Saturday 17 July 2021

YYZ (Rush, 1981)

 This is one of my favourite instrumental tracks ever. It comes from Rush's eighth studio album Moving Pictures. The title is just the identification code of Toronto Pearson International Airport, the one the band reached when leaving their homes and where apparently Alex Lifeson was inspired for the song's rythm by the morse code translation of YYZ (that's - . - - / - . - - / - - . .  and that's the opening sound of the track). This is a highly dynamic piece of music, incorporating both groove and melody, full of changes and pauses the stop and go way that Yes liked so much. 

This track is a real flight, IMHO...

The main theme comes in at well studied intervals and - as usual with Rush - the rythm section provides a rich palette of bridges, progressions and variations. The song's pattern is so unpredictable and sought after that you hardly believe it can be confined in a track of just over 4 minutes. Enthralling and ever changing, YYZ is a manifesto of this band's idea of progressive rock, an idea I like very much... and I daresay I'm not the only one!