Since the release of the band's self-titled debut album in March 1974, Rush has become known for the instrumental skills of its members, complex compositions, and eclectic lyrical motifs drawing heavily on science fiction, fantasy, and libertarian philosophy, as well as addressing humanitarian, social, emotional, and environmental concerns.
Musically, Rush's style has evolved over the years, beginning in the vein of blues-inspired heavy metal on their first albums, then encompassing hard rock, progressive rock, and a period dominated by synthesizers. They have influenced various musical artists, including Metallica, The Smashing Pumpkins and Primus, as well as progressive metal bands such as Dream Theater and Symphony X.
Rush has won a number of Juno Awards, and was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1994. Over the course of their careers, the individual members of Rush have been acknowledged as being some of the most proficient players on their respective instruments, with each band member winning several awards in magazine readers' polls. As a group, Rush possesses 24 gold records and 14 platinum (3 multi-platinum) records. According to the RIAA, Rush's sales statistics also place them fourth behind The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Aerosmith for the most consecutive gold or platinum albums by a rock band. Rush also ranks 78th in U.S. album sales with 25 million units. Although total worldwide album sales are not calculated by any single entity, as of 2004 several industry sources estimated Rush's total worldwide album sales at over 40 million units. The band's most recent tour, an intercontinental promotion for Snakes & Arrows ended on July 24, 2008 in Noblesville, Indiana