MARTIN POPOFF - RUSH: Album By Album
June 7, 2017, a year ago
Interesting concept here, with Canadian music journalist Martin Popoff putting together a book walking the reader through storied prog rock band Rush’s history one album at a time. But it’s not much of Popoff doing the talking at all: for every album he puts together a different crew of Rush lovers who opine about the album at hand, its highlights and lowlights, obscure facts, and place in Rush history. There’s a large cast of people here, as Popoff has brought 20 experts together to discuss the band. It's interesting hearing other band guys like Metallica’s Kirk Hammett, Fates Warning’s Jim Matheos, and Dream Theater’s Mike Portnoy go on about Rush in a very candid manner; that’s the book’s greatest strength, this feeling like you’re having a couple beers and talkin’ Rush shop around the kitchen table with, you know, Kirk Hammett.
Another strength is that these conversations really make the reader want to go back and revisit the lesser-loved albums, with a closer eye to detail than maybe was afforded before. Wrap it all up in a nice hardcover package with lots of fun eye candy, and this is an extremely enjoyable package, one of Popoff’s best books as of late (and he's been on a roll). One thing I would have loved to have read more of is the author’s musings on each Rush release, although that information is out there in other books of his, which include one previous book devoted to our favourite trio of Canucklenerds. Rush: Album By Album is tons of fun to read, and will no doubt encourage further re-examination of the rich Rush catalogue, never a bad thing.