World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Hold Your Fire

Hold Your Fire
Studio album by Rush
Released September 8, 1987
June 3, 1997 (Remastered CD)
Recorded September 1986 – April 1987
The Manor Studio, Oxfordshire;
Ridge Farm Studio, Surrey;
AIR Studios, Montserrat;
McClear Place, Toronto, Canada
Genre New wave[1]
Length 50:21
Label Anthem (Canada)
Atlantic (Japan)
Epic/Sony (Japan)
Mercury (USA)
Vertigo (Europe)
Producer Rush, Peter Collins
Rush chronology
Power Windows
Hold Your Fire
A Show of Hands
Singles from Hold Your Fire
  1. "Force Ten (promo.)[2]"
    Released: 1987
  2. "Time Stand Still"
    Released: October 19, 1987
  3. "Lock and Key (promo.)"
    Released: 1987
  4. "Prime Mover"
    Released: April 11, 1988
  5. "Mission (promo.)"
    Released: 1989

Hold Your Fire is the twelfth studio album by Canadian rock band Rush, released on September 8, 1987. It was recorded at The Manor Studio in Oxfordshire, Ridge Farm Studio in Surrey, Air Studios in Montserrat and McClear Place in Toronto.[3] Hold Your Fire was the last Rush studio album released outside Canada by PolyGram/Mercury.

Rush continued to explore new songwriting territory in Hold Your Fire. 'Til Tuesday bassist and vocalist Aimee Mann contributed vocals to "Open Secrets" and "Time Stand Still", appearing in the Zbigniew Rybczyński-directed video for the latter.[4]

The album was not as commercially successful as most of the band's releases of the 1980s, only peaking at #13 on the Billboard charts, the lowest debut for a Rush album since Hemispheres.[5] However, it did eventually go gold.


  • Writing 1
  • Production 2
  • Reception 3
  • Track listing 4
  • Personnel 5
    • Band Members 5.1
    • Additional musicians 5.2
    • Production 5.3
  • Charts 6
  • Singles 7
  • Sales certifications 8
  • Remaster details 9
  • References 10
  • Further reading 11


After Rush's 1986 Power Windows tour ended, the band members took the summer off to spend more time with their families. A few months passed, and the group decided to start getting back into writing material.[6] Neil Peart began writing lyrics in a cottage behind a still lake in early September. Meanwhile, Geddy Lee started to compose on his keyboard setup controlled on a Macintosh computer using software called Digital Performer,[7][8] which would be useful for both the writing and production stages, and Alex Lifeson was doing experimental tapes at home.[8] Peart also used the Mac to write some of the lyrics for the album.[7] Peart wanted to do something in the same vein as Power Windows, this time working around the theme of time. However, after writing some lyrics for the first song he wrote for the album, "Time Stand Still", he started to create more material that would turn the theme into "Instinct",[8] which was the reason for titling the album Hold Your Fire.[9] In an afternoon later that month, Peart and Lee together showed what they had been working on, and they also discussed a few lyrical ideas they weren't able to write on paper, which would be included in "Mission", "Open Secrets" and "Turn the Page".[8]

The group started writing sessions in Elora Sound Studio, Ontario on September 27, 1986.[6] Lifeson showed his experimental tapes, while Lee brought his Soundcheck Jams he had done that year. According to Peart, Lifeson's tapes "would yield some good parts for several songs," and Lee's Soundcheck jams were "sorted and labeled as potential verses, bridges, choruses or instrumental bits, and thus they served as a reference library of spontaneous ideas that could be drawn upon at will." Lifeson used a drum machine to write the drum parts, which Lee tracked on a Lerxst Sound recorder. By early November, eight songs had been written, which the group felt wasn't enough for the album to have a good amount of musical variety. Peart said, "We decided we'd go a bit further this time. We were aware of the fact that only a small percentage of people actually buy records any more, the vast majority choosing cassettes or CDs. Thus, we figured, why should we worry about the time limitations of the old vinyl disc? We thought we'd like to have ten songs, and go for fifty minutes or so of music. So we did."[8] Producer Peter Collins came in to Elora Sound in early December to give the band suggestions of improving the songs. Among many small changes, a couple of major suggestions were new verses to "Mission" and chorus revisions to "Open Secrets".[8] With nine songs already written, Collins also suggested the band make a tenth track for the album, and the song "Force Ten" would be written on the last day of pre-production, December 14.[6]


Recording of Hold Your Fire began on January 5, 1987, at The Manor Studio in England. This was where the drums, bass, basic keyboards, lead guitars and lead vocals were recorded. The keyboards, guitars and vocals were recorded digitally, while the drums and bass, as preferred by Neil Peart,[10] were taped using an analogue tape recorder, later converted into a digital tape.[6] On February 7, the band went to Ridge Farm Studio for Andy Richards to perform additional dynamic keyboards and exciting "events", as well as put all recorded instrument tracks into a digital machine.[9][11] Lifeson was also able to write guitar overdubs while recording at Ridge Farm.[8] The band headed off to AIR Montserrat on March 1 to start producing the guitar overdubs,[8][9] and later to McClear Place Studios in Toronto three weeks later to finish the overdubs, record orchestral arrangements by Steve Margoshes for "High Water", "Mission" and "Second Nature", and track additional voice parts, such as Aimee Mann's vocals for "Time Stand Still" and "Prime Mover", and gospel choir.[8][9][12] Recording was finished by April 24,[12] and mixing would take place starting May 7 at William Tell Studio in Paris. Lee mastered the album with Bob Ludwig at Masterdisk in New York City by mid-July.[13]

Lee played a

  • Banasiewicz, Bill (1988). Rush Visions: The Official Biography. Omnibus Press.  

Further reading

  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c Hold Your Fire (Remastered Edition) (CD booklet).  
  4. ^ a b Collins, Jon (2005). "And then there were three". Rush: Chemistry : The Definitive Biography. London, UK: Helter Skelter Publishing. pp. 150–152.  
  5. ^ a b "Hold Your Fire Billboard Albums".  
  6. ^ a b c d e Banasiewicz, Bill (1988). p. 89.
  7. ^ a b "Geddy Lee - Off The Record". Power Windows. 1987. Retrieved October 12, 2013. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Peart, Neil. """Fireworks: The Making Of "Hold Your Fire. Power Windows. Retrieved October 12, 2013. 
  9. ^ a b c d Banasiewicz, Bill (1988). p. 90.
  10. ^ Claypool, Bob (January 27, 1988). "Interview with Neil Peart".  
  11. ^ a b c d Hold Your Fire" linernotes and lyrics""". Power Windows. Retrieved October 12, 2013. 
  12. ^ a b Banasiewicz, Bill (1988). p. 92.
  13. ^ a b Banasiewicz, Bill (1988). p. 93.
  14. ^ Rivadavia, Eduardo. "Hold Your Fire - Rush".  
  15. ^ Chirazi, Stefan (October 3, 1987). "Firestarter!".  
  16. ^ Espiau, Olivier (23 April 2010). "Rush - Hold Your Fire".  
  17. ^ "Rush: Album Guide".  
  18. ^ Elliot, Paul (October 31, 1987). Hold Your Fire' Album Review"'".  
  19. ^ a b "RIAA Database Search for Rush".  
  20. ^ "Dear Superstar: Geddy Lee", Blender, March 17, 2009. (accessed 29 January 2012)
  21. ^ "Doublenecks, tribute bands, mid-gig chundering and his least-favourite Rush song - Alex Lifeson wraps his head around your questions".  
  22. ^ "Top Albums/CDs - Volume 47, No. 2, October 17, 1987".  
  23. ^ "Rush – Hold Your Fire" (in Dutch). Hung Medien. Retrieved 2011-12-02.
  24. ^ "Longplay-Chartverfolgung at Musicline" (in German). Phononet GmbH. Retrieved 2011-12-01.
  25. ^ "Rush – Hold Your Fire". Hung Medien. Retrieved 2011-12-02.
  26. ^ ホールド・ユア・ファイアー (In Japanese). Accessed from July 8, 2013.
  27. ^ "Rush | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart Retrieved 2011-12-01.
  28. ^ "Rush – Chart history" Billboard 200 for Rush.
  29. ^ a b c "Hold Your Fire Billboard Singles".  
  30. ^ "Prime Mover Chart Stats". Chart Archived from the original on 2012-07-21. Retrieved 2012-03-11. 
  31. ^ "Gold Platinum Database - Title: Hold Your Fire".  
  32. ^ "BPI Certified Award Search for Rush".  
  33. ^


Hold Your Fire was remastered again in 2011 by Andy VanDette for the "Sector" box sets, which re-released all of Rush's Mercury-era albums. It is included in the Sector 3 set.[33] For the 2011 remaster, master tapes containing different mixes of Hold Your Fire were inadvertently used, with the result that the mix is noticeably different from previous releases in several places; particularly during "Mission", where string parts that were not present on the original release can be heard.

  • The tray has a picture of three fingerprints, light blue, pink, and lime green (left to right) with "The Rush Remasters" printed in all capital letters just to the left, mirroring the cover art of Retrospective II. All remasters from Moving Pictures through A Show of Hands are like this.
  • Includes all the artwork that came with the original album.

A remaster was issued in 1997.[3]

Remaster details

Country Organization Sales
U.S. RIAA Gold (500,000)[19]
Canada CRIA Platinum (100,000)[31]
UK BPI Silver (60,000)[32]

Sales certifications

"Time Stand Still"
  • Released: October 19, 1987
  • Written by: Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart
  • Produced by: Peter Collins and Rush
  • Chart positions: No. 3 US Mainstream Rock;[29] #41 UK
"Force Ten"
  • Released:
  • Written by: Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, Neil Peart and Pye Dubois
  • Produced by: Peter Collins and Rush
  • Chart positions: #3 US Mainstream Rock[29]
"Lock and Key"
  • Released:
  • Written by: Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart
  • Produced by: Peter Collins and Rush
  • Chart positions: #16 US Mainstream Rock[29]
"Prime Mover"
  • Released: April 11, 1988
  • Written by: Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neil Peart
  • Produced by: Peter Collins and Rush
  • Chart positions: #43 UK[30]


Chart (1987) Peak
Canadian Albums (RPM100)[22] 9
Dutch Albums (MegaCharts)[23] 40
German Albums (Offizielle Top 100)[24] 34
Swedish Albums (Sverigetopplistan)[25] 21
Japanese Albums (Oricon)[26] 67
UK Albums (OCC)[27] 10
US Billboard 200[28] 13



Additional musicians

Band Members



No. Title Length
1. "Force Ten"   4:31
2. "Time Stand Still"   5:09
3. "Open Secrets"   5:38
4. "Second Nature"   4:36
5. "Prime Mover"   5:19
6. "Lock and Key"   5:09
7. "Mission"   5:16
8. "Turn the Page"   4:55
9. "Tai Shan"   4:17
10. "High Water"   5:33

All lyrics written by Neil Peart except "Force Ten" by Peart and Pye Dubois, all music composed by Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson[3].

Track listing

Despite the poor commercial performance of the album, songs from it are frequently performed live by the band, with "Force Ten," "Time Stand Still," and "Mission" played most often. To date, only two tours since the album's release (the 2002 Vapor Trails Tour and the 2015 R40 Live Tour) did not include at least one song from the album in the set list.

The song "Tai Shan" was an experiment in composition. It was influenced by classical Chinese music, and its title was a reference to Mount Tai in China's Shandong province, which Peart first became aware of during a bicycle trip in China.[4] A backward sample of Aimee Mann's vocals from another track is used at the end of the song. In a 2009 interview with Blender, Lee expressed regret in including "Tai Shan" on the album, calling it an "error" and saying "we should have known better."[20] Lifeson called the song "a little corny" in a 2012 interview with Total Guitar.[21]

Hold Your Fire was initially deemed a commercial disappointment in comparison to other Rush albums. It stalled at #13 in the Billboard 200 album chart, the first time a Rush studio album failed to reach the Top 10 since 1978's Hemispheres.[5] Although Hold Your Fire was certified gold in the US shortly after its release, it failed to reach platinum status according to the RIAA, becoming the first Rush studio album to not do so since 1975's Caress of Steel.[19]

Opinions to Hold Your Fire have been mixed to positive. While the album has been criticized for its 1980s pop music sound and overused synths, some, including the band members, felt it was better than their previous studio projects, with praises of the album's production, composition, and lyrics.

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic [14]
Kerrang! [15]
Metal Storm (7.7/10)[16]
The Rolling Stone Album Guide [17]
Sounds [18]


[8][6].marimbas, and wind chimes, cowbells, gong bass drum, a Tama, a crotales, timbale, a temple blocks pad through one of the Akai samplers, which made sounds of Simmons cymbals, and a Avedis Zildjian drums, Tama, Premier drums and Pearl Drums drum set, a plated-hardware of Ludwig-Musser Neil Peart played on a combination of [8]

This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.