands like Led Zeppelin. Most of the songs sound immature and unambitious though.

Songs like "In The Mood", "What You're Doing", "Take A Friend" and "Need Some Love" aren't interesting to my ears by any means and have nearly nothing in common with songs Rush would make during different eras in their career. The album also features several songs that are better, like "Before And After" and the longest track from the album "Here Again". Also the opener "Finding My Way" is one of the few tracks that I enjoy on this album. The only great moment on this album is the heavy album closer "Working Man". Though not as excellent as many songs Rush would later release, this is a very fine song. It has some pretty simple but good riffs in it, and also a lot of soloing.

Apart from "Working Man" and perhaps "Finding My Way" this album doesn't have much to offer. Also, "Working Man" can be found on live albums by Rush, and I would recommend getting those over this album, as this album contains a lot of uninteresting songs. I definitely think this album deserves only two stars, as I enjoy very few of the music on it.

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This isn't the real Rush yet and there's not a second of prog in sight for miles, but this is just a very enjoyable hard rock album in its own right. Unlike later Rush albums, the influences from other bands is still very prominent in their sound. In my ears that would be from Led Zeppelin and Budgie.

On the next album, Neil Peart would kick Rush really into action. His creative drumming style is really missed here. John Rutsey doesn't do a bad job but it's all pretty straightforward rock drumming, none of the vintage counter- and poly-rhythms, no surprising time signatures, no fills nor frills that would be the groundwork for Rush's take on progressive rock that would start on their next album.

That not withstanding, the fury and energy here is only matched by the 1976 live album All The World's A Stage. Except for Before And After, that shows a first glimpse of more dynamic song writing in its intro, all the best tunes of this one ended up on that live album. Judging from my love for this I would easily rate this 4 stars but since it isn't up to the same level of later Rush albums 3 will have to do.

Review by tarkus1980
3 stars In the beginning, before Neil Peart joined the band (the original drummer was one John Rutsey, who never really tries to make himself sound like a "drum god" on this album but at least sounds good enough), Rush was basically just another hard rock power trio, with one distinguishing feature; they could play the absolute living hell out of their instruments (well, they also had a singer who sounded like Robert Plant with his nuts in a vice, but we'll ignore that; Geddy's voice has never bothered me). They wore their influences on their sleeve, and none of the songs betray much in the way of stylistic originality (other than playing their instruments with greater ferocity than others did), so it's hard to rate this album as one of the band's best. Still, it's an interesting curiousity, and there are some parts here that rate with the best material the band did during the 70's.

The best tracks are the ones that bookend the album. "Finding My Way," if nothing else, displays an incredible sense of showmanship as an opener in the incredibly energetic guitar lines, and the way Geddy's screeching vocals play off of the solid main riff is very impressive. "Working Man," which closes the album, has an absolutely gargantuan slower riff in the verses, and an equally great faster riff which the band uses as the foundation of what's arguably the best pure jam the band ever did. I quite regret that Alex and Geddy didn't engage in these kinds of battles more often, honestly. This is one of the few Rush songs that I actively look forward to hearing on the radio; few things compare to the thrill of pumping the bass up to its highest level on my car stereo and blasting out my eardrums with that jam. And the extended ending, well, I like it just fine. After all, if Jethro Tull could have awesome extended codas, why couldn't Rush?

A third moderate highlight is "What You're Doing," with a riff closely modeled off of that to "Heartbreaker" and a great heavy guitar sound, as well as an amusing Geddy vocal delivery. Unfortunately, the album doesn't have any other tracks that I find very good, and some actively annoy me. "Need Some Love" and "In the Mood" are short and novel for Rush, but they're kinda dumb and average to my ears ("In the Mood" at least has some goofy joviality, though). "Before and After" has a fairly pretty acoustic introduction, with a nice build into the electric parts, but eventually it's overcome by a fairly pedestrian rocker. "Take a Friend" has a moderately catchy chorus, but its opening and closing, as intricate and tricky as it might be, just seems pointlessly messy to me (an ill harbinger of Rush to come). And finally, "Here Again" is about as close to a clone of "Since I've Been Loving You" as could exist without actually copying the melody, and it really betrays Rush's status as a second class hard rock band.

Still, this is reasonable for a debut album. It's extremely unpolished, but it betrays a good amount of talent on the part of the band members. There's no concept or real ambition, but that's where part of the enjoyment comes from.

Review by progpositivity
2 stars Rush's 1974 debut was a quality hard rock album, influenced in no small part by the vocals of Robert Plant, the heavy blues guitar style of Jimmy Page and by the wide-reaching hard rock influence of Led Zeppelin in general. Depending upon my mood, I enjoy listening to this album more than to many of Led Zeppelin's albums but that is a matter of personal taste.

The highlight is the 7:10 closer and fan favorite "Working Man", a song that still remains a staple of the band's live performances. As such, more definitive performances are available on live Rush albums.

If you are a classic rock fan with a penchant for Rush, this album clearly is for you. Otherwise, I don't see this as an item of interest to general prog-rockers. For this reason, I'll designate it as a high quality "for collectors/fans only" album. 2 stars.

Review by AtomicCrimsonRush
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Every great band has a beginning...

The first Rush album is nowhere near their virtuoso best as that would develop on subsequent albums such as "2112", "Moving Pictures" or "Hemispheres". However as a debut this is quite an achievement with some of the best heavy prog you will hear. It begins with the blistering heavy riffing 'Finding My Way' that shimmers with strong energy and Lee belts out the words with conviction and power. He had a higher voice in these early days and at times is metal screechy but still a great singer. The guitars on the album of Lifeson are raw but I like that, more like Led Zeppelin but they would develop their own sound and become Rush.

The drums are not Peart of course in this incarnation but John Rutsey is competent. There is little in the way of progressive in this early Rush album but the potential is there and oozes through on gems such as 'Finding My way', 'In The Mood', 'What You're Doing' and the quintessential treasure, 'Working Man'. There are Led Zeppelinesque riffs on this latter track and some cool time sig changes. I love the verses and the riff in the chorus that has haunted me for years.

There are some moments of mediocrity such as the saccharine 'Here Again' and the dull 'Take a Friend'. But there is some heavy blues and boogie wrapped up in 'What You're Doing' which really feels like 'Whole Lotta Love' from the Zeps but it is still original to put a new spin on that classic riff.

'Working Man' is in my top 5 Rush songs and I never tire of it's structure, crazy riffing and innovative rhythmic time sig changes. This one is the only true prog song on the album but it paved the way for greater prog to come. It reminds me of the closing track on Genesis' "Trespass" as this too was the most progressive track, the heaviest and best for Genesis, as 'Working Man' is to this album.

Overall it is worth getting hold of this debut, as long as you are not expecting a prog masterpiece, as any Rushaholic will contest this is simply not the case.

Review by Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Let me paraphrase Scott's last review a little bit and say: Every great band has a beginning (and now it will differ equally as my opinion differs from virtually everyone here), but this kind of beginning is something I admire, enjoy and find extremely (yet I'm not extremist) interesting. Not just that, there's of course more.

Indeed, this is basically Hard Rock, but the most elaborate H-R I've ever heard. And believe me, despite I wasn't even alive when this was released and has no playcount of thousands of Rock albums, yet I feel (from limited number of hundred "similar" [same genre] albums I've heard) that this is top notch, this is great. Maybe it's good because it's Rush and may it's Rush that's the reason why it's good. They started like that, almost instantly kicking into heights of great Prog music (rating average from all of their albums is very big, considering that dark 80s aren't as dark as for many other 70s bands). For me, their started instantly, right from first album.

At first, the sound of this album is very clear, production is as good as remasters are (some will disagree though). Great bass work, especially bass work that's normally not that in front of attention (maybe it's because Geddy is frontman, but anyway, I welcome this idea of putting bass in front, because everyone can hear electric guitar anyway, but bass ? it's often well hidden). Guitar solos are everywhere, that's fine (they're quite clever ones, nothing cheap - after all, this is 1974, this is maybe another reason why it's so mature Rock) and also note that drumming isn't just banging on some CANs (capital letters are unintentional, it's typing mistake I don't want to fix, really), but more like pre-Rush "the greatest" era. This album is of course in the shadow of what will came in next years, but if this would be in let's say Prog-related category, this would shine. It's by Rush, so I don't feel this should affect my rating that much. Given atmosphere of this, raw energy pouring from it, while still being intelligent man's music, reasons I stated earlier and also because I have great memories about this album (which also affects not my judgement, but how I perceive this album, how I accept and feel it, so in nutshell - I like it more, I appreciate it more, I find minor reasons that forms together my Masterpiece rating). The most "normally" Prog would probably be the beginning of the songBefore and After. There's Geddy's voice also, it helps to feel familiar (like at home).

5(-), if you like Hard Rock (and I believe you do), you'll like this album. If you don't, this album won't attract you probably. But I suppose that most of us like this kind of music (and many of us started with this). I just see "more" in this and that's it.

I like Prog a lot, but this is by far my most played Rush album. Despite my efforts to listen mostly Prog. Yet another reason why to love this album. It's catchy and irresistible.

A little bit controversial review, I agree, but reasonable one. I dare to rate it like that though.

Review by Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars OK, let's analyse quickly debut albums at this time period, 1974.......not many due to the fact most prog acts had already delivered debuts and follow up albums. Still our Canadian cousins introduced themselves formerly in 1974 as.... Rush. If I had to make comparisons, let me say this a Budgie debut x 3, a good par with Wishbone Ash albeit from 69' or Gravy Train from Manchester. Regardless this is a stunning debut and kind of in retrospect gave the two fingers to all the critics who wrote them off so adeptly so early on. John Rutsey does a fine job on the drums and can always claim his heroics based on paving the way for a certain Neil Peart.

Alex Lifeson is simply superb on " Working Man" and generally the bluesy, rockabilly feel to Rush's debut makes them contenders for best debut ever. This is a serious album, not to be taken too lightly and smacks of endeavor and passion which has not desolved almost 40 years on. These guys were vintage then and are vintage now, I wish i could just trap this album in a time capsule. Grossly underrated.

Review by Starhammer
2 stars Finding their way...

The début release from one of the most prolific rock bands of all time, and their only to feature John Rutsey on the drums.

The Good: Working Man stands out here like a shiny pebble amongst a sea of sand, and is the only track that shows signs of great things to come.

The Bad: The rest of the songs, whilst not particularly bad, are nowhere near progressive enough to merit a higher rating, and just end up sounding like a poor man's Led Zeppelin. Of these, the album opener is the strongest of a weak bunch.

The Verdict: Modest beginnings.

Review by Warthur
3 stars Rush's sole album with founding drummer John Rutsey is an object lesson in how much a change in lineup of a tight three-man unit like Rush can change the character of a band. More or less everyone with an interest in progressive metal knows Rush as a technically proficient band who are constantly experimenting with different directions to take their sound in, are blessed with one of the scene's most technically proficient drummers in the form of Neil Peart, and feature the instantly recognisable high-pitched vocals of Geddy Lee. Aside from Geddy's vocals, none of these qualities are in evidence on their debut.

Steeped in Led Zeppelin worship, the album showcases a band which clearly have potential but just aren't pushing themselves to realise it. The point of interest for most Rush fans will be how Rutsey compares to Peart. The answer: not well. It's impossible to tell whether he was simply a less talented drummer who was holding the band back due to his inability to play more technically complex material, or whether the band as a whole were simply not making use of their talent at this point in time, but the overall effect is the same: Rutsey snoozes through all the usual hard rock cliches (complete with cowbell) and does nothing particularly spectacular.

Alex Lifeson turns in the most distinguished instrumental performance here - particularly his solos on the extended numbers Here Again and Working Man - but again he's simply running through the hard rock playbook rather than making any new contribution on here. As for the vocals, whilst Geddy's distinctive voice is in place it is jarring to hear him try an unconvincing impersonation of Robert Plant, and he's hampered by the lack of the witty and articulate lyrics Rush are usually known for (except on Working Man). Again, this is probably a consequence of the different lineup, since Neil Peart would take on primary lyrical responsibility once he joined the band.

As a result, if you're coming to this debut album expecting something that sounds remotely like any other phase of Rush, with the possible exception of the throwback garage rock they indulged in on the Feedback EP, you'll likely find this a bit of a disappointment, with only Working Man really showing much creative spark. It's telling that although Rush had no problem about replacing John Rutsey, they never even contemplated replacing the late, great Neil Peart: Rush only properly became Rush once he joined.

That said, if you want a nice throwback album which sounds like a Led Zep tribute act test-driving some of their own material, and which stylistically sounds like it belongs a bit more to the turn of the decade than to 1973 (a point when much of the hard rock scene had already moved on from a lot of the stylistic choices on here), then it's an entirely pleasant listen. It's just not a very Rush-like listen. Latter-day remasters (like the one done in 2011 for the Sector 1 box) seem to have a bit more life to them than earlier issues.

Review by Chicapah
3 stars In my ongoing, better-late-than-never investigation of the prog phenomenon known as Rush I've finally gotten my mitts on a copy of their first outing and, relatively speaking, it ain't bad. Obviously, this is the album with the significant asterisk stuck next to it, indicating that their infamous and highly touted drummer Neil Peart had yet to join the trio and, therefore, expectations should be lowered accordingly. With few exceptions, a band's debut is rarely a stunner and this definitely won't stun anybody I know. Yet a record doesn't have to be mind-blowing to be categorized as impressive and this one assuredly is. For a trio of young musicians barely in their 20s and still mere neophytes in the recording studio environment they acclimated themselves admirably to the task at hand and learned quickly. What they lacked in experience they more than made up for in enthusiasm and naive confidence so it's no wonder this disc got them the attention they needed to be allowed to make another and better record a year later.

They open with the aggressive rocker, "Finding My Way." Alex Lifeson's supercharged guitar riff and bassist Geddy Lee's in-your-face vocal approach reveal their unbridled energy and the hard rock influences they were raised on. Even though it's their first LP one can tell they were a talented bunch and the fact that they didn't seem concerned about manufacturing the standard 3-minute long, Top 40 single established their credentials as being worthy of later competing in the progressive rock category. Considering that only a miniscule fraction of North American bands were brave enough to go in that frowned-upon direction they deserve our respect and gratitude no matter what you may think of their music. "Need Some Love" is next and it's a straight-forward rocker molded in the tradition of Deep Purple and Trapeze (not bad company to keep, really). In light of the legend who replaced him, John Rutsey does a damned decent job on the drums and is unquestionably on an equal footing with both Lifeson and Lee as demonstrated on "Take A Friend." In the track Alex in particular displays a bullish attack on his fretboard well beyond his tender years but the tune as a whole belies their still-developing, somewhat amateurish songwriting skills. "Here Again" follows and, while I admire their effort to do something different with the traditional blues/rock format, it's crystal clear that the genre wasn't going to be their forte. Special note must be paid to Lifeson, however, due to him making the most of his extended solo, summoning in the process his finest Jimmy Page-channeled techniques.

"What You're Doing" is a riff-based rocker with a strong James Gang flavor. Once again their musicianship isn't in doubt but on this number they lack a distinguishing spark of originality, something that will change in short order when Peart enters the picture. "In the Mood" is the nadir of the album. A machismo-filled rock & roll ditty, it sounds like any of a thousand other wannabe groups of the mid-70s era but for Geddy's inimitable vocal timbre. It may well have benefited from more cowbell. "Before and After" offers the first sign of a trait in their creativity that proggers would come to appreciate and delight in more and more. In the early going of the tune they show they weren't afraid to shine a light on the softer, more sensitive side of themselves by developing an airy, emotional mood instrumentally. It would've been much more engaging had they held on to that aura and expanded the initial feel but they chose to get "heavy" with it and it's at that juncture I lose interest in the number. I detect a whiff of Black Sabbath wafting around in "Working Man," proving their metal mettle in dramatic fashion but to my ears it's no more than an average "rawk" dirge. I do like how Alex tears it up properly during the instrumental section, playing with passion and fire and the colossal concert-styled ending was perfect for making a memorable grand exit when they went out to tour the record. They were wise to think ahead like that.

If you're a die-hard Rush fanatic then it makes sense to have this in your collection but if you aren't then it isn't essential. First albums are a curious breed, though. It never ceases to amaze me that a few kids with shared interests can find each other, put together a fledgling garage band and end up a worldwide sensation. The odds of that happening are astronomical, yet some of the greatest groups came together in just that serendipitous way. At some point, if they were lucky, they got an opportunity to go into the studio and tape some of their stuff but the vast majority never went beyond that stage. But when you listen to this album you can hear that these determined boys had something intangible going for them that most didn't have and it's always a remarkable thing to notice how some seeds take root and thrive while others that seemed similarly promising wither away. Kudos to Rush for making the most of their big chance. 2.7 stars.

Review by siLLy puPPy
COLLABORATOR PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams
4 stars Now this an album I have a long history with and one of the first albums I owned. It's the first RUSH album that doesn't seem to get a lot of love simply for the fact that it's not progressive and not in the same league with the masterpieces they would churn out just a few years down the road. All I can say is --- SO WHAT!

I find this a splendid specimen of enthusiastic hard rock with well written catchy songs where all three members are playing their hearts out. I simply categorize this first rendition of RUSH as a totally different entitiy than with what they would become just one album later. I put this album in the same category as Foghat, Boston, UFO or any other high energy melodic hard rock act of the 70s. Geddy Lee's vocals are on fire, the guitar and bass play extremely well with other and although he's no Neil Peart, John Rutsley more than gets the job done on this one.

Zeppelin inspired? Yes, but definitely no clone. I actually prefer this to FLY BY NIGHT simply because this is really good at what it is while the next album feels a little weak for what it wants to be. Am I glad Neil Peart joined and took RUSH to a new level of musicianship? Of course. Do I recognize a great sounding hard rock album when I hear it? I do and this is one of them. Not a masterpiece but a great album that I wish would get a little more recognition as such.

Review by Necrotica
3 stars Canadian rock trio Rush have become a household name in the music world, garnering an exceptionally faithful fanbase and boasting more platinum-certified records than most bands could even dream of having. However, while the better part of their career has been spent making universally-celebrated progressive rock records, the beginning of their musical journey was a bit different. Since drummer Neil Peart wasn't in the band yet and thus didn't influence the band in a more sophisticated direction yet, this line-up of the trio happened to be more influenced by their blues-rock roots. In this debut record by them, you'll hear plenty of Led Zeppelin in Cream riffage throughout their compositions. So how does this record hold up? Surprisingly, it's pretty damn solid.

Okay, it's not even close to the band's best work, but there are a few glimpses into the band's future. The biggest praise would have to go to the band members' individual instrumental talents. Even drummer John Rutsey does a really above-average job on the record and pulls off some great fills in the album's more complex (or fast) songs. Even before their prime, Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson were rife with talent, especially on the closing highlight "Working Man." The extensive solo section of this piece is wonderful, showcasing a mix of blues, 70s hard rock/metal, and a few hints at the band's future prog-rock suites. Speaking of which, that whole song completely blows most of the album out of the water. The verses are extremely heavy for 1974, and the alternately ascending and descending guitar/bass work going on in the chorus is infectious. But fear not, there are other great moments on here. "Need Some Love," despite being only about two-and-a-half minutes, packs quite the speedy hard rock punch in that amount of time; meanwhile, the song "What You're Doing" has a bluesy riff that would make the aforementioned Led Zeppelin proud, while containing punchy drum work from Rutsey and a nice meaty guitar sound from Lifeson. There are a few interesting experiments on this record too; the biggest one is the intro to "Before and After." The song starts out in a very serene way, almost as if you're entering a garden or a forest of sorts. The clean guitar work from Lifeson really highlights this tune, and once the bass and drums enter the picture, they only further illustrate this image of peace and quiet joy. However, all of this is halted once the song erupts into one of the best rockers of the record. Geddy Lee's vocals sound especially loud and dominant, and the syncopated rhythm adds to an already-solid hard rock song.

Unfortunately, the problem with all of this is that, by the fifth or sixth song on the album, it gets a little boring. Most songs sound very similar after a while, and there's not much variation on the blues rock sound. On top of this, there's no extra instrumentation on top of the normal guitar/bass/drums line-up, so there's not much to speak of in terms of additional ornamentation throughout the record. Especially around the middle, a few throwaway tracks like "In the Mood" and the aggravatingly long power ballad "Here Again" pop up. Also, I hate to say this, but Neil Peart's absence on this record is truly felt after some time listening to it; after about the second or third time hearing the record, you start to think about how much Peart's future inclusion into the band benefited them in the end. That's not to say John Rutsey's a bad drummer by any means, but he does lack the charisma and technical ability of Rush's future bandmate.

However, I'd still consider this a great album because the songs that work do really, really work. This is the sort of record you spin when you want to just have a good time and not worry about super-technical progressive rock anthems. If you enjoy Cream, Led Zeppelin, or early Queen, then you'll really enjoy a lot of the material on this album. However, with Rush's next effort Fly by Night, Neil Peart would enter the picture and the rest would be rock history.

Review by Modrigue
4 stars Not really progressive yet, but already rocks!

RUSH was a trio formed in 1968, but it was not until 6 years that the band released its first studio album. Therefore this self-titled debut already displays Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson's talents at vocals, bass and guitars. However, this record is a bit of an exception as it doesn't feature Neil Peart yet, but instead original drummer John Rutsey, and lyrics written by Geddy Lee.

Highly influenced by the British rock scene of the early 70's, especially LED ZEPPELIN, the Canadians borrow the hard rock elements for their compositions: direct, punchy and fast. RUSH carries well its name here. The result is neither very personal, original nor progressive, but the songs are energetic, efficient and quite nice.

The hard bluesy rock "Finding My Way" is a powerful opener that immediately sets the tone. Although rather basic, the short dynamic "Need Some Love" is enjoyable, whereas the average "Take A Friend" is anecdotal. Discrete progressive elements can be heard on the soft "Here Again", a pretty and touching ballad with long melancholic guitar soli.

Back to life with the riffing "What You're Doing", which can remind DEEP PURPLE at times. More conventional, "In The Mood" is just a hard rock'n'roll song, while "Before And After" stands for the other slightly prog composition of the disc. Alternating sweet, aggressive and instrumental passages, this track is very good. However, the best track is the heavy and catchy "Working Man", whose style is comparable to BLACK SABBATH.

Despite its lack of originality and personality, "Rush" still remains a promising and rocking debut by talented musicians. The songs have an overall constant quality, the music is energetic, direct and efficient. Although it has not earn success and is rather an exception in the band's career, this a solid and punchy hard rock album. Not revolutionary, nonetheless recommended to early 70's British rock fans!

After this first effort, John Rutsey will leave the trio and be replaced by a man who will inflect RUSH's musical direction and lyrics forever...

Review by Kempokid
2 stars Despite the fact that Rush is undoubtedly a massive name in the prog world, I personally find it hard to deny that they had a very rocky start with their first couple of albums, with their eponymous debut containing little of what people would associate with Rush. Before Neil Peart entered the scene on their second album, Fly By Night, there was very little prog to be found in the band, instead employing a more standard, classic rock sound taking heavy inspiration from Led Zeppelin. Personally, I'm not much of a fan of the majority of this album, as I do feel like it often does sound like a weaker version of the bands they are being influenced by, and it feels clear that while there was definitely work that went into the album, it often can feel ill conceived when listening to the weaker cuts on the album.

Finding My Way kicks off with a fun, fairly standard hard rock riff, with the other instruments backing it up nicely to make one of the songs here that sound a bit more like what Rush would come to sound like on their future albums. The big issue with the song is that it is littered with Geddy Lee screaming "Oh yeah", which doesn't come off as much beyond extremely cheesy to me, and it definitely dampens the song quality quite considerably, disrupting the flowand steady groove of the song considerably.Need Some Love is one of the weaker tracks on the album, doing very little which I find interesting, as it doesn't even function particularly well as a fun classic rock song, which I believe is at least somewhat to do with the fact that Geddy's vocals here are quite grating at multiple point, especially when trying to sing passionately or hit high notes. Take A Friend isn't anything particularly special, but it is a passable song all around, without anything particularly wrong with it outside of the lyrics being very cheesy, but it doesn't really do too much for me in either case, although it is a massive improvement from the previous two songs. Here Again is one of the 2 songs on the album that I can say I truly love, as it takes a more subtle, moody approach that still leaves room for a passionate performance, but one that doesn't go over the top like most of the other songs here do, and Geddy sounds great. The song ascends to another level once the vocals are belted out and the amazing guitar solo kicks in, which balances the two main aspects of soloing extremely well, being technically impressive enough while also containing great deals of emotion and melody, and ties the song together very well. Overall, this is likely m favourite song from Rush's first 3 albums and is definitely an underrated gem.

After that display of greatness, the album falls back to being strraighforward hard rock, with What You're Doing instigating a very similar response to what I felt from Take A Friend, being decent, but nothing particularly interesting to me. In The Mood sticks out to me even more than Need Some Love as the definite weak point on the album, with a chorus that simply does nothing outside of bore and frustrate me, all around being dull and repetitive with very little going for the song in general. Before and After is one of the better songs here, having an extended intro and really fun, groovy instrumentals, especially the wonderful bassline. It still suffers from fairly poor vocals, but even so, the song still ends up sounding pretty fun. Working Man is the obvious pick for another highlight on the album however, being acclaimed as Rush's first true classic song, which I can completely see why, as the song defiitely feels like the most fully realised on the album, having a strong, consistent groove maintaining the pace as Alex Lifeson unleashes awesome solos. The main verses are enjoyable all around as well, and definitely lend themselves to the song, despite the main attraction being that superb instrumental break in the middle of it.

Overall, while I personally don't enjoy a great deal of the songs here, the ones I do enjoy are enough to push this up to a 2 star rating, along with the fact that there is definitely potential within the album that was just not quite realised here. I'd definitely find this much more enjoyable with a few more songs of the quality of Working Man and Here again, but even moreso if the vocals were better, as they're definitely another ig reason why this album just doesn't hit the mark for me. While I do like Rush quite a bit, I still personally find there to be only a small amount of material to enjoy here, even though that material happens to be pretty excellent.

Best songs: Here Again, Working Man

Weakest songs: Need Some Love, In The Mood

Verdict: This mainly sounds like Rush emulating the sound of Led Zeppelin, often fairly poorly. Overall, I wouldn't recommend this album to anyone before a great deal of other Rush albums, although if you're an avid fan of straighforward hard rock, you may enjoy this one quite a bit, I just personally don't.

Latest members reviews

2 stars In 1974, Rush released their self-titled debut album. Rush is firmly in the same musical lane as early Led Zeppelin: high-energy, melodic, bluesy hard rock. While the individual musicians in Rush may have been flashier than many of their contemporaries in the blues-rock world, structurally, most of ... (read more)

Report this review (#2904232) | Posted by TheEliteExtremophile | Monday, April 3, 2023 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Rush's self titled debut album could possibly be the least essential LP in the band's catalog? or perhaps, one of the most important? Both, maybe? Neither? OK? let's quantify "Rush" somehow by taking an honest look at its very existence. We might as well get the 800-lb. emu out of the way now; st ... (read more)

Report this review (#2879641) | Posted by Hokeyboy | Tuesday, January 31, 2023 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Review #73 If we don't consider THE BEATLES (considering them would be unfair) I truly believe there is no more influential rock band in the world than RUSH; seriously, not even PINK FLOYD or LED ZEPPELIN. On the top of my head, the bands that I remember they have cited RUSH as one of their major ... (read more)

Report this review (#2486769) | Posted by Uruk_hai | Monday, December 21, 2020 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Rush was a very good debut album by Canadian musicians, not yet clear at that time that they would be heading down paths related to the progressive, they did have the wood to become a great rock band. Strongly influenced by Led Zeppelin and the hard rock sound of the early seventies, Rush delive ... (read more)

Report this review (#2417298) | Posted by Hector Enrique | Saturday, July 4, 2020 | Review Permanlink

1 stars It's hard to believe anyone actually enjoys this album and music. It is boring music made for boring people who enjoy vanilla ice cream. This album almost can't even be considered a rush album, it is so different to everything else. It is all blues with no complexity, but lacks the adventure and thr ... (read more)

Report this review (#2307102) | Posted by hugo1995 | Wednesday, January 15, 2020 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Rush's debut album sounds exactly like that: like a debut. Their style and sound would vary on every single album, but on this one they were just pulling ideas from wherever they could. I am not a fan nor an expert on The Who and Led Zeppelin, but from what little I have heard of them it is clear th ... (read more)

Report this review (#1825189) | Posted by judahbenkenobi | Monday, November 20, 2017 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Arguably one of the most influential and beloved bands of all time, Canada's Rush came from humble beginnings, with this 1974 self-titled debut, which sees the Canadian three-piece as not much more than a standard hard rock outfit, long before they adopted a more progressive sound that would gar ... (read more)

Report this review (#1778896) | Posted by martindavey87 | Sunday, September 3, 2017 | Review Permanlink

2 stars "Rush" is the self titled debut album of this incredible band. It's a good taste from what Rush is, but its just the beginning of it. This album features many pure rock catchy songs but what I like about this album is that you can already tell what Rush will be in the near future. Sure this album ... (read more)

Report this review (#1598402) | Posted by Rodrigo Andrade7 | Wednesday, August 17, 2016 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Earnest & humble beginnings. The hard rock or heavy metal (considered at the time) debut of Rush. It's definitely not a prog record. Maybe a couple of minuscule hints at prog like maybe the beginning of Before & After and uh maybe thats it! On this record, Rush's influences are front and cente ... (read more)

Report this review (#1509071) | Posted by ster | Friday, January 8, 2016 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Rush, raw and rocking. While the band's self-titled debut album sounds like a mishmash of some of their biggest influences (The Who, Cream, and Led Zeppelin), the end result sounds closer to a synthesis of Kiss' classic 1974 debut and the early pre-synth Black Sabbath with a fast and furious 7 ... (read more)

Report this review (#1175280) | Posted by James Gong | Thursday, May 15, 2014 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Many Rush fans criticize this one because it is neither progressive, intellectual, nor graced by Neil Peart's talents. Don't write it off though! Many of the elements that made early Rush great are still here. Geddy Lee howling like a pre-pubescent Robert Plant (in a good way) and supplying ta ... (read more)

Report this review (#1166997) | Posted by TwoCents | Tuesday, April 29, 2014 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Here my friends, is the birth and debut of one of the best bands in the history of Rock music and probably the best known Rock band to come out of Canada. I am of course talking about the "Holy Trinity" Rush. The band's eponymous debut is a little rough around the edges when compared to future ... (read more)

Report this review (#1074258) | Posted by ProgMetaller2112 | Friday, November 8, 2013 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Rush without soul: In the beggining, Rush were just like a very gorgeous and hot chick in a strip club. When you look at her, you desire her, you know she is not only beautiful, she does an awesome job. She knows how to turn you on. So you spend your money with her. But she is dumb, an empt ... (read more)

Report this review (#1027485) | Posted by VOTOMS | Monday, September 2, 2013 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This is a solid, if generally unspectacular, debut from a band that would eventually achieve legendary status. I'll be honest: they're my favorite band, but I try to keep things in perspective. If something's not perfect, I won't hesitate to say so. "Working Man," "Finding My Way," and "Need So ... (read more)

Report this review (#990649) | Posted by Deckiller | Monday, July 1, 2013 | Review Permanlink

2 stars With this, their first album, Rush introduced themselves to the world as a Canadian threesome who made hard rockin music. The drum stool on this album was occupied by John Rutsey who would soon be replaced (health reasons) by one of the, arguably, best drummers in the prog rock world (Peart). ... (read more)

Report this review (#934106) | Posted by sukmytoe | Saturday, March 23, 2013 | Review Permanlink

3 stars 3,5 stars really. I'm a suspect to write any review about RUSH, because side to side with YES, GENTLE GIANT and GENESIS etc... they compound the mainstream of my favorite bands. Mainly if the album was released between 1974 ( obviously this album) until 1985 (Power Windows). The album in q ... (read more)

Report this review (#905487) | Posted by maryes | Sunday, February 3, 2013 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Curious how ratings are made completely in perspective. This first album is obviously far better than the most recent one Clockwork Angels and, nonetheless, received a far worst rating. I think the ratings are gennerally made looking forward (fabulous releases), in the case of this album, and loo ... (read more)

Report this review (#795672) | Posted by alextrev | Friday, July 27, 2012 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Amazing debut album! Original trio is tighter and have more musical approach. I can imagine that this is very hard to admit for regular Rush fan, that band played better in the beginning. For sure Neil Peart was neccessary to have, to make band as big as it became. Better you notice difference by c ... (read more)

Report this review (#771612) | Posted by Muumi | Friday, June 15, 2012 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Though this isn't prog (and probably not even prog-related), I'm still compelled to review this as this was the first album that birthed me into the Rush world. This is the early Rush sound at its finest; the guitars are the prominent instrument, Geddy's vocals are at their best, and the music doesn ... (read more)

Report this review (#771340) | Posted by Mr. Mustard | Friday, June 15, 2012 | Review Permanlink

2 stars For years this album is easy to understand the influence caused by Led Zeppelin. "Finding My Way" do not let me lie. "Need Some Love" continues with the theme so common to the period, women etc. A nice guitar solo, though simple and short song. "Take A Friend" change the theme over t ... (read more)

Report this review (#759318) | Posted by Vobiscum | Sunday, May 27, 2012 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of RUSH "Rush"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.