A Show of Hands

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A Show of Hands
Rush A Show of Hands.jpg
Live album by
ReleasedJanuary 9, 1989 (1989-01-09)
Recorded1986, 1988
GenreProgressive rock, hard rock
Rush chronology
Hold Your Fire
A Show of Hands
Professional ratings
Review scores
The Encyclopedia of Popular Music[2]
Rolling Stone[4]

A Show of Hands is a live album by the Canadian rock band Rush, released in 1989. The band released a video of the same name, originally on VHS and LaserDisc, the same year. A DVD version was released as part of a box set in 2006, and as an individual DVD in 2007. In 2015 it was reissued after being remastered by Sean Magee at Abbey Road Studios following a direct approach by Rush to remaster their entire back catalogue.[5]


The majority of the performances on this album were from the 1988 Hold Your Fire tour, recorded in the American cities of New Orleans, Phoenix, and San Diego, and the British city of Birmingham. "Mystic Rhythms" and "Witch Hunt" were recorded in East Rutherford, New Jersey, during the 1986 Power Windows tour.[6] The opening track "Intro" features The Three Stooges theme playing in the background; the band used this music to open many of their concerts during the 1980s.

With the exception of "Closer to the Heart", the tracklist focuses almost entirely on the band's material from the 1980s, and is Rush's only live record to feature no performances of songs released before 1977. Unlike All the World's a Stage and Exit...Stage Left, this album does not have any songs that had to be omitted for single CD release. The first two were released prior to the introduction of compact discs and were double album sets, whilst this album was initially released on CD so time restrictions were already taken into account.

Video release[edit]

The video was filmed at the first of two Birmingham (UK) shows which took place on April 23–24, 1988 at the city's NEC Arena - one of the sources of the live album. The song order and selection of the video are different from the live album.


  • "Closer to the Heart" / "Witch Hunt" (7")
  • "Mission" (12" promo)
  • "Marathon" (12"/CD promo)

Track listing[edit]

All songs written by Alex Lifeson, Geddy Lee and Neil Peart, except where noted.

2."The Big Money" (Birmingham, UK)5:59
3."Subdivisions" (Birmingham, UK)5:22
4."Marathon" (Birmingham, UK)6:39
5."Turn the Page" (New Orleans, LA)4:41
6."Manhattan Project" (Phoenix, AZ)5:18
7."Mission" (San Diego, CA)5:46
8."Distant Early Warning" (Birmingham, UK)5:15
9."Mystic Rhythms" (Meadowlands, NJ)5:32
10."Witch Hunt" (Part III of Fear) (Meadowlands, NJ)4:00
11."The Rhythm Method" (Drum Solo) (Peart) (Birmingham, UK)4:37
12."Force Ten" (Lifeson, Lee, Peart, Pye Dubois) (Phoenix, AZ)4:55
13."Time Stand Still" (Birmingham, UK)5:13
14."Red Sector A" (Birmingham, UK)5:18
15."Closer to the Heart" (Lifeson, Lee, Peart, Peter Talbot) (Birmingham, UK)4:54



Chart (1989) Peak
Dutch Albums (Album Top 100)[7] 38
Finnish Albums (Suomen virallinen lista)[8] 7
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[9] 35
Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[10] 28
UK Albums (OCC)[11] 12
US Billboard 200[12] 21


Country Organization Sales
Canada CRIA Platinum (100,000)[13]
United States RIAA Gold (500,000)[14]

Remaster details[edit]

A Show of Hands was remastered in 2011 by Andy VanDette for the "Sector" box sets, which re-released all of Rush's Mercury-era albums. A Show Of Hands is included in the Sector 3 set.[15]


  1. ^ Prato, Greg. "A Show of Hands - Rush". AllMusic. Archived from the original on October 20, 2013. Retrieved October 15, 2011.
  2. ^ Larkin, Colin (2007). The Encyclopedia of Popular Music (4th ed.). Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0195313734.
  3. ^ Hotten, Jon (January 14, 1989). "Rush: 'A Show of Hands'". Kerrang!. Vol. 221. London, UK: Spotlight Publications Ltd. p. 21.
  4. ^ Azerrad, Michael (April 20, 1989). "A Show of Hands". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on February 28, 2014. Retrieved January 10, 2015.
  5. ^ "Abbey Road - Engineers - Sean Magee". Archived from the original on December 14, 2020. Retrieved December 14, 2020.
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 11, 2016. Retrieved January 11, 2017.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  7. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Rush – A Show of Hands" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved July 3, 2020.
  8. ^ Pennanen, Timo (2021). "Rush". Sisältää hitin - 2. laitos Levyt ja esittäjät Suomen musiikkilistoilla 1.1.1960–30.6.2021 (PDF). Helsinki: Kustannusosakeyhtiö Otava. p. 221. Retrieved May 17, 2022.
  9. ^ "Offiziellecharts.de – Rush – A Show of Hands" (in German). GfK Entertainment Charts. Retrieved July 3, 2020.
  10. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Rush – A Show of Hands". Hung Medien. Retrieved July 3, 2020.
  11. ^ "Official Albums Chart Top 100". Official Charts Company. Retrieved July 3, 2020.
  12. ^ "Rush Chart History (Billboard 200)". Billboard. Retrieved July 3, 2020.
  13. ^ "Gold Platinum Database - Title: A Show of Hands". Music Canada. Archived from the original on March 26, 2016. Retrieved November 20, 2011.
  14. ^ "RIAA Database Search for Rush". Recording Industry Association of America. Archived from the original on July 1, 2007. Retrieved November 20, 2011.
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on August 23, 2014. Retrieved May 18, 2012.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)

External links[edit]