Rush News

"Top 10 Alex Lifeson Guitar Moments"

As a followup to the launch of the new Gibson Custom Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess, has just added "Top 10 Alex Lifeson Guitar Moments":
"Then we have guitarist-extraordinaire Alex Lifeson, who has carved out his own estimable and indelible niche in the pantheon of guitar heroes. In a band known for its intricate detail and complex musical landscapes, Lifeson's guitar work is the paintbrush that completes the portrait...let's take a closer look at ten of the greatest guitar moments for the man some affectionately refer to as Lerxst..." "Top 10 Alex Lifeson Guitar Moments",, February 25, 2011

The Gibson Interview: Alex Lifeson has posted a new interview with Alex Lifeson where he discusses the status and potential release date of Clockwork Angels and a spring 2012 tour:
...we had six songs written. Those two were the two we decided to record just prior to the tour start, around this time last year. Since then, Geddy and I have been writing. We’ve been writing for the last couple of weeks and I think we’ve got the makings of another song. Pretty close. Some other snippets of ideas. Once we get back into the writing full-steam in the next week or so, with all those bits and pieces, I’m sure we’ll be able to get at least another song or maybe two. In which case, I think we’re looking at eight or nine songs as the magic number...We’ll take a short break in the summer, start recording in September and hopefully have the new album out for the start of the next tour, which would be in the spring of 2012."
Alex also discussed the Vapor Trails remix:
"Well, we've been toying with that idea for quite a few years now. And there was initially no interest from the record company in rereleasing it. It's a little bit of a dance that we would have needed to do without their support in terms of releasing it and getting the releases for it.

The thing about that, I mean, you walk a very narrow line… That album's almost ten years old. It's a very, very important record for us. There's a lot of emotion on that. We were coming back after a very difficult period in the band's history and certainly in Neil's life. So for us, there's a great deal invested in that record and it's very, very special. And in a lot of ways, I wouldn't want to change anything, because it was recorded in such a way that we captured the very essence of what we were doing at that time. You know, you could say that that album is sixty percent demos, because really that's kind of what it was. Most of that record was what we wrote. We didn't rerecord it. It was the most basic essence of the idea. And that's what was really special. But sometimes when you do that, you're not really aware or conscious of production merits, sounds, spending time creating sounds and, you know, developing that end of it. So consequently, the record suffered a little bit from production or lack of production. And when it went to mastering, it was mastered very hot and all we hear is the little bits of distortion here and there, and these compromises that were made on production.

It's always bothered us, so we thought [we would consider it after hearing] a couple of songs that Rich Chycki remixed. They were really a lot closer to the way we always would have liked to have heard that record, you know? And we talked about it and so we decided, 'Let's just — you know what, if it's just for the three of us — let's just remix the record so we're happy with it. At least we know that we've done it, that we've got that out of our system. We'll pay for it. It's no big deal. Let's just do it.'

You could say that of any record. Go back and remix Caress of Steel or something, but I don't know. Something about Vapor Trails… We just don't feel like we serviced the record properly and we want to give it another breath. And I know it upsets a lot of fans. It goes both ways: I hear from a lot of fans who think it's just a great a idea and they can't wait to hear it, and others who say, 'Why are you touching this record? You should not touch this record.'"
Click here for the complete interview at

Vote For Rush - Canadian Top 40 Songs of 40 Years

In celebration of 40 Years of the Juno Awards, the Juno Awards' Facebook page is holding a vote to select the Top 40 Canadian songs of the past 40 years. Vote for Rush!

Rush On "Criminal Minds"

Yesterday evening Rush tweeted "If you watch tonight's episode of Criminal Minds, you'll hear Rush's 'Closer To The Heart'". Hopefully you were able to catch it, but if you missed it click here for the full episode, or click here for a video clip containing the scene with Rush.

The episode "Today I Do" (season 6, episode 15), has the synopsis "A deranged woman tracks down the boyfriend of a woman whom she has abducted. Meanwhile the BAU puts out an APB on the missing man." In the scene featuring Rush, a man is seduced with beer and Rush (works for me), as he says "Oh my God, this is the best damn bootleg that Rush ever did you know this is my favorite?!"

Graphic Designer Discusses "Time Machine" Cymbals

"Wendy Cosman Parlee has designed thousands of signs, logos, banners, and murals she started her custom graphics company Creative Advertising 24 years ago. But a recent project for Sabian endorser and Rush drummer Neil Peart has to be one of the most unique.

Parlee designed Peart's steampunk-style cymbals for Rush's 2010/2011 Time Machine tour. 'This is probably a once in a lifetime kind of deal,' Parlee admitted. 'I do my magic here, Sabian does their magic in the vault, then Neil does his magic on stage.'...Parlee had previously customized a gong for Slipknot and one for Alice Cooper drummer Jimmy DeGrasso, but they were much smaller projects.

Rolling Stone Readers Name Peart #3 Best Drummer of All Time

The magazine might ignore Rush, but Neil Peart was chosen as the third Best Drummer of all time by Rolling Stone's readers (behind only John Bonham and Keith Moon):
Neil Peart: To Rush's army of fans any name at the top of this list other than Neil Peart is surely sacrilegious, though it's likely that Peart himself would be more than happy to see his name at Number Three – right beneath Bonham and Moon. Of course, no Rush concert is complete without a Peart drum solo. Here's one from Frankfurt Germany in 2004. -, February 8, 2011 - Thanks to Jeff Lucas for the headsup!

"Alex Lifeson Picks Top Riffs of All Time"

"In a new, soon-to-be-published interview with, we asked Rush guitarist extraordinaire Alex Lifeson what he thought was the greatest guitar riff of all time. Having just published a brand new poll on the subject, we were curious to hear what topped the list of the fretboard genius behind such monster riffs as 'Limelight,' 'Working Man' and 'Passage to Bangkok.'

"'Well, I would say there are two that are enduring,' said Lifeson. 'One would be 'Satisfaction,' 'cause that was the first time I heard anything on a guitar that just blew me away. You know, the distorted sound and a simple riff, but it had so much power and it was slick and it was sexy and it had all that stuff. And even when I hear it now, maybe it's because I make that connection to my youth, it still does that to me. And 'Smoke on the Water,'' he continued. 'My God, everybody in the world recognizes and knows that riff and knows how to play it. So, I'd have to say those two would be at the top of that list.'

It turns out Lifeson's picks were spot-on with the final poll, which had The Rolling Stones' '(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction' at #1 and Deep Purple's 'Smoke on the Water' at #2. 'Is it really?' he laughed. 'OK, well, yeah, there you go! Ha ha!'" -, February 14, 2011

Alex Lifeson Remembers Gary Moore

Guitarist Gary Moore passed away of a heart attack this past Sunday while on vacation in Spain. Alex Lifeson remembers Gary Moore with ClassicRockRevisited - Thanks to Stephen Humphries for the headsup!
"I was very saddened to hear the news of Gary 's death. We toured together in the 80s and I remember him as a soft spoken, gentle man with a quick smile. His influence as a guitarist is undeniable and his purity of playing and passion will live on in all of us who love the instrument he so cherished."

"Countdown" Makes "Thirteen Great Songs About Space Travel"

Rush's "Countdown" made ChartAttack's "Thirteen Great Songs About Space Travel".
"Space: the final frontier. Those who can't venture there often sing about it. If there's a common theme uniting songs about hurtling through the vast expanses of the universe, it's loneliness. Space is cold, isolating and boring. Why do we want to go there, again? CHARTattack presents 13 Great Songs About Space Travel:

4. Rush's "Countdown" Turn it up a little. A little more. Just crank it. You wouldn't think that Geddy Lee narrating a 1980s NASA launch would be this exciting, but there it is." -, February 10, 2011"

Alex Lifeson On VH1 Classic Rock Nights This Wednesday

"VH1 Classic Rock Nights is doing a special broadcast from the West Coast this week and host Eddie Webb will be chatting with Alex Lifeson on Wednesday, February 9th. They'll be chatting about the upcoming tour, the Grammy nomination for Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage (Grammy's are this Sunday) and other exciting things the band is working on. Visit: or on facebook at VH1 Classic Rock Nights." -, February 8, 2011

"Hell's Kitchen" from "Mystic Rhythms"

Rush has never been fond of producing videos. One of their better ones is the original promotional video for "Mystic Rhythms" which features an assortment of surreal images and objects interspersed with footage of the band performing the song. The final 30 seconds of the video features "Hell's Kitchen", a one-of-a-kind hand-carved mechanical sculpture, or "automata", built in 1980 by Paul Spooner.

Hell's Kitchen is currently owned by Marvin Yagoda, the owner of Marvin's Marvelous Mechanical Museum in Farmington Hills, Michigan. The sculpture is over 7 feet tall, 3 feet wide, 2 feet deep, and weighs around 300 pounds. Although it is no longer on display in the museum (as the museum received too many complaints regarding the genitalia found on the sculpture), here is a clip of Hell's Kitchen extracted from a Marvin's Marvelous Mechanical Museum promotional DVD. - Thanks to KevinWayte and Sniglets for the headsup!

Vapor Trails Remix - Richard Chycki weighs in...

Ever since its release, both fans and critics alike have lamented the mix of Rush's triumphant 2002 album, Vapor Trails. A victim of what has become known as the loudness war, as succinctly described in depth by reviewer Rip Rowan, a remix has long been anticipated. In fact, Atlantic Records had announced a remaster as early as 2004; this reissue obviously was shelved. It wasn't until later that the band finally addressed the issue when in the April 2007 issue of Metal Edge Alex Lifeson stated "it was mastered much too hot; it's too loud and it eats away at us and we want to address that". Finally, nearly ten years after the original release, it seems the time of the Vapor Trails remix is nearly upon us:
"Rush are planning to totally remix their 2002 album Vapor Trails. Talking exclusively to Classic Rock, guitarist Alex Lifeson revealed: 'We were never happy with the production. Perhaps we should have taken more time over the record. But now we’ve got the chance to improve things. There will be no re-recording, just a remix'." -, February 3, 2011 - Thanks to Ed at RushIsABand for the headsup!
Update: today Richard Chycki discussed the Vapor Trail Remix in his blog, and how certain elements appeared for the first time in the remixes of "One Little Victory" and "Earthshine".
"A while back, I re-mixed One Little Victory and Earthshine from Rush’s 2002 release Vapor Trails to be included on their 2009 release Retrospective 3. The re-mixes were very well-received so the band has decided to let me move ahead and re-mix the remainder of the CD. To put rumors to rest, there was no re-recording or performance correction done on the first two tracks and that will continue for the remainder of the CD. The reason 'new' details may seem to have appeared in those songs is due to the fact that I listened to the multitracks and interpreted the mix structure without first analyzing the original [deliberately] — so tracks either muted or turned down in the original mixes may shine through differently (the acoustic guitars in Earthshine might be a good example of this). As well, the same technical tweaks will continue for the remaining songs and I still will not have a buss limiter on the mix set to stun. In any case, both the band and I are really excited to re-visit Vapor Trails and hope you’ll all enjoy the re-mix." - Rhichard Chycki,, February 4, 2011
No word yet if any bonus tracks will be included. Click here for the complete history of the Vapor Trails remaster/remix saga.

Jay Leno's Cat Drums To "Limelight"

During his monologue last night, Jay Leno played a clip of his cat playing drums during "Limelight"! Check it out here, skip ahead to the 10:35 mark.

Rush On Jeopardy

During Monday's episode of Jeopardy, in the "Music of Canada" category for $1000 the clue was "This 'Fly By Night' power trio formed in Toronto in 1968; Neil Peart joined in '74 (cue the drum solo)". Click here for a video clip; click here for the full answer board from J! - Thanks to Ande Green and Jason Kaczor for the headsup!