Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson was recently interviewed by, and had quite a bit to say about the band's upcoming album Clockwork Angels (available everywhere June 12!).

When comparing the new record to its predecessor, 2007's Snakes and Arrows, he says, "I think probably with this record, we really wanted to play and wanted to stretch out a little bit. We wanted to have fun playing and also to strip things down a little. I think Snakes and Arrows in retrospect was a little bit dense because it was written on acoustic guitar which played a major role in the production. We layered a lot of acoustics and electrics and I think we got just a little cloudy at times. I really like the record but with hindsight of living with it for a while we realized that we kind of overcooked it a bit."

He also discusses his own guitar work on the new album, describing how two solos in particular made the final record: "It's funny because the solo in 'Clockwork Angels' and also the solo in 'The Garden,' which are two of my favourite solos that I've ever done, were throwaway solos. After we'd written those songs and worked on the arrangements, Geddy [Lee] went away for a few days, so I continued working and filling things in a little bit and I threw down a couple of solos in just a few takes and that was it...With me, when I don't think too much about what I'm doing, that's when I tend to do my best work."

It's a long interview, well worth reading in full.

Clockwork Angels will be available everywhere June 12; you can pre-order it now, on CD or deluxe double vinyl, at the Roadrunner webstore! (European fans click here.) Rush tour dates have also been announced.