Rock History

Rebecca’s Picks – Albums You Should Own: Rush – 2112

Track List
1. 2112
2. A Passage To Bangkok
3. The Twilight Zone
4. Lessons
5. Tears
6.Something For Nothing

All Songs written by Lee, Lifeson, and Peart
Released February, 1976 on Mercury/Polygram Records
Produced by Rush and Terry Brown

Band Members:
Geddy Lee-bass, keyboards, vocals Alex Lifeson-guitars
Neil Peart-drums, percussion

“2112” was a breakthrough album for Rush, and is still considered the bands’ masterpiece by many fans.

The title track is a 20-minute, seven part suite. On vinyl, this was the whole first side of the album. It tells the story of a man who lives in a future society that is ruled by the Priests of the temple of Syrinx. These priests alone decide what can be heard, read, or seen. The man finds an ancient guitar in a cave, and realizes that he can create his own music. Overjoyed, he takes it to the priests. They take the instrument and destroy it. The man stumbles back to his home. Deciding that he cannot live in a world in which he cannot express himself, he commits suicide.

Melodramatic? Maybe. Powerful? Totally. The music behind the story is driving and intense. Lee, Lifeson, and Peart are each considered among the best at the instrument each plays, and the three together are a force to be reckoned with. There are many “progressive” bands playing today that owe a great debt to Rush.

The rest of the tracks are unrelated to the story, so technically this is not a “concept album”. But all I can remember from 1976 is listening to the first side, then picking up the needle and setting it back to the beginning.

By Rebecca