Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson gave a fascinating interview to Classic Rock Revisited recently, where he discussed a variety of subjects, from the recording of the band's latest album, Clockwork Angels, to their plans for the upcoming tour, and more.
Says Lifeson of the lengthy Clockwork Angels recording process, "When you get into the studio and you record everything together then it brings that consistency through it. I think we really achieved an interesting dynamic. We have a lot of songs that are different from each other. I think a lot of the songs are very cinematic and part of the story...When I think of the songs on the album I think of them in the little groups that we wrote them in."
He says of the upcoming tour dates, "We're still trading emails regarding the set. Right now, the set is probably somewhere around four hours long. Our target is about three hours and ten minutes of music. We need to really pull it back. There are a lot of older songs that we want to bring back for this tour. There are a lot of great classic rock songs that we haven't played in a very long time. We don't want to short-change those songs but, of course, you always want to play your most current stuff. It is tempting to look at Clockwork Angels as the whole thing but we will see. We start rehearsals next month and we'll have a better idea of how we want to approach that whole thing."
He also looks back at the band's darkest period, when drummer Neil Peart's wife and daughter both died within months of each other and the band wondered if they'd even go on. "If Neil had said that he was done with it, then we would have just been done with it and moved on with our lives," he says. "The band really was not important at all during that time. It was all about helping our friend get back on his feet and learn to live again."
It's a long and fascinating interview; read the whole thing!