Exposé Online banner

Rush — Snakes and Arrows
(Atlantic 177084, 2007, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2008-01-01

Snakes and Arrows Cover art

When a short audio sample of "Far Cry" was posted on Rush's web site it led to excited and hopeful premonitions of a return to the kind of prog rock the Canadian trio had pioneered on late 70s albums like Hemispheres. However, a full spin of the song (and album) instead reveals more of the type of melodic rock seen on albums Vapor Trails (2002) and Test for Echo (1996). For those lamenting the grip this kind of music has had on Rush lately you won't find much solace here. Songs like "Armor and Sword," "Workin' Them Angels," or "We Hold On," while flirting with odd meter and power trio dynamics, are a far cry (pardon the pun) from the sort of creativity seen on landmark albums like Permanent Waves or Moving Pictures. New producer Nick Raskulinecz has done a good job improving over the tonally flat palette of Vapor Trails, and the band revisits trademark stylings from earlier times (best exemplified by Alex Lifeson's increased use of acoustic guitars) with positive results showing in the better songs like the rocking "Spindrift" or the instrumentals "The Main Monkey Business" and "Malignant Narcissism." Lyrically, Neil Peart has become more of a commentator on the human condition and Life on Earth. It's a safer and less charged position, though songs like "The Way the Wind Blows" still reveal him to be in command of his craft. The same can be said for Rush in general, even if the years are starting to show.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 35, 2007 releases

Related artist(s): Rush, Geddy Lee

Latest news

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more

2020-09-05
Gary Peacock RIP – Legendary bassist Gary Peacock, veteran of many recordings and performances with Paul Bley, George Russell, Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, Tony Williams, and many more. » Read more

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Electrelane - Rock It to the Moon, The Power Out, & Axes – Contortions for dirigible apoplexy flex muscular curvatures in modern sound passing raiment unto itself, ballooning into monsoon walls with torque and cresting on a fine knacker. Galloping seesaw...  (2007) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues