Rush ‘Signals’ Change: Neil Peart, Alex Lifeson And Geddy Lee ‘InTheStudio’ On Million-Seller Album’s 30th Anniversary
North American syndicated Rock radio show InTheStudio: The Stories Behind History’s Greatest Rock Bands examines a pivotal moment in the career of Rush. By 1981, Rush had built a fiercely loyal fan base through eight albums, only one of which did not sell more than its predecessor, and road-dog touring, all the while honing their chops, their arrangements and lyrical themes into a laser-tight focus for Rush’s worldwide blockbuster Moving Pictures.
So what did the band do for the follow-up when all of their hard work paid off? Rush changed. Because the album also contained the Top Ten hit “New World Man” and sold over a million copies in its first two months, there is a tendency to assume that the follow-up Signals was easily embraced by all of the Rush faithful.
It wasn’t. With back-to-back million sellers Permanent Waves in 1980 and then the massive Moving Pictures, Rush risked their new-found fame and fortune with the 1982 album Signals, expanding their sound with new instrumentation and additional layers of sound on songs “Subdivisions”, “The Analog Kid”, “Chemistry” and “The Weapon”. But if Rush had not challenged themselves and their fans by continuing to innovate and explore all four corners of the studio on Signals in Fall 1982, would there even be a Rush in the 21st century? Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart all weigh in for this classic rock interview. Here is just a portion of what Neil Peart shared with ‘InTheStudio’ host Redbeard:
“We were all looking for a new place for the guitar, and Alex was looking for a new way to play it and present it. So Signals is very experimental for us.”
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