Archive: Blog Entries from September, 2013

Monday, September 30, 2013

Vapor Trails Remixed and Rush: The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set released today
6:48AM EST | link | comments (120) |

It's finally here! Today Rush releases their long-awaited remix/remaster of Vapor Trails along with a Rush: The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set. Friday morning RollingStone.com posted a FULL preview of the album which you can listen to at this location. European reader RushFanBen already received his copies of the CD and box set on Friday and sent along some scans of the packaging for us which you can check out in this post. Geddy Lee had the following to say regarding the remix in a Rolling Stone interview from earlier this week:

... it was hard to get people onboard. "Why are you obsessing over this one record? You have 20 records. Why the fuck do you care about this one record?" I just felt it was so pivotal that the songs required some justice. We gave it one last kick of the can, and Andy from our management suggested that David Bottrill have a go at it. I thought it was kind of strange/full circle that the guy we almost used in the first place is trying to save it. We were on tour and Neil didn't want to have too much to do with it. The album has a lot of very painful memories for him. We said, "Don't worry. We're going to let David just follow his instincts and he'll do it while we're touring." David just got the record right away and started sending us mixes. Of course, we'd have comments here or there, but generally he understood what it should sound like. So, I'm very pleased with the end result. I think he's finally brought some completion and some justice to some of those songs we'd put so much of our heart and soul into.

For my latest poll I'm asking everyone which song from Vapor Trails they think benefited the most from the remix? Please take the poll and let us know if you haven't already. You can order the Vapor Trails remix on CD or on 180g vinyl, and order the Atlantic-era The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set here.

Related Posts:
[Photos of the Rush: The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set and Vapor Trails Remixed, full album preview at RollingStone.com]
[Rush Vapor Trails Remixed higher quality, 30-second sample clips]
[Geddy Lee talks Clockwork Angels Tour video, Vapor Trails Remixed in new Rolling Stone interview]
[Alex Lifeson discusses Vapor Trails Remixed in new Classic Rock interview]
[Rush Vapor Trails Remixed 30-second sample clips now available]
[Long-awaited Vapor Trails remix coming October 1st, now available for pre-order]

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Saturday, September 28, 2013

Geddy Lee weighs in on effort to save iconic Sam the Record Man sign
3:02PM EST | link | comments (19) |

UPDATE - 9/29@9:11AM: Here's a petition at change.org in support of remounting the sign (thanks RushFanForever).

Iconic Toronto music store Sam the Record Man closed its doors back in 2007 due to sagging sales, and store founder Sam Sniderman passed away last year at the age of 92. Sniderman was instrumental in the promotion of the Canadian music industry, helping several Canadian acts such as The Guess Who, Joni Mitchell, Gordon Lightfoot and Rush get their careers off the ground. Sam began selling records out of his family's College Street radio store in 1937. After Sam's business began to thrive, his family changed the name of the store to Sam the Record Man in the 1950s, and in 1961 Sam moved the store to its iconic Yonge Street location with its huge flashing red neon record sign. Ryerson University bought the store's old location and along with it the iconic sign back in 2008, and committed to remount the sign at some future time. From CBC News:

... in November 2011, Ryerson reevaluated its commitment to replace the sign. The university reconsidered after it estimated the cost to repair and hang the sign would be more than $250,000. The university has said it will negotiate a less expensive way to commemorate the sign with the city.

So far, Ryerson has not found a new home for the Sam's sign. It appeared briefly in a Nuit Blanche art exhibit, but has not had a permanent home since it was taken down. Today the spinning records, which were first seen on Yonge Street in the 1960s, sit at an undisclosed location, awaiting a placement somewhere in Toronto. ...

Toronto music journalist Nicholas Jennings has started an online effort to help push the reinstallation of the sign via a Facebook page titled SOS: SAVE OUR SAM the Record Man Sign. Earlier today the page shared a copy of a letter Geddy Lee sent to the Toronto City Council yesterday in support of preserving the sign. The letter reads as follows:

September 27, 2013

To: Toronto City Council

The Sam the Record Man store and sign were important fixtures in Toronto's musical landscape as well as its Civic history. Sadly, all that remains now are our memories of the store and this magnificent neon sign. Ryerson and the city of Toronto should absolutely preserve what myself and many of its citizens consider to be an important symbol of our past and of that store's contributions to our culture.

Geddy Lee

Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Friday, September 27, 2013

Updates and other random Rush stuff
1:05PM EST | link | comments (57) |

It's almost here! Rush will be releasing the long-awaited remix/remaster of their 2002 album Vapor Trails along with a Rush: The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set this coming Monday, September 30th. Earlier this morning RollingStone.com posted a FULL preview of the album which you can listen to at this location. The album is available for purchase individually on CD or Vinyl, or as part of a new Atlantic-era Rush box set which also releases on Monday. Now that we have some full song clips to preview, for my latest poll I thought I'd ask everyone which song from Vapor Trails they think benefited the most from the remix? Please take the poll and let us know. In the last poll, Secret Touch was the winner, with 17% of you indicating that you were most looking forward to hearing that track on the new remix; complete results here.

As I'd mentioned above, the release date for both Vapor Trails Remixed and the Atlantic-era box set is now Monday, September 30th; the remix had been pushed up from October 1st a couple of weeks ago, and the box set was just recently pushed up as well. European reader RushFanBen has already received his copies and sent along some scans of the packaging for us. He reports that the booklet included with Vapor Trails is no different from the original release other than the new cover design and the note that it was mixed by David Bottril. The CDs in the box set are packaged in miniature album sleeve replicas and are also no different from the originals. There's an orange booklet included in the box set containing all the lyrics of all 7 of the included albums.

You can pre-order the Vapor Trails remix at this location, and the Atlantic-era The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set here. You can also pre-order the double LP 180g vinyl version of Vapor Trails here. Geddy Lee had the following to say regarding the remix in a Rolling Stone interview from earlier this week:

... it was hard to get people onboard. "Why are you obsessing over this one record? You have 20 records. Why the fuck do you care about this one record?" I just felt it was so pivotal that the songs required some justice. We gave it one last kick of the can, and Andy from our management suggested that David Bottrill have a go at it. I thought it was kind of strange/full circle that the guy we almost used in the first place is trying to save it. We were on tour and Neil didn't want to have too much to do with it. The album has a lot of very painful memories for him. We said, "Don't worry. We're going to let David just follow his instincts and he'll do it while we're touring." David just got the record right away and started sending us mixes. Of course, we'd have comments here or there, but generally he understood what it should sound like. So, I'm very pleased with the end result. I think he's finally brought some completion and some justice to some of those songs we'd put so much of our heart and soul into.

Geddy also talked about Rush's upcoming Clockwork Angels Tour concert video in the interview along with the band's future plans (or lack thereof):

... our manager is talking all the time about the future and we're choosing to ignore him. There has been talk of some sort of anniversary tour that might be the next thing we do, but we definitely have not decided if or when that's going to happen. ... The plan now is to have no plans. We have had a great 10 years of tour, album, tour album. I can honestly say that the three of us enjoyed this tour more than any one we've ever done. We left on a high note, but we recognize that we need to pay attention to our families and recharge our batteries. So we decided that we're just not going to discuss anything for a little while. ...

Alex Lifeson had similar comments regarding the band's future in his recent Classic Rock interview.

Audio Fidelity's SACD (Super Audio CD) version of Rush's Hemispheres officially released last Monday and you can purchase it now at Audio Fidelity's website. If you purchase directly from Audio Fidelity use the code CYGNUSX1 at checkout to get 20% off of your order. It's also available for pre-order at other online retailers for release this coming Tuesday, October 1st. You can pre-order your copy at Amazon at this location. Audio Fidelity released an SACD version of Counterparts earlier this year.

Late Late Show host Craig Ferguson made a reference to Rush in his monologue last Friday night when discussing the new Ron Howard film Rush. Craig mentioned that he was disappointed that the film was not about the band Rush, saying the following:

... when I heard about the movie Rush I thought "this is gonnna be great" and now I'm disappointed because I thought it was about Rush - you know the progressive jazz rock Canadian pop [trails off] ... Those guys can move their fingers really fast! Can't they? And then they pick up their instruments and play them ...

You can watch video of the monologue on YouTube at this location beginning at about the 1:40 mark. On a related note, Mike Ryan at the Huffington Post posted an article earlier this week titled Is This A Line From 'Rush' Or A Lyric From Rush? where he lists a quote and indicates whether it's a line from the movie Rush as opposed to a lyric from the band Rush. Rush is a band! ... not a movie. :)

Neil PeartLast Friday evening Neil Peart once again updated the news page on his website. The September, 2013 entry is titled Drummer With a Singletrack Mind and it was originally written during the Clockwork Angels European tour in May, 2013, for a British motorcycling weekly. The version that was ultimately published didn't include Neil's originally submitted photos, so Neil decided to re-publish the complete, unabridged version at NeilPeart.net. It's a short update by the standards of other NeilPeart.net updates and describes Neil's travels across Europe on that leg of the tour with his friend Brutus. You can check it out online here.

Primus singer/bassist Les Claypool and guitarist Larry LaLonde recently announced that they will be reuniting with original drummer Tim Alexander for some live dates. There's also a book in the works on the history of Primus, along with a a fishing TV show with ex-Ween member Mickey "Dean Ween" Melchiondo! Claypool recently sat down to discuss the reunion, the book, the TV show and more with Rolling Stone magazine and mentions having recently had dinner with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson:

... you can feel the excitement from [Alexander] and the enthusiasm, which is great, 'cause you just didn't feel that before. And for me as well, reading through the [yet-to-be titled] book as I have been, you become a little nostalgic for what we were in the "heyday," so to speak. And then I had dinner with Geddy [Lee] and Alex [Lifeson] a couple of months ago, and they're big Primus fans, but they're bigger fans of the Primus with Tim Alexander. I assume they'll be excited about this. [Laughs] ...

Primus and Rush have been good friends since Primus opened for the band on the Roll the Bones tour. You can read the entire article/interview at this location.

A new biography focusing on the early career of heavy metal pioneers KISS was released a couple of weeks ago on September 10th titled Nothin' to Lose: The Making of KISS (1972-1975). Rush toured extensively with KISS as an opening act during 1974-5, and the band is heavily featured in chapter 26 of the book (Heavy Metal Masters) on pages 375-383. The chapter includes interview snippets from members of KISS and Rush along with some members from both road crews; Rush lighting director Howard Ungerleider and the late Skip Gildersleeve are both quoted. Both groups comment extensively on the fun they had touring together, and the deep bond they developed. Here's what KISS frontman Paul Stanley had to say about Rush:

There are good guys in bands and there are great guys. Rush were great guys, fun to be around, no pretense. We seemed to share a sense of humor. Our backgrounds were similar. We shared a great bond with the whole band.

And here are some of Alex Lifeson's comments:

We hung out a lot. We'd go out to eat and hang out with each other. Gene and I used to correspond through the mail and I still have a few of those letters. There was a very heartfelt connection between both bands even though musically we were moving in two completely different directions. Their vision was looking at rock and roll as entertainment whereas we were looking to make the album and write the song. But despite all of those differences there was a real sense of unity in what we were doing and how we were doing it together. If there's affection towards us from their camp there's certainly lots of it from ours.

The book also includes some photos from when the bands toured together including this one. You can check it out yourself by going to the book's Amazon listing and click on the book cover's Look Inside feature. Then just search inside this book using the word Rush. The chapter mentioned above is on page 375. Rush also were mentioned in recent autobiographies from former KISS members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss. On a related note, Megadeth's Dave Mustaine was recently interviewed for Ultimate Classic Rock and mentions being a fan of Rush and KISS growing up (thanks ou812112):

... KISS was one of the bands from the very beginning that affected me. And this record on the shirt, 'Hotter than Hell,' on the back cover had a girl with a boob sticking out. I thought that was pretty cool as a kid (laughs). I saw KISS at the Long Beach arena back then, I saw Rush, they were a couple of the bands that affected me growing up once I saw them play live. ...

Reader rushfanben alerted me to some good news for European Rush fans. On November 4th the R30 Blu-ray will finally be available in Europe from numerous retailers.

Neil Peart got a brief mention in the latest episode of Cartoon Network's Aqua Teen Hunger Force (Season 10, Episode 6 - Skins). At about the 3:15 mark in the show Master Shake says ... like Neil Peart in Rush... Cartoon Network subscribers can watch the show online at this location. The show writers are big Rush fans and have included Rush references in past episodes. A cartoon version of Neil Peart appeared in the Aqua Teen Hunger Force movie a few years back. Thanks to Kelly M for the heads up.

Last week Rush's Tom Sawyer was featured in an ESPN Monday Night Football commercial, and this week the song was featured on the season 2 premiere of NBC's post-apocalyptic television show Revolution. A few minutes into the show during a bar scene a musician in the bar plays a solo acoustic version of the song. It goes on for a minute or so, playing in the background for most of the scene. You can watch a YouTube video of the scene below or at this location.

That's all for this week. Have a great weekend!

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Photos of the Rush: The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set and Vapor Trails Remixed, full album preview at RollingStone.com
10:01AM EST | link | comments (36) |

UPDATE - 9/27@10:27AM: In light of the fact that we now have some full preview clips to listen to, I thought I'd update the poll and ask everyone which song from Vapor Trails they think benefited the most from the new remix? Please take the poll and let us know! In the last poll, Secret Touch was the winner, with 17% of you most looking forward to hearing that track on the new remix; complete results here.

UPDATE - 9/27@10:17AM: RollingStone.com has posted a preview of the complete Vapor Trails Remixed album! Just go to this location and click on the link in the article. It will pop up a player where you can listen to the entire album. It's mp3-quality of course, but it's still the full songs from the album.

Rush will be releasing the long-awaited remix/remaster of their 2002 album Vapor Trails along with a Rush: The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set this coming Monday, September 30th. The album will be made available for purchase individually on CD or Vinyl, or as part of the box set. A few weeks ago some low-quality, 30-second sample clips began appearing at some online retailers. Since then some higher quality clips have been posted, and the Rush Fan Film Project compiled all of these clips into one handy YouTube video which you can view at this location.

As I'd mentioned above, the release date for both Vapor Trails Remixed and the Atlantic-era box set is now Monday, September 30th; the remix had been pushed up from October 1st a couple of weeks ago, and the box set was just recently pushed up as well. European reader RushFanBen has already received his copies and sent along some scans of the packaging for us. He reports that the booklet included with Vapor Trails is no different from the original release other than the new cover design and the note that it was mixed by David Bottril. The CDs in the box set are packaged in miniature album sleeve replicas and are also no different from the originals. There's an orange booklet included in the box set containing all the lyrics of all 7 of the included albums. He also reports that the remix sounds amazing.

You can pre-order the Vapor Trails remix at this location, and the Atlantic-era The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set here. You can also pre-order the double LP 180g vinyl version of Vapor Trails here.

Related Posts:
[Rush Vapor Trails Remixed higher quality, 30-second sample clips]
[Geddy Lee talks Clockwork Angels Tour video, Vapor Trails Remixed in new Rolling Stone interview]
[Alex Lifeson discusses Vapor Trails Remixed in new Classic Rock interview]
[Rush Vapor Trails Remixed 30-second sample clips now available]
[Long-awaited Vapor Trails remix coming October 1st, now available for pre-order]

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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Rush's Tom Sawyer played on season 2 premiere of NBC's Revolution
10:12PM EST | link | comments (9) |

UPDATE - 9/26@9:37AM: Thanks to the wonders of YouTube, a video of the portion of the show where Tom Sawyer is played is now available. Get it while it's hot.

----- snip -----

RevolutionIn tonight's season 2 premiere of NBC's post-apocalyptic television show Revolution, an acoustic version of Rush's Tom Sawyer is played. A few minutes into the show during a bar scene a musician in the bar plays a solo acoustic version of the song. It goes on for about 30 seconds, with some of it in the background. The episode should be available online later this week. Thanks to Gisabun and Wigtone for the heads up.

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Rush featured in new KISS biography Nothin' to Lose: The Making of KISS (1972-1975)
2:57PM EST | link | comments (32) |

A new biography focusing on the early career of heavy metal pioneers KISS was released a couple of weeks ago on September 10th titled Nothin' to Lose: The Making of KISS (1972-1975). Rush toured extensively with KISS as an opening act during 1974-5, and the band is heavily featured in chapter 26 of the book (Heavy Metal Masters) on pages 375-383. The chapter includes interview snippets from members of KISS and Rush along with some members from both road crews; Rush lighting director Howard Ungerleider and the late Skip Gildersleeve are both quoted. Both groups comment extensively on the fun they had touring together, and the deep bond they developed. Here's what KISS frontman Paul Stanley had to say about Rush:

There are good guys in bands and there are great guys. Rush were great guys, fun to be around, no pretense. We seemed to share a sense of humor. Our backgrounds were similar. We shared a great bond with the whole band.

And here are some of Alex Lifeson's comments:

We hung out a lot. We'd go out to eat and hang out with each other. Gene and I used to correspond through the mail and I still have a few of those letters. There was a very heartfelt connection between both bands even though musically we were moving in two completely different directions. Their vision was looking at rock and roll as entertainment whereas we were looking to make the album and write the song. But despite all of those differences there was a real sense of unity in what we were doing and how we were doing it together. If there's affection towards us from their camp there's certainly lots of it from ours.

The book also includes some photos from when the bands toured together including this one. You can check it out yourself by going to the book's Amazon listing and click on the book cover's Look Inside feature. Then just search inside this book using the word Rush. The chapter mentioned above is on page 375. Rush also were mentioned in recent autobiographies from former KISS members Ace Frehley and Peter Criss. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Rush Vapor Trails Remixed higher quality, 30-second sample clips
11:33AM EST | link | comments (63) |

Rush will finally be releasing the long-awaited remix/remaster of their 2002 album Vapor Trails this coming Monday, September 30th. The album will be made available for purchase individually on CD or Vinyl, or as part of a new Atlantic-era Rush box set which releases the next day on October 1st. A few weeks ago some low-quality, 30-second sample clips began appearing at some online retailers. Since then some much better quality clips have been posted, and the Rush Fan Film Project compiled all of these clips into one handy YouTube video which you can view below or at this location. For my latest poll I thought I'd ask everyone which song from Vapor Trails they are most looking forward to hearing (the full version of) on the new remix? Please take the poll and let us know if you haven't already. You can pre-order the Vapor Trails remix at this location, and the Atlantic-era The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set here. You can also pre-order the double LP 180g vinyl version of Vapor Trails here.

Related Posts:
[Geddy Lee talks Clockwork Angels Tour video, Vapor Trails Remixed in new Rolling Stone interview]
[Alex Lifeson discusses Vapor Trails Remixed in new Classic Rock interview]
[Rush Vapor Trails Remixed 30-second sample clips now available]
[Long-awaited Vapor Trails remix coming October 1st, now available for pre-order]

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Monday, September 23, 2013

Geddy Lee talks Clockwork Angels Tour video, Vapor Trails Remixed in new Rolling Stone interview
11:17AM EST | link | comments (31) |

Geddy Lee recently sat down with Rolling Stone's Andy Greene for a new interview to discuss the band's upcoming Clockwork Angels Tour concert video, Vapor Trails Remixed, the band's future, and more. Here's Geddy discussing what goes into choosing which show(s) to film:

Sometimes it's a very concerted effort to choose a time and a place, as it was with Rio. We wanted to record in Brazil and we wanted that location. And when we chose Cleveland, there was a very definite reason for that because Cleveland was the first city that really embraced us. It was a full-circle thing. But this tour, we didn't make any plans originally to record it, but then after we saw that our work was paying off and we were so proud of the show, we thought, "Okay, we have to record this." We had a second leg planned in the new year, and at the time we didn't know whether we would change songs or not. The feeling was, "Life is too unpredictable. Let's not record it next year. Let's record it now because at least we know what the show is." So we quickly found a venue that was appropriate, or really a couple of venues, and that's how we did it.

Here's Geddy on the band's future plans (or lack thereof):

... our manager is talking all the time about the future and we're choosing to ignore him. There has been talk of some sort of anniversary tour that might be the next thing we do, but we definitely have not decided if or when that's going to happen. ... The plan now is to have no plans. We have had a great 10 years of tour, album, tour album. I can honestly say that the three of us enjoyed this tour more than any one we've ever done. We left on a high note, but we recognize that we need to pay attention to our families and recharge our batteries. So we decided that we're just not going to discuss anything for a little while. ...

Geddy also touches on the Vapor Trails Remixed project:

... it was hard to get people onboard. "Why are you obsessing over this one record? You have 20 records. Why the fuck do you care about this one record?" I just felt it was so pivotal that the songs required some justice. We gave it one last kick of the can, and Andy from our management suggested that David Bottrill have a go at it. I thought it was kind of strange/full circle that the guy we almost used in the first place is trying to save it. We were on tour and Neil didn't want to have too much to do with it. The album has a lot of very painful memories for him. We said, "Don't worry. We're going to let David just follow his instincts and he'll do it while we're touring." David just got the record right away and started sending us mixes. Of course, we'd have comments here or there, but generally he understood what it should sound like. So, I'm very pleased with the end result. I think he's finally brought some completion and some justice to some of those songs we'd put so much of our heart and soul into.

You can read the entire interview online at this location (thanks Geddimus Prime).

Related Posts:
[Alex Lifeson discusses Vapor Trails Remixed in new Classic Rock interview]
[Rush Clockwork Angels Tour CD/DVD/Blu-ray to release November 19th, now available for pre-order]
[Rush Vapor Trails Remixed 30-second sample clips now available]
[Long-awaited Vapor Trails remix coming October 1st, now available for pre-order]
[Rush Clockwork Angels concert film status update]
[Rush Clockwork Angels tour concert film trailer released]
[Rush Clockwork Angels tour concert video to release September 24th]
[Rush Clockwork Angels tour Dallas open thread]
[Rush Clockwork Angels tour Phoenix open thread]
[Rush to film Phoenix and Dallas shows for live DVD release]

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Rush reference on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson
10:57AM EST | link | comments (1) |

Late Late Show with Craig FergusonLate Late Show host Craig Ferguson made a reference to Rush in his monologue this past Friday night when discussing the new Ron Howard film Rush. Craig mentioned that he was disappointed that the film was not about the band Rush, saying the following:

... when I heard about the movie Rush I thought "this is gonnna be great" and now I'm disappointed because I thought it was about Rush - you know the progressive jazz rock Canadian pop [trails off] ... Those guys can move their fingers really fast! Can't they? And then they pick up their instruments and play them ...

You can watch video of the monologue on YouTube below or at this location beginning at about the 1:40 mark. Thanks to Eric at Power Windows for the heads up.

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Saturday, September 21, 2013

New Neil Peart news update at NeilPeart.net
9:59AM EST | link | comments (5) |

[NEWS, WEATHER, and SPORTS: September, 2013 - Drummer With a Singletrack Mind]

Neil PeartJust a few weeks after his last update, Neil Peart has once again updated the news page on his website. The September, 2013 entry is titled Drummer With a Singletrack Mind and it was originally written during the Clockwork Angels European tour in May, 2013, for a British motorcycling weekly. The version that was ultimately published didn't include Neil's originally submitted photos, so Neil decided to re-publish the complete, unabridged version at NeilPeart.net. It's a short update by the standards of other NeilPeart.net updates and describes Neil's travels across Europe on that leg of the tour with his friend Brutus. You can check it out online here.

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Friday, September 20, 2013

Updates and other random Rush stuff
11:56AM EST | link | comments (13) |

UPDATE - 9/20@1:18PM: Here's a longer, 30-second version of the Tom Sawyer ESPN Monday Night Football commercial (thanks Eric at Power Windows).

Earlier this week Rush finally announced details and a release date for their Clockwork Angels Tour concert video. On Tuesday, November 19th Rush: Clockwork Angels Tour will be released simultaneously on CD, DVD and Blu-ray, with the DVD and Blu-ray already available for pre-order. The video was filmed on November 28th of last year in Dallas, TX and the primary footage consists of this entire concert which was one of the band's Night A setlists. As a bonus they also include 3 Night B setlist tracks (Middletown Dreams, The Pass and Manhattan Project) from the November 25th show in Phoenix along with a soundcheck recording of Limelight. The DVD/Blu-ray also includes a 25-minute tour documentary titled Can't Stop Thinking Big, the intro/intermission/outro tour videos and other exclusive bonus content. You can get all the details in the Rush.com press release. The video was produced by Fadoo Productions and earlier this summer CEO Bob McCown mentioned that the video will likely premiere on HBO at some point this fall, although there's no mention of that in the announcement so it's not clear whether this will actually happen. Although the CD isn't yet available, you can pre-order your copy of the DVD or Blu-ray on Amazon today (DVD, Blu-ray). For most of the past week the video has been the #1 seller at Amazon in the Music Videos & Concerts category (it's currently at #2). For my last poll I asked everyone which of the various Night A and Night B setlists from the 2013 Clockwork Angels tour setlists they liked the best. The results are in and the clear winner with close to 35% of the vote was the Night A set featuring The Body Electric, Bravado, Seven Cities of Gold, and Manhattan Project. You can view the complete results here.

Another long-awaited Rush release that we'll be seeing soon is the band's remix/remaster of their 2002 album Vapor Trails, which will see the light of day on Monday, September 30th. The album will be made available for purchase individually on CD or Vinyl, or as part of a new Atlantic-era Rush box set which releases one day later on October 1st. Alex Lifeson recently spoke with Classic Rock magazine about Vapor Trails Remixed, revealing why the original sound of the album bothered him, how the new mix is different from the original and he also touches on the band's future plans:

... There are no definitive discussions about [touring] at this point. Right now it's only been a month since we got home and we really need three or four months to get it out of our system and then see what we feel like doing. But I think we're looking at spring of 2015 as the probable time to get back going again. ... Ged's been collecting bass guitars like a madman. He's covered the walls with all these vintage basses. He's playing them, and he's not one for playing when we're not touring. So I'm wondering if maybe he and I will sit down in the new year and do something. I'm just speculating. I'm not saying there are any plans for writing or anything like that. But if he's goofing around with his basses, that's a good sign for me.

You can read the entire interview online here and listen to some 30-second sample clips of Vapor Trails Remixed online here. The clips are low-quality mp3s, but you can definitely still hear the difference from the original mix. For my next poll I thought I'd ask everyone which song from Vapor Trails you are most looking forward to hearing on the new remix? Take the poll and let us know. You can pre-order the Vapor Trails remix at this location, and the Atlantic-era The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set here. You can also pre-order the double LP 180g vinyl version of Vapor Trails here.

Audio Fidelity's SACD (Super Audio CD) version of Rush's Hemispheres officially released this past Monday and you can purchase it now at Audio Fidelity's website. The original release had been delayed because of shipping issues, but a newsletter that went out to Audio Fidelity members last week announced the September 16th street date. If you purchase directly from Audio Fidelity use the code CYGNUSX1 at checkout to get 20% off of your order. It's also available for pre-order at other online retailers for release on October 1st, although that may get pushed up now that it's beginning to ship. You can pre-order your copy at Amazon at this location. Audio Fidelity released an SACD version of Counterparts earlier this year.

There was some very sad Rush news to report earlier this week. Longtime Rush roadie Russell Skip Gildersleeve passed away on Tuesday at the age of 57. Skip was a roadie for Rush from way back in the early days up until 1997. Here's a short biography of Skip from the 2006 Rush biography Chemistry:

Russell "Skip" Gildersleeve is a crew veteran of many bands. He was brought in for the 'Caress of Steel' tour to replace Jimmy Johnson, And he often used to introduce the band. Skip, a.k.a. "Slider", became Geddy's bass technician, and by Counterparts he graduated to a stage management role. When not touring with Rush, he worked for Steely Dan (with Lorne Wheaton) as equipment manager, and guitar tech for Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band. Skip is no mean guitar player himself. He guested on Japanese artist Venus Fly Trapp's debut CD 'Shakunetsu', which means "red heat".

Our thoughts and prayers go out to Skip's family and friends. You will be missed. Yesterday the members of Rush posted the following message addressing Skip's passing at Rush.com:

"The news of Russell 'Skip' Gildersleeve's passing is shocking and very, very sad. He was one of our original crew members from the mid-70s and we all have many great memories of his friendship, his sense of humour and his association with us over all those years. Our hearts and thoughts go out to his family and close friends. He will be missed." - Geddy, Alex and Neil

There's also this short In Memorium posting for Skip at FOH Online, and Robert Scovill's blog/tribute to Skip on the SPLNetwork.

Anthem's (Rush's management company) Andy Curran, Peggy Cecconi and Meghan Symsyk recently made a trip to Hamilton's McMaster University to see a presentation by students Jotthi Bansal and James Renwick focusing on profile data of Rush's fanbase gathered via a global music download archive on campus. From the Hamilton Spectator:

... "I thought I would be wowed, which is why I came to Hamilton. But I didn't think it would be so beautifully laid out and presented," said Pegi Cecconi, vice-president of Anthem Entertainment Group / SRO Management.

Especially interesting to the delegation was the finding that Rush fans have a unique profile and tend to also be big fans of classical, jazz and Latin (the music, not the language).

The students were hoping a member of the band would show up with Cecconi and the other two visitors, Andy Curran (director of artists and repertoire) and Meghan Symsyk (SRO Management Inc.). But it wasn't to be. Too busy doing rock star stuff. ...

Some other findings from the study showed that Rush fans show a preference for songs from the '60s, '70s, and '80s, rather than more recent releases and that Rush was the most popular progressive rock band when it came to live recordings. For all the details check out the Hamilton Spectator article here. There's also this article on the study from the McMaster Daily News.

Bubba's Bar and Grill 2014 calendarThe Bubba's Bar and Grill official merchandise store at Bubbawares.com has announced the release of their Far and Near Calendar for 2014. The 12"x12" calendar will be available November 1st and features 28 pages brought to you by the West Side Beemer Boyz. You can pre-order the calendar today at this location.

Canadian folk musician Jacob Moon announced last month that he is working on a new CD titled Fascination which will include covers of Rush's Limelight and Subdivisions, and is slated for release sometime in November. It'll also include covers of songs from Yes, Marillion, Radiohead and Peter Gabriel, along with two new original songs. The project is being funded via a RocketHub campaign and although it has already reached its goal, he is still accepting contributions. In his latest RocketHub update from earlier this week Jacob had some news on the recording of Limelight with the David Barrett Trio:

Lots of progress on the new CD this week. We recorded drums, bass and guitars with the David Barrett Trio for a cover of Rush's 'Limelight' that you simply must hear! Epic, prog-rock goodness awaits! David played a really cool part on the steel guitar and rocked a killer rhythm on his electric double neck 12 string.Today it's vocals in Toronto. ...

Jacob also posted some in-studio footage where he and David talk about The Trio's work with Alex Lifeson, the Limelight recording and more - which you can check out here (thanks RushFanForever). Jacob Moon garnered the attention of Rush and their fans when he posted a YouTube video of himself performing an impressive rooftop solo rendition of Rush's Subdivisions a few years ago. The video quickly went viral, and Rush later asked Jacob to perform the song at their Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame induction ceremony back in March of 2010.

The guitars of Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee will be featured in an upcoming book from author/photographer Lisa Johnson titled 108 Rock Star Guitars which is slated for release on October 8th. The book includes a forward by Les Paul which he wrote before his death in 2009, and a portion of the proceeds from the sales will go to benefit the Les Paul Foundation. Guitar World recently posted a photo gallery preview of a few of the guitars featured in the book including Alex Lifeson's 1976 Gibson ES-355 Stereo. You can pre-order the book on Amazon at this location.

Crave Online recently posted their list of 10 Concept Albums We Want As Comic Books, listing Rush's 2112 at #5. Apparently they didn't realize that a comic book version of 2112 has already been written! Last year's 2112 Super Deluxe Edition contained a comic of the 2112 story written by Tom Hodges.

The 2012 documentary film Don't Stop Believin' chronicles how Filipino cover band singer Arnel Pineda came to be the lead singer of Journey, replacing Steve Perry. At one point in the film it shows him singing Rush's Tom Sawyer for his cover band The Zoo in the Philippines prior to being discovered by Journey guitarist Neal Schon. The full clip of him singing Tom Sawyer is available on YouTube here (thanks Sean).

Dream Theater guitarist John Petrucci mentions Rush and Alex Lifeson in a recent Total Guitar interview where he discusses the band's new self-titled album. Dream Theater worked with Rush sound engineer Rich Chycki on the album, and Rich helped Petrucci mimic some of Alex's guitar sounds on the track The Looking Glass. Petrucci had mentioned this track as being a purposeful tip of the hat to Rush in a recent MusicRadar.com interview. Here's what Petrucci had to say:

... it's a Roland Dimension D. I mean talk about Rush, there some things that Alex (Lifeson) did that Rich, having worked with Rush, he knows exactly how to get it. So I would say, 'How did he get that sound?' and Rich would say, 'Hold on a second' and I would be like 'I love that!' That solo really features that sound but it actually got used a bunch on the album. He actually found one and got it for me, which was really cool. One of the cool things about that solo is that I used the Axis and it has the Floyd whammy bar on it. You can hear the chirpy thing that bridge does. It's a little bit different than my signature guitars." ...

Dream Theater's self-titled album releases this coming Tuesday, September 24th and can be pre-ordered here.

Geddy Lee at a Cleveland concert in 1982 - photo by Janet MacoskaEarlier this week, Cleveland's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in partnership with the Cleveland Hopkins International airport unveiled a new exhibit showcasing the work of celebrated rock and roll photographer and Cleveland native Janet Macoska. One of the photographs featured in the exhibit is a photo of Geddy Lee from a 1982 Cleveland Rush concert.

The Cruise To The Edge was a progressive rock concert cruise taking place this past March which featured Yes, Steve Hackett's Genesis Revisited and several other progressive bands. At one point during the cruise Yes bassist Chris Squire and Steve Hackett (Squackett) sat down for a Q&A with fans. At one point during the Q&A Steve mentions that the last time he was on a cruise was in 1957 when his family emigrated by ship to Canada, before moving back to the UK only four months later. Chris then replies that in 1948 his family also nearly moved to Canada, but that his mother, who was pregnant at the time, decided it was better not to travel and therefore travel plans were canceled. He then smiles and says to Steve, "You do realize, we could have been RUSH!". You can see the full Q&A on YouTube here and the conversation described begins at the 22:30 mark. Thanks to Eric at Power Windows for the info.

Rush's YYZ gets a mention in a recent article from Craven Lovelace on how the Morse Code has been used in music:

... Rush famously used the Morse Code characters for "YYZ" to create the odd rhythm of that song. ("YYZ" is the Morse Code signal for the Lester B. Pearson International Airport in Toronto, and the inspiration to use the code snippet came to Rush's guitarist Alex Lifeson, who is a licensed pilot.) ...

The Coff-in churchToday is a very special day in the annals of Rush history (at least we think it was today - see below). On this day (or thereabouts) back in 1968 - 45 years ago - the initial incarnation of Rush played their first paid gig at The Coff-In coffeehouse located in the basement of an Anglican Church in Toronto. For a long time the date of this first gig was thought to have occurred on September 18th because Alex Lifeson had given that date in a 2002 interview with Chum TV. However, it's been documented that the gig occurred on a Friday night, and September 18, 1968 was a Wednesday - so the actual date was more likely the 20th. This initial lineup consisted of guitarist Alex Lifeson, singer/bassist Jeff Jones, and drummer John Rutsey. From the Rush biography Visions:

... The first band formed by Alex and John [Rutsey] in the Spring of 1968 was called The Projection. By the end of the summer that band had broken up.

In August, Jeff Jones came in as bass player and lead singer and a formal line-up of John, Alex and Jeff was formed. They spent their evenings and weekends trying to learn the hard rock songs of the day and scheming for an opportunity to play outside their basements.

The boys were soon able to work out an agreement to play in another basement, but this time they would be paid. Their salary was $25. The gig consisted of playing on Friday nights at an oddly named coffee-house located in the basement of an Anglican Church. The Coff-In served coffee, doughnuts and music to local teens for 25 cents a head.

The band was excited, but they had a big problem. While they had been dreaming of playing, they had neglected to come up with a name for their group. So a few days before the gig they sat around in John's basement trying to come up with an appropriate monicker. They weren't having much luck when John's older brother Bill piped up, "Why don't you call the band Rush" and Rush it was. ...

And Rush it still is, 45 years later. Jeff Jones was replaced at the last minute by Geddy Lee the following Friday after Jeff Jones canceled. After several lineup reformations, Rush's better-known initial incarnation was formed in May of 1971 consisting of Lee, Lifeson, and Rutsey. This would be their lineup on through the release of their self-titled debut album in 1974, after which John Rutsey was replaced by one Neil Elwood Peart... and the rest is history. In a February, 2006 interview with Sound & Vision Magazine Alex Lifeson remarked on the setlist for that first show (as well as he could recall):

Wow. Let's see. We did Jimi Hendrix's 'Foxey Lady,' Cream's 'Spoonful' and 'Crossroads,' the Yardbirds' 'Shapes of Things,' and maybe a few others. We only knew about seven or eight songs back then.

The band image pictured above shows Alex, John Rutsey and Geddy Lee sometime in late 1968. As far as I know, there isn't any photo of the band with Jeff Jones in it since he was only in the band for that one gig. In the Rush documentary Beyond the Lighted Stage, a much older Geddy and Alex took filmmakers Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen on a tour of the old church and reminisced about this gig, although they had some trouble finding it! Here is the video on YouTube. Happy anniversary guys!

Payton ManningAll this past week ESPN has been running a 15-second television commercial spot promoting their upcoming Monday Night Football broadcast on September 23rd where the Oakland Raiders will take on the Denver Broncos. The commercial features footage of Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning with Rush's Tom Sawyer playing in the background. ESPN finally posted the commercial to their YouTube channel late yesterday and you can watch it below or at this location:

That's all for this week. Have a great weekend everybody!

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Rush's Tom Sawyer featured in ESPN Monday Night Football commercial
10:26AM EST | link | comments (6) |

Payton ManningAll this past week ESPN has been running a 15-second television commercial spot promoting their upcoming Monday Night Football broadcast on September 23rd where the Oakland Raiders will take on the Denver Broncos. The commercial features footage of Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning with Rush's Tom Sawyer playing in the background. Thanks to all of the many readers who emailed me about this. ESPN finally posted the commercial to their YouTube channel late yesterday and you can watch it below or at this location:

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Alex Lifeson discusses Vapor Trails Remixed in new Classic Rock interview
11:40AM EST | link | comments (54) |

Rush will finally be releasing the long-awaited remix/remaster of their 2002 album Vapor Trails on Monday, September 30th. The album will be made available for purchase individually on CD or Vinyl, or as part of a new Atlantic-era Rush box set which releases the next day on October 1st. Alex Lifeson recently spoke with Classic Rock magazine about Vapor Trails Remixed and revealed why the original sound of the album bothered him:

The original mastering was the problem. It was poorly done. At the time we should have remastered. It bothered us forever - particularly Geddy, who had the task of remastering of the original album and feels responsible for it. It irked him for many years. The original version is hard on your ears, because the mastering was pushed so hard, there's distortion and so much compression - I found it very difficult to listen to it.

Alex goes on to talk about David Bottrell - who headed up the remix effort - and also explains how the new mix is different from the original:

It's much more pleasurable to listen to. Now, everything's open, you can hear everything, and everything has its place. It's so well-balanced. There's a sort of creaminess and a smoothness to the sound of it. It's so much more dynamic. Before, everything was just balls to the wall. Now it breathes.

Alex also touches on the band's future plans:

No. There are no definitive discussions about [touring] at this point. Right now it's only been a month since we got home and we really need three or four months to get it out of our system and then see what we feel like doing. But I think we're looking at spring of 2015 as the probable time to get back going again. ... Ged's been collecting bass guitars like a madman. He's covered the walls with all these vintage basses. He's playing them, and he's not one for playing when we're not touring. So I'm wondering if maybe he and I will sit down in the new year and do something. I'm just speculating. I'm not saying there are any plans for writing or anything like that. But if he's goofing around with his basses, that's a good sign for me.

You can read the entire interview online here. You can listen to some 30-second sample clips of the album online here. The clips are low-quality mp3s, but you can definitely still hear the difference from the original mix. You can pre-order the Vapor Trails remix at this location, and the Atlantic-era The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set here. You can also pre-order the double LP 180g vinyl version of Vapor Trails here.

Related Posts:
[Rush Vapor Trails Remixed 30-second sample clips now available]
[Long-awaited Vapor Trails remix coming October 1st, now available for pre-order]

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RIP Russell Skip Gildersleeve: longtime Rush roadie passes away at age 57
10:37AM EST | link | comments (10) |

UPDATE - 9/20@11:51AM: Here's a short In Memorium posting for Skip at FOH Online, and here's Robert Scovill's blog/tribute to Skip on the SPLNetwork.

UPDATE - 9/19@4:40PM: The members of Rush have posted a message addressing Skip's passing at Rush.com:

"The news of Russell 'Skip' Gildersleeve's passing is shocking and very, very sad. He was one of our original crew members from the mid-70s and we all have many great memories of his friendship, his sense of humour and his association with us over all those years. Our hearts and thoughts go out to his family and close friends. He will be missed."

Geddy, Alex and Neil

----- snip -----

Longtime Rush roadies Skip 'Slider' Gildersleeve and Tony 'Jack Secret' Geranios in 2012There's some very sad Rush news to report this morning. Longtime Rush roadie Russell Skip Gildersleeve passed away yesterday at the age of 57. Skip was a roadie for Rush from way back in the early days up until 1997. Here's a short biography of Skip from the 2006 Rush biography Chemistry:

Russell "Skip" Gildersleeve is a crew veteran of many bands. He was brought in for the 'Caress of Steel' tour to replace Jimmy Johnson, And he often used to introduce the band. Skip, a.k.a. "Slider", became Geddy's bass technician, and by Counterparts he graduated to a stage management role. When not touring with Rush, he worked for Steely Dan (with Lorne Wheaton) as equipment manager, and guitar tech for Bob Seger and the Silver Bullet Band. Skip is no mean guitar player himself. He guested on Japanese artist Venus Fly Trapp's debut CD 'Shakunetsu', which means "red heat".

There's no online obituary posted yet that I'm aware of, but his passing has been confirmed via a number of sources including his good friend and fellow Rush roadie Tony Jack Secret Geranios (pictured above right with Skip in 2012). On behalf of all RIAB readers, our thoughts and prayers go out to Skip's family and friends. You will be missed.

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Monday, September 16, 2013

Rush fans profiled via global download music archive
11:07PM EST | link | comments (77) |

UPDATE - 9/17@8:24AM: Here's another article (thanks RushFanForever) on the study from the McMaster Daily News.

James Renwick and Jotthi Bansal present their finding to the Rush team of Andy Curran, Peggy Cecconi and Meghan Symsyk - Cathie Coward,The Hamilton SpectatorAnthem's (Rush's management company) Andy Curran, Peggy Cecconi and Meghan Symsyk recently made a trip to Hamilton's McMaster University to see a presentation by students Jotthi Bansal and James Renwick focusing on profile data of Rush's fanbase gathered via a global music download archive on campus. From the Hamilton Spectator (thanks Enviro_tech):

... "I thought I would be wowed, which is why I came to Hamilton. But I didn't think it would be so beautifully laid out and presented," said Pegi Cecconi, vice-president of Anthem Entertainment Group / SRO Management.

Especially interesting to the delegation was the finding that Rush fans have a unique profile and tend to also be big fans of classical, jazz and Latin (the music, not the language).

The students were hoping a member of the band would show up with Cecconi and the other two visitors, Andy Curran (director of artists and repertoire) and Meghan Symsyk (SRO Management Inc.). But it wasn't to be. Too busy doing rock star stuff. ...

Some other findings from the study showed that Rush fans show a preference for songs from the '60s, '70s, and '80s, rather than more recent releases and that Rush was the most popular progressive rock band when it came to live recordings. For all the details check out the Hamilton Spectator article here.

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Rush Clockwork Angels Tour CD/DVD/Blu-ray to release November 19th, now available for pre-order
2:23PM EST | link | comments (44) |

UPDATE - 9/17@10:25AM: The Clockwork Angels Tour DVD is currently the #1 seller at Amazon in the Music Videos & Concerts category (thanks John at Cygnus-X1.net).

UPDATE - 9/16@2:53PM: Note that the press release does confirm that there will be a separate CD release, although there's no pre-order information for it as of right now.

Rush has just announced details regarding their upcoming Clockwork Angels Tour CD/DVD/Blu-ray which is set to release on November 19th. From Rush.com:

...On November 19th, "RUSH: CLOCKWORK ANGELS TOUR" will be released simultaneously via Anthem/Roadrunner Records on CD and the companion BLURAY/DVD on Anthem/Zoe Vision/Rounder.

"RUSH: CLOCKWORK ANGELS TOUR" was filmed and recorded last November at the American Airlines Arena in Dallas, Texas, during Rush's highly successful Clockwork Angels Tour. The eleven month-marathon world tour crossed North America twice and ventured overseas to Europe in support of the band's acclaimed 2012 studio release "CLOCKWORK ANGELS."

In capturing the tour's electrifying three hour set, "RUSH: CLOCKWORK ANGELS TOUR" pairs Rush classics ("Tom Sawyer," "The Spirit Of Radio," "2112″), with a nod to the 80′s Rush era (The Analog Kid," "Territories," "Subdivisions") alongside newly reworked arrangements specifically for the tour featuring the Clockwork Angels String Ensemble ("Headlong Flight," "YYZ," "Red Sector A"). The string section marks the first time the trio has brought additional musicians on the road with them. To showcase their latest studio release, the epic set list also features nine tracks off "CLOCKWORK ANGELS." Other highlights include tracks rarely performed and never before recorded live ("The Body Electric," "Middletown Dreams"), in addition to three separate drum solos by the incomparable Neil Peart.

Beyond the incredible live performances, the DVD includes a 25-minute tour documentary titled "Can't Stop Thinking Big", featuring interviews with all 3 members, exclusive and behind the scenes footage, and offers a glimpse into the inner workings of the Rush tour machine and insight into the band members themselves. Other special features on the DVD include the trio of hilarious shorts created specifically for the tour as well as interviews and outtakes captured during their filming. Additional filmed sketches and a rare soundcheck performance of perennial favourite "Limelight" round out the exclusive offerings. ...

The announcement also includes the cover art, the complete tracklisting and more details about the bonus content. It looks like the primary footage was taken from the November 28th show in Dallas judging by the setlist, but the 4 alternate tracks taken from the Phoenix show are also included as bonus content. The video was produced by Fadoo Productions and earlier this summer CEO Bob McCown mentioned that the video will likely premiere on HBO at some point this fall, although there's no mention of that in the announcement. You can pre-order your copy on Amazon today (DVD, Blu-ray).

Related Posts:
[Rush Clockwork Angels concert film status update]
[Rush Clockwork Angels tour concert film trailer released]
[Rush Clockwork Angels tour concert video to release September 24th]
[Rush Clockwork Angels tour Dallas open thread]
[Rush Clockwork Angels tour Phoenix open thread]
[Rush to film Phoenix and Dallas shows for live DVD release]

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Rush Hemispheres SACD from Audio Fidelity released today
9:45AM EST | link | comments (7) |

Audio Fidelity's SACD (Super Audio CD) version of Rush's Hemispheres is officially released today and you can purchase it now at Audio Fidelity's website. The original release had been delayed because of shipping issues, but a newsletter that went out to Audio Fidelity members last week announced the September 16th street date. If you purchase directly from Audio Fidelity use the code CYGNUSX1 at checkout to get 20% off of your order. It's also available for pre-order at other online retailers for release on October 1st, although that may get pushed up now that it's beginning to ship. You can pre-order your copy at Amazon at this location. Audio Fidelity released an SACD version of Counterparts earlier this year.

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Friday, September 13, 2013

Updates and other random Rush stuff
12:06PM EST | link | comments (42) |

As I'd mentioned in last week's Friday updates post, September was a HUGE month for Rush releases. A Farewell to Kings (1977) and Caress of Steel (1975) were both September releases, and just this past week Hold Your Fire (September 8, 1987), Signals (September 9, 1982), and Test for Echo (September 10, 1996) all celebrated anniversaries. Neil Peart and his wife Carrie Nuttall also celebrated an anniversary this past week; they were married back on September 9, 2000. And the big event of the past week was Neil Peart's 61st birthday yesterday. We are still awaiting the release of Audio Fidelity's SACD (Super Audio CD) version of Rush's Hemispheres, which had been originally scheduled for release on September 3rd. Most retailers are now listing the release date as October 1st, and you can order your copy here. The long-awaited Vapor Trails remix had also been scheduled for an October 1st release, but it now looks like we'll be getting it a day early on September 30th, although the Rush: The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set is still coming out on October 1st. Earlier this week Amazon Europe posted some 30-second sample clips of the album online here (the clips are not available at Amazon in North America or the UK). Although the clips are just 30-second, mp3-quality snippets, you can definitely hear the difference from the original recordings. Here are Geddy Lee's comments about the remix from Rush.com:

... "Vapor Trails was an album made under difficult and emotional circumstances - sort of like Rush learning how to be Rush again - and as a result, mistakes were made that we have longed to correct. David Bottrill's remixes have finally brought some justice and clarity to this deserving body of our work," says Geddy Lee. "Every song has been given a new life, from the fire of 'One Little Victory,' 'Secret Touch,' and 'Ceiling Unlimited' to the melodic musicality of 'Sweet Miracle' and 'How It Is'... these songs have been redeemed. Thank you David!" ...

The David that Geddy refers to in the Rush.com post is Grammy-winning Canadian producer David Bottrill. You can pre-order the Vapor Trails remix at this location, and the Atlantic-era The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set here. You can also pre-order the double LP 180g vinyl version of Vapor Trails here.

Another highly-anticipated upcoming Rush release is the Clockwork Angels concert video, which should see the light of day at some point closer to the Holidays, although the band still hasn't announced any official release date. The video is being produced by Fadoo Productions and earlier this summer we learned from the company's CEO Bob McCown that the video will likely premiere on HBO at some point this fall with the DVD/Blu-ray release following shortly thereafter. A 2-minute trailer for the film was mistakenly posted online back in June and is still floating around the internet.

Speaking of Clockwork Angels, Kevin J. Anderson's novelization of the album was released a year ago last week on September 4th. The Rush Backstage Club has launched a new contest where you could win a signed copy of the novel. For all the details and to enter just go to this location.

Cyril Neville is the youngest member of the Neville Brothers - the legendary first family of New Orleans R&B. Neville released a new solo album earlier this week titled Magic Honey which includes a bluesey cover version of Rush's Working Man. You can listen to a 30-second sample of the track on YouTube at this location, and order your copy of Magic Honey here. The album is available on iTunes as well, and you can also purchase the Working Man track individually for download here.

Speaking of Rush covers, Canadian folk musician Jacob Moon recently announced a few weeks ago that he is working on a new CD titled Fascination which will include covers of Rush's Limelight and Subdivisions. It'll also include covers of songs from Yes, Marillion, Radiohead and Peter Gabriel, along with two new original songs. He also launched a RocketHub campaign to fund the project and he's already reached his goal (thanks RushFanForever). In his latest RocketHub update from earlier this week he announced that he'll soon be entering the studio with the David Barrett Trio to record Limelight and should have some photos and rough mixes to share with us soon. Jacob Moon garnered the attention of Rush and their fans when he posted a YouTube video of himself performing an impressive rooftop solo rendition of Rush's Subdivisions a few years ago. The video quickly went viral, and Rush later asked Jacob to perform the song at their Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame induction ceremony back in March of 2010.

Rush Fan StoriesEarly last month a new book project with the working title Rush Fan Stories kicked off with the launch of a website at RushFanStories.com and a Rush fan survey. The project aims to publish a Rush book with the primary focus being on Rush fans and their stories. Over the last month the project has collected hundreds of surveys from Rush fans the world over. They've also launched a Facebook page and have lined up the perfect person to write the book's foreword. From an update posted to the Rush Fan Stories website earlier this week:

... The biggest news to report is that Donna Halper has agreed to write the Foreword! Donna is credited for discovering Rush and was instrumental in helping them get their first record deal. Rush Fan Stories will be a better book because of Donna, considered by many to be Rush's #1 fan. ...

The update also includes a report on the results of the survey so far and more information on how you can help contribute to the project. For all the details be sure to visit the RushFanStories.com website and follow them on Facebook.

Author and music journalist Martin Popoff's new illustrative history of Rush titled Rush: The Illustrated History was released back in May. Popoff made an appearance to meet fans and sign copies of the book at the Indigo Eaton Centre in Toronto on this past Saturday, September 7th. Reader Andrew W went to the signing and took this photo. To order your copy of Rush: The Unauthorized Illustrated History via Amazon, go to this location.

Rush was featured in an MSN Entertainment article from earlier last month titled Rock's long-haul truckers, where they featured a photo gallery of bands with decades-spanning careers (thanks ou812112). What they had to say about Rush will likely piss off a few female Rush fans that I know:

Ask a woman - any woman - her thoughts on Toronto's prog-rock pioneers and she'll look at you as if you had two heads. Rush is a guy's band and has been since time immemorial which is roughly when the trio launched (actually 1968 but you take our point). Yet the very things that have failed to ingratiate Rush with the ladies - no hunky members, protracted drum solos, wonky sci-fi lyrics and serious, heads-down musicianship - is precisely what has enthralled the guys year after year. You can bet Rush ain't complaining as they make their way to the bank.

Our good friend John over at Cygnus-X1.net was interviewed earlier this week by Rich Castle of Deathscream.net. John discusses Cygnus-X1.net and how it came about, how he became a fan, his favorite Rush albums, the Spirit of Rush fanzine and more. The interview runs for about an hour and you can check it out online here. Speaking of John and The Spirit of Rush, he has added issue #12 of the fanzine to the archive, and also recently posted some great old photos from Rush's appearance at the PinkPop Festival back in 1979.

Reader stergios2112 let me know about a Rush reference in the Making of Death Magnetic video from Metallica, which documents the recording of the band's 2008 album Death Magnetic. The full movie is available for viewing on YouTube and at the 1:09:14 mark singer James Hetfield is attempting to sing a high note and remarks, "We should get Geddy Lee in here." You can watch it online here.

Dream Theater's John Petrucci was recently interviewed for MusicRadar.com to discuss the band's new self-titled album track-by-track, and mentions Rush when discussing the track Looking Glass (thanks Setlist Scotty):

"The song is definitely a tip of the hat to Rush. We're such fans - they've been a huge influence on us, and we continue to admire and look up to them. One of the great things about them is how they write really uplifting songs with positive messages, but they always sound cool.

"It's really interesting. The Spirit Of Radio, Limelight - those are big, big songs with big arena-rock riffs in a major key. Even Free Will has that. The songs aren't dark, but they're tough. It's really hard to write something that can cut both ways like that, but that was my goal.

"The Looking Glass has a few different stylistic changes: There's the Rush arena-rock major riff, but the verses are tricky as far as time signatures, and the style is a little darker. The pre-choruses are very pretty and flowing - they're in half-time - and the choruses open up and get really hooky. From verse to pre-chorus to chorus to riff, you've got a lot of musical styles, and that helps to keep things interesting."

Dream Theater's self-titled album releases on Tuesday, September 24th and can be pre-ordered here.

Neil Peart with Don GeorgeAs I'd mentioned at the beginning of the post, yesterday Neil Peart turned 61 years old. 48 years before that on September 12, 1965 Neil turned 13, and on his birthday that year his parents bought him a pair of drum sticks, a practice pad and some drum lessons with Don George at the Peninsula Conservatory of Music. Neil spoke about Don in a news update at NeilPeart.net last year. He mentioned how he took lessons with Don for 1 year and then hadn't seen him since up until the band's show in Toronto last year on October 14th where the above photo was taken. Don was recently interviewed for Drum Talk TV and discusses some of his collection of materials dating back to 1923, as well as demonstrates and talks about his magic formula for teaching drums to all ages. He also talks a little about his most famous student - Neil Peart. The interview was filmed with an in-studio audience and it can be viewed on YouTube at this location.

To celebrate Neil Peart's birthday, Ultimate Classic Rock posted their list of the Top 10 Neil Peart Rush Songs ... whatever that means (thanks ou812112).

This past Tuesday Apple Inc. held a live event where they introduced the new iPhone 5s and 5c. They also demonstrated several of the new features of iOS 7. It was live-blogged on CNET.com, and at about 1:15PM when Apple senior vice president of Software Engineering Craig Federighi was demonstrating to the audience how to make an iTunes radio station, they used Rush as their example! They mentioned that they were going to show (via creating a Rush radio station) how to get a pure dose of awesome. The CNET liveblogger also remarked that, "Never have I heard so much applause for Rush!" You can see a photo of the Rush reference here and watch some YouTube video below or at this location.

This coming Wednesday, September 18th marks a very important day in Rush history. On that day back in 1968 - 45 years ago - the initial incarnation of Rush played their first paid gig at The Coff-In coffeehouse located in the basement of an Anglican Church in Toronto. Have a great weekend everybody!

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New Drum Talk TV interview with Neil Peart's first drum teacher Don George
9:34AM EST | link | comments (6) |

Neil Peart with Don GeorgeYesterday Neil Peart turned 61 years old. 48 years before that on September 12, 1965 Neil turned 13, and on his birthday that year his parents brought him a pair of drum sticks, a practice pad and some drum lessons with Don George at the Peninsula Conservatory of Music. Neil spoke about Don in a news update at NeilPeart.net last year:

... In 1965, at the age of thirteen, I started drum lessons with Don at the Peninsula Conservatory of Music in St. Catharines, Ontario. When he stopped teaching there a year or so later, I didn't see him again until the day of that first show in Toronto, on October 14, 2012.

In recent years Don and I had been in touch by mail and email, and he sent me videos of his current teaching ideas and methods. I was pleased to see that he was obviously still a gifted and dedicated teacher. For his part, when talking about this long-ago student, Don was once quoted, "Neil didn't have another teacher for thirty years, so I must have done something right."

And he did - Don gave me a strong enough direction toward what I needed to know that I could follow it through those decades. Most of all, he gave me the encouragement that I could be a drummer, if I worked at it. Essentially, Don kept me climbing that mountain for three decades, until I needed Freddie Gruber and Peter Erskine to guide me to higher elevations. ...

Don was recently interviewed for Drum Talk TV and discusses some of his collection of materials dating back to 1923, as well as demonstrates and talks about his magic formula for teaching drums to all ages. He also talks a little about his most famous student - Neil Peart. The interview was filmed with an in-studio audience and it can be viewed below or on YouTube at this location. Thanks to Greg Nosek for the heads up.

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Happy 61st birthday to Neil Peart!
9:16AM EST | link | comments (25) |

Neil Peart then and nowOn this day back in 1952, our favorite drummer - Neil Ellwood Peart - was born in Hamilton, Ontario. Neil is the old man of Rush and turns 61 today; Geddy and Alex both recently turned the big six-oh. I should also mention that this past Monday, September 9th, Neil and his wife Carrie Nuttall celebrated their 13th wedding anniversary. Happy birthday Pratt, and happy anniversary Neil and Carrie!

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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Rush used to demonstrate new iOS 7 features at today's big Apple event
1:56PM EST | link | comments (40) |

UPDATE - 9/10@5:26PM: Here's some YouTube video of the Rush mention (thanks Darren P):

----- snip -----

As we speak Apple is holding a live event where they are expected to introduce the new iPhone 5s and 5c. They are also going over several of the new features of iOS 7. It is being live-blogged on CNET.com, and at about 1:15PM when Apple senior vice president of Software Engineering Craig Federighi was demonstrating to the audience how to make an iTunes radio station, they used Rush as their example! They mentioned that they were going to show (via creating a Rush radio station) how to get a pure dose of awesome. The CNET liveblogger also remarked that, "Never have I heard so much applause for Rush!" You can follow the live blog here and see a photo of the Rush reference here. Thanks to Michael M and Jodeo for the heads up.

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Monday, September 9, 2013

Rush Fan Stories book update; Donna Halper to write foreword
10:24AM EST | link | comments (46) |

Rush Fan StoriesEarly last month a new book project with the working title Rush Fan Stories kicked off with the launch of a website at RushFanStories.com and a Rush fan survey. The project aims to publish a Rush book with the primary focus being on Rush fans and their stories. Over the last month the project has collected hundreds of surveys from Rush fans the world over. They've also launched a Facebook page and have lined up the perfect person to write the book's foreword. From an update posted to the Rush Fan Stories website over the weekend:

... The biggest news to report is that Donna Halper has agreed to write the Foreword! Donna is credited for discovering Rush and was instrumental in helping them get their first record deal. Rush Fan Stories will be a better book because of Donna, considered by many to be Rush's #1 fan. ...

The update also includes a report on the results of the survey so far and more information on how you can help contribute to the project. For all the details be sure to visit the RushFanStories.com website and follow them on Facebook.

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Saturday, September 7, 2013

Rush Vapor Trails Remixed 30-second sample clips now available
2:12PM EST | link | comments (123) |

Rush will finally be releasing the long-awaited remix/remaster of their 2002 album Vapor Trails this coming October 1st. The album will be made available for purchase individually on CD or Vinyl, or as part of a new Atlantic-era Rush box set releasing on the same day. Amazon Germany now has 30-second sample clips of the album posted on their website at this location (thanks gornhay). The sample clips are not yet available at Amazon in North America or the UK though. Although the clips are just 30-second, mp3-quality snippets, you can definitely hear the difference from the original recordings. Here are Geddy Lee's comments about the remix from Rush.com:

... "Vapor Trails was an album made under difficult and emotional circumstances - sort of like Rush learning how to be Rush again - and as a result, mistakes were made that we have longed to correct. David Bottrill's remixes have finally brought some justice and clarity to this deserving body of our work," says Geddy Lee. "Every song has been given a new life, from the fire of 'One Little Victory,' 'Secret Touch,' and 'Ceiling Unlimited' to the melodic musicality of 'Sweet Miracle' and 'How It Is'... these songs have been redeemed. Thank you David!" ...

The David that Geddy refers to in the Rush.com post is Grammy-winning Canadian producer David Bottrill. You can pre-order the Vapor Trails remix at this location, and the Atlantic-era The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set here. You can also pre-order the double LP 180g vinyl version of Vapor Trails here.

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Cyril Neville covers Rush's Working Man on new solo album Magic Honey
9:34AM EST | link | comments (20) |

UPDATE - 12/11@9:24AM: There's now an official music video for the song which you can check out on YouTube here (thanks RushFanForever):

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 9/11@5:40PM: The YouTube link to the full track has been removed (thanks RushFanForever).

UPDATE - 9/10@5:01PM: The complete track has been uploaded to YouTube (thanks RushFanForever):

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 9/8@2:43PM: The album is available on iTunes as well, and you can also purchase the Working Man track individually for download here. Also be sure to check out Liryca Neville's (Cyril's daughter) comments regarding how the cover came about in the comments thread on this post. The track credits on the album were a mistake be the label, and Cyril definitely was aware that the song was written by Rush.

Cyril Neville is the youngest member of the Neville Brothers - the legendary first family of New Orleans R&B - and he will be releasing a solo album this coming Tuesday, September 10th titled Magic Honey. One of the tracks on the album is a bluesey cover version of Rush's Working Man. From a review of the album in Offbeat Magazine:

... Neville's vocals have never lacked swagger, but here they have an arena-rock power that he's seldom reached for in the past. So it makes sense that the track "Working Man" isn't the one Mike Bloomfield wrote and Otis Rush recorded (as the cover credits have it), but the one by those venerable bluesmen, Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson. And the sound of New Orleans funkateers doing a Rush song-and doing it damn well-is about as colorblind as music gets. ...

You can listen to a 30-second sample of the track on YouTube at this location, and order your copy of Magic Honey here. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Friday, September 6, 2013

Updates and other random Rush stuff
11:28AM EST | link | comments (17) |

It was another relatively slow week for Rush news as we wait for a few new Rush releases to arrive. Audio Fidelity's SACD (Super Audio CD) version of Rush's Hemispheres was scheduled for release earlier this week, but because of distribution issues it hasn't shipped to all retailers yet. Audio Fidelity expects that orders for the SACD should ship within the next week or two, although retailers have adjusted their release date out to as late as October 1st for now. You can order your copy of the Hemispheres SACD at this location. Hemispheres will celebrate the 35th anniversary since its release this coming October 29th. Audio Fidelity also released an SACD version of Counterparts earlier this year.

If the Hemispheres SACD release is indeed pushed out until October 1st, it'll be in the company of 2 other big Rush releases scheduled for that day; the long-anticipated Vapor Trails remix and the Rush: The Studio Albums 1989-2007 box set. After that we'll still have the Clockwork Angels concert video release to look forward to, which should happen at some point closer to the Holidays. The video is being produced by Fadoo Productions and earlier this summer we learned from the company's CEO Bob McCown that the video will likely premiere on HBO at some point this fall with the DVD/Blu-ray release following shortly thereafter. A 2-minute trailer for the film was mistakenly posted online back in June and is still floating around the internet. Just do a search for Rush Clockwork Angels Tour DVD trailer and you will likely find it. :)

Clay Paky Sharpy light fixtures on the Clockwork Angels tourSpeaking of the Clockwork Angels tour, Rush lighting director Howard Ungerleider was recently interviewed by Live Design Magazine where he spoke a little about the band's use of Clay Paky Sharpy light fixtures on the ecently-completed tour:

... "We had 55 Sharpys on the tour for the duration," says Howard Ungerleider, lighting designer for Rush. "Sharpys are one of the most versatile and exciting lighting fixtures I've used in a while. I can really get a lot of looks out of them. I definitely work them without over-using them." ...

The article goes on to describe how the fixtures were used in a few specific songs from the band's set including Red Sector A, The Body Electric, The Pass and The Wreckers. You can check out the entire article online at this link.

Vertical Horizon Echoes from the UndergroundVertical Horizon announced last week that their new album Echoes from the Underground will release on October 8th, and the album is now available for pre-order from Amazon and other retailers. Way back in early 2012 we first learned that Neil Peart had played drums on a couple of tracks on the album. The first single is called Broken Over You and was released online for free download earlier last month. Neil doesn't play on this track but plays on the tracks Instamatic and South For The Winter. Earlier this week the band posted a video of Neil Peart in the studio tracking Instamatic to their Pledge Music page. The video is viewable only to people who have pledged via the website, although here's a screenshot (thanks Andy Olson). There's also some older video of Neil in the studio with the band from back in early 2012. Neil had also made a guest appearance on Vertical Horizon's 2009 album Burning the Days, playing drums on three of the tracks along with penning the lyrics for one. You can pre-order your copy of Echoes From the Underground here.

The Spirit of Rush, issue 1The Spirit of Rush was a quarterly, pre-internet Rush fanzine that was published starting in 1987 up through its untimely demise in 2002. It was the brainchild of British Rush fan Michael "Mick" Burnett, who tragically passed away on July 31, 2002 of a heart attack. John over at Cygnus-X1.net with the help of former contributors and co-editors of the fanzine has created an archive of back issues of the Spirit of Rush and earlier this week made them available online here. Here's John explaining the origins of the fanzine and his plans for the archive:

... In the pre-internet age, Mick was essentially creating the ultimate Rush fan site through his quarterly magazine - and fans and the band quickly took notice. Out of the humble beginnings in 1987, the Spirit of Rush grew in popularity year after year, expanding its reach well outside of Europe to all four corners of the globe. As Rush progressed through the late 1980's into the 1990's, so too did the Spirit of Rush. ... In August of 2002, after publishing over 60 issues since that fateful summer in 1987, tragedy struck the fanzine. The editor and founder of the Spirit of Rush, Mick Burnett, passed away suddenly after suffering a heart attack. Just a month later, Mick was celebrated and remembered during a Rush convention in England - one that was essentially sponsored by the fanzine. Following the 63rd issue of the fanzine, one that was dedicated to Mick, a final issue was released after which the Spirit of Rush closed its doors forever. ... With the help and blessing from both Monica Zimmerman, a former contributor to the Spirit of Rush, and Janet Balmer, one of the co-editors of the fanzine, this site will now host an archive of all of the issues of the fanzine. Each issue will be carefully scanned and presented on individual pages for all to enjoy. To start off this new section of Cygnus-X1, the first ten issues of the Spirit of Rush are available below. New issues will be posted on a weekly basis in chronological order. ...

This archive is a treasure trove of information and a great glimpse into the pre-internet days of Rush fandom. You will definitely want to check out if you haven't already. The initial launch consisted of the first 10 issues of the archive, and John has since also added issue #11. You can check out all the issues online here with more to come over the coming weeks/months.

On Rush's Clockwork Angels tour Alex Lifeson used custom Lerxst Omega amplifiers from MojoTone. Back in February MojoTone announced that they were partnering with Alex Lifeson to make the all hand-wired Lerxst® Omega amp and matching Celestion G-12M loaded Tall 4x12 speaker cabinet available for sale via the lerxstamps.com website. They now also have a 2x12 speaker cabinet available for purchase along with some very cool Lerxst Omega t-shirts.

Speaking of Lerxst, Alex was a guest on BBC Radio 2's Sounds of the 70s with Johnnie Walker this past Sunday. Alex reminisces about Rush's early career playing the Toronto bar scene back in the early 70s. He also was allowed to choose a couple of 70s tracks to play on the show and chose The Who's Won't Get Fooled Again and Pink Floyd's Comfortably Numb, saying a few words about both tracks and their personal importance to him. You can listen in to the interview online at this location with Alex's portion coming in at about the 1:24:00 mark.

The second annual Prog magazine Progressive Music Awards took place this past Tuesday at London's Kew Gardens. Rush was nominated for Band of the Year and their 2112 Deluxe Edition was nominated in the Grand Designs category. Unfortunately they came up short in both categories, losing to Marillion and Family's Once Upon a Time's box set respectively. You can view a complete list of all the winners online here.

Rolling Stone magazine recently conducted an online readers' poll to determine The 10 Best Prog Rock Albums of the Seventies and Rush's 2112 topped the list at #1:

... It's a fine story, but the brilliance of 2112 isn't found in the story. It's the music. Rush were in a tough spot when they started the album. They weren't scoring hits songs, and their label was on the verge of dropping them. Instead of making a commercial album, they quadrupled down on prog. It didn't lead to a hit, but the album found a huge cult audience. It's nearly 40 years later, and that audience hasn't let go at all. Rush remain the biggest cult band in the world, and every show on their last tour wrapped up with the title track from 2112. Nobody left disappointed.

Rush's Hemispheres also made the list at #6

Loudwire.com recently compiled their list of 10 Metal Songs that Make a Great History Lesson (thanks Kelly M) and Rush's Manhattan Project made the cut. Here's what they had to say about the track:

Rush are referred to as a progressive rock band, but they've dabbled in sounds akin to the term heavy metal, thus fitting for this list. Anyway, Rush consistently wrote thought-provoking lyrics, with no exception here. They meld their reflection into a bit of history about the song's namesake, which was the name of the project to develop the atomic bomb. The lyrics are predominantly vague, but enough to inform listeners about the project and subsequent event. Rush express the regret felt by those who commanded the dropping of the atomic bomb on Japan, and, in the last verse, give the name of the pilot and the month of the event. You can thank Rush when you nail that Jeopardy question.

Business Insider put together a list of 13 Bands That Have Been Together Since High School earlier this week and Rush was one of the bands featured:

Rush's Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee first started playing together in 1968, when they were high school classmates in Ontario, Canada. Drummer Neil Peart joined the band six years later, finalizing the lineup.

Progscape Radio featured Rush's 1977 masterpiece A Farewell to Kings on this past week's program. You can view the playlist from the broadcast here and read a write-up on the album at examiner.com here. The Platinum-selling A Farewell to Kings was Rush's 5th studio album and was released 36 years ago this month.

Speaking of A Farewell to Kings (and particularly the track Cygnus X-1), reader NorthwestOfPegasus recently paid a visit to the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, AL and noticed something of interest to Rush fans in the Black Holes Inspire Our Imagination exhibit. This display panel explores the role black holes have played in pop culture, as metaphors and as fodder for art, music, and literature. Tucked away in one corner of this exhibit is a page of the sheet music for Rush's Cygnus X-1 as pictured here and here.

Several readers sent me this video of 6-year-old drumming sensation Avery Molek drumming along to Rush's Fly by Night. Watch out Neil Peart!

September was a BIG month for Rush releases so there are several recent and upcoming anniversaries to mention including A Farewell to Kings (September, 1977), Roll the Bones (September 3, 1991), Hold Your Fire (September 8, 1987), Signals (September 9, 1982), Test for Echo (September 10, 1996), Caress of Steel (September, 1975), and All the World's a Stage (September 29, 1976). Neil Peart and his wife Carrie Nuttall also are celebrating an anniversary this month; they were married back on September 9, 2000. And we can't forget about Neil's upcoming 61st birthday next Thursday, September 12th! Have a great weekend everybody!

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Thursday, September 5, 2013

Vertical Horizon's Echoes from the Underground featuring Neil Peart now available for pre-order
11:08AM EST | link | comments (3) |

Vertical Horizon Echoes from the UndergroundVertical Horizon announced last week that their new album Echoes from the Underground will release on October 8th, and the album is now available for pre-order from Amazon and other retailers. Way back in early 2012 we first learned that Neil Peart had played drums on a couple of tracks on the album. The first single is called Broken Over You and was released online for free download earlier last month. Neil doesn't play on this track but plays on the tracks Instamatic and South For The Winter. Yesterday the band posted a video of Neil Peart in the studio tracking Instamatic to their Pledge Music page. The video is viewable only to people who have pledged via the website, although here's a screenshot (thanks Andy Olson). There's also some older video of Neil in the studio with the band from back in early 2012. Neil had also made a guest appearance on Vertical Horizon's 2009 album Burning the Days, playing drums on three of the tracks along with penning the lyrics for one. You can pre-order your copy of Echoes From the Underground here.

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Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Howard Ungerleider talks Clockwork Angels tour lighting in new Live Design magazine interview
10:00AM EST | link | comments (5) |

Clay Paky Sharpy light fixtures on the Clockwork Angels tourRush lighting director Howard Ungerleider was recently interviewed by Live Design Magazine where he spoke a little about the band's use of Clay Paky Sharpy light fixtures on the band's recently-completed Clockwork Angels tour:

... "We had 55 Sharpys on the tour for the duration," says Howard Ungerleider, lighting designer for Rush. "Sharpys are one of the most versatile and exciting lighting fixtures I've used in a while. I can really get a lot of looks out of them. I definitely work them without over-using them." ...

The article goes on to describe how the fixtures were used in a few specific songs from the band's set including Red Sector A, The Body Electric, The Pass and The Wreckers. You can check out the entire article online at this link.

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Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Rush Hemispheres SACD from Audio Fidelity release date pushed
10:23AM EST | link | comments (15) |

UPDATE - 9/5@9:35AM: Amazon is now listing the release date as October 1st on their website, adding to the confusion.

UPDATE - 9/3@3:32PM: Audio Fidelity has informed me that these should ship within the next ten days. Apparently the shipment was held up in Austria, but has now arrived in the U.S.

Audio Fidelity's SACD (Super Audio CD) version of Rush's Hemispheres had been scheduled for release today, but it now looks like it has been pushed out at least one week. Amazon and other online retailers had been listing the release date as September 3rd for the past few weeks, but Amazon now has it listed as temporarily out of stock while Music Direct lists the release for September 10th, and CD Universe is showing a release date of September 17th. The listing for the SACD at the Audio Fidelity website also still reports it as coming soon. If anyone has actually received a copy of the SACD, please let us know. More information as I learn it. You can pre-order your copy of the Hemispheres SACD at this location. Audio Fidelity released an SACD version of Counterparts earlier this year.

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Monday, September 2, 2013

Progscape Radio to spotlight Rush's A Farewell to Kings this week
6:09PM EST | link | comments (42) |

Progscape Radio will be featuring Rush's 1977 masterpiece A Farewell to Kings on this week's program. The show runs from 8-11PM EST tomorrow night with an encore presentation on Wednesday from 3-6PM. You can listen in online tomorrow night at this location and read a preview of the show at examiner.com here. The Platinum-selling A Farewell to Kings was Rush's 5th studio album and was released 36 years ago this month.

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Alex Lifeson appearance on BBC Radio 2's Sounds of the 70s
10:42AM EST | link | comments (6) |

BBC Radio 2Alex Lifeson was a guest on BBC Radio 2's Sounds of the 70s with Johnnie Walker yesterday. Alex reminisces about Rush's early career playing the Toronto bar scene back in the early 70s. He also was allowed to choose a couple of 70s tracks to play on the show and chose The Who's Won't Get Fooled Again and Pink Floyd's Comfortably Numb, saying a few words about both tracks and their personal importance to him. You can listen in to the interview online at this location with Alex's portion coming in at about the 1:24:00 mark. Thanks to Chris S for the heads up.

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Sunday, September 1, 2013

The Spirit of Rush fanzine archive now available online at Cygnus-X1.net
11:47AM EST | link | comments (18) |

UPDATE - 9/5@9:31AM: John has just added issue #11 to the archive.

The Spirit of Rush, issue 1The Spirit of Rush was a quarterly, pre-internet Rush fanzine that was published starting in 1987 up through its untimely demise in 2002. It was the brainchild of British Rush fan Michael "Mick" Burnett, who tragically passed away on July 31, 2002 of a heart attack. John over at Cygnus-X1.net with the help of former contributors and co-editors of the fanzine has created an archive of back issues of the Spirit of Rush and made them available online here. Here's John explaining the origins of the fanzine and his plans for the archive:

... In the pre-internet age, Mick was essentially creating the ultimate Rush fan site through his quarterly magazine - and fans and the band quickly took notice. Out of the humble beginnings in 1987, the Spirit of Rush grew in popularity year after year, expanding its reach well outside of Europe to all four corners of the globe. As Rush progressed through the late 1980's into the 1990's, so too did the Spirit of Rush. ... In August of 2002, after publishing over 60 issues since that fateful summer in 1987, tragedy struck the fanzine. The editor and founder of the Spirit of Rush, Mick Burnett, passed away suddenly after suffering a heart attack. Just a month later, Mick was celebrated and remembered during a Rush convention in England - one that was essentially sponsored by the fanzine. Following the 63rd issue of the fanzine, one that was dedicated to Mick, a final issue was released after which the Spirit of Rush closed its doors forever. ... With the help and blessing from both Monica Zimmerman, a former contributor to the Spirit of Rush, and Janet Balmer, one of the co-editors of the fanzine, this site will now host an archive of all of the issues of the fanzine. Each issue will be carefully scanned and presented on individual pages for all to enjoy. To start off this new section of Cygnus-X1, the first ten issues of the Spirit of Rush are available below. New issues will be posted on a weekly basis in chronological order. ...

This archive is a treasure trove of information and a great glimpse into the pre-internet days of Rush fandom. It's something that I think every Rush fan will definitely want to check out. A big thanks to John and everyone involved in putting this archive together. You can check out the first 10 issues of the archive here with more to come over the coming weeks/months.

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