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Subject: 03/05/91 - The National Midnight Star #185

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          The National Midnight Star, Number 185

                  Tuesday, 5 March 1991
Today's Topics:
                  Administrivia - READ!
                        Red lenses
                  Red (Lenses, Sector A)
           Re: 'Anagram' and 'Hotel California'
                       Red Sector A
                   A different twist !
         Red Sector A =  Nazi Concentration Camps
    Re: Xanadu; Dionysus; a Show of Hands (the video)
                      Re:  Rocinante
       Countdown and other hated satanic lyrics :)
              RED SECTOR A AND CYGNUS X-1...
                     4th band member?

Subject: Administrivia - READ!
Date: Tue, 05 Mar 91 13:17:29 EST
From: RUSH Fans Digest Manager 


Due to limitations on disk space, I will be doing some housecleaning of
the archive directories.  In particular, I'll be removing old issues of
the NMS.  Since we are up to issue #185, I figure there's little use for
the issues 1-100 anymore.  I'll check the FAQL, and leave those issues
that have something special in them, but otherwise they'll get backed up
somewhere else, and removed from Syrinx.  If you want any of these issues,
ACT NOW, or forever hold your peace.  I'll leave them out there for the
remainder of this week, but they'll be removed sometime next week.  They
should still be available from the mail server at Ingr, but that's up to
Keith to decide.  If for some reason there is no other way to retrieve
them, I will be able to get them back, but it won't be a simple process.
You'd better have a good reason for wanting them later if you ask me to
restore any of them...


Also, you people are slipping as much as I am.  Only one person pointed out
my mistake in a comment I made yesterday; the poster asked about Neil's 
guitar changing colours in the ASOH video.  As we all (should) know, it's
*Alex's* guitar ...

The National Midnight Star
(RUSH fans mailing list)


Date:  Mon, 4 Mar 91 15:06:40 -0500
Subject: Red lenses

I've been reading some discussion about Red Lenses being about McCarthyism and
Soviet stuff, etc.  (I'd quote some, but I don't use the neat-o mailer that
let's me highlight the stuff.)

Anyway, I always thought Red Lenses was a passionate/romantic encounter.  I
always thought that the stuff about The National Midnight Star, and the Soviets
was nothing more than smalltalk, until they get to the part with the heavy,
jungle-like, animalistic beat compliments of Mr. Peart, along with some bass
poppin' and the words...

		and the mercury is rising  <=====(It's getting hot...)
		barometer starts to fall   <=====(No pressure, no inhibitions..)
		you know it gets to us all... <==(Any guesses.....)

Haven't you guys and girls out there been in any situations like this?  I
thought so!  The other reason I believe this is because of the cartoon boy and
girl who chase each other through this part.  (I saw it on the Power Windows
tour, just after the drum solo.)
|Daniel L. McDonald    | Internet:             |
|University of Michigan| Bitnet:|
|Computer Science, '91 | USnail:   1705 Hill St.  Ann Arbor, MI 48104|
|"rising falling at force ten                    | THIS MAY, I'M OUT |
| we twist the world and ride the wind..." - Rush| OF HERE, FOLKS!   |


Date: Mon, 4 Mar 91 12:21:59 PST
From: (Ron M. Kleiner)
Subject: Red (Lenses, Sector A)

Red Sector A is not about an "alien menace" or "Red Dawn".  It's about
concentration camps, death camps, and internment (?) camps, and in particular
those in Europe in WWII.  Red Lenses is about the paranoia of regarding
Communism/Soviet Union as the root of all evil, probably inspired by Reagan's
"Evil Empire" babbling back then.  The title is derived from the phrase "looking
through rose-coloured lenses" which means seeing the world as being a lot
"rosier" than it actually is.

Ron Kleiner
"Signals get crossed"


Date: Mon, 4 Mar 91 15:37:10 EST
From: Robyn Landers 
Subject: Re: 'Anagram' and 'Hotel California'

In TNMS 183 Jeff Shaffer points out lyrical similarity between
Eagles' "Hotel" and Rush's "Anagram".  I don't know if that line from
"Hotel" directly inspired Neil for the line in "Anagram", but
I do remember reading an interview with Neil in which he said that
the line "Too many hands on my time, too many feelings" from
"The Analog Kid" was directly inspired by the Styx song "Too Much
Time on my Hands".

More virtually useless trivia to tuck away...

	"I'm just doing my rock'n'roll duty" -- Dubois
ObIRQ  (obligatory inflammatory Rush quote. Not to be taken seriously)
	"And the Meek shall inherit the Earth"  --Peart, or Christ?


Date: Mon, 4 Mar 91 12:46:53 -0800
From: Douglas V. Simpkinson 
Subject: Red Sector A

Hmmm - my opinion has always been that it refers to Nazi concentration camps
as evidenced by:

"I hear the sound of gunfire at the prison gate
Are the liberators here, do I hope or do I fear?"

Just my 2 cents worth taking up $10 of bandwidth....



Date: 4 Mar 91 13:29:01 MST (Mon)
From: (Dan Quella)

Hi, fellow Rush fans! I've been reading TNMS since last March, before it
was the Star, so I figured it's about time I post!

Re: 2112 ending - The Priests already had control, so they couldn't assume
it, now could they? I think the question is whether the Elder Race really
assumes control or just in the dream of the dying narrator.

Re; 2112/Pass - There is indeed an interesting dichotomy between these two
songs. However, there is a major difference in circumstances. In 2112, the
"hero," upon discovering and learning to play the guitar, discovers what
an oppressed society he lives in. In the end he decides that an oppressed
life is not worth living. Note that the lyrics are in the first person.
Contrast this with The Pass, which is a more general condemnation of teen
suicide, written in the second person. "Christ, what have you done?" is, to
me, simply a question with a strong interjection. It's hard to think of a
stronger interjection that will make it onto the radio!

I remember hearing long ago that some shrink made a list linking favorite
rock groups to different personality traits. Rush supposedly indicated a
predisposition to committing suicide! I never found out whether that was
based solely on 2112's ending. Maybe Neil was trying to atone for that
bad rep with The Pass...

Speaking of oppression, writes about
A Passage To Bangkok:

>I don't agree with the sentiment behind it and it really bugs me that
>a band as talented and hardworking as Rush is would stoop to writing a
>song about drugs like so many other less talented groups do.

Well, remember that this song was from 1976, back when it wasn't the
end of the world if someone wanted to get high, and it seemed
likely that marijuana would soon be legalized. I don't think they were
"stooping" to anything! Besides, it's a killer jam! Don't think for a minute
that Rush's creativity hasn't been affected positively by their past
use of ganja. I would hope that the majority of Rush fans, being an
intelligent lot, would agree with me that the drug war is really a war
on rights! Before this elevates into a flame war, let me suggest that
any of you prone to disagree with me read talk.politics.drugs on Usenet
for a couple weeks before bothering me or TNMS with any knee-jerk emotional
pro-drug-war crapola. Rush is better off for its past use of mind-expanding
drugs (well, one, at least) and I wouldn't be surprised if they still
indulge on occasion.

Re: Babys opening for Rush
Heh - I knew better than to enter the auditorium until they were off...
Wish I could convince the local Classic Rock station to quit playing
their "hits" (and play Rush instead!)...

ObRQ: Those who know what's best for us must rise and save us from ourselves



Date: Mon, 4 Mar 91 15:00:08 CST
From: (Paul E. Knight)
Subject: A different twist !

This is my first posting, so I'll say "Hey" to all you folks with this
common thread.  I'll also mention the obligatory "be patient as this is
my first posting..."

As an employee of a Fortune 500 (100 ?) company which has recently
begun mandatory drug testing for all employees on three year intervals
(with no false positives of course; any positive and you're in rehab),
I'd like to suggest a different interpretation to one ORQ:


Any Takers ??



Date: Mon, 4 Mar 91 16:24:48 CST
From: (Ervan Darnell)
Subject: Red Sector A =  Nazi Concentration Camps

	I have always thought "Red Sector A" referred to Jews in Nazi
Concentration Camps.   I have not seen the movie "Red Dawn", to which
some have referred, but the poster indicated the heroes in this movie
were looking in to the prison camp.  The point of view in RSA is
definitely from inside the camp looking out.  "Are the liberators here
 -- do I hope or do I fear?", 'here' (in the camp), not 'there', indicates
inside looking out.
	My analysis of it is:

>All that we can do is just survive
	not enough strength to escape, no hope for release
>All that we can do to help ourselves is stay alive...
	because death is likely and escape impossible

>Ragged lines of ragged grey
	They all wore the same prison clothing
>Skeletons, they shuffle away
	The were starved, often to death
>Shouting guards and smoking guns
>Will cut down the unlucky ones
	that dared do anything out of line and others that did nothing

>I clutch the wire fence until my fingers bleed
	a vain hope of escape
>A wound that will not heal --
	literally, too weak for physical wounds to heal well
		(a) will never forgive the Nazis (?)
		(b) a decimation of the Jews collectively (?)
> a heart that cannot feel --
	no longer any sympathy for the victims because there
		have already been so many
	Heart & wound go together, heal & feel go together, and
		wound refers to the prisoner, so "a heart that cannot
		feel" refers to the prisoner's own feelings and not the

>Hoping that the horror will recede
>Hoping that tomorrow, we'll all be freed

>Sickness to insanity
	the increasing dementia of a prisoner under ghastly conditions
>Prayer to profanity
	prayers for release did not work, neither did curses
>Days and weeks and months go by
>Don't feel the hunger -- too weak to cry

>I hear the sound of gunfire at the prison gate
>Are the liberators here -- do I hope or do I fear?
	have the Allies arrived or is it an attempted escape being foiled?
>For my father and my brother, it's too late
	already gassed
>But I must help my mother stand up straight...
	to maintain a last semblance of dignity if it is the Allies (?)

>Are we the last ones left alive?
	Have the Nazis won the war and killed all of the other Jews?
>Are we the only human beings to survive?...
	Human, as in humane, the Nazis having lost their humanity
	The Jews in the camps had no knowledge of how the war was going,
	for all they knew, the Nazis had won.

Problems with this interpretation:
1) Some lines, those marked with (?), don't quite fit

2) The title

[ Maybe "red lenses" is a reference to "rose coloured glasses"?  As in
  that's how people like to view the world - it makes life easier?  Just
  a guess...                                                    :rush-mgr ]


Date: Mon, 4 Mar 91 17:55:30 EST
From: (vaalpens)
Subject: Re: Xanadu; Dionysus; a Show of Hands (the video)

just 3 things.

> Says: Ed Federmeyer 
> 4a)  Why was the guy trapped in "Xanadu"?  Why couldn't he just leave
>          the pleasure dome and resume a mortal life?  Was it like
>          "Shangri-La" in Lost Horizon, by James Hilton, where once you
>          leave, you turn real old and crumble into dust real fast?

He outlived humanity as the last "immortal man".  Why he couldn't leave is
a mystery, but I don't think it was for the reason you describe  -- that he was
afraid of death.  In fact if it was that easy to end his torments, he would
have gladly done so.  He was after all, "Waiting for the world to end",
..., "Praying for the light" (the light people reportedly sometimes encounter
in death?!)

A rather simplified explanation of my view of the song is this:
   The Song Writer took a poem about a man (Kubla Khan in fact)
who had a dream of where to find eternal life, but woke up before he
discovered where the source lay,  (poem by Samuel Coolridge {sp?} please correct
me if you know differently, and send reference to the original poem)
and expanded on it.   Xanadu is IMHO about a man who, taking clues from
an "ancient book" finds the source of immortality.  But he also finds that
immortality is not as great as he believed (evident in his exclamation,
"to taste my bitter triumph").  And so, the Song Writer asks us all what we
are looking for in immortality.  At least that's what I see in my mind's eye.
   On Cygnus X-1 Book II:  Part III.
   Dionysus: the Bringer of Love

  I just wanted to point out that I saw the movie 'The DOORS' recently, and
Dionysus poped us in Jim Morrison's past as well as in the lyrics of Cygnus X-1.
According to the Encyclopaedia Brittanica's Micropaedia; "Dionysus, also called
BACCHUS, in Greek religion, a nature god of fruitfulness and vegitation,
especially known as a god of wine and ecstacy."
   At least now we know why "the cities were abandoned" in part II of the
2nd Book of Cygnus X-1.

A friend of mine lent me 'A Show of Hands' video, and I discovered something
which was distressing.   About 1 hour 18 minutes into the video, two
pulsating Radiation Warning signs appeared on both sides of Alex's head
accompanied by the following:
"               Producers Apology
		--------- -------
The vocal portion of this segment has been deleted due to the sensitive and
inexplicable nature of the subject matter and for the protection of our
viewing audience.  Thank you!"

Accompanied by the disapearance of Alex Lifeson's voice - you can see him
singing, but only hear the music.  If they didn't like what he sang, why
didn't they just cut it out of the tape.  It seems like blatent censorship,
and I don't like it. :-(

[ This is in all versions of the video.  As Foghorn Leghorn says "That's a
  joke, son!"  Check the FAQL you should have just received; it's in there.
                                                                 :rush-mgr ]

Seriously - I would like to know if ANYONE who reads this TNMS issue has
an uncensored video (maybe someone in Canada) because that is the one I would
like to purchase.   I like the music enought that if all else fails, I will
get this video version, but I won't be completely happy.

Also greatly missing from the video - but on the cd - is Mystic_Rythms.

Well that's my 3 items for the day,
be seeing you,


BTW:  for the person who posted that nonsense last issue about the Upcoming
album & concert:  Thanks alot for getting my hopes up ;-)


Date: Mon, 4 Mar 91 20:21 CST
From: (6079 Smith J)
Subject: Re:  Rocinante

Ed Federmeyer  writes:

>    4d)  Is the 'Rocinante' based in any literature, or was it like
>         "By-tor and the Snow Dog", just something they made up?

I believe that Rocinante was Don Quixote's girlfriend in Cervantes' book.

[ Only if she were reeeeely ugly. :-)  Rocinante was his horse.  It's also
  from a John Steinbeck novel.  Check the FAQL for specifics.    :rush-mgr ]

The association here is pretty evident:  Everybody thinks the guy on the
Rocinante (chasing Rocinante) is on a crazy trip....


Date:         Mon, 04 Mar 91 13:37:24 EST
Subject:      Countdown and other hated satanic lyrics :)

  While the "excitement so thick..." line in "Countdown" is very trite and
 cliche, I can forgive them for it. Look at some of the other great lines
 in the song. Comparing the shuttle to a "sleeping white dragon" for example.
 That's beautiful, IMHO as an english major. What a metaphor! Also the line
 about "super-science mingling with the bright stuff of dreams" is a fitting
 tribute to the feelings I had about the shuttle when we watched in 6th
 grade (has it been THAT long? God I feel old!) as it lifted off.
  There's all kinds of one-liners I don't particularly like, but in every case
 the rest of song more than compensates for it. I believe "Second Nature" has a
 a line "Folks have got to make choices, and choices got to have voices". Now
 I don't particularly like that line (it sounds like Neil was trying to force
 the rhyme, IMO) but the follow up line "Folks are basically decent/ Conventio
 nal wisdom would say/ Well, we read about the exeptions/ In the paper everyda
 y." is great!
   I think someone should write "The Cliche song" and fill it with every
 boring cliche seen far too much in music today. I'm not naming any bands,
 I'm sure you all know what I mean.



Date: Mon, 4 Mar 1991 22:35 EST
From: "John C. Walp Jr." 





[ Ahem, mixed case is much easier to read ...                   :rush-mgr ]


Date:         Tue, 05 Mar 91 10:50:41 EST
From: Steve Kilpatrick 
Subject:      4th band member?

Hi folks! This is my first posting to TNMS so I'll briefly introduce myself.
I'm from the Providence, RI area and I've been a Rush fan for about 12 years,
when I bought 2112. I had the privelege of seeing them live for the first time
in May 1990 on the Presto tour here in Providence (they received a pretty
decent review in the local paper from a guy who normally doesn't like anyone!).
It was great when they ended the show almost as they do in the ASoH video,
except that Neil played the drum part to 'Wipeout' as Alex "surfed" in front of
 the drum kit.

Anyway, my question: Who is the guy playing the additional synthesizer/computer
parts during their live shows? On the ASoH video, I noticed a keyboard behind
some black curtains next to the ramp behind the drum kit (toward the end of "In
the Mood" as Alex and Geddy run across the ramp). When I saw them in Providence
I was sitting on that side of the arena and sure enough, there was a concealed
"4th musician" playing some of the additional parts. Is he the one getting
synthesizer engineer credit or something to that effect on the video? Has he
(or someone else in the same role) been on the tours since AFTK? I wouldn't
blame them - Geddy can only play so many instruments at a time.

[ Was he actually playing keyboards, or was he flipping floppies for the 
  band?                                                        :rush-mgr ]


To submit material to The National Midnight Star, send mail to:

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The contents of The National Midnight Star are solely the opinions and 
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Copyright The Rush Fans Mailing List, 1991.

Editor, The National Midnight Star
(Rush Fans Mailing List)

End of The National Midnight Star Number 185

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