I’ve tried. I swear to the Rock Gods, I’ve tried. It took twelve years of marriage for a guy to finally drag me to a Rush show. Every guy I’ve ever dated worshiped upon the power trio’s altar, owned all their albums, saw them in concert every time they toured. I just can’t get into their music.
Since I LOVE going to concerts—seeing musicians transform their passions into sound, feeling the music, the energy—I thought perhaps if I saw them play live I may understand the devotion they sir in their
thousands millions of fans. Male fans.
Last weekend I journeyed to their show (through two hours of gridlock) with an open heart, an open mind, and a big ass beer in my hand.
After seeing them live I can officially declare I still don’t dig them.
You want proof Rush is a guy band?
I’ve waited upwards of a half hour for a chance at one of those usually nasty stalls. Dave Matthews Band, NIN, Jane’s Addiction—I’d spent enough time in line to learn the life stories of the women around me while we stood with our legs crossed trying to look cool and not do the dance.
There may have been ten girls at the show. Okay, maybe a fifty. Out of thousands of rabid fans. To the point I stopped in front of one and said, “Oh look, there IS another woman here.” She just half-smiled and looked at her watch like she was ready to go.
And if you ever need an ego boost, go to a Rush show. The other women wore old
vintage holey T-shirts (like my hubby). They hadn’t updated their jeans (ripped, stonewashed, high-waisted, relaxed fit) or their hair (mullets. many of them.) since they started going to shows thirty years ago.
I saw no pairs or groups of women. They all came with their male counterparts. Yet I’ve never seen so many guys together on dates in my life. No, nothing romantic (a gay guy would NEVER be seen in public dressed so tastelessly). Bromance hung heavy in the air: male bonding at its finest. Their wives/significant others were smart enough to stay away.
So why don’t women get Rush? Since I was not “at one” with the music, I had plenty of time to reflect while I people-watched and sipped beer. Each member of the Canadian power trio does show mastery of their instruments. They wove complex harmonies—perhaps too complex? The songs (with the exception of a few hits like Tom Sawyer and Closer to the Heart) just don’t have enough melody. There’s nothing to hum or sing. Thousands of old guys playing air guitar and air drum solos—hells yeah—but the sound is just too tangled. Forget being something to dance to, there’s not even a steady enough drum beat to swing a hip to.
The lyrics are intelligent tirades, some nearly poems (seriously: they quote literature, even Shakespeare) but they are utterly lacking in emotion. Yes, I’m generalizing, but most girls don’t dig songs about robots.
Okay, and for some women it may be a question of sex appeal:
I don’t know if this album cover is supposed to make them look sexy and brooding, like porn stars or Jedis. But there are plenty of bands where the singers are not the slightest bit attractive (have you seen Marilyn Manson?) but they just exude . . . something. Rush’s music is utterly asexual. Once again: robots over romance.
To be fair, I skipped a hunk of the show. Some drunk-assed baby boomer MAN knocked my FULL 24-ounce beer all over me. Yes, he was apologetic. Yes, he bought me a new one then found another patch of grass to pollute. But I was still soaked. And pissed. Though the bathroom WAS empty, I still couldn’t shower the stink off, so I wandered and tweeted.
I returned home smelling like a frat house couch: an eau d’ stale beer, various smokes, and testosterone. At least Hubby had a EPIC time. ::sigh:: The things we do for love.
Have you ever been dragged to a concert you didn’t like?