Last night, I had a dream where Armageddon, a 1979 song by Vancouver-based band Prism — a song I haven’t even thought about in a very long time — featured prominently. If you grew up in Canada in the early 1980s and listened to FM rock station, you’ll recognize the tune as soon as you hear the horns playing the opening march. If you’re not from that place or time, prepare to be rocked:
It’s an over-the-top number, clocking in at a few seconds under 8 minutes, but it doesn’t feel like an 8-minute drag. In fact, if you didn’t pay too close attention to the fact that it’s a song about nuclear annihilation, you might think it was the perfect tune for driving down the highway with volume cranked and the top down — and it is! It’s catchy orchestral classic rock that would fit in perfectly in a set with the Moody Blues, Led Zeppelin, and Queen.
I will admit to once owning this button and proudly wearing it on a denim jacket:
I’ve used Armageddon as an example song to teach people how to play by ear. Even if you’ve never heard the song before, it’s catchy enough that you want to learn it, and just complex enough to give you a little challenge. (In case you’re wondering, the intro, outro, and chorus are in the key of E, and the verses are in B.)
I’m definitely adding this to my “having beers on the front porch” playlist.