Rush is a Band

A blog devoted to RUSH:
Neil Peart, Geddy Lee & Alex Lifeson

Mon, May 20, 2024

Updates and other random Rush stuff

Fri, Sep 6, 2013@11:28AM | comments removed/disabled

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. :)

Speaking 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 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. 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 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 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 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 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 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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