Rush Begins Work On First Album In 5 Years

Veteran rock power trio Rush has begun writing the material intended for the group's first Atlantic studio album since 1996's "Test For Echo," which peaked at No. 5 on The Billboard 200. No

Veteran rock power trio Rush has begun writing the material intended for the group's first Atlantic studio album since 1996's "Test For Echo," which peaked at No. 5 on The Billboard 200. No release date or title has yet been announced. "It's very early days in the process," bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee said in a statement, "but it's nice to be back in touch with each other.

"It's been almost five years since we've done any writing together, and there's a bit of feeling each other out that needs to happen," he continued. "We've all been in such different head spaces, it's going to take some time for us to communicate musically. I think you have to start to communicate as people first, and the music comes as an extension of those good feelings."

In the downtime since "Test For Echo," tragedy befell Rush when drummer Neil Peart's 19-year-old daughter died in 1997. Her passing was followed by the death of his wife in 1998.

Although he spent most of the time off from Rush out of the limelight, Lee returned last fall to release his first-ever solo album, "My Favorite Headache." "I never felt I was stifled or frustrated in the context of my band. The three of us have always had a very good creative arrangement," Lee told Billboard last October. "But, on this long hiatus, I found myself itching to write."

The Atlantic set debuted at No. 52 on The Billboard 200 in December, while the title track peaked at No. 20 on Billboard's Mainstream Rock Tracks chart.