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  • Michael Curzan

RUSH Worst and Best Part 3

I think it is time for another worst and best list of Rush songs, so here are the next three albums, ranked from worst to best, in my opinion.


The first one is A Farewell to Kings. I am counting "Xanadu" and "Cygnus X 1" as one song each for simplicity.

Number 6: "Madrigal" -- This one is beautiful, but it is really slow and forgettable.

Number 5: "Cinderella Man" -- This one is also forgettable, but it is faster.

Number 4: "Closer to the Heart" -- This one is great, but it is rather short.

Number 3: "A Farewell to Kings" -- This is the best shorter-length song.

Number 2: "Cygnus X 1" -- This is an intense, multi-part song about a black hole.

Number 1: "Xanadu" -- This is very poetic. It tricks you into thinking it is an instrumental, but it isn't. The lyrics and premise are both amazing, not to mention the instruments and sounds of this song. It is simply the best song of this album.


Now here is Hemispheres. I am counting "Cygnus X 1, Book II: Hemispheres" as five separate song parts for convenience.

Number 8: "Circumstances" -- This is the least memorable.

Number 7: "The Sphere" -- This one is a nice end to the Cygnus song, but it is rather slow.

Number 6: "Armageddon: the Battle of the Heart and Mind" -- This one does its job in Cygnus rather well, and it contains the name of the album as a lyric, but it is far from the best of even the Cygnus song.

Number 5: "Cygnus: Bringer of Balance" -- This is a wonderful climax to Cygnus, but it is still not the best. This album is just that good, it is hard to rank properly.

Number 4: "Apollo: Bringer of Wisdom" and "Dionysus: Bringer of Balance" -- I ranked these together because they are essentially the same thing twice. They do a great job of setting up the two Olympians and their effects on people, in contrasting and yet identical lyrics.

Number 3: "Cygnus X 1, Book II: Hemispheres: Overture" -- This overture is nearly as good as the 2112 overture, in how it introduces the rest of the song perfectly. It is a wonderful intro for this song.

Number 2: "The Strange City" -- This is a great instrumental track that sustains over nine minutes of no lyrics, just music. It is better than any individual part of Cygnus, in my opinion. I had to translate the name because my spell check wouldn't let me write in the correct Italian words.

Number 1: "The Trees" -- This song is obviously the best. It has a nice melody, it has great lyrics, and it even has a lesson, for anyone who wants to learn it. The premise of trees being in a class struggle is amazing, so this one takes the first place, in my opinion.


Finally, I am ranking Permanent Waves. This one is long overdue, because of the anniversary, but I wanted to do them all in order so this is late on the list. I am counting "Natural Science" as three songs here.

Number 8: "Different Strings" -- This one is the only actually forgettable one, sticking out like a sore thumb.

Number 7: "Natural Science: Tide Pools" -- This is the introduction to the song, and it is slow. The other parts are much better.

Number 6: "Jacob's Ladder" -- This one is a nice song with large instrumental portions, but it is still rather forgettable, and nothing very interesting really goes on here.

Number 5: "Between Us" -- This is all right, but it is far from the best. I translated the name from French because I wanted to, after what happened with "The Strange City".

Number 4: "Natural Science: Hyperspace" -- This is where the extended song gets good.

Number 3: "Freewill" -- This song has an unusual rhythm, but it is still easy to listen to, and it makes some profound points about fate and choices.

Number 2: "Natural Science: Permanent Waves" -- The conclusion of "Natural Science", this song contains the conclusion and the lesson of the song. It is definitely the best, except for...

Number 1: "The Spirit of Radio" -- The first song of the album, it is just the best, hands down. It is a song about songs, essentially.


So that is my list, and as before, be sure to tell me what you think of it in the comments. Thank you.


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