Rush News

Sonic Reality Releases Neil Peart Drums Vol. 2 The Grooves plus a FREE exclusive sample pack download on

May 8th, 2012, Sunrise, Florida – Legendary drummer of Rush Neil Peart and Grammy-winning producer Nick Raskulinecz have teamed up with music software developer Sonic Reality to create the new “Neil Peart Drums Vol. 2 The Grooves” sound collection. Over 600 grooves performed by Peart are now available in a variety of loop formats such as Rex, Apple Loops, Acidized Wave, R.A.W., Stylus RMX and more to come. Musicians can use these drum grooves to write their own music, practice, jam or play Rush covers inside their computer recording software or iPads and mobile devices.

“When we did the Neil Peart Drums Vol. 1 Series we wanted to present a digital recreation of Neil’s amazing DW kit so it could be played from any midi controller such as a keyboard or an electronic drum kit” says Sonic Reality CEO Dave Kerzner “But for Vol. 2 we now also have the isolated drum tracks of Rush songs performed by Neil and cut up into 1-2 bar patterns that can be re-arranged and used in new music made by any musician or songwriter.”

Offering the first “virtual reality drum session” with one of the top rock drummers in the world, Neil Peart Drums Vol. 2 The Grooves gives musicians an opportunity that’s not only a dream come true for Rush fans but anyone looking for album quality rock drum loops for their music.

THE NEIL PEART DRUMS FREE SAMPLE PACK For a limited time Sonic Reality and are offering an additional FREE set of 72 loops taken from the Rush song “YYZ” in their R.A.W. series Rex, Apple Loops and Wave formats from

These exclusive drum loops are currently not available in any Neil Peart Drums products or anywhere else. You can hear these loops in action here:

YYZ: A cover of the Rush instrumental “YYZ” done by Sonic Elements featuring Billy Sherwood of Yes, Dave Kerzner of Sonic Reality and Neil Peart Drums:

TRIFECTA: Here’s an example of the same grooves of YYZ used in a different musical context which is an original song called “Trifecta” by Sonic Elements also featuring Billy Sherwood of Yes, Dave Kerzner of Sonic Reality and Neil Peart Drums:

For more info on Neil Peart Drums and a download of the Free Sample Pack go to:

For more info on Sonic Reality:

To Follow the Sonic Elements Progressive Rock Project by Sonic Reality Visit:


- Thanks to Dave Kerzner for the headsup!

Producer Nick Raskulinecz talks Rush's Clockwork Angels has posted a new interview with Rush producer Nick Raskulinecz where he discusses the making of Clockwork Angels.
"There a certain responsibility you have no matter what record you're producing," he says. "You want to help the band make the best record they possibly can, and with Rush, that can be a very tall order. Rush fans hold the band very dear to their hearts. You want to honor that, but you also want to push the band forward and allow them to be the best they can be right now." He pauses slightly, then adds with a laugh, "Of course, that stops when we're done for the night. That's when I sit down with the guys and go, 'All right, let's talk about 1977!'
"Two weeks or so into it, as Geddy and Alex were writing more music, we all kind of looked at one another and said, 'Hey, this is really turning into something. It's tying together.' Then one day, Neil walked in the room and said, 'It's done. I finished it.' For the next 20 minutes, Neil talked about this vision he had for the concept of the record, and it was one of those moments I'll never forget. Listening to him, watching him speak – it was amazing! I wish we were filming him so we could put it on YouTube. And right there, the whole record just clicked. Once Geddy and Al heard where Neil was going, they churned out some amazing music. I think Headlong Flight came the next day."
Click here for more.

Rush featured in Governor General's Performing Arts Awards short film "Inner Rush" - Now Available

Starting Saturday, May 5, at 10:30 p.m. ET, Canadians everywhere can watch the National Film Board of Canada’s online film tributes to rock legends Rush, filmmaker Deepa Mehta, comedienne Mary Walsh and more, as the NFB honours the 2012 laureates of the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards at the Screening Room and via the NFB’s apps for smartphones, tablets and connected TV.

For the fifth consecutive year, the NFB has brought together acclaimed Canadian filmmakers and NFB producers to craft a series of short signature works honouring the recipients of Canada’s most prestigious performing arts awards, presented at the Governor General’s Performing Arts Awards Gala at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa on May 5, 2012. Included in this year's tributes is the film "Inner Rush":
Inner Rush celebrates the career of legendary rock trio Rush and members Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart. Recipients of the Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award, Rush have had the most consecutive gold or platinum studio albums in rock history after the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. Inner Rush is directed by Toronto-based filmmaker and cinematographer Chris Romeike and produced by Gerry Flahive.

Rush Visit Canada's House of Commons

UPDATE (May 4):
"Rush member Alex Lifeson said he was thrilled at his reception on Parliament Hill on Thursday.
“It’s really quite an honour. We’ve been a band for a very long time and musicians since we were 15 years old and to come all the way here after so many years is really exceptional for us and we’re very, very proud of it,” he told CBC News.
"South Park’s Matt Stone will pay tribute to Rush’s Alex Lifeson, Neil Peart and Geddy Lee at a gala at the National Arts Centre on Saturday. Stone is a friend of Rush member Neil Peart and appears in a documentary about the power trio – Rush Beyond the Lighted Stage." -, May 4, 2012
In advance of tomorrow's Governor's Award presentation, all three members of Rush dropped by Canada's House of Commons today for a little bit of hand shaking:
OTTAWA - Lots of visitors stop by the public galleries of the House of Commons to watch question period, but few are closer to the heart of politicians than a visiting rock star.

The prog-rock puns were flying faster than Neil Peart's drumsticks as MPs and ministers paid tribute to the members of Rush and other Canadian artists in the Commons.

"Mr. Speaker, there they go, another rush to excuses when they get caught," NDP MP Charlie Angus said as he posed a question to the government on the government's use of limousines.

The iconic Canadian band are in Ottawa along with seven other recipients of the Governor General's Performing Arts Awards, the country's highest artistic honour.

Rush Feature In "Classic Rock Presents PROG" April Issue - Includes More Clockwork Angels Details

The April 2012 issue of Classic Rock Presents PROG is now available, and includes the two page story "Angels Are Go!".  The article shares for the first time additional Clockwork Angels track details, including the following from Neil Peart and Alex Lifeson:
Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson originally worked on the music together in a basement studio, sometimes with Lifeson giving Peart two demos of a tune - one with a drum machine illustrating rhythmic ideas, the other a click-track. "Alex had put together one collection of ideas that turned out to be most of the song Clockwork Angels,' says Peart. "As soon as I heard its rhythmic feel, which was so different for us, my response was 'I want to play that!'"

Carnies and Headlong Flight were of 'furious jams', and there was an 'immediate spark of connection' with Seven Cities Of Gold, Alex Lifeson says, "We talked about having a raucous beginning that related to the middle 'solo' section, and as the song evolved it took on the appropriate character; entering the city with all the wild, dangerous sensory experience it offers." Peart asserts that Lifeson's solo on The Garden was, "A few takes recorded casually and assembled into an improvised performance that remains his personal favourite." Audiences throughout the Time Machine tour will have already heard the opening tracks, first single Caravan and its B-side BU2B, which were written early in the process. The Wreckers was the result of Lee and Lifeson swapping instruments during writing sessions but, "Once we switched into recording mode," says Peart, "it was back to the same old us."
Click here for the full transcript.  Thanks Reed Lover for the original article!

"Clockwork Angels: The Novel" Author Kevin J. Anderson: "My Record Collection"

Author Kevin J. Anderson, who is writing Clockwork Angels: The Novel (now available for preorder here), recently shared his comments on his record collection including his favorite band, Rush:
"When I wrote my first novel it was inspired by the Rush album Grace Under Pressure. I remember signing a few copies and sending them to the offices of their label Mercury Records. A few months later I got a letter from Neil Peart and we've been corresponding and good friends ever since. I dedicated the novel The Edge Of The World, which we based the Roswell Six record on, to Neil and we've written short stories together and he wrote the foreword to my short story collection [Landscapes].  I guess Rush are probably my favourite band. Over the decades they have consistently sought to improve and their work is amazing. Their new record, Snakes And Arrows, is just jaw-dropping" - for more visit, April 5, 2012 - Thanks to RushFanForever for the headsup!
For more on Kevin J. Anderson, visit his entry on this website's "Rush Inspired Literature, Film, And Pop Culture References" page here. You might also be interested in Neil's introduction to Landscapes, Anderson's short story collection. Lastly, check out Anderson's blog post from 2010 telling of his spending time with Neil during Rush's visit to Colorado on the Time Machine Tour. - Thanks to Ed at RushIsABand for the headsup!

Lo-Fi Resistance - "Chalk Lines"

Prog fans, here's another upcoming release you will want to check out.  Dave Kerzner, the man behind SonicReality, and Sonic Elements XYZ: A Tribute To Rush Featuring Neil Peart Drums, is also an accomplished keyboardist who recently appeared on Steven Wilson's Grace For Drowning.

Coming this fall, Kerzner will be appearing on Randy McStine's next Lo-Fi Resistance album Chalk Lines along with Porcupine Tree's Gavin Harrison (all tracks) and Colin Edwin (sharing tracks with John Giblin).  The band may also go out on a mini-tour with additional guitars by John Wesley (three-fourths of Porcupine Tree as a touring band - not bad!). 

The album releases this fall, but a the single version of the title track was released today, May 1st.  Check out a sample of the Chalk Lines single here; to purchase the single, click here.

Clockwork Angels Tour Announcement

The Clockwork Angels tourdates have been announced at  The complete Clockwork Angels tourdates can be found in my Tour Archive here  (click tourdates under Clockwork Angels). Click here for the tour trailer from Artisan News Service, "Rush Headlong Flight Into 2012 Tour, Talks Music Biz Advice."

Rush has issued this press release, which includes details on special pre-sales for Citi cardmembers through Citi's Private Pass Program beginning April 23rd in select markets.  In addition, there are now purchase links listed at LiveNation, Ticketmaster and MusicToday.  The press release also announces there will be a special VIP Tour package available at which includes:
  • One reserved ticket located within the first 15 rows of the stage
  • Exclusive Rush tour shirt
  • Collectible tour poster (numbered, limited)
  • Official tour program
  • Specially designed tote bag
  • Set of official guitar picks
  • Commemorative concert ticket
  • Commemorative tour laminate
Related News

Rush Featured in June 2012 issue of MOJO

The June 2012 issue of MOJO magazine will be on newsstands shortly, and includes an 8 page feature on Rush.

The cover includes the tagline "RUSH. Alienation. Weed. Epic Insanity!", and gives the details "How the highbrow Canuck proggers fed on Tolkien, Ayn Rand, weed and whiskey, survived critics and personal tragedies to become 'the biggest cult band in the world.'".

Although I haven't seen the final product yet, included in the story are tour posters and ticketstubs from the Power Windows "Tour Archive". - Thanks to Stephen Humphries for the headsup!

New Petition To Urge VIP Nation To Reverse VIP Policies

Feeling dissatisfied with your VIP ticket purchase?  An new online petition has been created to urge VIP Nation to reveal the location of the VIP seating. From the petition:
VIP Nation's new policies state that one can buy a VIP package (that guarantees one a seat within the first 15 rows of a venue) through their website for around $300 USD but will not know one's actual seat until the day of the show. It is gathered from this new policy that this is to prevent resale of tickets to professional brokers who would then in turn make a huge profit at the band's expense. However, this is a huge gamble- one could ostensibly buy a VIP package and end up with a seat on the far aisle of the 15th row of an arena- a terrible view for the amount of money paid for it. This is quite different than the Time Machine Tour VIP packages that told one immediately where one's seat would be. This will not stand.
It is assumed that these policies apply to all VIP ticket sales and were not created specifically for Rush fans.  VIP Nation's frequently asked questions is available on their home page. Is Back - What Do You Want to Hear On Tour is back for another tour, and is encouraging fans to pick their 5 favorite Rush songs from a list of songs that Rush have not played live in the last 20 years.  Click here to vote!

- Thanks to Skip Daly for the headsup!

Rush Reference On Fringe (April 20th)

There was a Rush sighting on last Friday night's episode of Fringe.  During the episode "Letters In Transit" (season 4, episode 19), guest star Henry Ian Cusick uses the password "092112#" written on a piece of paper to get into the "old" (alternate universe's) Massive Dynamic building. - Thanks to Bill Oross for the headsup!

This is the second Rush reference on the popular Fox television program.  Two years ago, during the episode "The Man from the Other Side" (season 2, episode 19), "Tom Sawyer" was heard on a car radio in opening scene.

Headlong Flight Now Available For Digital Purchase

Headlong Flight is now available as a digital download via iTunes here as well as via CDUniverse should you desire an MP3 version.  View "the official lyric video"
"'Headlong Flight' was one of those songs that was a joy to write and record from beginning to end. Alex [Lifeson] and I had blast jamming in my home studio one day before the 2nd leg of the Time Machine Tour and I did not revisit that jam until a year later. Alex and I assembled the song to be an instrumental and its original title was 'Take that lampshade off yo head!' but once we saw the lyrics Neil had written for 'Headlong Flight,' I knew that the spirit of the lyrics matched the instrumental perfectly and it was just a matter of making them fit and writing the melodies." Geddy Lee,, April 19, 2012
"In late 2011, my drum teacher Freddie Gruber, towards the end of his long and adventurous 84 years, was reminiscing among friends and former students. Often he would shake his head and say, 'I had quite a ride. I wish I could do it all again.' That is not a feeling I have ever shared about the past -- I remain glad that I don't have to do it all again. While working on the lyrics for 'Headlong Flight,' the last song written for Clockwork Angels, I tried to summarize my character's life and adventures. My own ambivalence colored the verses, while Freddie's words inspired the chorus 'I wish that I could live it all again.'" - Neil Peart, April 19, 2012
Related News

Clockwork Angels Tour Presale

Rush has announced via their newsletter that the Clockwork Angles tour presale will begin at noon today, Monday April 23rd. For a full list of shows and general ticket information, visit

The first round of Clockwork Angels Tour pre-sales start this Monday, April 23 for Manchester, Philadelphia, Newark, Brooklyn, Boston, Anaheim, Los Angeles, Buffalo, Chicago & Detroit.  Be sure to register in advance at  VIPNation.

For the pre-sales, you have the option of:
1 – Tour Package pre-sale starts Monday 4/23 at noon local time and is exclusive with password headlong for the first 24 hours
2 – Rush Fan Club pre-sale starts Monday 4/23 at noon local time and closes Wednesday 4/25 at 5pm local time
3 – CitiCard holders pre-sale starts Tuesday 4/24 at 10 am local time and closes Thursday 4/26 at 3pm local time

Additional pre-sale markets will be announced soon.

Packages will be exclusive to Rush fan members for the first 24 hrs!
Passcode: headlong (lower case, case sensitive)

Package Includes:
One reserved ticket located within the first 15 rows of the stage
Exclusive Rush Tour Shirt
Collectible Tour Poster (numbered, limited)
Official Tour Program
Specially Designed Tote Bag
Set of Official Guitar Picks
Commemorative Concert Ticket
Commemorative Tour Laminate

We will also be offering an exclusive Clockwork Angels Tour hoodie, only available via this offer upon check-out.

To purchase your Tour Package, please visit
The Fan Club tickets are only available during the PRE-SALE. Reserve the best seats in the house through our special Rush fan pre-sales. These presales only last three days, and only certain cities/dates are currently available with more presales being added each week. Check back soon if you don’t see your date. At the end of your ticket purchase, you will have the opportunity to pre-order Exclusive Tour Merchandise.

The Fan Club Presale Merchandise includes a BRAND NEW Clockwork Angels T-Shirt design.

In addition, when you order Fan Club Tickets and the Exclusive Merchandise you will be automatically entered to win a meet and greet with members of the band at your show (one winner plus guest per city). To purchase Presale Tickets and Presale Merchandise please visit

Just a reminder that those fans that are CITI® card members will have access to pre-sale tickets through Citi’s Private Pass® Program beginning April 23rd in select markets. For complete presale details visit

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.