Rush is a Band

A blog devoted to the band RUSH:
Neil Peart, Geddy Lee & Alex Lifeson

Wed, Nov 13, 2019

Snakes & Arrows reviews, round 4

Tue, May 8, 2007@4:57PM | comments

We've had several more Snakes & Arrows reviews come out over the weekend. Once again, they are overwhelmingly positive.

Ben Wener of the Orange County Register gives the album a B+ and concludes with the statement ... On this aptly titled return, they sound truly inspired. Much of it is among their very best work.. You can read the entire review here.

Brian Holland from Modern Guitars absolutely loves the album. No rating given but if you read the full review there's not much doubt. Here's an excerpt:

... Snakes & Arrows is a marvelous indication of just how tight and together the band is currently. The music is fresh and exciting, and the sound is massively full. It overflows with strong melody and sonic punch. ... Snakes & Arrows is a colossal journey and an epic saga, leaving no doubt that the live Rush shows of 2007 will be nothing less than amazing.

The New Haven Register gave the album a great review claiming that Snakes & Arrows is clearly, so far, one of the best records of the year. You can check out a scan of the full review at this link (thanks to reader Don B for supplying).

This lukewarm review from across the pond reads better than the 3 out of 5 rating would suggest. It's from London's Evening Standard. Here's an excerpt:

... The 18th studio album offers a neat sample of the Rush modus operandi: sinuous hard rock embellished with folky touches, Geddy Lee's tremulous voice and Peart's vastly pretentious lyrics (witness Workin' Them Angels: "Driving down the razor's edge between the past and the future"). But they sound more relevant than the likes of the Rolling Stones these days, and with the tough pop of Far Cry, a return to the charts wouldn't be out of the question in a more just world.

Thanks to Thomas for the heads up.

Reader batperez pointed me to this mini-review from Mike McGuirk of Real.com's Music Store.

Math rock necromancers Rush emerge from whatever realm it is they exist in to release their first album of original material in five years. Stylistically similar to 2002's Vapor Trails (meaning no keyboards), their latest finds Alex, Geddy and Neil plotting out solid rocking vectors for lyrics concerning higher beings (like angels), and of course some swords 'n' stuff. Snakes & Arrows makes a case for the idea that bands way past their prime can remain vital if they continue to evolve, as Rush has done over the years. "The Larger Bowl" should win Best Song Title of 2007.

Blabbermouth reviewer Don Kaye gave the album an 8 out of 10 rating in this review.

... It's pointed and questioning without being too specific, and lyrically this may well be one of the saddest albums that RUSH has ever made. Yet it's musically one of the group's most inspiring since "Moving Pictures" and gives ample reason why this band's music is still valid 33 years after it released its first record - a claim that I doubt many bands working today will ever be able to make.

The Dutch Progressive Rock page released their round table review of Snakes & Arrows over the weekend. All 3 reviewers had high praise for the album. Louis Koot, with his 8 out of 10, gave the lowest rating of the 3 and concludes with this statement: Snakes & Arrows ends up being a great album despite the initial disappointment I had. On the other end of the spectrum, Martien Koolen gives Snakes & Arrows a perfect 10 out of 10 and states that the album is already my best album of the year 2007. Dave Baird gave it a 9.5 and had this to say: Really a superb return to form for the band and with such vitality I couldn't imagine them stopping anytime soon. Thanks to John R for the heads up.

And finally, back in round 2 I linked to a blog post from Buffalo News Pop Music Critic Jeff Miers where he expressed his enthusiasm for the album. His full review is now online at this location. Some choice excerpts:

... [Snakes & Arrows] is a wholly ambitious and fully actualized record from a group of musicians still passionately seeking new ground even as they mark some 35 years together. ... one notices the taut, visceral, crystalline nature of the album's production, which represents the first collaboration between Rush and Nick Raskulinecz, ... Clearly, Raskulinecz understands Rush and wisely concentrated on creating ample sonic space for the band's broad, grandiloquent sound. ... These songs have been constructed from the rhythm section up, and when your rhythm section is bassist Lee and drummer Peart, that's a serious foundation to lay. Above all of this, guitarist Lifeson does what he was put on this earth to do: construct intricate, detailed guitar arrangements blending creative arpeggios, robust power chords and solos that split the difference between the searing and the esoteric. "Snakes & Arrows" is also notable for the strength of Lee's singing, marking his apotheosis from the full-frontal shriek of the band's '70s epics into a singer of remarkable subtlety and invention. "Snakes & Arrows" finds Lee painting his masterpiece as a singer. There's far too much to discuss, too much meat to simply nail down in a few paragraphs. Suffice it to say that "Snakes & Arrows" finds Rush rounding yet another new corner. It's a remarkable piece of work.

Related Posts:
[Snakes & Arrows reviews, round 3]
[Snakes & Arrows reviews, round 2]
[Snakes & Arrows review at AllMusic.com]
[Snakes & Arrows review in Toronto Sun]
[Snakes & Arrows reviews, round 1]
[Another Snakes & Arrows review]
[Snakes & Arrows review]

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