Rush News

Michael Angelo Batio's "Shred Force 1" Now Available, includes cover of "What You're Doing"

Click to Order
Michael Angelo Batio, considered to be a pioneer of the shred guitar genre, has released his first-ever career retrospective, Shred Force 1: The Essential Michael Angelo Batio.   Highlighting his best work to date, it also brings together many nationally renowned musicians from the hard rock and heavy metal genres. The album features some of Michael’s most memorable performances including a dynamic version of Rush’s “What You’re Doing,” which features Queensr├┐che vocalist Todd LaTorre, Metal Church guitarist Kurdt Vanderhoof, Alice Cooper bassist Chuck Garric, Metal Church/TSO drummer Jeff Plate and guitarist Craig Blackwell. An official audio stream of “What You’re Doing” can be found below... You can order the album here. - Thanks to the B-man for the headsup!

Neil Peart talks Far and Near on CBC Radio's "The Next Chapter" with Shelagh Rogers

Click to Order
Back on January fifth, Neil Peart appeared on CBC Radio One's The Next Chapter with Shelagh Rogers to discuss his latest book Far and Near: On Days Like These.  The radio show is now available for streaming here. - Thanks to RushFanForever for the headsup!

Geddy Lee Interviewed in Men's Fashion magazine Spring 2015

Geddy Lee is featured in a one page interview of the Spring issue of Men's Fashion magazine titled "Stopover: London".  The tagline reads:
"A man of talent, curiosity and diverse enthusiasms that include baseball, birds and bottles of fine wine, Geddy Lee, of Rush, feels a particular attraction to London.  The band, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary with a North American tour that kicks off in early May, has spent a lot of time recording and performing in Britain, and Lee is a regular visitor to a a city that he summarizes as 'his and enduring.'"
You can read the full interview on page 28 of the Spring issue here. - Thanks to RushFanForever for the headsup!

Win a Meet & Greet with members of Rush!

The Rush Backstage Club has begun their first contest of the R40 Tour to Win a Meet and Greet with members of RUSH!  They will draw one lucky winner for every city on the upcoming RUSH R40 Tour to win a pair of meet and greet passes to meet members of RUSH.

Only one entry PER PERSON PER CONCERT DATE is permitted.  This contest closes on July 9th, 2015.  Draws will take place approximately 1-2 weeks prior to show date and winners will be notified by email.

Click here for complete details and to enter.

Peart/Anderson's "Drumbeats" included in Humble Bundle Spotlight

Humble Bundle is running a special bundle highlighting books by Kevin J. Anderson's own small publishing company, WordFire Press.  It's an amazing deal of 16 books, where you pay what you want, and a portion of the proceeds goes to charity and the rest gets divvied up among the authors.

Included in the bundle is the story co-written by Anderson with Neil Peart, titled "Drumbeats",  about a rock drummer bicycling through Africa between concert tours, and some weird stuff that happens to him...

This is a great chance for Rush fans to get a copy of the story along with a lot of other novels, and it's for a great cause.  For complete details visit https://www.humblebundle.com/books.

And don't forget, you can can now preorder two upcoming titles also by Kevin J. Anderson and Neil Peart:

Rush Sighting on AMC's "Better Call Saul" - Again

From Monday's season finale of AMC's "Breaking Bad" spinoff, "Better Call Saul", Saul visits his old friend Marco, and in Marco's basement apartment there is a 2112 poster.

This is the second Rush poster featured on the show.  Back in February, we reported how episode 4 included a scene where you could see a commemorative poster for Rush's Aug 14, 1974 Pittsburgh show (first show with Neil Peart) on the back wall.
- Thanks to RushIsABand for the screen capture.

Photographer Glen Wexler discusses Hold Your Fire Cover Photo Shoot and More

Last year photographer Glen Wexler sat down with Travellersintime.com to discuss his career in shooting album covers.  Glen talks at length about many covers, including the work he did for Rush's Hold Your Fire album cover and linernotes art.  Glen tells how the original actor chosen to play "the juggler" was Dennis Hopper, and that the set piece still exists in his garage:
Hold Your Fire was my only Rush cover. In the mid to late 80s Hugh Syme and I collaborated on several projects. Hugh worked with Rush as their art director from very early on. We were both art directing conceptual album covers, although I was creating the images with photography, and at the time, Hugh was primarily a painter. The collaboration was an interesting and productive mix.

I often worked with miniature sets, and suggested the approach for staging the fire juggler. Many of the miniature buildings were recycled from a Yamaha advertising campaign featuring Michael Jackson, which I had created a couple years prior. I brought in my set team, who built a very impressive set, but very small, only four feet across.

I cast the fire juggler, this great character actor, Stanley Brock, who's mostly known for his role in the film Tin Men. We originally had Dennis Hopper on board, but kept running into scheduling conflicts.

I shot the miniature street scene in my studio on 4x5 film. The other elements were shot medium format with a Hasselblad. The fireballs are a basketball that was coated with rubber cement and torched. The dog, full size fire hydrant, and actor were shot separately. I combine all the elements with multiple exposures on 8x10 film in my darkroom, which was the primary method I used to combine images pre-digitally. When everything was combined together on one piece of film, it was sent out for a dye transfer print and final retouching, which was the typical workflow back then.

In the original version, we also flew in the boy who modeled for Hugh's painting for the Power Windows cover. He was seen looking out of the apartment window, but it was decided that he didn't really enhance the shot...there was so much going on. Earlier Rush covers are referenced in the image, and Power Windows was covered by the period TV sets in the room.

In hindsight, both Hugh and I regretted using that image in the inside of package. It was a little too "clever" using the three red balls for the cover, and leaving the more epic and memorable image for the inside of the packaging. While it might not look like it, the cover with the red balls is photography, as well. I had my set guys physically sculpt the RUSH text into a 4' x 8' surface that was then painted a high gloss red by an auto body shop. The printer combined the red billiard balls during the pre-press. I still have the set piece in my garage. I thought it would make a cool door.
You can read the full interview here. - Thanks to RushFanForever for the headsup!

Clockwork Angels: The Animated Movie - April Fools'!

Over the last three years, in addition to Rush's excellent album Clockwork Angels, Rush fans have been treated to the expanded steampunk universe of The Anarchist and The Watchmaker in the Clockwork Angels novelization written by Kevin J Anderson and Neil Peart, and again with Clockwork Angels: The Graphic Novel illustrated by Nick Robles.  This fall we will also be treated to the followup to the Clockwork Angels novelization, titled Clockwork Lives (now available for preorder in hardback and scheduled for release on September 15th).

We have now learned from a Rush fan at DreamWorks Animation SKG, who asked to remain anonymous, that the Clockwork Angels story is being brought to the big screen in Summer 2016.  As detailed in the working movie poster provided here, the screenplay was co-written by Kevin J. Anderson and famed screenwriter John Logan, and the art direction is a steampunk inspired collaboration by Rush cover artist Hugh Syme and the graphic novel illustrator Nick Robles.  Best of all, the film will feature the music of RUSH! 

Stay tuned for more details as we learn them.
UPDATE: I hope you enjoyed our April Fools' joke.  We again teamed up with John at Cygnus-X1.net and Ed at RushIsABand, and Kevin J. Anderson even joined in the fun. Big thanks to John for creating the poster, with suggestions bounced back and forth by Ed and I.  Who knows, this idea might not be too far fetched, we will see what the future holds...

The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Plays Prog Rock Classics Now Available, featuring Red Barchetta

Buy Now
Today saw the release of The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra Plays Prog Rock Classics, which appears to be be a compilation of previous recordings including "Red Barchetta" featuring Adrian Smith of Iron Maiden (from Royal Philharmonic Plays The Music Of Rush).

Label Cleopatra Records says: “A stellar group of musical virtuosos from the prog stratosphere join the orchestra, lending their talents to these intricately arranged masterworks in a collaborative match made in prog rock heaven.”

Tracklist:
ELP Suite: Tarkus/From The Beginning/Tarkus (Reprise)
Comfortably Numb – Ian Bairnson
Thick As A Brick – Richard Harvey
21st Century Schizoid Man – Gavin Harrison & Guthrie Govan
Focus II – Thijs Van Leer
Nights In White Satin – Mark Feltham
Think Of Me With Kindness – Patrick Moraz
Roundabout – Jimmy Greenspoon
Watcher Of The Skies
Red Barchetta – Adrian Smith

Legends of Classic Rock - Jeff Woods with Neil Peart - Now Available via FlinkTO

Back on November 6th, Neil Peart sat down for an hour with Jeff Woods on his Legends of Classic Rock syndicated radio show to discuss the new R40 video collection as well as his latest book Far and Near – On Days Like These.

Although it previously aired on select radio stations the weekend of November 14-15, the entire show can now be heard on the FlinkTO app via the Apple App Store here. - Thanks to RushFanForever for the headsup!

2112 Hologram Edition And All The World's A Stage Vinyl Reissues - Now Available


UPDATE March 30th: Sales of the 2112 Hologram Edition have brought it back into the Billboard Top 200, coming in at #149. - Thanks Wolffman for the headsup!

Today, March 17th, Rush has reissued a unique hologram edition vinyl of 2112 (click to buy).    Also today, they have reissued All The World's A Stage on vinyl (click to buy).  Both reissues come with a code for a 320kbps MP4 vinyl ripped Digital Audio album download.  Take a look at the 2112 hologram edition vinyl courtesy of That Metal Show below.

As announced last fall, following last year's Rush reDISCovered release, Rush is reissuing the rest of Rush's remaining Mercury era albums (studio and live albums through A Show of Hands) in chronological order throughout the rest of 2015. Previous vinyl reissues include Rush reDISCovered, Fly By Night (also available on blu-ray audio in 5.1 surround sound), and Caress of Steel.

Neil Peart's "News Weather and Sports" - March 2015

Yesterday evening Neil Peart updated his website with the latest issue of "News Weather & Sports."  Titled "Miracle in Colorado", Neil tells of how after losing one of his BMW motorcycle's luggage cases which contained many valuables while riding in Colorado back in 2004, it was finally returned to him over a decade later, when he received it last month.
"...it’s some kind of a story—with a bittersweet ending and renewed faith in humanity. A small dark blot in my past, with its fading nebula of pain and regret, has suddenly flared into a bright star of relief and gratitude.   You can’t make that stuff up."
You can check it out here.

Rush's induction video for the 2015 Allan Waters Humanitarian Award at the Junos

UPDATE:  The complete 2015 Juno Awards Ceremony is now available on Youtube, and you can view it here.  The presentation of the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award to Rush begins at the 2:34:15 mark.

The JUNO Youtube channel has posted the induction video for Rush's "Allan Waters Humanitarian Award" and Ray Danniels' "Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award" last Saturday night at the Junos in Hamilton, Canada. Check them out below.





PRS Guitars Announces the launch of their new SE Alex Lifeson Thinline Acoustic Guitar

PRS Guitars just announced:
New product alert! We're proud to introduce the new SE Alex Lifeson Thinline Acoustic Guitar. We worked closely with Alex to make this guitar a studio and stage workhorse at a great price.
The suggested retail price is $799, but the guitar is already available at online retailers for less.  For more info, check out the SE Alex Lifeson Thinline Acoustic Guitar at PRSguitars.com. - Thanks to Rosmakloma for the headsup!

‘Nice Canadian boys’ who just happen to donate millions to charity - Hamilton Specator

Today's Hamilton Spectator included a lengthy follow on Saturday night's Juno Award's celebration:
Rush singer Geddy Lee "gratefully" accepted the award on behalf of the band, but admitted he felt uncomfortable receiving "an award for doing something that you should do."

Rush began supporting the Toronto Food Bank during its earliest shows at Maple Leaf Gardens, urging fans to bring food for those in need. Rush has also performed benefit shows for the United Way and in support of AIDS research.

In 2008, Rush donated $100,000 from a Winnipeg concert to the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. In the same year, the band also gave $100,000 from a New Orleans concert to Brad Pitt's Make It Right Foundation to help rebuild the city in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

As well, Rush has raised some $2 million for Doctors Without Borders and another $575,000 for Alberta Flood Relief.

"There are a lot of people who give and don't play in a rock band, they don't make a lot of money," Lee told reporters backstage during the Juno Awards gala attended by some 800 music industry insiders at the Hamilton Convention Centre.

"Giving is a healthy thing to pass on to other people. You don't have to shout about it, but it is important to do it, whether it's $5 to someone in the neighbourhood, it's a meal, there's a ton of ways to help. It's a part of everyone's obligation as a human being. We try to look at life like that."

When asked why the band has not publicized its many charitable acts, Lee replied: "We're nice Canadian boys and we try not to make a spectacle of ourselves. We focus on our work and get publicity for the work we do. What we do privately is private."

Lee's bandmates — guitarist Alex Lifeson and drummer Neil Peart — were unable to make it to the Juno dinner, but each sent brief videotaped messages of thanks.

"It is both a gratifying and a humble thing to be recognized this way," said Peart, who is currently rehearsing in California for the band's upcoming tour. " ... I always say, if you do well, try to do good. Because I've done well, I try to do good."

Lee, 61, told reporters that the secret to the Toronto band's longevity was its sense of humour.

"It's really not as easy as it looks to stay together for 40 years," Lee said. "We are blessed with very equal temperament and we have a unique and shared sense of humour. We try not to take things too seriously other than the music we are working on ... We are friends, we like each other and we do like to hang out together and make each other laugh."

Also honoured at the Juno dinner was longtime Rush manager Ray Daniels, who founded the Anthem Records label after the band was rejected by every other label in Canada during the early '70s. Daniels was presented with the Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award for his contributions to the Canadian music industry.

"I've always said that I was at Rush's first shows and I plan on being at the last. That hasn't changed," Daniels told the audience.

"I've had the privilege of spending time with some of the most interesting people in the world; some are captains of industry, world leaders and elite athletes," Daniels said. "Some were just well-read limo drivers and others just music fans like myself. What a trip for a kid like me who never finished high school. When I started out with Rush, Pierre Trudeau was prime minister, Nixon was about to be impeached and the Leafs were only a few years past winning the Stanley Cup. That is a long time ago."

Other charitable organizations supported by Rush include the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, Child Advocates, the Dominic Triano Foundation, Little Kids Rock, the Kidney Foundation, the Chilean Red Cross and Grapes for Humanity Canada.

Juno Awards Honor Rush for Career-Long Charity Work - Billboard

Tonight Rush will receive the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award at the 44th annual Juno Awards, taking place in Hamilton, Ontario. The honor is given to "outstanding Canadian artists whose contributions have positively enhanced the social fabric of Canada." In addition, manager Ray Danniels will receive the Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award. Geddy Lee will be on hand to receive the award.  For more check out yesterday's Billboard wrapup, "Canada's Juno Awards Honor Rush for Career-Long Charity Work".

Toronto prog legends Rush discuss band's long history with charity, Junos - Canadian Press

Another new interview with Alex Lifeson has been posted today, this time by The Canadian Press.  Alex discusses's Rush's charitable history.
"It's a way that you can do it as a unit, which Rush is, without making really a big deal about it.  This is really great to get this award — it's always very humbling — but this is just something that you're supposed to do. We don't make a big deal out of it."
Among their charitable contributions, Rush has donated significantly to Toronto Food Bank, United Way, the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, the New Orleans-assisting Make it Right Foundation, Doctors Without Borders, Alberta Flood Relief and Casey House. Click here for the full interview with Alex. - Thanks to RushFanForever for the headsup!

Alex Lifeson talks about Juno honour, upcoming tour - Canoe.ca

Today Canada's Canoe posted an all new interview with Alex Lifeson where he talks about Rush's upcoming 2015 Allan Waters Humanitarian Award at this year's Juno awards (which will be accepted in person by Geddy Lee), and how he is preparing for the upcoming tour.
“I learned very early that it feels really good to help somebody else. A lot of times it feels better than getting help yourself and now that we’re in a position to do something and have been for awhile, it only makes sense. It’s a duty, really, that we all have to help the less fortunate.”
“It’s a wonderful thing to get this kind of recognition. We’ve been very lucky, particularly over the last many years that there’s been all this attention paid to us. And it’s lovely and it’s very much appreciated but it’s not the most important thing. But we happily accept these sorts of things but we don’t try to make a really big deal. You know, it’s a typical Canadian attitude, trying to stay under the radar, and do the thing that we do, and then complain as much as we can.”
 Of the tour, Alex said:
“We’re prepping for the tour; we’re at that stage where we’ve just started playing. You don’t want to hear us.  We’re nuts.  We rehearse for six weeks before the rehearsals. I’m serious. I’ve been rehearsing for three weeks now. I spend four hours, three times a week, and then the rest of the time I play for an hour to two hours. And that’s just to get ready for rehearsals.”
You can read the full interview here.

CelebrityAccess.com: In the Hot Seat with Larry LeBlanc - Ray Danniels, SRO/Anthem

Last week CelebrityAccess.com posted a new and extensive interview with Ray Danniels, CEO and president of SRO Entertainment and the Anthem Entertainment Group.  On "In the Hot Seat with Larry LeBlanc", Ray talks about managing RUSH for four decades, maneuvering record deals over the decades, looking out for what's best for his clients, and what is to come in the future.  Of the R40 tour, and whether Rush will tour again in the future, Ray responds:
"Somewhere between possible and probable. There are some of us who would keep going forever, and there are some of us who wouldn’t. So it’s a process of working that out. And what somebody thinks today may not be what they think in a month...I am focused on making this as good as it can be, and then seeing where we are. I did not want to do a farewell tour. There was no one in the band who wanted to do that because there is nobody who thinks it is that final or thinks that they won’t make music or do something. But I will tell you this. I am probably not going to be able to get a band full of 65 year olds out again on the road--which is what would happen next time with any potential tour--they all would be 65-ish. Neil is as much an athlete as he is a musician, but with these 2 1/2 and 3 hour length sets, I don’t know if it possible to keep up with that (physical) demand. And they each want to go out on top in every single way. From their status....well, that is more me—the status—than it is them; and still having the ability to be at their best. To play at the level that they have been able to play."
You can check out the complete interview at CelebrityAccess.com. - Thanks to RushFanForever for the headsup!

Rush Reference On FX's "Archer" (yet again!)

UPDATE: One week after Kreiger's van appeared with its new color scheme, there has been yet another Rush reference.  During this week's episode, "Pocket Listing" (season 6, episode 9, aired March 5), Doctor Kreiger is seen sitting in front of a bunch of monitors and one of them is displaying a large "YYZ". - Thanks to David Wholihan for the headsup!

Last night (February 26) on FX's Archer (season 6, episode 8 "The Kanes"), Doctor Kreiger's van was once again painted with a Rush themed mural; this time it featured a motif mimicking Rush's debut album with "RUSH" simply replaced by the word "VAN". - Thanks to Ed at RushIsABand for the headsup!

This is not the first time that RUSH has been referenced on Archer:
  • "Double Trouble" (season 2, episode 13, aired April 21, 2011): Dr. Krieger mentions listening to "Red Barchetta" through his "awesome van's" stereo, and says to Archer's Russian defector love interest Katya "Please tell me you like Rush". The van is painted with a mural like the Exit...Stage Left album cover but reads "Exit...Van Left".
  • "The Man From Jupiter" (season 3, episode 1, aired January 19, 2012): Dr. Krieger's van is now painted with a Hemispheres themed mural that reads "Krieger Vanispheres".
  • "Skin Game" (season 3, episode 8, aired March 9, 2012): In the opening scene Krieger brings Archer to his lab which holds a large Neil Peart-esque drumkit, replete with double bass drums with "Thunder" and "Dome" written in the font from the debut album. Archer says "Wow, amazing, you can play 'YYZ'", to which Krieger replies "First of all, it's YY-zed. And second of all, no I can't get it, it's impossible." Later, in the next scene (after the opening credits), in regards to creating an android of Katya, Krieger says "How dare you fail to recognize my greatest accomplishment to date?", and Pam replies "What, you finally nailed YYZ?" Krieger shouts "It's Zed, and...no, Neil Peart (Pert) stands alone..."
  • "Space Race: Part 2" (season 3, episode 10, aired March 22, 2012): Dr. Krieger's van was once again painted with a Rush mural; this time it was "Caress of Krieger".
  • "The Wind Cries Mary" (season 4, episode 2, aired January 25, 2013): Dr. Krieger's van is painted with a Rush mural yet again with "Van By Night".
  • "Sea Tunt, Part II" (season 4, episode 13, aired April 11, 2013): Dr. Krieger is naked in his basement modifying an assault rifle, drumming to "Tom Sawyer" with a pair of screwdrivers. Click here for a video clip.