Rush’s Alex Lifeson On His Song Dedicated To Neil Peart


Rush’s Alex Lifeson recently spoke about the tribute song to his late bandmate Neil Peart, who passed away in January 2020. The guitarist explained what had inspired him to release the track with his new band, Envy of None.

After their formation in 1968, Rush experienced a few lineup changes, but the band settled on their power trio with Alex Lifeson, Geddy Lee, and Neil Peart. They disbanded in 2018, and later in 2020, they lost their drummer Neil Peart to brain cancer. Even though they had parted ways, the Rush icons had a close relationship.

Alex Lifeson formed a sideband, Envy of None, and released their debut album in March 2022. The self-titled album closed with the song ‘Western Sunset,’ inspired by Neil Peart’s final days on earth and written as a tribute to Lifeson’s ex-bandmate.

In a recent interview, Lifeson stated that he had gone to see Peart when he was sick and had an inspirational moment. The sun was setting, and Lifeson was on Peart’s balcony. Even though it’s not exactly the best of times, he thought it was a poetic way to end a chapter due to the sunset. Hence, he came up with the song ‘Western Sunset’ at that moment. Envy of None’s closing song became a tribute to the well-respected late drummer.

Here is what Lifeson explained about being inspired to create the song:

“I visited Neil when he was ill. I was on his balcony watching the sunset and found inspiration. There’s a finality about a sunset that kind of stayed with me throughout the whole process. It had meaning. It was the perfect mood to decompress after all these different textures, a nice way to close the book.”

You can listen to Envy of None’s ‘Western Sunset’ below.