Guitarist Alex Lifeson says there's no "urgency" when it comes to a timetable for making new music with longtime Rush bandmate Geddy Lee.

"We’ve talked about it, but we’re not moving in any specific way right now," he tells UCR. "I have all of this stuff going on, and he has stuff going on in his life. If we don’t get together, that’s fine."

Lifeson says he and Lee are still "very close" and in frequent contact since Rush's final tour ended nearly six years ago. "We talk to each other, probably every other day," he notes. "He’s my absolute best friend and always was. That’s not going to change. I know if we do sit down and start [messing] around, it will be very casual over a cup of coffee, and [we’ll] see what happens. But there’s no urgency."

The guitarist admits that after more than 45 years of working with the singer and bassist, there's "no great overwhelming desire to do stuff at this time." Each has been busy with other projects and spending time with their families recently. Lifeson says he's been exploring some new musical paths. "I’m quite happy doing other stuff," he notes. "Whether it’s [with new group] Envy of None or doing all of these other little projects that come and go, it’s pretty good."

Lifeson revealed earlier this year that he and Lee had been discussing future collaborations before those plans were sidetracked by the pandemic. "But we're both eager to get back together and kind of get back into that thing that we've done since we were 14 years old that we love to do," he said during an interview with Make Weird Music. "And we work really, really well together. So we'll see what happens with that."

The guitarist has kept busy with the Envy of None recordings and working on a new song with Rage Against the Machine's Tom Morello and Metallica's Kirk Hammett. "There’s lots of other more unknown stuff," he explains. "A few things for friends that are looking for guitar stuff.

"That’s the way this Envy of None stuff started out with Andy [Curran]. He just asked me if I would kindly throw in some guitar on some music that he’d been working on. I wasn’t doing anything and I’d love to, so I said, ‘Yeah, sure!” As it grew, and then [singer] Maiah [Wynne] got involved, it took on a whole different character, and now it’s become a big project for us."

Lifeson built a studio in his new apartment in March, offering him some creative space. "It’s a nice-sounding small little room, but I’ve got all of my guitars in here and all of this old analog gear that I brought over," he says. "It’s a little sanctuary for me."

He admits that the recent whirlwind of publicity brought on by the announcement of a new Epiphone guitar and the new music released to coincide with the signature instrument's arrival has kept him busier than expected. "This has been sort of a resurgence these last few weeks of all things musical for me. It’s not bad - after being retired, I’ve sort of come out of retirement," he laughs. "I’ve been forced into being proactive with all of this, but it’s fun!"

 

Rush Albums Ranked