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Mon, May 20, 2024

Prog rock duo Crown Lands pay tribute to Rush on new tracks

Thu, Mar 11, 2021@2:30PM | comments

Toronto-based progressive blues-rock duo Crown Lands consists of drummer/singer Cody Bowles and guitarist Kevin Comeau, who bonded over their shared obsession with Rush six years ago and formed Crown Lands shortly after. The duo released their blues-rock, riff-laden, self-titled debut album last year, and are currently working on new material with a more prog-oriented feel. debuted two new tracks from the band earlier today and both draw direct inspiration from their fellow Canadian rockers Rush. From Rolling Stone:

... One of the two new songs, the multi-part, three-years-in-the-making suite "Context: Fearless Pt. 1," may well be one of the most overt Rush tributes ever attempted, with a direct musical nod to "Red Barchetta" and modal riffing straight out of the Alex Lifeson handbook. To fully capture the vibe, Crown Lands sought out some special help, recording an early demo of the song with Terry Brown, who produced all of Rush's early classics, from Fly by Night to Signals. "They are well-educated on Rush," says Brown. "And there is definitely a likeness in some ways, but in more ways, they're nothing like Rush. The register that Cody likes to sing in is very reminiscent of Geddy [Lee] in his younger days. And certainly, some of the guitar riffs and the bass playing from Kevin, who also loves the old synths. But when you put them all together, it adds up to Crown Lands, and I think, something unique and special."

From there, they pursued another Rush connection, booking time to record with Nick Raskulinecz, who produced Rush's final two studio albums, and has also worked the Foo Fighters, among others. As it happened, they met up with Raskulinecz in January of last year, driving through a snowstorm to Nashville, just after the world learned of the death of Rush drummer Neil Peart. "When they showed up, I was pretty wrecked about that," says Raskulinecz. "We tipped our hats to Neil, we listened to some Rush, had some shots of whiskey in Neil's honor, and we moved forward and recorded."

Bowles played parts of a drum kit that Peart had given to Raskulinecz, which duplicated the one Peart played on 2007's Snakes and Arrows album. The producer was already a fan of Crown Lands. "A lot of people are influenced by Rush but don't sound like Rush," he says. "These two just kind of sound like that." The band also recorded another new song with Raskulinecz, "Right Way Back," that pays lyrical tribute to Peart. ...

Both tracks are currently available for streaming on multiple platforms. You can also listen to them below or on YouTube.