Rush News

Sonic Reality's "XYZ A Tribute To Rush" Featuring The Drums Of Neil Peart Now Available For Download (CD's shipping soon)

UPDATE April 21: The download version of Sonic Elements XYZ - A Tribute To Rush featuring Neil Peart Drums is now available from esoundz.  The CD version will be shipping soon.

Sonic Reality's Neil Peart Drums is a sample library featuring recordings of Neil Peart playing the Snakes and Arrows’ Custom DW Drum Kit.  The Sonic Elements project was put together by Sonic Reality CEO Dave Kerzner featuring various musicians from around the world playing classic rock covers and originals using the library samples.   For more info, check out Everything You Wanted To Know About Sonic Reality's Neil Peart Drums: An Interview With Dave Kerzner by Andrew Olson.

You can purchase the music on CD or download, or you can download Neil Peart Drums to do a virtual jam with him yourself! All is here: (XYZ can be ordered at the bottom of the page).
1) Tom Sawyer: Vocals, Guitar - John Wesley (Porcupine Tree); Keyboards - Dave Kerzner; Bass - Billy Sherwood
2) Red Barchetta: Vocals, Guitar - Rik Emmett (Triumph); Keyboards - Dave Kerzner; Bass - Matt Dorsey
3) YYZ: Guitar, Bass - Billy Sherwood; Guitar - Alastair Greene; Keyboards - Dave Kerzner
4) Limelight: Vocals - Randy McStine; Guitars - John Wesley; Keyboards - Dave Kerzner; Bass - Billy Sherwood
5) Trifecta (Bonus Track): Guitars, Bass - Billy Sherwood; Keyboards - Dave Kerzner
6) Times Gone (Pre-Order Only Bonus Track): Guitars, Bass - Billy Sherwood; Keyboards - Dave Kerzner
On all: Drums - Neil Peart Drums by Sonic Reality

Steel Assassin's Cover "Red Sector A" on "WWII: Metal Of Honor"

On May 15th, Boston heavy metal band Steel Assassin will release their new album WWII: Metal Of Honor. As announced back in July, one of the tracks on the album is a cover of RUSH's "Red Sector A".  You can order the album here; click here to hear it.  Guitarist Mike Mooney recently discussed the song with High Roller magazine:
"I actually made a demo of the song about five years ago basically for my own purposes. I've always loved the way Geddy (Lee) sings that song, there's a hopelessness and longing in his voice that is brilliant, but there's also a quality of urgency that I thought would translate well to metal, so I basically changed up the tempos and really kept everything else the same. I call Rush my 'desert island' band, meaning if I were ever stranded on desert island and could only listen to one artist, it would be Rush. Kevin and I are both huge fans all the way back to their earliest days. Their writing in a lot of ways is very metal, but they are so much more diverse than just that. 'Red Sector A' also ties in rather neatly with the military concept of our record. We were at my house combing through some demos for the new record, when I came across my old version of it, and all at once it struck me, this would be an awesome addition to the World War II theme. I began the campaign right then to have this song on the album, Kevin instantly agreed and the rest would follow. Lyrically and musically it's a perfect compliment to this record and the whole band is really excited about it."
Thanks to Ed at for the headsup!

Alex Lifeson interviewed in June's "High Times" Magazine

Alex Lifeson is interviewed in the current (June 2012) issue of High Times magazine.  From their website:
"A rock legend recalls high times on and off the road, including the time our first issue inspired the creation of a legendary pot song."
Thanks to Ed at for the headsup!

Toronto's NewsTalk 1010 Podcast: Donna Halper on "The Rock & Roll Hall of Lame"

Donna Halper was interviewed by Jim Richards of Toronto's News Talk 1010 this past Monday, April 16th.  In the interview Donna shares how Rush have not been nominated because a couple of the judges don't like Rush.

To download the podcast click here for Jim Richard's podcast page, and scroll down to "April 16 2012 Podcast". - Thanks to Frank Panacci for the headsup!

Clockwork Angels - Desktop and Smartphone Wallpaper

Now that the album art has been officially announced, I have added three new images to the Rush Desktop Wallpaper album art page. Included are the Clockwork Angels cover, the new group photo, the Headlong Flight single cover, and in addition I've updated my "Rush Art Gallery" wallpaper which features every studio and live album arranged by release date.

UPDATE: By request, I've added some Clockwork Angels wallpapers of the iPhone/Droid variety...

‘Tom Sawyer’ #48 on Ultimate Classic Rock's Top 100 Classic Rock Songs

Rush grab their much deserved slot on our Top 100 Classic Rock Songs list with a track that found the band once again breaking new ground artistically.

The unmistakeable sonic boom synthesizer intro of ‘Tom Sawyer’ launches side one of 1981’s landmark ‘Moving Pictures.’ Thanks largely to this song, the LP reached the top five of the Billboard album charts and would eventually become the band’s bestselling record.

From the band’s perspective, every single second of ‘Tom Sawyer’ would be hard fought for in the studio as they worked to get things exactly right.

What began — as it often does — as simple noodling at soundcheck evolved into a much more complex undertaking. Fortunately their efforts paid off and ‘Tom Sawyer’ was quite well received, to put it mildly.

Geddy Lee featured in Fender Promo Video "2012 American Standard Series: Still the One"

Yesterday Fender posted a new video to Youtube to celebrate the 2012 American Standard series. Included are guitar and bass greats including Eric Johnson, Wayne Kramer, Chris Shiflett, James Burton, Justin Meldal-Johnsen, Nate Mendel, Marcus Miller, Geddy Lee and Billy Gibbons extolling the virtues of Fender's time-honored big four—the Stratocaster®, Telecaster®, Precision Bass® and Jazz Bass® guitars. - Thanks to Ed at RushIsABand for the headsup!

Rush Receive Revolver Magazine’s Ronnie James Dio Lifetime Achievement Award

As reported today by UltimateClassicRock:
At Revolver Magazine’s Golden Gods Award ceremony Wednesday (April 11) night, Rush received the Ronnie James Dio Lifetime Achievement Award. Previous winners of the award were Ozzy Osbourne, Lemmy Kilmister and Motley Crue.

After giving a plug to the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund, Tenacious D presented the band in their typical style, with Kyle Gass and Jack Black trading lines of praise about the band. “For almost 40 years, this band has been blowing our minds and expanding everyone’s definition of rock,” Gass said.

“Can anyone imagine a world without ‘Tom Sawyer?’” Black continued as the duo proceeded to name other Rush classics. “These songs and many others have become part of our collective DNA. They either inspired you enough to pick up an instrument and practice like hell”

To which Gass replied, “Or, let’s be honest, discouraged you from even trying to approach their technical prowess.”

Drummer Neil Peart was the only member of the band on hand to accept the award. Bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee was in Japan, and guitarist Alex Lifeson, who Peart claimed is “the funniest man in the world,” was in Toronto.

Although known for his challenging and wordy lyrics, Peart was uncharacteristically brief and direct in his acceptance speech. He simply wanted to “express our gratitude. Our lifetimes aren’t over, our achievements aren’t over, so this is like ‘So far, so good,’ and we’ll keep trying to get better. Thank you.”

Clockwork Angels Press Release - Album Coming June 12, Single April 19th has been updated, including the following press release:


Rush has unveiled details of its highly anticipated, new album, “CLOCKWORK ANGELS.” This is the first new collection of original material in over five years and their first studio release via Anthem/Roadrunner records. “CLOCKWORK ANGELS,” the band’s 20th studio album, will be released on June 12th.

The recording of “CLOCKWORK ANGELS” began in April 2010 with Grammy Award winning producer Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Deftones) – who also collaborated with the band on their last studio album, 2007’s “SNAKES & ARROWS.” Rush co-produced both records. The first two songs, “Caravan” and “BU2B,” were completed during that first session at Nashville’s Blackbird studios and performed nightly during the wildly successful Time Machine Tour, which ran from June 2010 to June 2011. Work on “CLOCKWORK ANGELS” resumed in the fall of 2011 at Revolution Recording in Toronto after the tour’s finale, with additional strings (arranged by David Campbell) recorded at Hollywood’s Ocean Way Studios earlier this year. Lyrically, “CLOCKWORK ANGELS” chronicles a young man’s quest across a lavish and colorful world of steampunk and alchemy as he attempts to follow his dreams. The story features lost cities, pirates, anarchists, an exotic carnival, and a rigid Watchmaker who imposes precision on every aspect of daily life. The novelization of “CLOCKWORK ANGELS” is being written by science fiction writer Kevin J. Anderson in collaboration with Rush drummer and lyricist Neil Peart.

Rush will herald the release of “CLOCKWORK ANGELS” with a new single “Headlong Flight” landing at rock radio on April 19th. Details of a full-scale North American tour to support the new album will be announced shortly. -, April 11, 2012
Tracklist: 1. Caravan (5:40); 2. BU2B (5:10); 3. Clockwork Angels (7:31); 4. The Anarchist (6:52); 5. Carnies (4:52); 6. Halo Effect (3:14); 7. Seven Cities Of Gold (6:32); 8. The Wreckers (5:01); 9. Headlong Flight (7:20); 10. BU2B2 (1:28); 11. Wish Them Well (5:25); 12. The Garden (6:59)
More details are included in this exclusive by PROG magazine:
"...And on this new album, Neil Peart got inspiration for his lyrics from a variety of authors, including Voltaire, Cormac McCarthy, Michael Ondaatje, Joseph Conrad and Daphne Du Maurier...In addition, Peart became fascinated with ancient traditions, which also had an impact on the album.  'I learned about an entire set of runic hieroglyphs for elements and processes,' says Peart. 'As the lyrical ‘chapters’ came together, I chose one symbol to represent each of them.'  You can see these symbols in the clockface on the album cover, which has been painted by Hugh Syme.  Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson worked on the music in a basement studio, with Lifeson sometimes giving Peart two demos for specific tunes. One of these would feature a drum machine to outline certain rhythmic ideas, while the other had just a click track. And on one song, The Wreckers, Lee and Lifeson swapped over instruments during the writing sessions." - Rush New Album Exclusive -, April 11, 2012
Although not yet announced, we have also learned that the album will be available on in lossless 96kHz/24-bit FLAC.

Updates/Related News:

Time Machine 2011: Live In Cleveland Nominated for Juno "Music DVD Of The Year"

Time Machine 2011: Live In Cleveland was nominated for the 2012 Juno Award for "MUSIC DVD OF THE YEAR". Other nominees for the award included Feist: Look At What The Light Did Now, Tegan and Sara: Get Along, Peter Katz Live At The Music Gallery and David Francey: Burning Bright.

The Juno Awards were held April 1st at Scotiabank Place in Ottawa, Ontario, and hosted by William Shatner who performed a medley of rock songs including Tom Sawyer (here's a video).

Unfortunately, Rush did not win the Juno.  Awarded March 31st during the pre-broadcast ceremony, the Music DVD of the Year Juno to Toronto's Leslie Feist for Feist: Look at What the Light Did Now.

Rush Reference: Clutch's "10001110101" on 2005's Robot Hive/Exodus

From the "better late than never department...", an old friend of mine recently turned me on to the band Clutch.  Today, I had one of those Rush "moments" when I heard a familiar phrase in the lyrics.  Released June 21, 2005 on the album Robot Hive/Exodus, while the title of the song "10001110101" is similar to a lyric from "The Body Electric", it also includes an obvious Rush tribute in the chorus:
"Man alive the jive and lyrics, radioactive, don't come near it
Temple of Syrinx having the bake sale of the year."
You can check it out here.

Rush Guitarist Alex Lifeson Paints The Town Blue For Kidney Foundation

"It seems touring the world with one of the biggest rock groups of all time isn't enough for Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson as he splatters a canvas with blue paint. However Lifeson wasn't exhibiting a new creative direction for himself, rather he was taking part in a charity gala for The Kidney Foundation called 'Paint The Town Blue' in his native Canada.

"The event saw the 'Tom Sawyer' guitarist alongside contemporary artist and fellow Canadian decorate a series of blank canvases before inviting guests to showcase their own artistic talents. The event was an overall success and a major help towards achieving the organisation's goal of raising up to $50 million for the charity. Toronto, Canada - 29.03.201" -, April 3, 2012 (click for video)

Clockwork Angels Album And Tourbook Covers Leaked

Finally, the album cover to Clockwork Angels, Rush's long awaited 19th studio album has been revealed/leaked.  The image replicates the clock-face from the "Caravan" single, floating in a red storm background.  The time on the clock is 9:12, or "2112" in military time.

And as I've posted before, starting at the one o'clock position on the Clockwork Angels clock face, the symbols are Brimstone, Purification, Mercury, Winter, Zinc, Sun, Aquarius, Essence, Neptune, Lead, Earth, and Copper.

In addition, the Clockwork Angels tour book cover has also been leaked, and it includes a dalmatian standing on a sidewalk staring at a red fire-hydrant painted on a the wall; through cracks in the wall clockworks are seen.
- Thanks to MJZ and Ed at RushIsABand for the headsup!

Rush To Appear On The Cover Of The Rolling Stone! - April Fools!

UPDATE: I hope you all enjoyed our April Fool's joke!

According to a source from Rolling Stone magazine, RUSH will finally appear on the cover of the Rolling Stone!  Still riding high on the popularity generated from Beyond The Lighted Stage and the Time Machine Tour, the magazine has taken this opportunity to showcase RUSH with their first ever cover feature in support of the release of Clockwork Angels.

The magazine, which includes the feature story "Clockwork Excellence: Canucks Still Ticking After Nearly 40 Years", will also reportedly include an extensive collection of photos taken at Revolution Recording in Toronto, as well as a feature covering the band's history with the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

The source confirmed that RUSH will be featured in the April 21st, 2012 issue, and provided this working copy of the cover (click here for a high resolution image) with the promise that that will be updated soon with a story excerpt and photo gallery. has added a brief excerpt of the cover story, "Clockwork Excellence", as well as this extensive photo gallery (click to enter).

Although the Rolling Stone has not always appeared friendly towards RUSH, this trend began to turn when support for the band was provided in 2008 with their feature story "Rush Never Sleeps", and the followup online feature "Rush vs. Rolling Stone: A Qualitative Analysis".

The Rolling Stone has also reached out to others in the Rush community to share the news, including Ed Stenger and John Patuto at and, leading me to believe that this is the start of the Clockwork Angels media storm which we will see over the next few months.

Anthrax Recording Cover of Rush's "Anthem"

Anthrax are recording a cover of "Anthem" for an upcoming Rush tribute album.  Yesterday posted this video of drummer Charlie Benante laying down his drum track.  No further details are available. - Thanks to Frank Ray for the headsup!

Points North's 'Road Less Traveled' Now Available, includes Rush tribute

California progressive rock trio Points North's debut album, Road Less Traveled, was released March 13th on Magna Carta Records.  The all instrumental album includes the track "Grace Under Pressure", which is a tribute to Rush.
"The track 'Grace Under Pressure' (originally titled 'Blue Zone B') is a prime example of the band's ability to time travel while (musically speaking) keeping one foot in the present. 'Hearing Rush's Moving Pictures, from 1981, was a turning point for me,' says Barnett.  The song reimagines Alex Lifeson's 1980s guitar style as a 21st Century invention (think Rush's 'Red Sector A' with a post-Cold War twist). 'The mid-period Alex Lifeson style is where he really focused on chord textures and inner voicings,' says Barnett, who picked up the violin at age five and switched to guitar in his early teens. 'It's not something you hear that often in an instrumental song, because so often those types of songs are about the lead line. In our song the bass is carrying the melody and root notes.'" - Magna Carta Records

Creosote Covers "Mystic Rhythms" On "Area Man" Now Available

Creosote's Area Man, the debut solo album by Gord Smith, who also happens to be the bass player for Jason Plumb's backup band, The Willing, hits store shelves March 27th.  One of the tracks on the album is a cover of Rush's "Mystic Rhythms". 
"Originally from Toronto's suburban sprawl, Smith has been in Regina most of his life. After losing his father at 12, his mother encouraged his interest in music by getting him his first drum set. Being a huge Rush fan early on contributed to his dedication to learning how to play...Pulling in his Canadian rock roots, Smith decided to cover a Rush song mostly because nobody else is ambitious enough to try. 'I picked a song that was in their late 80s keyboard funk, which was panned by fans. The songs are still there.' Rush’s original 'Mystic Rhythms' is a mid-tempo synthesizer and keyboard-driven song. Smith turned in into the guitar-driven rock song he thought it should have been. He got to gush to Rush's Alex Lifeson about breathing life into the song while recording Jason Plumb and the Willing's new album All Is More Than Both." -
Thanks to RushFanForever for the headsup!

Tampa Bay Devil Rays' Evan Longoria's Most Prized Possessions

The Sporting News has published a new story online featuring Tampa Bay Devil Rays' Evan Longoria, which includes includes this brief discussion on his most prized possessions:
"Longoria's most prized possessions are his dogs and his 2008 AL championship ring, but he has another great piece of memorabilia: a drumhead signed by members of the rock group Rush.

Longoria started playing the drums in 2009, when teammate Gregg Zaun had a set at Tropicana Field.

'I never wanted to play in front of him. I'm a perfectionist. I don't want anybody to see me do something and look stupid doing it,' Longoria says. 'I would get to the field two hours early and play his kit without anybody there, at noon. I'd be back there full sweat, and guys would just be getting to the field, and I’d be playing the drums.'

Cool story how he got the drumhead: Rush's singer, Geddy Lee, a huge baseball fan, collects balls autographed by pitchers who have thrown no-hitters. When Rays righthander Matt Garza threw one in 2010, a Lee representative called the Rays to ask for a ball. A Rays clubbie named David Westmoreland (everyone calls him Westy) said, sure, if you send Longoria the signed drumhead." -, March 24, 2012

Rush Miniature Instruments - Officially Liscensed By Fender

Our partners over at have just revamped their line of officially licensed miniature Fender guitars, including a perfect reproduction of Geddy Lee's  1972 Jazz Bass.

These guitars are of the highest quality, and are perfect for the home and office, and are in a word, awesome.  Axe Heaven offers free domestic shipping for Power Windows website users (use coupon code FS2012); international orders over $75 can enjoy a 10% overall discount on their order with coupon code "TEN2010".

Besides the Fender collection, Axe Heaven also offers reproductions of Alex Lifeson's Gibson double-neck and ES-355, as well as Neil Peart's Snakes & Arrows drumkit.  For more info visit our Rush Miniatures page, or

"Small Beginnings: Models fueled Rush drummer's passion for cars" has posted an interview with Neil Peart where he discusses his long time love of collecting cars, beginning as a child collecting models, continuing when touring with Rush building models, and to this day, collecting dream cars including a 1964 Aston Martin DB5 (better known as James Bond's car). - Thanks to Ed at RushIsABand for the headsup!
Since 1974, Neil Peart has been the drummer and lyricist for the legendary Canadian rock band Rush. Rush holds an enviable position right behind the Beatles and the Rolling Stones for the number of most consecutive gold or platinum studio albums by a rock band. Not too shabby, and neither is his collection of cars, which includes a 2001 BMW Z8, 1964 Aston Martin DB5, 2010 Aston martin DBS, and a recently acquired 1963 Corvette Spilt-Window coupe, which happens to be one of his childhood dream cars.