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  1. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20cover%20pointing_zpsblfzf9hp.jpg http://assets.rollingstone.com/assets/images/contributors/david-fricke.jpg By David Fricke, Yukon Blade Grinder, Sr Editor Part II On a rather warm May evening, and after a really cool press release for the new album Moist, Rush convene for one last crucial task before hitting the tour grind: a pre-tour dinner. The site is Ken Jeong's Rocky Mountain Oyster Palace, a Toronto dive located in the famous Jane and Finch district. When I say famous, I mean dangerously famous. Driving through this, ummm, interesting part of Toronto, I instinctively lock my car door as we pull up to a red light. "Don't worry" says Geddy, "We're ok. All Canadians love us!" Praying that to be the case, I still double check my door making sure it's locked. Finally pulling into the parking lot, and through an iron gate, I see the huge sign that radiates ego, and calf fries. This place is wack. As we enter the restaurant, trumpets blare. http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/KJPalace%20copy-1.jpg Complete with neon lighting, fake wood, decadent framed food-porn of fleshy mountain oysters and an aquarium which surrounds the dining hall. It's the hangout of Canadian stars. I sit at the table with Kings of Canada. Our sprightly waiter, the owner, jumps from the kitchen and greets us with, "What's up bitches...and distinguished guest? Oh, you from RollingStone? You Subdivision boy right? Ha ha...I know that's you. Can I have your autograph, left out muthafukka?" My gosh. He knows that I was the loner in the Subdivisions video. That's never happened. Taken aback, I don't know what to do other than sign his order pad, and try to shake his hand. "No, no, no, no. You get no play with the ladies. Which hand you use? Bet you can't show your ass on the UVA campus. Just kidding bitches. I guess you back for more of my nuts?" "Oh yeah. Wenner Rounds. Been craving them all day" says Neil, who kindly wipes the table off as we sit. "Whatever you have of the Alberta Moose, whatever you have of the Saskatchewan Elk. What else sits great?" Ken would have none of that, he has a requirement. "Oh no...before I do anything you have to answer this one question: How my nuts taste?" Without hesitation, the Kings of Canada sing aloud in barbershop harmony: You're so nutty, this we know How the squirrels love you so You've descended from the oak The nuts on you, they're no joke! An asian manical laugh fills the air, "You got it bad bitches! Boy the Rockys are really nice today--fresh!" "Oh okay, we can order now right?" Alex asks with a gracious glow. Apparently this is the routine everytime they visit. One of the perks afforded to the entrepenuer who has monopolized their market. "So let's get five dozen of those Rockys...what about the Yukon Goatnuts?" Sheepishly Ken admits, "What you talkin' 'bout Willis? We sold out just before you arrived." "We'll be here a while. Can you get some flown in tonight?" Alex asks with deadpan sincerity, "We're not joking!" "I'll see what I can do...as always, quid pro qou bitches", Ken says while rubbing his chin and clicking his heels. As he heads for the kitchen he asks Geddy if he wants the secret sauce. Without a word, Geddy and Neil nod their heads with enthusiastic approval. When I turn my attention back to the table, I notice that a wineglass has mysteriously appeared before me, filled an oenophilic quarter full. "It's a Jailhouse bordeaux, Alex's secret recipe" says Lee, sailing over my palate with a single phrase. "It's our 2014 Bacchus Plateau. The 2010's are doing quite well. This one is not oaked--it's actually aged in a plastic bag." Gonna be a great night for me. Geddy has pulled out the band's own wine label. I'd heard about this before, when Rush Limbaugh hosted the unveiling of Clockwork Angels on his radio show. Neil was a riot of course. The band's trying their hand at marketing products aimed specifically at their fan base. Nothing wrong with that. Gotta make a buck. Now it's time to get to brass tacks and get the show rolling. Hoping to leave no stone unturned, the recorder is on, and I start asking questions about the recording of the new epic album Moist, at newly refurbished Le Studio. When you all went back to Le Studio for the retrospective documentary, what was it that so moved you to buy the property, and record Moist there? Alex: Well it came down to several factors really. One, we have so much cash we thought "what the hell"? Two, it was hard to see, a crime really, for a treasured time capsule vacant of equipment, yet full of golden memories to just lie in ruins. Third, it's a great place to just get away and be guys. Really, those are the reasons. Everything else is secondary. Plus the volleyball court is awesome. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/6c/Le_studio_Logo.png/250px-Le_studio_Logo.png What record does Moist resemble most in terms of recording? You've recorded many at Le Studio Neil: Drummistically it actually reminded me of recording Hemispheres in Wales, in that beautiful stone room. We got a great sound at Le Studio. Kevin "Caveman" Shirley worked his mojo. We set up the Stonehenge baffling and got the sound we wanted rather quickly. Alex called it...what did you call it? Alex: The "brown" sound of drums, a reference to Eddie Van Halen's tone. Neil: Right. I think we had something like 50 mics on the set, and then we used a new type of microphone Caveman invented called Banana Mike. You actually wear it around your waist. Really gets a great bead on all those sounds around waist level in the room. There's all kinds of rich sounds bouncing at that level. The Banana Mike was able to capture them really well, though it was a bit awkward to wear while performing my drum parts. Geddy: For me it was unlike any recording experience at Le Studio because the enviroment is so different now. This is 2015. We're talking the 70's, 80's, and 90's in terms of comparisons. Now, between the studio and control room, is the aquarium wall from floor to ceiling, with lots tropical fish in it. This is the second wall to be installed. Alex and his quirks you know. He HAD to have it. It just makes this constant noise that drives me crazy. Anytime Nick or Terry had a comment for me, I'd have to manuever my head because a fish would always be in my direct line of sight, kinda staring at me. But, that wasn't the biggest issue. We had two producers who helped make our best works in the same room. So you had that dynamic at all times. Our engineer Caveman (Kevin Shirley) was a strong personal force as well. It was like being one cat, in a bag full of cats. Got stuffy pretty quick. To answer your question it doesn't remind me of any record. This was a new experience for us. Tell our readers about the "brawl". Broon and Booujzhe had many disagreements. Which ones stick out? Geddy: Ha. To call them mere disagreements is like calling the great Saskatchewan Beaver Pelt Rebellion of 1877 a "peaceful" demonstration. In hindsight it was really beneficial to us. Cleared the air, which is necessary in any relationship from time to time. Moist was not an easy album to make. Lots of directions to go, and lots of ways to arrive at the end goal. Incredible amounts of experience and creative energy to draw from. For the four of us (Nick included), we wanted to keep the snowball rolling from the inertia of Clockwork Angels, but Broon hadn't worked with us in ages. Caveman, I think it was Counterparts, so it was a long time. Nick had been on board since Snakes and Arrows, so he had his system in place. Bringing Terry and Caveman into that was going to be an adjustment regardless. This isn't 1982 anymore. We've evolved a bit. Terry needed to figure that out. Caveman, well--we call him Caveman for a reason. Alex: The big one started in the control booth. Back in the day, Broon always kept a candy dish full of Jolly Ranchers there for anyone to enjoy. It was a refreshing break to come out of the sound room and just pop one in...really broke the monotony, made you feel good. Nick wanted to carry on that tradition, so he put out a candy dish, except it had Starburst instead of the old Jolly Ranchers. When Terry saw that something went off in his brain. It was like watching a Jedi MMA match. Broon just went nuts. We're talking mind powers out the ying yang. What was really interesting were the things they would say to each other. Have you ever watched the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers? Crazy what producers can think up on the spot. Caveman got between them and got nailed with the dish that was thrown at Nick. He got knocked out cold. It bounced off the floor and cracked the aquarium wall. Water and fish everywhere. It was a real mess (laughs). We weren't even worried about Caveman, we're scooping up fish so they didn't die. What did you do with the fish? That's a huge tank. It's a wall of fish, water, and more water. Geddy: We just threw 'em in the lake. They're probably happier there. Alex: If they just didn't die. I mean, they were tropical fish. Neil: Revisiting that moment in time, there we were just looking at this water catastrophe with Caveman's limp body on the floor, fish flopping around him. Good thing we know people who could clean it up relatively quick. Otherwise the record would've taken much longer to make. For a second we just looked at each other and Alex said, "this is what it must've been like to be a member of The Police." Then there was LBP. Geddy: When we started work on the instrumental, Little Blue Pills, there were song structure issues, but also minor technical ones. We wanted have the sound of pills rattling in a bottle during the middle eight, with our wives actually rapping a chorus of sorts, a la Roll the Bones. Terry thought it was a bit of reach. Your wive's singing is not on the album, and ended up on the cutting room floor. Why? What were the lyrics? Neil: I wasn't allowed to write them--they did. I'm embarrassed but this is what they were: http://cdn2-b.examiner.com/sites/default/files/styles/image_content_width/hash/cb/80/1368662525_6474_Viagra.jpg?itok=yQQLyunj We may be older, but that doesn't matter. Let's get worked up in that old folk lather. It doesn't matter what you say, we're gonna act out 50 Shades of Grey. You have the look of fear. So sexy for men your age. Thanks for giving us that thrill, Now take your little blue pills. Geddy: My God that blew our minds. But, the detail Broon wanted was unusual. He wanted Viagra that was made in the US, not the Canadian off-brand. The density is a bit different. He said (laughs) they created a thicker, more robust sound as they rattle. Talk about anal. Nick, Caveman, and Terry, all put their foot down and told us to grow a pair, so we dropped the singing bit. Neil (quickly changing the subject): Yeah but that was really minor in scope because "Once a man twice a Boy" was so problematic because of our guest performers. Which leads to the Blind Boys of Alabama. An odd choice for proper Rush, at least upon first glance. How did you get connected with them? Neil: My drum teacher knows them. Recorded with them in the 60's and 70's. Leophus Hambone Jones, 1970 Oh yes, the great Hambone Jones--originator of the famed "Circular Motion" technique--tell us about him. Neil: He's more than a drum instructor. He's a life coach for the band really. When Freddy died he left me instructions on how to get to the "next" level. Hambone was the person he chose to take me there. Really? What was that like to get such a gift in his will? Neil: An honor, but also a huge responsibility. I feel responsible for Hambone. He now lives in LA and Toronto, and travels with me. In terms of connecting with him, Freddy didn't make it easy (laughs). Freddy left me a map of the United States, with arrows indicating places I might find Hambone, since he has no phone. Geddy: Hell we couldn't even find him on Google Neil. He's 97 years old, living under a bridge and street performing in Minot, North Dakota. Freddy left that part out--drummers! Neil: Right. So it was strange from the get go, but we found him. I gave Freddy's letter to him he knew what to do. Alex: It's funny. He didn't even open the letter. He put it to his forehead for a couple seconds and said "Right on man. I'm supposed to hang with the drummer with no rhythm." Then came the process of getting to know Hambone. Which was interesting to say the least. He's a man of the street, but his kit is awesome. Next to Pratt's, the coolest I've seen. We tried to acclimate him to "normal" living. Bought him a house. Got him a car. Hired a maid service. Got him a membership at the YMCA. He would have none of that--he prefers to live under bridges. The sound of the cars gives him "peace that soothes the soul". So, we send out Meals on Wheels three times a day, they feed him and his friends. Whatever makes him happy. Interesting. What about the connection to the gospel group? They are a gospel group. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/ce/Blind_Boys_of_Alabama_in_Quebec.jpg/200px-Blind_Boys_of_Alabama_in_Quebec.jpg Neil: Hambone played with them in the 60's and 70's. Made a ton of records. One night in LA, I got an invite from Hambone to go see this group. Never heard of them before--The Blind Boys of Alabama. He hopped in the sidecar of my BMW motorcyle and we made a day of it. He actually tours with me that way. Kinda pisses off Mosbach (His personal security) but that's another story. Anyway, they were fantastic. Funny. Touching. Great harmonies. Alex: I actually saw them in Quebec at a summer festival back in 2007. They blew me away. So I actually knew about them before the Neil and Ged. Geddy: Meeting them was the best. So humble. So friendly. They stayed in Morin Heights for a week. Even challenged us to a volleyball match after they regained their sight. Regained their sight? What do you mean? Geddy: One of the great things about Le Studio is the residential component. You live here when you record. We all stayed in the same chalet. Nice accomodations. Well, we were sitting around one night singing "Once a man twice a Boy". Alex lights up a huge joint and they smoke it with him. Three hours later they could see again. We did a test and their vision was 20/15, which is better than perfect. Which made me wanna hit it too, but I didn't. Alex: My medical card really comes in handy. That month, ironically, I had the "Ecuadorian Electric Eye" strain. It restores sight to the blind apparently. Alex Cavemen gave you a reverb pedal as a sign of trust, or was he just sick of you bitching...which was it? Alex: Oh yeah that was a moment. I think it's on youtube. He said I earned it. Whatever that means. Geddy: I almost cried. Really touching moment. As Ken comes to the table with salad and drinks, we're get ready for the main course...which will take place next issue. So for those who are dying to know where this is all going I suggest you pull up to the table, and get ready to dine on the finest calf fries in Toronto! The Yukon Blade Grinder, per usual, will be bringing the main course http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/KenJChef%20copy-1.jpg
  2. The Yukon Blade Grinder presents Origins of Rush Songs: The Trees By Werner Herzog http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/e/ec/Wallace_and_gromit.jpg/260px-Wallace_and_gromit.jpg I remember the day the Yukon Blade Grinder approached me for a new article in their controversial thread. Little did they know I’m a fan. I’ve been a member of The Rush Forum since its genesis, secretly posting under the user name "The Ecstatic Truth". When the call came, I was deep in the script for my new film Wallace and Gromit: The Hunt for the Bones of Kinski. Animation is a new medium for me, and working with clay is something I’ve always enjoyed. Gromit. Such a fascinating, sympathetic character. As usual I’m a sucker for a diversion in my life. Molding new reality from lumps of earth excites me for some reason. It does the same for my wife. One of our favorite movies is Ghost, and sometimes, when the mood is right, we re-enact that famous scene with Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze. Sparks re-emerge in our relationship as we speak German and Russian to each other during those passionate times. Such eroticism between the young and old is certainly worthy of poetic prose. However I digress. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/4/41/Ghost_%281990_movie_poster%29.jpg Yearning for the next act in my movie to pop in my head, I sat in my office, begging the trance of creativity to descend upon me. Just as inspiration was about to arrive, I heard the phone ring and I knew it was a message from God. Listening to this rather articulate man, known only as Tombstone Mountain, I was convinced a story was there to be had and well worth exposing. A script can wait. I wrote Strozek in three days—no big deal. My wife, who is 30 years my junior and a mail order bride from Russia, was intrigued by this voice as well. She described it a cross between Barry White, Pee Wee Herman, and Sergie Bubka. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/01/Werner_Herzog_Venice_Film_Festival_2009.jpg/220px-Werner_Herzog_Venice_Film_Festival_2009.jpghttp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c0/Portrait_of_Lena_Herzog.jpg Indeed. There was this vaulted warmth, an authority about him. A playful, mischievous element provoked my imagination. He described a situation of vitriol, love, and pity on The Rush Forum. Rush is winding a career down. Knowing the Forum the way I do, this man knew I could bring a unique perspective to this rumbling of emotions, and talk about the pure sacrifice of endurance a certain member of the band had to endure. How could I not oblige? My Life in Film Most people know my work for its unflinching portrayal of people striving for greatness only to fall victim to our common fate. The need to matter in a universe of anti-matter permeates us, infiltrating our souls. Inspiration, like the eagle, can soar above the dreamy landscapes of our minds. Always problematic for the bird, danger lurks as we know eagles can be hit with an arrow, bullet, or stone. I should know. I’ve been hit with all three. The stone is the worst. Immediately painful. Making sense of this story, and conveying it to The Rush Forum would be a piece of cake I thought compared to those experiences. Der Hoden Chimes der Schwarzwaldes The Yukon Blade Grinder inquired for me to search out the seeds of life to the song The Trees, written by Neil Peart. Didn't have to go far. I was there shortly after it was written. Neil showed up to my house a mess, with bloody scratch marks all over his body. The YBG has been kind to me in the past, after the debacle of the Clockwork Angels tour. Time heals all wounds. The band is coming to the end of their time in the sun, and this song is being uncovered again for the faithful throngs of fans. Augmented by an intro for the ages during the Exit...Stage Left tour, it has burned a place in the mind of the Rush fan, and is an all-time classic--musically and lyrically. How did Neil come to write such a fantastic piece of work, with implications far exceeding the simple lyrics? Here's how...read on fellow Grinders! In my homeland of Germany the Black Forest awaits. A place of great beauty and mystery. Ancient stories have resonance in the collective German conscience and are part and parcel of who we are as a people. The parable of Broom Hilda is just one of those timeless stories which gives Aesop a run for his money. Greeks think they know everything about morality tales…ach mein gott! http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/bd/Relief_Map_of_Germany%2C_Black_Forest.png/272px-Relief_Map_of_Germany%2C_Black_Forest.png The Black Forest. I remember Klaus Kinski and I would spend hours in that place, thinking of things to put into his autobiography. Most of them fabricated, but what does it matter? Inspiration, even if its origins are complete bullshit, can lead people into action, taking the mantle of control of their own lives. Just ask Barack Obama. Many times I have sat alone in that forest contemplating life as birds chirp with such freedom, such joy. Even when it rains the beauty will not subside, as if impervious to the bleak monochrome hue of gray clouds. If one is especially still, the deer come to you and eat out of your hand. But there is more to be seen, and heard. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/9/94/Tamias_minimus.jpg/220px-Tamias_minimus.jpg And on that rare day of the vernal equinox, at the precise moment of planetary equilibrium, when day and night share the exact same duration, a species of chipmunk known only to the black forest, will come sit on your shoulder and whisper the tale of Broom Hilda. Germans call this phenomenon Der Test. So titled because one must remain completely still, entirely motionless. You mustn’t giggle as those cute little rodents tickle your ear, while telling tales of yesteryear. Hard to do, for these creatures wear lederhosen and sing German drinking songs as they approach you. Though quite comical in appearance, it’s deadly serious. For if you give in to the desire to laugh, they attack you. Many have died trying to make it out of the wood. Neil made it out, by stomping a ton of chipmunks. For most however, the chipmunks are almost always too great in number. Neil has very large feet and tried to keep the mayhem down to a minimum. He did. On the other hand, Kinski is really to blame for the severe reduction of the chipmunk population. When he went through der fehdehandschuh der deutsch streifenhornchen, he had a pistol on him, with four 30 round clips he bought while in Afghanistan. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/5/5a/Woyzeck_dvd.jpg Klaus Kinski--Chipmunk Killer http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/1/13/Neil_Peart_performing_at_the_Air_Canada_Centre_on_October_16%2C_2012.jpg/250px-Neil_Peart_performing_at_the_Air_Canada_Centre_on_October_16%2C_2012.jpg Neil Peart--Chipmunk Slayer But, If a traveler succumbs to the attack, their bare bones are taken to the legendary crypt of Broomhilda, and testicles are hung from the tall oak trees, creating a sound like wooden chimes that resonate with a peace that forces one to sit and listen. When it happens, a cocoon of serenity, a glow surrounds you. Before you know it, you’re sitting on Der Shiester Throne, which magically appears out of nowhere, giving superhuman inspiration to those who seek it. Neil sat on that throne, and thus a song was born. He won't tell you how he actually came to write the lyrics, because the wounds he sustained are permanent, and carry a harsh weight. Many holy texts tell us "tis a sin to kill a mockingbird", well, in Germany, to kill a chipmunk is just as bad. Neil has to live with those scars. So, when the band cranks up this classic remember the man behind the kit went through much to bring you the magic of the Black Forest. Balls intact. So until our next installment, should the Yukon Blade Grinder be so kind to ask me to share, I bid you Auf Wiedersehen und viel Glück!
  3. http://www.cygnus-x1.net/links/rush/images/tourbooks/r40/1-s.jpg Three is a magic number. Yes it is, it's a magic number. Somewhere in the ancient, mystic trinity Three is a magic number. Yes it is, it's a magic number. Somewhere in the ancient, mystic trinity You get three as a magic number. The past and the present and the future, Faith and hope and charity, The heart and the brain and the body Give you three. That's a magic number. It takes three legs to make a tri-pod or to make a table stand. It takes three wheels to make a ve-hicle called a tricycle. Every triangle has three corners, Every triangle has three sides, No more, no less. You don't have to guess. When it's three you can see it's a magic number. A man and a woman had a little baby. Yes, they did. They had three in the family. That's a magic number. 3, 6, 9... 12, 15, 18... 21, 24, 27... 30. 3, 6, 9... 12, 15, 18... 21, 24, 27... 30. Three time ten is... >> 30 Three times nine is... >> 27 Three times eight is... >> 24 Three times seven is... >> 21 Three times six is 18, three times five is 15 Three times four is twelve And three times three is nine and three times two is six. And three times one is three of course. 3, 6, 9. 12, 15, 18. 21, 24, 27... 30. Three times ten is... 30 Three times nine is 27 Three times eight is... 24 Three times seven is... 21 Three times six is 18, three times five is 15, Three times four is twelve And three times three is nine and three times two is six. And three times one... That's a magic number. A man and a woman had a little baby. Yes, they did. They had three in the family. That's a magic number. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aU4pyiB-kq0
  4. Give up the feedback What do you think? Discuss with a vigor
  5. When someone complains about our favorite band in a flippant manner, you may issue this warning to them. Sure to make them straighten up and fly right. In order to get back in our good graces after said infractions, they have to listen to Clockwork Angels in one sitting. Video proof is required for re-instatement. Here's your card to issue: http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/RUSH%20card_zpsnsbflzdh.jpg
  6. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20Cover_zpsrwdelfam.jpg  http://assets.rollingstone.com/assets/images/contributors/david-fricke.jpg By David Fricke, Yukon Blade Grinder, Sr. Editor Part I   Few pleasures I've experienced in my work compare with this evening. Naturally, when the Yukon Blade Grinder dialed my number, I hopped on that puppy. Been on Willie Nelson's tour bus and hit fat j's that would make Bob Marley envious. I've sung with Springsteen during his now famous rendition of "Fire" at the White House, and been to Maggie's Farm with Bob Dylan. However, this was different. As stars go, these guys are famous for being normal. As in boring. On the way to Anthem Entertainment Internation HQ's from the airport, all four of us hopped in Peart's standard family minivan. So freaking cool that they picked me up from the airport on the way to the presser. As I sat in the passenger seat and got comfortable for the ride, Neil popped in a disc inscribed Moist. He said, "Welcome to the new era of Rush--Geddy and Alex can now count to four! Sesame Street is really helping them along". As we drove out of the airport headed for downtown Toronto, I felt like, to qoute the famous Lou Gehrig speech: "the luckiest man on the face of the earth". Neil points out the first track is the prequel to the immortal Jacob's Ladder, called Adam's Rib. When I reviewed Permanent Waves in 1980, I had to call out the music jack-holes of the day. With that album, Rush accomplished something I never suspected they could--mainstream accessibility while maintaining the uniqueness of their sound. It happened, and they did it well. In his words, "Adam's Rib" is about being alive, knowing that you're heading for the scythe of death, only to come into the presence of the next reality--the mystery of life answered. Of course, Alex has to throw in his two cents worth "I thought it was about sex, drugs, & rock n roll when Geddy and I were pumping it at first...Neil always takes the fun out of the jam!" Hmmm I sense a bit o' tension there. The album starts with a wind blowing gently. You can hear rustling leaves along the ground. A dog's bark is a distant early warning for an encroaching bliss of metal, as a floating voice recites what sounds like a Psalm, only to resolve in a human tornado of drums, bass, and guitar. As always, Neil provides the listener with plenty of food for thought: For years along the Darwinian path ambition lifted man to the skies. Searching beyond the veil for the echo of our past Only to discover wisps of terrestrial lies. Not alone, yet we can't see our guests Walking beside us, step by step. We've never seen the coming hordes As we stare into empty nests. Arriving at the points between enchantment and disillusion Our lives are revealed for what they are. Life is nature's tedious ad-lib, We come from Adam's Rib. Well, whatever the hell that means, it sounds awesome, and I want more! For 10 minutes I'm in total bliss. If anything, the music of Rush has been idiosyncratic to the hilt. They play what they like, and what they're doing now is indicative of musicians in total control of their craft. Steering a ship into waters that demand focus by playing in time signatures sure to make you puke in your hat, if your eyes aren't on the horizon. Gnarly! The epics were thought to be long gone in the lexicon of the band's music, so this was a surprise. Moist contains two. Unlike the band's last effort, the highly ambitious Clockwork Angels, this album is clear and totally balls to the wall. The second track "Twice a boy, once a man" creates something new for Lee--the use of voice modulation. Relentless in melancholy, I'm reminded of "Madrigal" from A Farewell to Kings. I was mesmorized when Lee shouts the chorus, complete with backing vocals supplied by none other than the Blind Boys of Alabama, sounding like an Irish wake, only hipper: When you climb the hill to arrive on top, You forget the journey never stops. Spindled by the weavers hands, I was twice a boy and once a man. Play in dirt make castles of sand. Build a fortress of stone with cold chapped hands. Time has now worked it's plan I was twice a boy, and once a man. Instrumentals have been something the band has always enjoyed making. Moist has one--"Little Blue Pills". Think YYZ meets Jerry was a Racecar Driver. Craziness knows no bounds. Man, it's really getting warm in this car as the music keeps pumping. Suddenly the conversation turns to marketing. Eager to please, the band's been breaking out new products left and right. Wines. Cheeses. Plus, the purchase of legendary Le Studio in Morin Heights. But now they're tapping into the adult market with products that'll help their fan base. PMS medication--outside of the box thinking. Neil says it was all Geddy's idea. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/PMS%20med_zpspsnhiahz.jpg "Hey when those difficult times hit the family--we wanna help" quipped Alex, pulling a flask from his jacket. Now that is some Canadian hospitality. The goodies don't stop there. Here's one for the aging Rush male fan: http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/totem.jpg Wow indeed! But we moved on to other topics. The album cover. Geddy has moved into aquatic art and felt the theme of water needed to be brought in, since it has three forms. "Album covers are important. Hugh's out of pocket, so we comissioned some chick from Frisco to hook us up. Hugh may be out of a job soon!" http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/MOIST_zpsv5j05ey9.jpg http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/MOIST%20back_zpsksjedkqx.jpg "Yeah, we're going back to the epics in every sense. 10 minute space jams. No more pansy stuff. This is what we do! I can't wait to play these songs on tour", says Geddy as we head into Anthem Entertainment International HQ's. The world is awaiting to be told of the grand reunion of Terry Brown and the golden boys of Canada. Part II in the next epic issue of The Yukon Blade Grinder
  7. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Press-Conference_zps3jwkpkdc.jpg (YBG Toronto Sun 3.28.15 ) "This is something we've wanted to do for a long time. To borrow a phrase from my favorite poet the stars have aligned perfectly for us to carry this dream to fruition. Of course, some help was presented to us along the way--all the better!" Ray Danniels couldn't have summed up the situation any better. For years, Canadians from coast to coast have long wanted to do something with Le Studio, either to make it an historical landmark, amusement park, something other than let it fall into disrepair and rot to nothing. Along with the members of Rush, Danniels have purchased the property and refurbished it entirely for the recording of the band's new album Moist.   The new album marks the first time since 1981's Signals the band has worked with Terry Brown, and fellow co-producer Nick Raskulinecz. "We're coming to the end of a road started many years ago. It comes down to pleasing the people who help put us in this position in the first place--our fans. They've been wanting Terry back for years. We've been away long enough. Nick was a must though, because he'll always point us to the fact that we need to be Rush. As you can tell from songs like Tai Shan, albums like Presto, we can forget that sometimes." The 21st album for the band revisits themes from the past, including the 10 minute song "Adam's Rib", prequel to Jacob's Ladder. A concert to promote the saving of Le Studio will be held April 1st at Massey Hall featuring many artists who've recorded at Morin Heights, but also those who just love the sound the studio produced.  http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Save%20Le%20Studio_zpsroub44se.jpg Also located on the property is the new winery created by the band, "Bacchus Plateau Chateau", complete with a dairy farm for a line of cheese products by drummer Neil Peart. http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/9best.jpg Geddy Lee joked that his wife finally gave his "grapes" back, and allowed him to pursue his dream of having a vineyard next to a recording studio. While Alex said they will offer a premium line of wine products, there will be a more affordable line for those feeling the pinch of a bad economy, yet still "wanna get their buzz on". http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/wine2.jpg Le Studio (later renamed Studio Morin Heights) was a residential recording studio located just south of the town of Morin-Heights, Quebec built in 1974 by André Perry and Yaël Brandeis. The studio, where artists recorded and stayed, was the venue for many notable Canadian and international artists, including Rush (it was nicknamed "Rush's Abbey Road" and The Police. Renowned for its location as well as its state of the art equipment, it was one of the earliest studios to install Solid State Logic mixing tables and RADAR digital recording equipment. By 2008 the studio had gone out of business. http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/AnthemCheese-1.jpg André Perry gained fame as a recording engineer working for John Lennon, and in 1974 was looking to expand his studio, a four-track studio venue in Montreal. He moved to Morin Heights, where he owned a lake, and built his studio there, with his wife Yaël Brandeis. The idea was to give recording artists a venue where they could record and live in a creative atmosphere, near the Laurentian Mountains: The Bee Gees, who recorded Children of the World (1976) at Le Studio, stayed for five months. Initially it had a guesthouse, a half an hour away, but it was burned down accidentally by Roy Thomas Baker and Ian Hunter, according to studio designer and engineer Nick Blagona. Later on a house across the lake was acquired and expanded. By the early 1980s it had acquired a reputation as a premium North American recording venue, after Rush, David Bowie, and April Wine had recorded albums there. "We'd like to return that feel to Le Studio, having the opportunity to live in comfort, while seriously working is what all musicians want and need," said longtime drummer Neil Peart. The Montreal Exchange looking to acquire funding for building a second studio, with audio and video capabilities, in the US state of Washington. 1.1 million shares valued at $3.50 were sold. Perry and Brandeis retained majority interests. They spent $500,000 on a Quantel Mirage digital video effects unit, hoping to install more equipment to allow the recording of sound effects and film music, as well as a Synclavier room. In 1988 Perry and Brandeis sold the studio, and Perry retired in the early 1990s. The studio, by then called Studio Morin Heights, was acquired in 1993 by L'Equipe Spectra, an entertainment company that had a number of local artists on record. Rush and other bands continued to do their tracking there. The new owners also built a new studio room, called "Far Side", which offered a digital RADAR audio recorder and allowed local bands with modest budgets to benefit from the amenities. The 233-acre (0.94 km2) site was listed for sale in July 2007, with an asking price of C$2.45 million. By 2008 it had shut down. The property remained for sale until 2009, when the land was purchased with the intent to convert the area to a retreat and spa. However with today's news, it's been disclosed the Anthem Entertainment and the band paid only C$1 million for the aquisition. Lifeson noted "We would've paid more. We're flush with cash, but you pay what the market demands. Plus, this album, needed the location of Morin Heights to make it happen...we love playing volleyball so much." Other international artists to record at Le Studio include Nazareth, The Police, Sting, Cat Stevens, The Bee Gees, Keith Richards, Kim Mitchell and Bryan Adams. Rush recorded at Le Studio during "the peak and the end" of the Terry Brown era. This era is reborn with the album Moist.
  8. We've all seen the cover of the Permanent Waves album--the woman with permanent waves in her hair near a jumble of lumber, her skirt rising up with the breeze, walking away from a man whose arm is raised in a permanent wave, and a crumbled newspaper on the ground. The headline of the paper is blanked out, but what did it originally say? I remember reading, years ago, that the headline was the famous "DEWEY DEFEATS TRUMAN" that had been erroneously published on November 3, 1948, but I wanted to find out more about this paper. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/permanentwaves-cover_zpsm6yij1js.jpg The cover we all know and love I am lucky enough to have access to some very high-quality scanning and image processing software so I did some work on this cover to decipher the paper. Scan, enhance 224 to 176, enhance, stop, and so forth. I was finally barely able to read the top of the paper! http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/permanentwaves-YBG_zpsl3lcvkrr.jpg The name of the newspaper Can you believe it? The name of the paper is Yukon Blade Grinder! I had no idea the Yukon Blade Grinder had existed for so long, and I certainly did not know of its involvement with Rush. Wow, now I really wanted to find a copy of this paper to see what was written on there. Unfortunately, this ended up being much more difficult than I had ever thought. The YBG newspaper seems to operate under the radar. They have no online presence and do not keep archival copies of their old papers. However, I located the city where the papers are printed and travelled there for further research. The night clerk at the YBG office is a slight, elderly man by the name of Finley Fergle. Finley absolutely loved that I was interested in the paper and was quite happy to talk my ear off. Most of what he said wasn't about the paper itself, but stories of some of the people involved with the paper over the years--Tom Clancey, Werner Herzog, Ella Fitzgerald, and more. Often his stories were interrupted by chipmunks running across the floor because he would get up to shoo them out and forget what he was talking about. When I asked if he might have kept a copy of the historic "Dewey Defeats Truman" paper he invited me to search the stacks of old newspapers at his cottage. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/old%20guy_zps158swauw.jpg Finley Fergle at his desk Like any good hoarder, Finley has piles upon piles of old newspapers stored in his cottage. But (possibly) unlike many other hoarders, Finley's papers are stacked in chronological order, and in no time I was able to find the paper in question. (This may have been the actual paper used in the Permanent Waves cover photoshoot, but Finley couldn't verify that; the actual paper may have instead gone to line a bird cage decades ago.) Sadly, the paper we were looking for had been sitting directly on the floor and had incurred quite a bit of water damage so much of it was unreadable. I decided to take it back and send it through my scanning and imaging software to see what I could recover. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Dewey%20Defeats%20Truman_zpsvq5a1rtm.jpg The Yukon Blade Grinder edition used on the Permanent Waves cover It's not much, but there it is! The Yukon Blade Grinder in print, and the very edition used on Rush's Permanent Waves cover. What a fantastic discovery! This whole research project was time-consuming and often frustrating, but the end results mean it was worth it. And now this has me thinking--since there is a YBG presence on TRF, and since the guys in Rush have an odd sense of humour, does this mean Rush is somehow involved in the YBG posts? Maybe another research project is in store for me!
  9. Rush begin their 40th 41st anniversary R40 tour in less than two months! Rush themselves have given us only tiny tidbits (Timbits?) of information as to what we can expect. In a recent interview Geddy stated R40 will be "the last big tour that we're going to do for a while," and that the setlist will be "a celebration of our entire history". As you can imagine, the rumours of what we are going to see and hear are flying fast and furious. I know sometimes the media will be privy to information to information the general public is not, and with that in mind I picked the brain of a Yukon Blade Grinder reporter who I know often visits the Anthem Entertainment offices in Toronto. We met up at the Orbit Room while I was in YYZ, and I discovered that buying the reporter a few maple whiskeys will cause them to spill some secrets. I learned the band is considering the following ideas for the R40 stage show: As the ultimate display of Rush's notorious sense of humour, the Caress of Steel-era songs will be accompanied onstage by dwarves dancing around an 18' (foot!) Stonehenge replica. Since Geddy unfortunately has difficulty hitting the very high notes from the band's early releases, R40 will mark the second time in the band's history they have additional musicians onstage. Those musicians will be a small group of back-up singers who will be "assisting" Geddy with reaching notes such as "Every nerve is torn apart!" from "Cygnus X-1". Other songs will be adapted and sung in a lounge act style to make them easier to sing. The film clips shown during the concerts will include home footage of Neil, Alex, and Geddy taken during their childhood years. Some of this surfaced in Beyond the Lighted Stage, and now we will have a chance to see more. To assist with covering the costs of a tour of this magnitude (several tour buses and trailer-trucks are used to haul crew and gear, while the band takes private planes), the film clip to be played during "I Think I'm Going Bald" will be used to promote Rogaine. What rumours have you heard?
  10. Gotta liven things up a bit. People are pounding the doors of the YBG offices asking WTF are you? Since the Yukon Blade Grinder is, for the time being, abandoning the epic news articles, and expanding our operation by going to a video format (gasp), BTW you'll find it on Yukon Blade Grinder TV (yes it's real) on Youtube, we've decided to at least see if we have anything left in the tank to arouse the loins, and intellects, of TRF faithful. Think about it. The Yukon Blade Grinder HAS to do it. We got a tour coming and this is all we get? Where's all the well mannered "frivolity" and hi-jinx? Where is that one thread that can take a dull period and make it into something special? http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/d/d5/Klopapierrolle_mit_Halter.jpg/220px-Klopapierrolle_mit_Halter.jpg Perhaps we need to go here^^^^^ by creating inspirational toilet paper, laden with the finest lyrics from our favorite band, and befitting the use of toilet paper. Toilet paper has many names. Let us consider them now: "bumf" "bum wad" "loo roll/paper" "bog roll" "toilet roll" "dunny roll/paper" "bathroom/toilet tissue" "TP" "arsewipe" "shit tickets" "tissue" Now, imagine reaching for that roll of comfort and cleanliness, tearing off a swath and seeing that Rush lyric that helps you think of more than just, well, you know--doing your business. It could be like reading a fortune cookie if you think about it, except what you put on it might not be all that tasty. Here goes my first volley: "The Way out is the Way in" What have you got TRF faithful? PS: Our first segment will be airing very very soon. We look forward to entertaining you!
  11. I just had to bring this out and let The Rush Forum have some good red meat to gnaw on. Look up "tool" or "Doosh" in the dictionary, and there resides a picture of the man who wrote this review for "Grace Under Pressure". This album needs no critical assistance: If you like Rush, you'll love it; if not, then Grace Under Pressure is unlikely to alter your assessment of the band as a lumbering metal anachronism. For the record, though, Rush has managed to incorporate a number of modern elements into its sound (note the almost danceable rhythms in "Afterimage" and "Red Sector A," and the swelling synthesizers and electropercussion throughout). Geddy Lee, the group's bassist and vocalist, has also gotten his dog-calling falsetto shriek under control. But these signs of incipient hipness are not what sets young pulses racing throughout the North American heartland. Rush is a band with a message. Briefly put, it's "Be free, and don't let the grown-up world grind you down." Thus, on "The Enemy Within," Lee sings, "I'm not giving in/To security under pressure/I'm not missing out/On the promise of adventure." And the hero of drummer-lyricist Neil Peart's sci-fi allegory, "The Body Electric," is an "android on the run, seeking freedom." The problem, though, is musical. On record, the lack of melody and any but the most rudimentary harmonic development soon becomes oppressive. In addition, Alex Lifeson is not a particularly interesting lead guitarist, and the strictures of the trio format still result in more splattery drum bashing than you'll ever care to hear. Rush delivers the goods, all right: strong social statements enveloped in a massive, pounding sound. But it's old news, and old music, too. From The Archives Issue 759: May 1, 1997 http://www.quotessays.com/images/kurt-loder-3.jpg
  12. You heard it here first: "Grinding to a Halt" Recorded at the newly refurbished Le Studio. They've also reunited with...wait for it Terry Brown
  13. ...what would be their chosen occupations? My prognostications? Alex—hairdresser Geddy—an agnostic dogcatcher/rabbi Neil—IRS agent What do you think their occupations would be?
  14. Rush: Clockwork Angels Live DVD Well, it’s here. The new live DVD documenting their highly successful Clockwork Angels tour will be received with open arms by Rush fans all over the world. Those who aren’t fans might be enticed to buy it, not because of the music, but because of all the “extras” it contains. Fans will certainly get the bang for the buck. Distant early rumors about the DVD were rife with speculation about which setlists would be included, but suffice to say the best of both are there. It’s not a secret that here in the offices of RollingStone a favorite pastime was dismissing this largely irrelevant band. No more. With an historic induction in the RRHOF, Rush is now mainstream and simply can’t be ignored any further (having said that, they’ll never appear on our cover). Many firsts are on display for the world to see with this release. Drum God Neil Peart looks like he’s actually having a good time, whether it’s closing out the epic 2112 with laconic precision, or nailing fans with t-shirts from his high-powered air gun. Astonishingly, there are more hot women attending this concert that all previous Rush concerts combined (probably inserted with CGI), and the band is joined onstage by a string ensemble with hot women playing instruments (not CGI). However, the goodies don’t stop there. The RRHOF induction ceremony is included, complete with Alex Lifeson and Flava Flav doing bong hits backstage. Not to be outdone by that visual statement, Iron Chef: God’s of Rock, the charity driven competition from the vaults of the Food Network is contained in its entirety. The show, which was pulled due to several factors, has Paula Deen in all her glory before her dismissal from the network. In addition, documentaries centering on performing life and backstage drama are included. The tour, which included a healthy dose of their latest release Clockwork Angels, was perhaps their most successful ever. Interesting the band chose to revisit the 80’s in terms of song choices. That era, which isn’t especially memorable (save the awful videos they produced) to the music community at large, does contain what die-hard Rush fans consider classic hits such as Middletown Dreams, The Body Electric, and Grand Designs. We know, we know. Most people never heard of those songs, but Rush has always catered to their rabid fan base who’s retarded devotion has lined their pockets, and conversely, been their “enabler” to produce moribund compositions. Obligatory radio staples Tom Sawyer, Spirit of Radio and Subdivisions are played with such verve, sexagenarians everywhere should beam with pride. Pick it up. Can’t say you won’t be disappointed, but at least you’ll be amused! Five Stars out of Five if you’re a Rush fan Two Stars out of Five if you just enjoy the radio hits Zero Stars out of Five if you’ve never heard of them –Andy Ladouche www.rollingstone.com/reviews/welivtofukwithrush/YukonBladeGrinder
  15. The time to Grind is now! During the bands hiatus, lame threads pop up like dandelions. Here's another. Create a Rush inspired product. Could be anything, make it fun. Slogans should be included and relevant to the product's function. I'll start with one I inserted into an edition of my famed Yukon Blade Grinder articles: "Hand over Fist" PMS medication Calming women down since Presto. Just one dose, and she's comatose!
  16. Spaghetti Lee Has Been Sneaking Progesterone Into My Macallan by Neil Ellwood Peart It has come to my attention, as I gaze into the mirror and wonder if my motorcycle armor makes me look fat, that a certain member of The Rush Forum's group of obstreperous ne'er-do-wells has used those pictures of my house on the Internet (Thanks, assholes.) to form a break-in plan to the room in which I keep my trusty liquor cabinet. This would concern me more if the member turned out to be one of many of those in the Sense O'Clock News forum, none of whom I would care to have on my property without at least an adequate sharks with frickin' laser beams tank for them to "accidentally" find once they start asking me why I'm not a fan of Rand Paul or his father. Or his namesake, at least not anymore. Damn it, I don't know. What do you people want from me, anyway? Screw you, this is MY guest column! Damn it, Spaghetti Lee is such a jerk! Am I having hot flashes now? I swear it's a thousand degrees out here. Maybe it's because I've been out in the middle of the desert again on my motorcycle. Why do I do that? God, I'm so stupid! Stupid female hormones... wait, am I growing breasts? Gah, are you kidding?? I am NOT taking a blog selfie with boobs! Michael?? Michael, do you have any liquor that isn't mine? Oh wait, just that stuff you drink? Eww, gross! Gawwd, how am I EVER going to face my wife again like this?? I mean, my boobs are bigger than hers! Well, okay, maybe they were before, but gawd. Oh no, is that one of my fans? Is he, like, seeing me like this?? Is he walking over to... oh crap, he has a cell phone camera! RUN!!! Phew! Man, I'm going to have to have these surgically removed. How do women live with these anyway? Spaghetti Lee, you are, like, SUCH a dead man! UPDATE: The Guys at Work visited and said that they don't notice much of a difference. Then they laughed at me. This sucks so bad, I'm gonna go in my room now and write a bunch of songs about it. Then they'll have to play them all. Serves them right.
  17. Ok people here's the deal. My dear friend and colleague SubstanceWithoutStyle has reportedly posted over 1000 times today. I know, it's a ridiculous number of posts. Crazy in fact. Obviously he needs help. Well, we all know someone who needs help, yet it seems some are too reserved or cowardly to step up and tell a friend to "get a grip". Here's the deal. Using Rush lyrics, give a friend guidance, or advice, to show them you care. Sometimes a kind word is all that's needed, however, there's a time for a no-nonsense, telling it like it is approach that must be taken. Make sure you address the person before giving the advice as seen below. Time to help a bud out and get your Grind on!
  18. YBG Proverb 1:1, from the book of Necessary Information "It's impossible to get chocolate from the anus of a weasel"
  19. The Yukon Blade Grinder has been given the order to design the "Rush" theme park on the outskirts of Toronto by the Canadian government. We're looking for cool ride/attraction ideas from TRF faithful. Compensation will be awarded for only the best ideas. So far we have only the "Mystic Rhythm Temple of Profound Thoughts and Metaphors". C'mon people—Canada needs YOU!!!
  20. YUKON BLADE GRINDER: Corrections Page #1 Readers and Rush fans know that we at the Yukon Blade Grinder always strive for our absolute best interpretations of The Facts™. However, despite our seemingly immaculate reputation, even our stellar, award-winning work (Longest Rushgoober Coverage Thread Ever, 2014. Excellent!), even we can be prone to the occasional error. So, just to clear up a few things, here are some corrections that we at the YBG have been meaning to get around to printing in a nice, bullet-pointed list just like this one: In our 2013 Swimsuit issue (“Geddy’s Still Got It… Sort Of”) we showed pictures of Today’s Hottest Rush Swimwear Merchandise on the beaches of Prince Edward Island. Unfortunately, the picture was one of over a hundred taken within a 12-hour period in the middle of January. We apologize to the families of the models and we promise that we will utilize Kickstarter for their funeral expenses. To the guy who keeps calling our offices saying that he has naked pictures of Alex Lifeson’s wife, stop it already. Seriously, Alex, we at the Yukon Blade Grinder are starting to worry about you. The story that we ran about archaeologists unearthing residue from a spacecraft full of extraterrestrial Rush fans did not compute with the facts. We puny humans apologize for the error and assure our fellow puny humans that no such beings exist. Now please put down that ray gun. One of the articles on Rushgoober’s disappearance (“Goober’s Headlong Flight”) described Pope Francis as a Rush fanatic. The Vatican has since denied this claim, stating that, “The lyrics of this Canadian rock band preach a level of personal expeditiousness that runs contradictory to The Church’s virtues of humility. Also, that dickhead Neil Peart totally ignored us and didn’t even sign our LP’s. How are we supposed to pay off our legal expenses on eBay with copies signed by only two members of the band? F**k those guys!” And finally, this is not a correction for us, but Aikenrooster totally misspelled “Country music” in the worst way possible on a recent thread. We at the Yukon Blade Grinder are still laughing our asses off at that one.
  21. Just shut up and play boys. Sing only for a 10 song encore.
  22. What flavor would they be? I'm going Victorian Earl Grey Black. With a splash of milk, and some honeydew.
  23. You and that someone special are hitting the town, but your only babysitting options are the members of Rush. Who gets your call?
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