Now that Rush has played their final R40 Live show in Los Angeles, many of us are unsure of what the future holds for the Holy Triumvirate. While a lot has been made of R40 Live being Rush's final tour -- and Los Angeles being their final show -- my feeling is it's not the end of the road for Rush. Instead, I see it as the beginning of a new chapter where they'll continue to write new music (and possibly perform live).
But don't take my word for it. Alex Lifeson said as much in a recent interview on the Eddie Trunk show:
"I think, in my gut, that this is probably the last major tour that we'll do. I'd like to think that we'll maybe do specialty gigs -- maybe a week in New York, or something like that... We want to discuss whether we want to make another record anytime soon. Whatever this tour is, it's not the end of the band. It's just reviewing where we're at, in terms of major tours... we're not waving goodbye."
So, while we ponder the band's new direction, here are some upcoming releases to look forward to -- in the coming months and beyond:
1. More Updates on NeilPeart.net: I fully expect Neil to continue to write and publish blogs and book reviews on his website. We should see an update from him in the next week or two, including his reflections on the final night of the tour.
2. Clockwork Lives (release date September 15, 2015). Written by Kevin J. Anderson and Neil Peart, this novel is a return to the Clockwork Angels universe. Having read one chapter, Clockwork Lives: The Bookseller's Tale, I expect another great read.
3. 2113: Stories Inspired by the Music of Rush: (No date announced) This anthology will include stories by David Farland, Mercedes Lackey, Greg van Eekhout, Dayton Ward, David Mack, Steven Savile, Brian Hodge, Michael Z. Williamson, Brad R. Torgersen, David Niall Wilson, Ron Collins, Mark Leslie, Larry Dixon, John McFetridge, and Tim Lasiuta. Bonus stories include a reprint of Richard Foster's story "A Nice Morning Drive" -- the original inspiration for "Red Barchetta" -- and Fritz Leiber's "Roll the Bones."
4. The R40 Live video release: While a date hasn't been announced, we do know that Rush filmed both Toronto shows on the R40 Live tour. Alex Lifeson said in the Eddie Trunk interview that it could be released by Christmas 2015. And being that this is the band's last "major tour," I expect to find a few surprises on it.
On the the "less certain" list:
5. More Neil Peart travel books: Neil's previous two books were based on his blogs. Now that he'll have a little more time, I expect that he'll write and publish a band-new book by 2016 (not that being busy ever stopped him!). I wouldn't be surprised to see him write something more introspective and historical, like he did in Roadshow and Traveling Music.
6. A new Hudson Music drum DVD or Drum Channel lessons: Even though Taking Center Stage was the ultimate DVD for fans of Neil Peart's drumming, I expect that Neil will continue to share his knowledge with the world -- especially with the way he's transformed his style in the past 10 years.
7. Soundtrack work by Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson. In one recent interview, Geddy and Alex talked about the prospect of doing soundtrack work for film. Given Geddy's interest in cinema, I think this will happen at some point. (See number 8 and 9 as well.)
8. Geddy Lee-produced movie based on the book "Baseballissimo." A few years back, Geddy Lee optioned Dave Bindini's book about baseball in the Italian farm leagues. Since then, the movie has been in development with director Jacob Tierney, producer David Miller, and writers Jay Baruchel, Dave Bindini, and Jesse Chabot.
9. Clockwork Angels movie. In a recent Rolling Stone interview, Neil Peart said: "I thought, what a great semi-retirement project (a Clockwork Angels film) for the three of us, 'cause Geddy loves cinema, Alex for the soundtrack and me for the story. But I was hoping that's a project that the three of us would undertake at some point."
10. A new Rush album: My gut tells me that we will hear new music from Rush, even if they don't support it with a major tour. Neil has always said that writing new music is the most exciting part of the job for him, so I don't expect him to stop doing it just because they scale back their live performances.