Sons of Apollo and ex-Dream Theater drummer Mike Portnoy has called out a fake news report that claimed he’s joining Rush for a 40th anniversary ‘Permanent Waves’ tour this year.
Keen Rush aficionado Portnoy took to social media to highlight a report from a Spanish website called Rock Progressivo which was posted on 28th December – aka Día De Los Santos Inocentes (Holy Innocents' Day) – which is celebrated as a kind of festive version of April Fool’s Day.
After fans shared the bogus story with Portnoy, the drummer saw the funny side and rubbished it. However, he insisted he would join Rush “in a heartbeat” if Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson asked.
Portnoy wrote: "Hahaha so everybody is sending this to me... Apparently some metal website posted a fake article saying I will be joining @rush in 2020 for a 40th Anniversary Tour for Permanent Waves! Even to the point of creating a fake Twitter post from me!
"While that's a pretty awesome (completely hypothetical) dream...and I would surely do it in a heartbeat...it's unfortunately not true!! (But it is a cool idea). In any case, just wanted to break the (real) news to anybody that had gotten their hopes up thinking that this may be real!"
He explained: "It's sad to see it end, but you've got to respect that because if they can't deliver, and if they are in physical pain and they can't deliver what fans wanna see, I respect that they would go out on top.
"I don't like when I see bands that are just a memory of what they used to be, and there's a few out there that I've seen recently that are still touring… I'm not gonna name them, but some of the members can barely play their parts, and then they have a lot of other members that weren't even originally in the band.
“I would rather see a band like Rush go out on top and have all the good memories of what they're capable of."
In an exclusive video interview for Planet Rock in October 2017, Portnoy described Rush’s ‘La Villa Strangiato’ as the benchmark of prog rock instrumentals.
“The first instrumental that truly blew my mind was ‘La Villa Strangiato’ by Rush,” Portnoy explains. “To me that was the benchmark of virtuoso playing and extreme writing.”