‘You know what? A real band plays live’: Rush’s Neil Peart on why he’ll never retire again

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As Rush prepares to release Clockwork Angels Tour, Neil Peart discusses the moment when — after a brief retirement from concert performances — he decided that he had to return to the road.

“A band lives on the stage,” Peart tells iDrum Magazine. “If I’m going to call myself a drummer, I’ve got to play. I’ve got to take that ultimate challenge of performing. That was the end of that argument for me — though not the end of the conflict. Because it still is a real conflict. I always say: It’s not like my life goes on when I’m touring. It doesn’t. It stops.”

Rush’s world tour behind the Clockwork Angels project began in September of 2012 and continued through August of this year. Shows in Phoenix and Dallas were filmed for use in the forthcoming concert souvenir film.

“In 1989, I announced: I’m not doing this anymore,” Peart says. “I had had enough of the dislocation of it. At that time, we had just made our album Presto, and it was a long period of soul searching — until finally I went: You know what? A real band plays live.”

Clockwork Angels Tour, due on November 19, 2013, will be available on CD, DVD and Blu-ray.

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