Rock Trio Is A Threat To Old Massey Hall

By Peter Goddard, Toronto Star, June 12, 1976

Toronto may not have to worry any more about what's going to happen to old Massey Hall.

The hardest of Toronto's Hard-nosed rock bands, Rush, began a series of concerts there last night. If the hall's still standing tomorrow night after this trio has finished churning out its louder-than-loud sounds, it will take only a good, stiff breeze to bring its walls down.

Rush is not the most subtle of rock groups. True, its kind of basic, thundering music has its following, with some 2,500 showing up last night, rushing the stage at one point and cheering every song.

The three-night series, which will gross $45,000 for guitarist Alex Lifeson, drummer Neil Peart and singer-bassist Geddy Lee, is being recorded for an album.

The band's most recent recording, Rush 2112 (Mercury records SRM1-1079) has already sold 200,000 copies in the United States and nearly 35,000 copies in Canada, and the band has just finished a successful tour of Texas where the kind of rock that assaults every sense is much in favor.

It's obvious, then, Rush answers a basic need for many rock fans who can't understand the form's more recent sophisticated developments and want instead something that's easy to understand.

Last night's effort by the Band, complete with smokebombs and a rather simple light show, was probably the best performance it has given here - although that's like saying you've just seen the best train wreck of your life.