Archive: Blog Entries from December, 2005

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Have a great New Year's Eve!
3:14PM EST | link | comments (1) |

There's not much going on in the Rush world this last day of 2005, so go rate Geddy Lee's mullet if you're bored. Have a safe and happy new year!

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Friday, December 30, 2005

Funny amateur "documentary" showcases 70s prog-rock
11:29AM EST | link | comments (1) |

[Rush and ELP(70's prog rock)]

YouTube.com allows users to upload and share their own amateur videos. This video documentary from user jhawke discusses 70s prog-rock - specifically Rush, ELP and Yes. It's really well done and funny as hell too. Check it out.

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R30 moving back up the music video charts
7:58AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Billboard Top Music Video Chart]

After 5 weeks on the Billboard music video chart R30 is still in the top 10 and has been since its debut at #2. Last week it was #10 and this week it moved up a notch to #9.

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Thursday, December 29, 2005

R30 Review, Geddy Lee Interview from UnderGroundOnline
2:17PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[RUSH: STILL IN THE LIMELIGHT]

This came out a few days ago but I didn't link to it originally because the Neil Peart interview was taken directly from the one released at Rush.com back in November. They also made it seem like they had conducted the interview themselves, which annoyed me a little. I figured the Geddy Lee interview was also taken from somewhere else. But upon further review, it looks original and is actually a pretty good interview. The R30 review is positive but much like all the other reviews that have come out; complaining about and praising all the same things. The Geddy interview is definitely worth a read though. When asked about hearing Rush influences in today's music he had this to say:

I don't hear our sound, but I get nuggets of some of our attitude from time to time. I was listening to Mars Volta the other day, and somebody told me they're big fans. There's times where the music is just really wild and they do rhythmic things that remind me of the way we used to think and still do from time to time about throwing riffs together. There's an adventurous spirit there that I would like to think was helped to grow through some stuff that we did at one point in our career.

Both Neil and Alex, and now Geddy, have talked about listening to The Mars Volta with Neil even including Frances the Mute on his "Recommended Listening" page at NeilPeart.net. I love TMV, so this is really cool for me to hear.

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Geddy Lee talks to MTV.com about R30, bad hair and big glasses
9:18AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Rush's 'R30' DVD Celebrates 30 Years Of Epic Songs, High-Pitched Vocals]

Here's an article from MTV.com which talks about the band's history and R30. It features several interview snippets with Geddy Lee. When discussing the early days of Rush, Geddy offers this tidbit:

"... we frequently found ourselves unemployed, and when we really needed some dough, Alex and I would get some extra work," Lee recalled. "Once, we painted a movie theater, but that was the closest I ever really came to having a day job." ...

On the tragic deaths of Neil Peart's wife and daughter:

... "It's somewhat of a miracle that we carried on after that, to be honest," Lee said. "We were all pretty well convinced that was the end of the line. But fortunately, to a certain extent, time heals, and we were able to have another stab at it. "...

When discussing the old interviews and videos on R30's bonus disc 2:

... "There's some funny stuff on there," admitted Lee. "For me to watch it is really psychedelic. It's so strange to see some of the old performances and the interview clips: how we look and how we talk and how young we were and bad haircuts, big glasses. I thought I was so grown up and complete as a person, but I look back now, and man, we were just kids." ...

All in all it's a decent little article.

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Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Tupac Vs. Talib Kweli Vs. Rush
9:37AM EST | link | comments (0) |

DJ Vlad: Rock Phenomenon[MTV.com Mixtape Monday:]

MTV.com is reporting that the latest mixtape from DJ Vlad(AKA The Butcher), Rock Phenomenon, features a track that uses Rush's Tom Sawyer. Here's some background from the article:

DJ Vlad (a.k.a. the Butcher) teamed up with Roc Raida to deliver a mixtape in the same vein as Vlad's Rap Phenomenon series ... except that rap verses from the likes of Tupac, Jay-Z and M.O.P. are mixed with tracks from rockers like Nirvana, AC/DC, Korn and Ozzy Osbourne. ...

The track featuring Tom Sawyer is called Tupac Vs. Talib Kweli Vs. Rush.:

" 'Tom Sawyer' was the Rush record we used," Vlad began to explain. "It's really a DJ's type of song. Talib Kweli actually came in the studio for this one. That's an original verse from him. He heard it and was juiced, like, 'Let's do it. Yeah, that's the one.' Talib really didn't know the Rush beat, but he was into what Tupac was saying. Kweli started rapping like, 'It was the night before Pac died and all through the 'hood/ Ain't a n---a was sleeping, and they wanna know what's really good/ Did we lose a soldier and gain a angel?/ Streets quiet down and let me express my anger.' Pac's verse was from, I believe, 'One Day at a Time.' "

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Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Blogcritics.org R30 Review
2:19PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[DVD Review: Rush - R30, 30th Anniversary World Tour]

Paul Roy gives yet another very positive review to R30 over at Blogcritics. He gives the performance an 8/10 and the production a 9/10. He concludes thusly:

... This is a very different video than the Rush In Rio DVD, released only a few years previous. Sometimes I am more in the mood for the gritty, crowd-drenched mix of the Rio show, and other times I prefer the pristine recording quality of this one. Each performance sees the band in a different light and offers the viewer a vastly different experience. I say bring on next years new album, tour, and concert DVD - and hurry it up already!

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Attention All Geddys of the Solar Federation...
9:54AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Solar Federation: Central Ohio's tribute to the music of Rush]

Solar Federation, a Rush tribute band out of Columbus, OH is looking for a Geddy. So if you know anyone who can sing/play like Geddy Lee drop them a line. Here's the message from their site:

With the end of the year comes the end of an era in Solar Federation. Vincent is no longer a part of the group, and has moved on to other musical ventures. We wish him success with his projects, and thank him for his help in getting this group off the ground and playing our first few shows.

As a result, we are holding auditions for the position of "Geddy". If you or someone you know thinks they're up to the challenge and wants to join us, please e-mail us at webmaster@solarfederation.net. Please contact us as soon as possible as we start auditions after the first of the year. Thanks!

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Monday, December 26, 2005

Oddest Oddity Yet
8:04AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Klezmer Geddy]

MitA recently posted this extremely odd oddity. The Klezmer band Finjan features a "cameo" from Geddy Lee on their 1988 Ship to Shore album (produced by Geddy friend Ben Mink). Geddy has a brief (an understatement) speaking part playing the role of the yiddish nephew named Grshn Lzr. As MitA said over at Counterparts, don't blink or sneeze or you'll miss it. Enjoy. :)

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R30 Billboard Chart Update
7:58AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Billboard Top Music Video]

R30 has now been on the Billboard charts for 4 weeks. It's still in the top 10 but just barely. Its weekly progression went as follows: #2, #4, #7 and, this past week, #10. If you haven't bought it yet, get it now - it's definitely worth it. I got my copy for Xmas and am extremely impressed; great sound quality and the old videos/interviews are great.

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Alex Lifeson "Makes History"
7:39AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[This Week in Entertainment History: 12/26/05 - 1/1/06]

It looks like Alex Lifeson's New Year's Eve at the Ritz-Carlton last year is now part of entertainment 'history'. The AP's list of events that have made This Week in Entertainment History now includes the following:

Also in 2004, Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson was arrested after he and his son got into a fight with police during a New Year's Eve celebration in Naples, Florida.

I'm sure Alex is really pleased. :)

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Friday, December 23, 2005

New Year's Eve at the Orbit Room
5:45PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Everything You Could Ever Want To Do For New Year's Eve In Toronto]

Canadian online music mag ChartAttack.com is running a story detailing all the many things one can do in Toronto on New Year's Eve. In it they mention Alex Lifeson's Toronto restaurant The Orbit Room:

... Rush's Alex Lifeson has been known to drop in on the Orbit Room. I'm not saying that he'll be there for New Year's Eve, but he's less likely to get in a skirmish at the College Street bar than at the Naples Ritz-Carlton hotel in Florida, where he spent the night (at least the part of the night when he wasn't detained in a jail cell) in 2003. That didn't turn out too well for him, unless you consider being stun-gunned by police a good time. If that's the case, maybe you should check out the party at Opera House. Anyway, LMT Connection are playing the Orbit and you'll also get favours and champagne in return for your $25. ...

It's a nice place. Unfortunately the one time I was there Alex didn't show up either. :(

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Trailer Park Boys Movie Trailer Featuring Music by Rush
10:01AM EST | link | comments (0) |

The Trailer Park Boys[Trailer Park Boys Movie Teaser Trailer]

The upcoming Summer 2006 Trailer Park Boys movie teaser trailer features music by a familiar Canadian power trio. For those of you who don't know, The Trailer Park Boys is a Canadian TV series where the main characters are big Rush fans. Here's some info courtesy the Power Windows site:

* Aired May 18th, 2003: "Bubbles is so devastated about not getting tickets to the RUSH concert that Ricky decides to bring Alex Lifeson (played by Alex Lifeson) to the park to perform a private concert." One scene of the episode was filmed during the October 22nd, 2002, Vapor Trails concert at Toronto's Air Canada Centre, as actor Mike Smith, who portrays Bubbles on the Nova Scotia, Canada, based comedy series, was filmed playing the part of a Rush roadie. As he walked on stage to hand Alex a new guitar, Geddy told the crowd "he is a new guy." Actor Mike Smith commented "I was a bit nervous up there. I mean, it's dark, and I can't see, and I'm stepping over cables and stuff...Alex is a big fan of the show...Alex came to us and asked to do a cameo. The director was like, 'No, but why don't we write a whole episode based around you?' And he was totally into that. So we flew him out to Halifax and we shot with him for three days and had really great times. He's a really amazing person." - (TorontoStar.com. Oct. 28, 2002). The final scene of the episode features Alex and Bubbles playing "Closer To The Heart" on dual acoustic guitars.
* "You Got To Blame The Thing Up Here" (aired May 8th, 2005): At the beginning of the episode there are some people standing around Ricky's dad's burned down trailer. One of guys in the backround is wearing the black Rush 30th anniversary "Party" t-shirt with the dragon on the front.

Related News:

* Rush To Be Used in Trailer Park Boys Movie: "...Ivan Reitman, the man behind such blockbuster films as Ghostbusters, is giving the Trailer Park Boys a chance to take their dope-smoking, foul-mouthed antics to feature-length proportions...a $5-million movie produced by a Hollywood veteran...starts filming next month in Halifax, for release next spring...there will be a helicopter chase, possibly to the music of the Rush song A Passage to Bangkok...characters Cory and Trevor will be listening to a lot of Rush in the movie." - "Hollywood takes in the trash", Toronto's Globe and Mail, May 14, 2005

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Neil Peart's R30 Kit in Virtual Reality 3D
9:37AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Quicktime VR of the DW kit from the R30 Tour]

This is the latest addition to NeilPeart.net. Very cool.

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Exit ... Stage Left DVD Release Date Announced
9:16AM EST | link | comments (0) |

UPDATE - 1/5@9:29AM: The March 7 release date rumor is false. Read the entire update here.

UPDATE - 1/3@2:27PM: Apparently the release data has been pushed to March 7.

This comes in via the Power Windows site:

Exit Stage Left...On DVD: Initial release dates from Zoe/Rounder for February include Exit Stage Left with a tentative release date of February 7th in the US. No other details are available at this time. - Dec. 22, 2005

This has been available on VHS for sometime now, but as previously reported, the DVD version will have been remixed to 5.1. Otherwise the footage will remain as it was on the VHS version. I'm still hoping there might be some extras thrown on there. We'll see.

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Thursday, December 22, 2005

Rush Blog Roundup
10:41PM EST | link | comments (0) |

Matt discusses grunge rock and argues as to why he thinks Counterparts is Rush's best album:

... many people, particularly a few of my rush-crazed (which is a good thing) relatives ... will think that i'm nuts for calling this rush's best album. ... why "counterparts" you say? how can that be rush's best album? well, for one, it is their return to a more organic, trio-based rock sound. of course, rush was never not a trio, but in the 80's the synth and various recorded sounds dang near became a fourth member. while that doesn't negate rush's greatness in the 80's, i personally prefer their rockier, heavier stuff. ...

He then compares Counterparts to every other Rush album and by process of elimination comes to his ultimate conclusion and uses the following fact as the clincher.

... lastly, and perhaps this is the clincher, "counterparts" has "everyday glory," which is one of my favorite rush songs and, without doubt in my book, neil peart's best lyric EVER....

He makes a decent argument, although I still say 2112 is their best album. Counterparts is damn good though.

Neil Peart inspires Dan to wax nostalgic about nostalgia and discuss his own personal Lakeside Parks.

There's an old song written back in the 70's about an old amusement park called Lakeside Park. It was written by one of my favorite lyricists, Neil Peart. The song is basically reminiscing about old childhood experiences. Lately I've noticed myself and many others having those same kinds of memories. ... Like Neil, he had his Lakeside Park...I had Disneyland, Santa Cruz, Frontier Village (a rediscovered memory), and a host of childhood memories that seemed mundane then, but magical now. Though they're all just memories, some memories last forever.

I love that song.

Dante responds to a blogging meme where he states ten random factoids about himself. One of these has to do with Neil Peart and drumming.

... for now, my absolute favorite band is rush. i am obsessed with studying neil peart's drumming methods and technique. ever since i started listening to rush a few years ago, various aspects of peart's playing style have begun to influence my own drumming. u2 was the band that i was listening to when i started learning the drums almost ten years ago, and a lot of my education came from mimicking larry mullen jr's sound. once i got a fairly good handle on how he plays and what motivates him with drum parts, my attention started drifting in search of other drummers to study and emulate. carter beauford of dave matthew's band has so foreign (and creative, of course) an approach to rhythm that i doubt i will ever begin to grasp how he comes up with the shit that he does, but with rush, i have found that despite the complexity of their material and the odd-ass time signatures they employ throughout their catalogue, peart's percussive muse and my own speak a common language. mind you, it will be a long, long time before i ever come even remotely close to playing a fraction as awesome as he does, but i at least am able to understand and progressively figure out the concepts that he has mastered. the album vapor trails is currently the cd that sees the most action in my rotation; this is significant in that before recording this record, neil peart spent six years in hiatus from music altogether after a couple personal tragedies left him searching for a reason to live - similar to the sort of malaise i am now experiencing in the wake of monica. ...

Tim thinks Steve Jones (Sex Pistols) is a better guitarist than Alex Lifeson? It all depends on what your definition of "good" is I guess.

... I've been playing guitar for ... 35 years or so and I have a certain amount of technique and, as a rabid student of this music's history from both a musicological as well as a socialogical perspective and I've come to the conclusion that technique, while admirable, is less than even half the equation when it comes to making music that moves people. ...I'm not immune to the realities of Rush's musicianship, hell I know a good technician when I hear one, it's just that Rush, and 'prog rock' in general - with the possible exception of King Crimson - leaves me cold. Plain and as simple as that. However, the 3 to 4 chord manic bashing of, say, the Sex Pistols' Steve Jones, resonates in glory from the garage of my heart and soul. While I completely understand Jim's (and others') perplexity at my preference of a Jones to a Lifeson, mainly because the converse is true in my little world; how can anyone not like the Sex Pistols etc., I just don't share, among many, many other things with Jim, the conviction that more technique makes for a better guitarist. ... Steve Jones of the Sex Pistols, much like Johnny Thunders before him in the New York Dolls, brought the Chuck Berry vocabulary into a new world, kicking and screaming and serving new purpose. ... And while watching a vastly 'better' (more technically proficient) guitarist might be more impressive in a generally athletic way, rock and roll is art and as such needs to tell the listener something other than 'I'm a better guitar player than you." ... So yes, I think Steve Jones is a 'better' guitar player than Alex Lifeson because I feel that what he brings to the world is better, as in more good, more righteous, if you will. There's more emotion, to me, in the roar of a player who's barely holding on to the song, but means it from every fiber of his being than the thousands of hours of dweedly dweedle commited to time by players like Lifeson and Malmsteen. ...

His point that technique isn't everything I agree with. And I actually like Steve Jones and Alex Lifeson (and just about every other guitarist he mentioned). But to say that Alex doesn't put any emotion into his music and calling it "dweedling dweedle" is ridiculous. It's too bad that Alex doesn't "move" Tim but I guess that's Tim's problem, not mine. You know what they say about opinions. :)

And I'll end with this amusing post from boadiccea. She talks about her crush on Geddy Lee.

I thought I was over my crush on Geddy Lee, like, YEARS ago.

Apparently, it's on again.

*sigh*

It's always the bassists, man. Always the bassists.

BTW, he's actually hotter now that he's older, as opposed to when he wasn't really all that hot at all. (I still drool over Nikki Sixx, too. He's hotter now that he's older, too.) Except for Geddy Lee's mad bass-playin' skillz, which always get me going. I had always hoped to emulate him someday, bass-riff-wise.

Well, hell, maybe I still will, someday. I can still play *some* Rush songs on my bass, I'm sure. ...

Hee hee. Even I - a red-blooded heterosexual male - must admit that Geddy has gotten hotter with age. :)

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Wednesday, December 21, 2005

R30 Billboard Chart Update
3:04PM EST | link | comments (2) |

[Billboard Top Music Video]

R30 is still in the top 10 on Billboard's Top Music Videos Charts. It's debut ranking was #2. Last week it was #4 and this week it's #7. Not bad.

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Rush and the Wall of Satan
1:55PM EST | link | comments (3) |

[For Whom Hell's Bells Toll]

This is an interesting article that discusses the backmasking craze that went on back in the 80s involving fundamentalist Christians, the PMRC and "heavy metal" / "hard rock" bands such as Rush.

... During the 1980s, many Americans-- concerned community and church leaders, educators, experts, and parents-- attributed a considerable bulk of society's problems, especially those related to youth culture, to Satanism, specifically as it was spread via heavy metal. The trend developed in parallel to the founding of the Parents Music Resource Center, its Filthy Fifteen list of offensive artists, and the legislation to rate albums based on content ... Accusations of Satanism and the general moral indictment of heavy metal abounded during this era, as did calls to censor the music and curtail its availability. The underlying assumption seemed to be that protecting children from evil music would insulate society against real problems like drug use, pregnancy, abortion, and poverty. Satan became an easy straw man for larger, stickier social problems.

In 1989 ... a small media company called Reel to Real Ministries began selling a video documentary called Hell's Bells: The Dangers of Rock and Roll. Taking its name from the AC/DC song, Hell's Bells was produced, directed, and hosted by Reel to Real's founder, Eric Holmberg, an amiable emcee and a mid-life convert whose self-confessed gods had once been John Lennon, Jimi Hendrix, and Jim Morrison. The documentary, which was shown and discussed in churches, homes, Christian academies, and youth group retreats, explored rock music's harmful effects on listeners' bodies, minds, spirits, and souls. ...

I was a teenager back in the 80s as well as an avid heavy metal maniac (and Rush fan), so I remember all this stuff very well. It really pissed me off back then - now it just makes me laugh. Here're the portions of the article that discuss Rush:

... inverted crosses, 666, and the devil hands (referred to here as "El Cronado") appear in the album art and videos for Be Bop Deluxe, Duran Duran, Rush, Iron Maiden, and Chris "The Lady in Red" de Burgh, but they're just the tip of Satan's iceberg. ... Backmasking was a hot topic during the Satanic Panic, reinforced by the fact that listeners could find whatever messages they were looking for among the weird scrambles of reversed sounds. The examples Holmberg gives all seem a little incredible, mostly thanks to uniformly awkward wording ... On the live version of Rush's "Anthem": "Oh Satan you are the one who is shining...Walls of Satan, I know it is you are the one I love." ...

Hee hee. Oh Satan.

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2112 Performed by Marching Band Update: Recordings Now Available Online!
9:49AM EST | link | comments (1) |

[America Heroes and Rush 2112]
[Winter Drumline Rush 2112]

November 7 I posted a link to an article about a highschool marching band that performed 2112. Shortly afterwards, Sid over at Counterparts contacted the band director. From Sid's post:

... I emailed the band director at Jordan-Elbridge to see if a recording existed. He said he had made a clean copy during rehearsal the day before the competition, and would send it to me. I explained I would make it available to the Rush community on a message board and he said "cool". He was intrigued about how I found out about it, and we had a good chat about marching bands in general. Nice guy!

MitA then agreed to convert the recordings to mp3 and post them on his site. Yesterday Sid gave an update:

I just emailed the 2 songs from Jordan-Elbridge High school to MiTa (who has graciuosly agreed to help make this tribute available to all - Thanks!). The first song is called "America, Heroes and Rush 2112" and features the full marching band playing Rush. The second is called "Winter Drumline, Rush 2112". I also have a video that I will watch and give a report to all of the peeps (eventually).

Just so you all know, the Band Director is a guy named Jim Peer. We spoke on the phone and emailed each other. He was genuinely impressed that people would be interested in this effort. He was also very willing to help share the music! A most genuine and sincere individual who has received my thanks (on behalf of all of us).

... And MitA just posted them to his site. Much thanks to Sid and MitA - and, of course, Jim Peer and the Jordan-Elbridge Marching Eagles. This is really cool. Enjoy!

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Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Anatomy of a Drum Solo Reviews
12:07PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Anatomy of a Drum Solo Customer Reviews at Amazon.com]

Neil Peart's instructional DVD Anatomy of a Drum Solo has been out for a few weeks now. Despite a minor production defect in the first run of the DVD, the feedback from fans has been very positive. There are currently 5 user reviews up at amazon.com and they all give it 5 stars. Here's a sampling of one of the more comprehensive reviews:

This DVD is a captured moment in time; I believe this will live forever as a record showcasing the genius of Neil Peart - the best and most popular drummer of modern times. ... Work In Progress was a great insight into Neil's analytical mind, but this is just fantastic and way more enjoyable. ... Neil, moreso I think than on Work In Progress, comes across as a humble, amiable and genuine guy with a total LOVE for drums. His incredible R30 drum set is set-up from scratch here by Lorne Wheaton, his drum tech ... this leads me to the extras. Oh boy. It's crammed. We got unreleased 1994 Counterparts concert footage, the Show Of Hands solo snippet, a solo recorded in Germany on the last tour but previously unreleased, with which one can compare and contrast subtleties that Neil makes to his solo each night (keeping it fresh), we got two 30 minute (and over) 'explorations' whereby we observe Neil at practice, simply exploring new concepts, fills, rhythms, ideas..."what ifs" - and we got a systematic piece-by-piece breakdown of Der Trommler; Neil's 2004 solo ... Neil mentions Buddy Rich, Gene Krupa, Joe Morello, etc etc and basically cites these as key players, amongst many others, who have handed us down this wonderful concept of 'drum soloing'. Many drummers, such as Kieth Moon and Stewart Copeland, refuse to 'solo', but the message here is; let's celebrate the art and marvel at the creations of the wonderful showpieces of the craft - and keep drum solos alive! It's our duty as drummers. ... Basically, you have to buy this DVD. It's choc full of extras and is put together really, really well. There is much interesting dialogue and also Mambo's Dance Party and Pieces Of 8 on audio which can be accessed. There are two drum-camera perspectives of Tom Sawyer and Subdivisons from the Frankfurt concert in 2004 and also O! Baterista! is here too. ... Occasionally, when one really builds oneself up for a DVD release, the result can oftentimes be disappointing. This isn't. It's incredible. ...

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Vote for Rush!
9:18AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[97 Rock Classic Rock's 400 Greatest Albums]

Buffalo's 97 Rock WGRF will be counting down the 400 greatest classic rock albums of all time as selected by the staff and listeners starting Jan. 2 at 9am. On the list of 500 albums to choose from are these 11 Rush albums: 2112, A Farewell To Kings, Caress Of Steel, Fly By Night, Hemispheres, Hold Your Fire, Moving Pictures, Permanent Waves, Roll The Bones, Rush, Signals. Unfortunately, you can only vote for 10. My guess is that 2112, Permanent Waves and Moving Pictures are shoo-ins so you may want to vote for the others. Have fun!

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Monday, December 19, 2005

Fender.com Interview with Geddy Lee
2:43PM EST | link | comments (4) |

Geddy Lee[Geddy Lee Interview]

Fender.com has a recent interview with Geddy Lee posted. In it he discusses the band's longevity, sense of humor, Feedback and cover songs, his playing style on R30, Fender and ... R40? This is one of the better recent Geddy Lee interviews in my opinion. Check it out.

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Saturday, December 17, 2005

Ultimate Critical Review of Rush?
7:57PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Music in Review 1974-1981 (1974)]


This information about a new Rush Book/DVD comes courtesy the Power Windows site.

Music In Review 1974-1981, a 48 page book and 2 DVD set from the UK, is set for release in the US on Jan. 10th. An unofficial release, this product claims to be the "ultimate critical review" of Rush. The UK company behind this project has previously released similar packages featuring other bands, which led many UK Rush fans to be skeptical from the start. The commentary on the DVD's is provided by various radio DJ's and/or music critics who are filmed on camera as they provide their 'opinion' of Rush's work, and the content flows in a biographical nature. The criticism is mixed, yet for fans with more than a basic knowledge of Rush, erroneous comments such as Peart having a degree in percussion, that Red Barchetta is semi-autobiographical about Neil and his uncle[!], or the simple yet inexcusable mispronunciation of "Peart" throughout, became very tiresome. Overall, however, the reviews are mostly good, and one redeeming factor in this set is the rare footage from Don Kirschner's Rock Concert in 1974, and the Pink Pop Festival in '79 (however short the clips may be), although most of the live clips are from previously released Rush concert video's or the Chronicles video collection. - Dec. 16, 2005

I'd hold out buying this one; wait for some definitive reviews. I'll post any more details that come my way.

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Friday, December 16, 2005

R30 review or an ode to the Rush "Geek"? You decide.
8:13PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Ten Million Band Geeks Can't Be Wrong]

This is one of the more entertaining R30 reviews I've read to date. It comes from Aye Aye, a contributor over at Weathered Living - a very cool site that describes itself as your local watering hole. He talks more about being a Rush "geek" than R30 - but that's ok because he does a good job of echoing the typical experiences and sentiments of many Rush fans out there (me at least). For example:

... It's not like I never leave the house without being draped in a Canadian flag and wearing a "Geddy Is My Homeboy" t-shirt (I strictly reserve that outfit for RUSHCON every year), it's just that I became a fan over half my life ago and I'm just not ready to end the relationship. I've made the commitment. But, I also understand that the criticism is justified. RUSH certainly isn't the coolest band in the world to be a fan of. I can't imagine some guy ending a date, inviting the lucky lady in for a nightcap, lighting candles and pouring a couple glasses of chardonnay, then cranking up Permanent Waves. Not exactly the best way to set the mood. Discussing the complexity of that album's opus, Natural Science, is a conversation about as socially acceptable as screaming racial slurs at the top of your lungs or farting in somebody's face. You just don't do it ...

I can definitely identify with that. :) Once a Rush fan, always a Rush fan. And I've gotten used to the fact that Rush is the type of band that you either love or hate - there's not much of a middle ground there.

Oh yeah - he reviews R30 too. Guess what... he likes it. Go figure. :)

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Rush Concert Video DVD Reissues
7:42PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Rush Bringing Vintage Performances To DVD]

This is old news but this article from Billboard discusses the upcoming DVD reissues of past Rush concert videos Exit ... Stage Left, Grace Under Pressure Tour and A Show of Hands.

... "Everything's been remixed to 5.1, and that was the intention -- to keep it all intact, except for the remix," guitarist Alex Lifeson tells Billboard.com. "So it's available in surround." It remains to be decided if the releases will be made available individually or packaged together. "I'm guessing a box set -- that would make more sense," Lifeson says.

Lifeson says he enjoyed taking a trip down memory lane while refurbishing the material. "It was interesting to see the development in the arrangements, and how our sound changed over the course of a decade," he says. "I definitely found it fascinating, looking at that. And how the stage show changed over the years -- of course, [in] 10 years a lot of stuff changes. But it was a little fascinating to watch that, actually." ...

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Thursday, December 15, 2005

Alex Lifeson Radio Interview: Chicago 97.9 The Loop
10:31PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Alex Lifeson Interview: 97.9 The Loop (mp3, 6MBs)]

Here's another radio interview with Alex Lifeson. This one is with DJ Byrd from Chicago's 97.9 The Loop. Alex discusses R30, the band's longevity, having fun, his recent legal battles, getting back in the studio and more.

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Rush Rockline Post-analysis
11:43AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Rockline Interview (mp3, 20.2MBs)]

UPDATE - 12/16@10:02AM: The entire interview has been posted online here. Enjoy.

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson appeared on rockline last night. I didn't listen to it myself (past my bedtime) but I've been following other fan reactions over at Counterparts and most of the reactions are negative. Little new information was revealed and a lot of boring, typical questions were asked (what's your favorite album? Alex, have you thought about doing a solo album? blah, blah...) . As far as useful information goes, here's a summary of member comments from this thread:

* Losing It and Different Strings are possibilities for the next tour
* Geddy said that the T4E (Test for Echo) show in Toronto was filmed for a Different Stages DVD, but there were technical problems and much of the audio was unusable...but a little of it is salvagable, and that will see release at some point.
* Alex mentioned that the Grace Under Pressure Video was converted to 5.1 for release as part of a compilation that is due out in the spring of 2006.
* Alex mentioned that, maybe for the next tour more Power Windows and Hold Your Fire material maybe get new life. He discussed their complex arrangements and if pulled off, came across well live.
* One of the more 'brilliant' callers asked if they had a favorite album, and who they'd like to hear cover one of their songs ... Alex said "Anne Murray" and Ged said, "She could do 'The Necromancer." So Alex treated us all to his version of her singing it ...

There you have it. More to follow as I hear about it. I'm sure somebody will have a recording available somewhere. I'll keep you posted.

UPDATE: I just got my hands on a recording and listened to it all the way through. Some interesting stuff I noted (that wasn't noted above):

* They think it's still too early for Rush to be in the Hall of Fame
* When asked about artists that they are currently listening to Geddy mentioned Funeral by Arcade Fire and Fiona Apple. Alex mentioned Uncle, Porcupine Tree and The Mars Volta.

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R30 Review from European Punk/Metal Site
11:30AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Review: Rush - R30]

They keep rolling in; another positive R30 review. This one is from a European hardcore punk/metal site, Pitfather.com. This just goes to show the wide range of support and respect that Rush has among different musical genres; from hardcore metal bands like Arch Enemy to indie rock acts like Rogue Wave to classical pianists like David Nevue - Rush fans transcend all musical sterotypes.

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Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Spirit of Radio Video from R30 Online
8:05PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[In Concert Live & In Demand: Rush - The Spirit of Radio]

MitA found this one. It's just a video clip of The Spirit of Radio off of R30. If, like me, you don't have the DVD yet (waiting for Santa) this will help tide you over.

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Rush Rockline Reminder
12:00PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Rockline Radio Online]

UPDATE - 12/15 @10:20PM: Here's a post-rockline analysis and link to the entire interview online.

Two-thirds of Rush (Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson) will appear tonight on the nationally syndicated radio show Rockline for their 19th appearance. The live show begins at 11:30 PM ET. Fans can call in with questions during the program at (800)344-ROCK (7625). From the Rockline official site:

We look forward to spending time with Rush as much as any band that ever picked up guitars and found something to bang on. Good thing too as they have been on ROCKLINE an amazing eighteen times. This nineteenth appearance should be something special indeed as Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson join us to discuss and play music from their extraordinary R30 collection. ... Join us as the celebration continues, it's Alex and Geddy as we rush to our next ROCKLINE!

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Homemade Subdivisions Video Tribute to Neil Peart
9:40AM EST | link | comments (0) |

Jon looking for a band[Google Video - Subdivisions]

Jon from Michigan is looking for a band. He put up a website advertising this fact. On it are several videos displaying his drumming abilities. In one of them he is playing the drums along with Rush's Subdivisions. Very cool. Also worth watching; this drum solo that may sound familiar. :)

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Monday, December 12, 2005

Arch Enemy talks Rush
12:47PM EST | link | comments (0) |

Arch Enemy[TALKING METAL EPISODE 26 - ARCH ENEMY EXCLUSIVE]

Online metal mag Strigl's Music News latest Talking Metal podcast features Swedish progressive metal band Arch Enemy who happen to be big Rush fans. This episode features an interview with Michael Amott and Sharlee D'Angelo of Arch Enemy which took place on Arch Enemy's tour bus in New York City before their performance at Irving Plaza on November 28th, 2005. In it they discuss their latest album and tour, their experience touring with Ozzfest and, most importantly, Rush. They mention how seeing Rush in Sweden on the R30 tour helped get the ball rolling for them in their writing process for their last record. They talk a bit about their favorite Rush albums and generally give their praises to the band. The bit about Rush starts in at 13:38 in the podcast and runs for a little over a minute.

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Rush R30 Easter Eggs
11:07AM EST | link | comments (6) |

Here's how to find the easter eggs on r30. I summarized this info from several sources on the net. There are just 2 eggs and they're both on Disc 2. Disc 1 is just the concert with no easter eggs.

Egg #1: From disc 2's opening menu, hit the 'Right' arrow key on your remote three times. The menu will reload with a new item, Rush Hits St. John's. Select the item to view the clip.

Egg #2: From disc 2's opening menu, go to the Interviews section. Once there, highlight the menu entry Interviews and Anthem Vault and then click the 'Right' arrow on your remote three times. The guy with the broom on the left of the screen will highlight yellow. Press the 'Enter' key on your remote and you will see Alex's Interview for Artist of the Decade.

On another note, the Rush official site has this to say:

There are 2 Easter Eggs to be found, "Think dates"
1. date of concert
2. start date

... nobody seems to know what this means or how this is supposed to help at all. :) If you do, let me know.

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Saturday, December 10, 2005

11-year-old drummer prodigy (and Neil Peart fan) jams for charity in Detroit
9:51PM EST | link | comments (1) |

Jason Hartless[Fraser 11-year-old drums up support for Toys for Tots]

This comes in from Peter Griffindoh at Counterparts. He posts earlier today:

Just caught the tail end of a very cool story on the local news here in suburban Detroit. They were doing a spot on Jason Hartless, an accomplished 11-year old drummer who was playing an 8 hour charity gig for Toys for Tots. As the reporter was finishing up the story, I could clearly hear Jason and his band jamming out the last few bars of YYZ! Sounded pretty damn good, too!

This online bio for Jason lists Neil Peart among his favorite drummers. Also on his list are such notables as Eric Singer, Buddy Rich, Corky Laing, Tommy Clufetos, Keith Moon, Gene Krupa, Louie Bellson & Mick Tucker.

Very cool indeed.

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Thursday, December 8, 2005

R30 Review: From the UK's Final Word
11:19AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[RUSH - R30 - Live In Frankfurt 2004 DVD]

Another R30 review - this one out of the UK and it's a long one. The tone is overall very positive. He concludes with this:

... Setlist and tehcnical Moaning aside - and I could quibble about the lack of favourites on the setlist of the tour for hours, let alone the songs cut out from the DVD release, what you have here is the second live DVD in 4 years - or to put it another way, the second live concert film in 16 years since the superlative 'show of hands' recording, now only in existence on fuzzy VHS tapes. Infintely superior to the Rush in Rio release, and despite its drastically abridged setlist which robs the performance of much of its impressive power, R30 sets the bar high in terms of both audio and video, as well as in terms of just how bloody good the band are.

Definitely one for fans rather than casual listeners,R30 is loaded down with extras and as such, combined with the sheer quality of the material here, a essential release for anyone with a passing interest in Rush. Just make sure you ignore the 5.1 sound mix, get the CD/DVD version if you're a fan, and just beware of the drum solo....the only way this could get bettered is if the band were to restore the missing tracks from the 'show of hands' and 'exit stage left' VHS and CD releases to something approximating a proper show from those days! Hell, I can dream Can't i?....

Until then, this is the best Rush you can buy.

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Real life "School of Rock"
9:23AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Lennon inspires new generation]

On this day 25 years ago arguably one of the greatest songwriters of the last 50 years was murdered. His influence on music is still being felt even to this day. This article highlights Lennon's influence on the next generation of musicians/songwriters and discusses a real life "School of Rock" class led by a Rush fan.

A quarter century after his death, John Lennon continues to inspire a new generation of rock fans, most of whom learned about him by listening to their parents' records.

For proof, look no further than Carmel High School. That's where Spanish teacher Paul Lobbee advises the Carmel High Rock Club, a group of about 30 students, most of them musicians, united by their love of the music that flourished in the 1960s and 1970s.

"John Lennon and the Beatles are pretty much responsible for the whole rock culture," said Pat Mitchell, a 17-year-old senior. "Without John Lennon and the Beatles, I probably wouldn't be playing guitar."

Junior Devin Brown, who plays bass, said he started getting deeper into rock music about four years ago, thanks to his parents and their love of such classic rock bands as Jefferson Airplane and the Beatles.

"My whole taste in music comes from my parents and what they listened to," said Brown, 17. "With Lennon, you could feel his emotions. He just let it all go."

In this "school of rock," Lobbe, 36, plays the role of Jack Black. He discusses classic rock with his students and has them stage two performances per year.

"I usually choose about half the songs they perform. They choose the other half, which tend to be on the harder side," said Lobbe, who grew up in Garnerville and favors such progressive rock bands as Rush, Yes and King Crimson.

For any Rush fan that's seen the movie School of Rock they'll certainly remember this part (courtesy Power Windows):

During the scene where Jack Black's character gives the students music cd's for inspiration, he gives the drummer "Rush, 2112. Neil Peart [pronounced Pert], one of the great drummers of all time, study up." A later scene shows a closeup of a chalkboard displaying a "family tree" of rock, with RUSH listed under "Prog Rock".

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Hanging with Rush
9:13AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Trunk Report: VH1 Classic interview air dates]

As previously reported, Eddie Trunk mentioned that an interview he conducted with Geddy and Alex was to be appearing on VH1 Classic. Here are the details:

My interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush will premiere on VH1 Classic this Sunday 12/11 at 9AM and 9PM EST. There will be repeat broadcasts 12/15 @ 10AM & 10PM, 12/16 @ 3AM & 3PM, 12/17 @ 9AM & 9PM. Don't miss it!

The show is called "Hanging With".

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Wednesday, December 7, 2005

Podcast profiles Geddy Lee and Moving Pictures
4:37PM EST | link | comments (2) |

[Basscast 11: Step Back in Time: "Moving Pictures" by Rush (Geddy Lee, bass).]

The Mighty Dudad over at Counterparts found this podcast out of Sydney Australia called Basscast. Each monthly episode features a "Step Back In Time" segment where they profile a significant bass player/album. Their most recent podcast profiled Geddy Lee and Moving Pictures. The Mighty Dudad did a great job of summarizing the podcast as follows:

... The guys talk about how Rush is/was pretty much a nonentity in Australia, but that once discovered are loved by musiscians...especially within the bass playing community. The 20+ minute segment discusses Geddy's equipment, technique, etc., and plays significant clips from YYZ, Tom Sawyer, Limelight, Vital Signs, & Red Barchetta. While some of the facts aren't exactly right, the hosts do a really good job talking about the music, the playing, the feel, etc. I especially like the the fact that the hosts aren't typical "fanboys", and really come across as sincerely appreciating - if not actually discovering - the greatness of Rush. They do talk a bit about the cult-like fan base at the end, but even then it's more matter-of-fact rather than negative. ...

Note that the Geddy Lee part of the show starts about 44 minutes in and runs for about 25 minutes to the end.

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Rogue Wave and Rush
2:14PM EST | link | comments (0) |

Rogue Wave[Rogue Wave 'Descended Like Vultures' on The Opolis]

Pat Spurgeon, drummer for Oakland CA indie rock band Rogue Wave had this to say about Rush in a recent interview with the Edmond Sun:

... Spurgeon also likes to indulge in a private guilty pleasure: He admits to going to a Rush concert where the band played the songs exactly the way they sounded on the album.

"You have these songs that were burned into your brain by the radio - I can't imagine them reinterpreting something like 'Tom Sawyer,'" Spurgeon said. "Some bands can interpret the sounds live exactly, and that can be cool but not too many bands can do that." ...

I think it's a compliment. :)

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R30 Review: No Separate CD Version Annoying, Otherwise Great
9:56AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[R30 Review]

This R30 review in the Wilkes Barre Times-leader brings up an issue that I haven't heard much about in any review yet:

... The problem is that the CD version is ONLY available as a companion to the limited edition DVD and not in the racks at your local retailer. ...

As far as I'm concerned, I could care less about the CD version being available at all - I'm not a big fan of live recordings (that's why you see a band in concert), so this didn't occur to me. It's a valid argument though. After this initial beef they go on with nothing but praise:

... Rush fans that caught this monumental tour at Montage Mountain during 2004 should be elated that a document of the evening is now ready for consumption. For anyone who missed the show, the DVD serves as a fine reminder of what a powerful and entertaining unit Rush has become over their three-decade span. ... The 14-cameras show off the band from every angle and swoop across the stage to provide a "better than being there" seat in front of an enthusiastic Frankfurt audience.

Being a celebration of the band's 30 years, the set list is impeccable and serves up a glimpse of every facet of the Lee/Lifeson/Peart musical machine. Tracks from their latest CDs such as "Earthshine" and "Heart Full Of Soul," sit comfortably alongside older gems like "Dreamline" and "2112." And of course, "Tom Sawyer" is thrown in for good measure.

Diehard Rush fans may quibble over missed opportunities ("In The End?" "Hemispheres?"), but the snapshot here is as complete as it gets. This IS the sound of a hard-working, hard-rocking band that has survived the slings and arrows of the musical press and still moved 50 million albums and sold out countless venues.

Rush is one band that deserves another 30 years and "R30" is all the proof you'll need.

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Tuesday, December 6, 2005

Anatomy of a Drum Solo Update: Not Enough Cowbell
11:21AM EST | link | comments (0) |

More CowbellUPDATE - 12/20@1:02PM: The reviews are in at Amazon.com.

This message, from Hudson Music - distributors of Neil Peart's Anatomy of a Drum Solo instructional DVD, was recently posted on Counterparts. It addresses a minor production defect on the first run of the DVD.

To Neil's Fans,

We would like to respond to the vague notice that has been posted on rush.com as to a "production defect" in Neil Peart's new DVD, Anatomy of a Drum Solo. To clarify what the "defect" is, it's a 3-second, audio-only dropout that occurs in Element 3 of Disc One, in a cowbell part, during an excerpt of "Der Trommler", the drum solo on which the DVD is based. The program is almost 3 1/2 hours long.

It's important to note that this cowbell part is fully audible, with no drop outs, in three other places on the DVD: in the full performance of "Der Trommler", in a "bonus" performance of the solo filmed the next night, and in the in-studio demo that Neil does when talking about that segment of the solo.

We have already corrected this minor flaw for the next run of the DVD, but in the meantime, we felt that it was important that Neil's fans know that the defect is a very minor one and that there is little reason for concern.

If you purchase a copy that has this dropout and would like to exchange it, please go to our website- www.hudsonmusic.com-for instructions on how to do so.

Thank you for your support.

Yours truly,
Rob Wallis and Paul Siegel

Hudson Music

All I know is that I have a fever... and the only prescription is more cowbell! :)

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Eddie Trunk Interview with Geddy and Alex coming soon to VH1 Classic
10:02AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Trunk Report: Thanks to last weekends guests Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson, plus remembering Dime, Rush interview with Eddie on VH1 Classic coming and more.]

Alex and Geddy were on the Eddie Trunk show Friday night. I was unable to listen in, but Eddie had this to say in his Trunk Report:

... Great response to the interview with Geddy and Alex of Rush. Missed it? Catch the replays this week online. Also gave away copies of the new DVD. Thanks also to comic Don Jaimison for co-hosting with me. ...

And apparently a Geddy and Alex interview with Eddie will appear on VH1 Classic at some time in the near future:

... Had a great time today with Geddy and Alex of Rush at the VH1 Classic studio last week. Great guys and so much to cover as the band celebrates more than 30 years together. I'll let you know when this will air on VH1 Classic as soon as I get the info.

Coming soon: Ric Ocasek & Rush! The new Rush DVD is awesome and out now. I will post the air date info when I get it. ...

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Neil Peart "warm-up" drum solo from 1991 Bootleg
9:21AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Neil "warm-up" drum solo]

MitA has posted this Neil Peart "warm-up" drum solo. He says it's an improvised solo taken from a bootleg recording of the Roll The Bones dress rehearsal on 10-23-1991. Very cool.

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Geddy, Alex Interview with UltimateGuitar.com
9:15AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[RUSH Rare Footage On R30]

UltimateGuitar.com has posted a short video interview snippet with Geddy and Alex. From the interview:

"My brother, who does a lot of work with us in terms of... He's kind of an intermediary between us and our video projects and there was a time where he just spent some time in the vault just kind of looking at what we had, cataloging what we had. And he found all this old footage that we had kind of forgotten about, and brought it to our attention. Once we knew about it, we said, 'Well, we'll look for the right opportunity to use all those pieces.' And then when we decided to do the R-30 tour and then subsequently made the late decision to film one of the shows on R30, it seemed the perfect opportunity to add another disc with all these pieces."

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Monday, December 5, 2005

More kind words for R30
4:27PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Buffalo News: Picks of the Season]

Some more kind words for R30 from Jeff Miers at Buffalo News:

A celebration of 30 years in the life of Rush. This is a gift for true fans of the group's wonderfully idiosyncratic blend of passion, humor and virtuoso musicianship. Disc one offers up a concert documented in Frankfurt, Germany, near the end of the band's 2004 30th anniversary tour. (Only 22 of the 30 songs Rush played during this show are included here, in order to avoid repeating songs already documented on the 2003 release "Rush In Rio.") The band has never been better, and the state-of-the-art surround-sound mix - coupled with the beauty of the filming itself, the result of a 14-camera high-definition shoot - makes this the pre-eminent Rush artifact. Disc two compiles filmed interviews beginning in 1979 and continuing through 2002, and includes just about every promotional video the band ever recorded. The '70s hair, flowing caftans and Mini-Moogs abound, and yes, this is some funny stuff. But watching this band develop is a treat. Special editions of the package also include a twin-disc audio-only representation of the Frankfurt show. The artwork, by longtime band associate Hugh Syme, is exemplary as well.

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New Album by Fall 2006
12:53PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[RUSH Guitarist: 'It's Time For A New Record']

Geddy and Alex have been making the rounds and doing several interviews for radio in the past week or so. There's been a lot of indication from these interviews that the band will be entering the studio next year and hopefully putting out a new album in the fall with a tour to follow. From a recent Alex Lifeson interview at WRIF 101.1 in Detroit:

"We're going to go in the studio early next year and start writing. It's time for a new record, time to move forward...we're going to hopefully finish the record by the summer, and think about hitting the road around this time next year."

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Sunday, December 4, 2005

Strange R30 Review discusses Alex's Package
8:39PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Review: Rush R30 Deluxe Edition DVD]

In the end, I think this guy liked the DVD - but at times I wasn't sure. For one thing, he started the review off this way:

I knew this chick... I always thought she was kind of a whore ... Anyway, the only thing this has to do with Rush is that in between assorted alcoholic beverages on certain lovelorn evenings-drinks that I purchased by the way--this woman kept going and on about Alex Lifeson's "package".

"It's soooo big." She said.

"F**k that." I said. "You want something big between your legs, why don't you go and straddle Geddy Lee's nose?"

I think I really ended up hating that lady---it seemed like she was always giving it out to everyone else but me. Maybe I've always taken that resentment and held it against Rush to a certain extent. I don't know.

"Nope, they're f**king boring." My friend Chipps said when I asked him to comment.

I guess I always sort of fell in between that woman's package worship and my buddy's downright hostility towards the group. ...

So does that mean he's a fan or what?? At this point the reviewer just sounds like an arse in my opinion. He did end up having these positive things to say though:

Alas, after viewing several hours of vintage Rush material, I saw no evidence of any gigantic Lifeson "package"---maybe it's an Easter Egg--but then again, I had kind of forgotten about that whole agonizing period of my life sometime during the opening melody of the first performance. That is important to note because part of the beauty of this band is that you can actually manage to get lost in the music of Rush. ... it is obvious that Rush went the extra mile for their fans to make this a complete project. The deluxe version of R30 even comes with a couple of collectible guitar picks and replica backstage pass--I know, I know--that alone doesn't mean much, but when combined with all the interviews and vintage performances, it helps make this DVD a worthy retrospective for thirty years of amazing rock brought to us all by three Canadians who did nothing more than play music on their own terms for the benefit for those who had minds open enough to accept it.

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Saturday, December 3, 2005

Launch Radio Network Interview Details
11:06PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[RUSH Salutes Earliest Fans On New DVD]

From Blabbermouth:

Launch Radio Networks reports: When RUSH launched their 30th anniversary world tour last year, they made sure to do something special for the fans who've been with them all along. The band went back to their early material to come up with an overture to start the shows, and the performance runs about six minutes and 40 seconds. It's the first thing the band plays on their new DVD called "R30", and guitarist Alex Lifeson told Launch how and why the overture was done. "We took snippets, or at least the main signature riffs or melody lines from, you know, the first number of albums, and certainly for some of the older fans that feel a real connection to this stuff from the '70s, you know, it's there, and it starts the show, and it's something that they sing along to, so that was kinda cool," he said.

"R30" includes concert footage on one DVD, and videos and interview segments on the other DVD.

There are no plans for a separate "R30" release on CD. The music is available from the major download sites, or you can get it as part of the "R30" deluxe package.

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Friday, December 2, 2005

Not-so-weekly Rush Blog Roundup
3:29PM EST | link | comments (0) |

I'm not calling this the weekly blog rush any more, since I probably will only do it once every couple weeks or so. With that aside, I once more give you these Rush-related posts from around the blogosphere. Enjoy.

The Timekeeper talks about how an interview with Geddy and Alex (with "Redbeard" from Rock 103 out of Memphis) got him thinking about beer.

... During the course of the show Geddy was asked what he thought of different cultures worldwide during their travels and what differences, if any, he noted in various places. Geddy ... stated that in his travels that all the various countries claim to have the best beer in the world. He would be like, "how can you claim that when the country I was in yesterday claims to have the best beer in the world?" I instantly thought that if there is one thing in the world that draws different people from different parts of the world together, it's BEER ...

Mossy Stone drools over the SS Professor and talks about his handwritten postcard from Neil.

... One of my major influences was Neil Peart. ...and I recall slavishly drawing out the layout of his massive kit over and over and over (hey, its a Drummer thing....) ... One of my more treasured possessions is a handwritten postcard from him (20 yrs ago, now) offering thanks for a piece of fan mail I sent to Modern Drummer magazine. (Note to self: Get that framed!)... So one of my colleages happened to wander over to my veal-fattening pen cubicle just around lunchtime and mentioned, "I dunno what kind of music you like, or if you're a Rush fan or not.. They have one of Neil Peart's drum kits on display down at Sam the Record Man. I think it's there until 3." ... So....off I went down to Sam's...walked in....found it.....drooled and dreamed. There's something to be said about the latent power of a set of drums. ... Tell me....why did I sell my kit 10 yrs ago? (oh yeah...I needed the money...and you can't serenade someone with drums)

Ricardo discusses (and posts several cool pics) seeing the SS Professor when it made a stop in San Jose. The engineer who worked with Neil to develop the Sabian Paragon Series Cymbals was there and gave a little talk/q&a.

... I got to see the kit up close and I have to say it's very beatiful. The Drum Tech told us all that the only thing on that kit that you could not buy from DW (Drum Workshop) was the personilized finish on the kit. Everything else could be purchased if you wanted the exact same kit. ... What I found out by being at this event was that Sabian pretty much made their cymbals sound like Zildiian cymbals because they basically reproduced the sound of each cymbal and slowly replaced them with Sabians as time went on. Originally the Engineer said that each Sabian had a logo printed on each one but Neil insisted on removing the labels. He then asked Neil why he never had cymbals with logo's and he told him "Do diamonds have logos on them". It makes sense to me now but I also had that question in my mind ever since. ...

Bicyclemark is haunted by Rush ...

You've probably got a friend who likes Rush. I'm sure you have to think for a second, cause maybe you haven't seen him in a while (and its definitely a HIM) but he was that good friend who was wonderfully intelligent and lived in what often seemed to be his own world... a world where Rush was the greatest band of all time and the lyrics and music of their songs could answer all of life's questions. ...

Preston Parkhurst reviews R30 and loves it ...

... Always with a hint of mysticism and social statement, Rush's music has grown, changed, and matured over the years and this DVD set captures this growth and change leaving one with a renewed sense of respect of what Rush has accomplished throughout its history. Unlike many bands that have succumbed to the old adage of "Sex, drugs, and rock-n-roll" and band members growing weary of their group, Rush has managed to not only to stay together but thrive in a way that gives one the sense that the trio are really but a single entity, both on and off the stage.

To music fans I say, this is a must have work of one of the greatest rock and roll bands of our era as no music collection should be without, period!

To Alex, Geddy, and Neil, thanks for all the years of traveling down your own path and bringing to the world such wonderful music that is sure to resonate for years to come. What a great ride it has been so far!

Jonathan Jones talks about great drummers like Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich and Neil Peart and praises Der Trommler (The Drummer) from the R30 dvd:

... John popped round about 20 minutes ago. ... I bought a couple of tapes of Gene Krupa & Buddy Rich and as he's a drummer, felt he might be interested in listening to and copying them if he so wished, which he has done. ... He left a tape of Krupa & Rich he'd copied for me along with liner notes and a sheet on how to tune up a drumkit. ... I've wanted to learn for such a long time but have always been daunted by the tuning aspect but as Neil Peart said in one of the R30 interviews I watched last night, "don't pick up drum sticks expecting to play Madison Square Gardens, pick them up and expect to play the local church hall" and I totally agree. In other words, give whatever you have each and every time and who knows where you may wind up. The R30 dvd was brilliant. Neil's drum solo on the track Der Trommler (The Drummer) was the best solo from any drummer I've seen to date. Absolutely brilliant. Okay there are drummers of the same level of skill and experience but there's something about Neil's sound and way of playing that just does it for me. He comes across as a really nice bloke as well. Yay for Rush!

Doomed to Rock praises self-indulgent epic rock songs and has good words to say about Rush's Hemispheres:

This song is the first side of the excellent Hemispheres album. Can't really say anything band about this song or about my Canadian heroes Rush (except for maybe Geddy's hair in the 80s). Hemispheres showcases the bass playing talents of Geddy Lee combined with the awesome analytical drumming of Neal Peart.

Doomed Rating: 10 out of 10

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Another Positive R30 Review
1:26PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Rock masters showcase their depth and breadth: Rush R30 Review]

This R30 review comes from NorthJersey.com. They give it 3 and a half stars (out of 4). Here it is in its entirety:

This 2-DVD, 2-CD set recorded in Frankfurt, Germany, during Rush's 30th anniversary tour last year showcases the Canadian rock trio's masterful musicianship and diverse catalog.

The 2-hour, 10-minute set opens with an instrumental medley that includes parts of early favorites "Finding My Way," "Anthem" and "Bastille Day," from the band's days as a Led Zeppelin-inspired power trio.

Bassist-vocalist Geddy Lee, guitarist Alex Lifeson and drummer Neil Peart are sharp and energetic throughout, turning in rousing renditions of Seventies prog-rockers "2112" and "Xanadu" and hook-laden radio hits "Tom Sawyer" and "The Spirit of Radio."

There are tunes from the band's synth-heavy '80s period - "Subdivisions," "Force Ten" - and more recent guitar-, bass- and drums-focused material such as "Animate" and "Earthshine."

Peart, one of the most influential rock drummers, executes a riveting 9-minute solo highlighted by a finishing flourish of swing and jazz rhythms played to a Count Basie backing track.

The first DVD consists of the same set as the CDs. The second DVD is a treasure trove of old and recent performance clips and interviews, including the band's induction into the Canadian Rock Hall of Fame in 1994.

A half-star is deducted only because the CD and DVD omit several songs from the concert, including the gems "Bravado" and "The Trees."

- Brian Aberback, Staff Writer

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Alex Lifeson Interview Posted Online
12:00PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Alex Lifeson interview with Mike Staff of Detroit's WRIF 101.1 FM]

A 10-minute audio interview with Alex Lifeson, conducted late last month by Mike Staff of Detroit's WRIF 101.1 FM, has been posted online.

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A Piano Tribute to Rush
11:23AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Vitamin Records: Piano Tribute to Rush]

The producers of various string quartet Rush tribute albums, Vitamin Records, will release A Piano Tribute to Rush on January 10th. From the Vitamin Records website:

The music of Rush is a patented mix of sci-fi imagery and technical soundscapes. Neil Peart, Geddy Lee, and Alex Lifeson are math-rock astronauts, exploring the farthest reaches of the rock'n'roll universe. Whether writing intricate concept albums or pop-friendly singles, Rush maintains a musical atmosphere that has sustained millions of fans for over three decades.

Pulsing through the drum beats and guitar riffs of Rush's songs are undeniable melodies. These hooks are brought to the surface on The Piano Tribute to Rush. The elemental soul of such hits as "The Spirit of Radio" and "Tom Sawyer" is extracted from their complex arrangements with simple piano. A must-have release for any Rush fan, this album promises to appeal to anyone with an appreciation for great songs and incredible musicianship.

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YYZ Live
10:19AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[YYZ]

I found this video of Rush performing YYZ live. It looks to be from A Show of Hands. Cool. As I reported previously, this video along with Exit Stage Left and Grace Under Pressure will be reissued sometime next year.

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What is "Exit. Stage Left" Alex
10:07AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Head2Head Trivia]

Today's Head2Head Trivia in Charleston's The Post and Courier features a Rush question. Question #4 is...

Canadian power-prog trio Rush released this live collection in 1981 that features classics such as "Tom Sawyer," "Freewill" and "Red Barchetta."

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Thursday, December 1, 2005

Geddy Lee Interview
3:21PM EST | link | comments (0) |

[RUSH Singer Says New DVD Captures A Really Good Show]

From Blabbermouth:

Launch Radio Networks reports: RUSH singer-bassist Geddy Lee is proud of his band's new DVD called "R30: 30th Anniversary World Tour". It gives people a good idea of what the shows looked and sounded like on the band's 30th anniversary trek last year. Lee told Launch that his recollection of the night is rooted in the fact that he and his bandmates really played well together. "I just remember the night getting off to a good start, and pretty glitch-free, for the most part," he said. "I remember a couple of songs we had our problems, but...I don't think it was a perfect night of performance, but it was a pretty damn good one."

The two-disc "R30" was shot in Frankfurt, Germany, in September 2004. The concert footage is on the first disc, while the second has interviews and videos dating from their earliest days up until the present.

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R30 Debuts at #2 on Billboard
9:50AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[Billboard Top Video Chart]

R30 has made its debut on the Billboard video charts at #2, right behind Green Day's Bullet In A Bible. Pretty impressive.

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Rush on the Rockline
9:44AM EST | link | comments (0) |

[RUSH Schedule 'Rockline' Appearance]

UPDATE - 12/15 @10:20PM: Here's a post-rockline analysis (link to full interview now available online).

Blabbermouth reports that Rush will be making a Rockline appearance on Wednesday Dec. 14:

Canadian rock legends RUSH will be the featured guests on the nationally syndicated radio show "Rockline" airing Wednesday, December 14. The live show begins at 8:30 p.m. PT / 11:30 p.m. ET, and fans are encouraged to call in with questions during the program at (800) 344-ROCK (7625). To find a station near you, check out www.rocklineradio.com.

RUSH's "R30: 30th Anniversary World Tour" DVD was released on November 22 via Rounder in the United States and Anthem in Canada; Sanctuary Visual Entertainment issued it November 28 in Europe. It was recorded September 24, 2004 at Festhalle in Frankfurt, Germany.

In addition to featuring 22 tracks from the show, "R30: 30th Anniversary World Tour" comes with a second disc, which collects a multitude of rarely seen bits from the RUSH archives, including studio footage from 1978, a soundcheck from 1980, and a recent rendition of "Closer to the Heart" with BARENAKED LADIES' Ed Robertson. The is also available as a deluxe edition, which includes two audio CDs of the Frankfurt concert, as well as various goodies, such as limited edition Dunlop guitar pick and a backstage pass.

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