Interview: Alex Lifeson Dissects 11 Key Rush Songs, from "Anthem" to "Test For Echo"
The guitarist dissects 11 key Rush songs in terms of guitars, amps, effects and more.
“THE BIG MONEY”
Power Windows (1985)
“That was a tough one that took a long time to complete. It was recorded in Montserrat. The guitar was tuned up a whole step with the E string at Fs, and I played a lot of open chords. I did a lot of drop-ins where I hit a chord and let it ring, then dropped in the next chord and let it ring and so on. When we started recording the song, it sounded too ordinary, so we tried dropping in those chords during the verses as an experiment.
“I remember doing the solo in this studio in England, SARM East, which is in the East End of London. We set aside a week for solos, last-minute vocals and mixing. The control room was tiny; there was barely enough room for me to turn my body around when I was playing, but I got a really great sound with the repeats and lots of reverb. I loved to be soaked in that kind of effect at the time.
“I used a white modified Fender Strat that I called the ‘Hentor Sportscaster.’ The name came from Peter Henderson, who co-produced Grace Under Pressure [Rush’s 1984 album]. The amp setup was a couple of Dean Markley 2x12 combos, two Marshall 2x12 combos, two Marshall 100-watt JCM800 heads and two 4x12 cabinets. I also ran a direct signal. By that time I had a pretty comprehensive rack with two TC Electronic 2290s and a 1210 that I used for phasing, and I had a Roland DEP-5.”
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