Territories
by Rush

Album: Power Windows (1985)

Songfacts®:

  • Rush drummer-lyricist Neil Peart looked to the East for this one. He explained the meaning to Canadian Composer: "I think what China had to offer, in terms of its impact on the world, I had already taken advantage of in a song like 'Territories' for instance. The song was directly influence by the Chinese attitude toward themselves. The title comes from an area around Hong Kong called The New Territories. I was struck by the sound of that word, and the territorial instinct. And what with the Northwest Territories being part of Canada, it was just the right sort of word to describe what I was after. It had the right poetic sound and visual contact. That's important to me in a title. So that was the essence of it. As for the opening line about the Middle Kingdom - that's still what China calls itself today. The reason for the Middle Kingdom is because it's a middle between Heaven and Earth. In other words, it's slightly below Heaven - but still above everybody on Earth."
  • Bass player Geddy Lee told Bass Player magazine about his musical approach on this song: "Sometimes it's hard to tell if you're playing a bass guitar or a keyboard. On the verse of 'Territories' there's a real droning type of bass part. Then, on the B part, you get into a more staccato kind of sound. Whenever you hear that low bottom end that drones underneath, it's usually my Moog pedals. I've been using those for years and they're really great when I have to go to keyboards and sustain the bottom end. Because they have an unobtrusive bass that doesn't phase."
  • In a 1986 interview with Guitar Player magazine, Alex Lifeson explained the sounds in the opening: "That's just the Ibanez HD-1000 Harmonics/Delay set at an octave above with a little bit of modulation. The harmonics level is set at about 70, the direct is set at the full 100, and I was on the middle pickup on the black Strat. I used left-hand finger-pulls. After that, it switches to a much crisper tone, and to do that in concert, I just switch to the back pickup." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Mike - Darkside of the Moon, for all above
  • According to Neil Peart, "Territories" is both a good-looking and good-sounding word. "'Territories' as a title appeals to me as much to look at as it does to listen to," he told Bruce Pollock. "I find that the more layers a word or series of words offers to me, the more satisfied I am."

Comments: 1

  • Wil from Milwaukee, Wi"A whole wide world, an endless universe...Yet we keep looking through the eyeglass in reverse. Don't feed the people but we feed the machines, can't really feel what international means..." WOW--that about sums it all up, doesn't it?!? Welcome to the 21st century kids!!
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