Rush In Rio. Classic live album by legendary band Rush is finally released on heavyweight vinyl.
Following nigh on a five-year break from touring, Rush returned to the stage in 2002 to support the trio’s seventeenth studio album: Vapor Trails. The band played to some of the biggest crowds of their career, including 40,000 people at the tour’s final stop in Rio de Janeiro.
Originally released on CD and DVD in 2003, Rush In Rio has never appeared on vinyl, until now. Presented as four 180 gram LPs in a heavyweight gatefold jacket, it also comes with a code so it can be downloaded digitally, too.
The collection includes all 29-songs that this legendary Canadian group performed at the Rio show, plus two bonus tracks recorded at other stops during the Vapor Trails Tour. “Between Sun & Moon” was recorded on September 27, 2002 in Phoenix, AZ and “Vital Signs” was recorded on October 19, 2002 in Quebec City, Quebec.
Guitarist Alex Lifeson recalls: “In all the years of touring, few gigs matched the energy we witnessed from the Rio audience. They sang along to every song, which was quite a feat considering English is not so commonly spoken there. They even sang robustly during ‘YYZ’ and that’s an instrumental! In fact, during mixing, we often pulled the band tracks down and just listened to the audience and it was mind-blowing. We were all so surprised by the welcome we received and the deep connection our fans had to Rush. It remains one of the greatest highlights we’ve experienced in over 40 years of touring.”
Fan favourites that are rarely played together on the same night were performed This included the sprawling sci-fi epic “2112,” as well as “Closer To The Heart,” “YYZ,” “Freewill,” “New World Man,” “Tom Sawyer,” and “Limelight.”
One of the concert’s high points is Neal Peart’s drum solo titled “O Baterista,” being Portuguese for “the drummer.” It actually earned the group a Grammy Award nomination for the Best Rock Instrumental Performance.
The songs that appear on Rush In Rio span the group’s entire career, up to that point, and include several tracks from Vapor Trails: “Earthshine,” “One Little Victory,” “Ghost Rider” and “Secret Touch.” The remainder of the setlist touches on most of Rush’s studio albums from 1996’s Test For Echo (“Driven,” and a rare acoustic performance of “Resist”); 1984’s Grace Under Pressure (“Distant Early Warning” and “Red Sector A”); 1980’s Permanent Waves (“The Spirit Of Radio” and “Natural Science”) and 1974’s self-titled debut (“Working Man.”).
This definitive live release is a superlative reminder of the majestic legacy that these princes of prog leave behind.
Rush In Rio is available from Rhino Records at https://www.rhino.com.
Words By Paul Davies.