Geddy Lee’s Pick For The Most Challenging Rush Album To Record And Sing

Rush made a spectacular entrance to the rock and roll world with several albums such as ‘Fly by Night,’ ‘2112,’ ‘A Farewell to Kings,’ and ‘Hemispheres.’ Even though their fame was established with their initial albums, they released 19 studio records throughout their career, until 2012.

The band members started to take breaks beginning in 2015, and the band’s drummer Neil Peart wanted to retire from touring because he was tired. Unfortunately, the drummer passed away from aggressive brain cancer in 2020, which canceled the possibility of a reunion even if there was a chance. Yet the band is still remembered for its iconic creations even in 2022. The band members still talk about their experiences together, and in 2020, a couple of months after Peart died, Geddy Lee spoke about an album that was difficult to create.

Which Rush Album Was Difficult To Create?

Geddy Lee stated in 2020 that creating their 1978 album ‘Hemispheres’ was a big challenge for them. They were isolated in a farmhouse, eliminated all hygiene forms, and turned into ‘grotesque’ creatures. While their 1980 album ‘Permanent Waves’ wasn’t like that.

‘Hemispheres’ was a neverending record, and everything was difficult to create. The band was happy with the result, but they put a lot of ‘themselves’ into the album. They wanted to create a complex album without repeating themselves, which took time, effort, tears, and sweat.

Here is what Lee said about the creation process of ‘Hemispheres’:

“During ‘Hemispheres,’ we were like these monks. At one point during that album, we stopped shaving; we sort of turned into these fucking grotesque prog creatures in this farmhouse making this record, working all night, sleeping all day. ‘Permanent Waves’ was quite the opposite.

You have to remember that ‘Hemispheres’ was the record that wouldn’t end. Everything about making that was exceedingly difficult. We were in Wales [at the Rockfield Studios] for far too long. I don’t remember more than three moments where we actually left the farm in over three months. We were very happy with the record, but it felt like we lost a chunk of ourselves in it.

The other realization I had was that I felt that we were becoming formulaic – these long, epic, side-long pieces were becoming inadvertently down pat; overture, a theme here, repeat theme here. In and of itself, it was complex, but in actuality, we were repeating ourselves, and I didn’t want to do that.

So we concertedly tried to shift direction. You know: can we work in a seven-minute time frame? Can we put that limit on what we’re doing and see if we can make that more tuneful, more interesting, and still complex? That was our goal.

You can listen to the first part of that album below.