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Two years after Rush began previewing new songs in concert, the band has set a release date for its 20th studio album, Clockwork Angels.
The Canadian trio’s first set for Anthem/Roadrunner Records will street June 12, more than five years after its previous album. The band played a pair of songs from the new record – “Caravan” and “BU2B” – nightly on its two-leg Time Machine Tour that launched in June 2010. Both songs appear on the band’s 2011 live album.
Clockwork Angels is produced by Rush’s Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart with Nick Raskulinecz, who won a best rock album Grammy for Foo Fighters’ One by One in 2003. He also worked on Rush’s 2007 album, Snakes & Arrows. A new single, “Headlong Flight,” hits radio April 19.
Press notes describe Clockwork Angels as chronicling “a young man’s quest across a lavish and colorful world of steampunk and alchemy as he attempts to follow his dreams. The story features lost cities, pirates, anarchists, an exotic carnival and a rigid Watchmaker who imposes precision on every aspect of daily life.”
Sci-fi author Kevin J. Anderson, who has penned spinoff novels from such properties as Star Wars, Dune and The X-Files, is writing a novelization of the story with drummer-lyricist Peart.
Details of the new album were released the same day Rush receives the Ronnie James Dio Lifetime Achievement Award at the fourth annual Golden Gods Awards, which honor hard rock and heavy metal. Jack Black and Kyle Gass of Tenacious D are set to present the award.
Rush has been busy since its previous record, with four concert tours; a Grammy nomination; its first TV appearance in more than three decades, playing “Tom Sawyer” on The Colbert Report; a cameo in the Paul Rudd–Jason Segel comedy I Love You, Man;and the feature documentary Beyond the Lighted Stage, which won the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival Audience Award.
The prog-metal group, whose lineup has remained intact since 1974, has amassed two dozen gold or platinum albums in the U.S. Eleven of those made the Top 10 of the Billboard 200 – though Rush never has topped the chart (Counterparts reached No. 2 in 1993). The group remains a favorite of classic rock radio with such enduring hits as “The Spirit of Radio,” “Freewill,” “Closer to the Heart,” “Red Barchetta,” “Subdivisions,” “Working Man” and “Time Stand Still.”
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