As a long-time HUGE Rush fan, I'm not bothered that they seem to be producing live product for every tour and also flooding us with DVDs and box sets. It's always great to enjoy new Rush material.
SNAKES AND ARROWS LIVE is in many ways their best live material in their recent era (I'm thinking of the time from VAPOR TRAILS on...after the band reformed following the tragedies in drummer Neil Peart's life). RUSH IN RIO was a blast because we've never heard (or seen) Rush playing in front of such a gigantic, enthusiastic crowd. But listening to the material was not as rewarding as watching it...the production was spotty, at best. The live Rush material that followed their 30th Anniversary Tour sounded better...but it wasn't the complete show. Also, I have to say, the Frankfurt crowd was not the best. On the latest, we get a more solid effort.
PROS: Many great older songs that have never been officially released live. "Circumstances" (one of my all-time favorites), "Entre Nous," "Digital Man" and even "Passage to Bangkok" (yes, I know you can hear it on ALL THE WORLD'S A STAGE) are all very welcome. The sound mix is overall pretty good...Geddy's vocals are more present than they have been lately. The playing is super tight, and the close adherence to the SNAKES AND ARROWS studio material will please those who complain that of late, Rush's live stuff hasn't been quite the perfect recreation of their studio work. Also, oddly, their version of "Freewill" on this album is particularly super tight...well-produced and well-played.
CONS: Too much SNAKES AND ARROWS. I really like that album, but I'd trade "Armor & Sword" and "Spindrift" for something older in a heartbeat. I'm going to see them live on the 29th of April, and they've changed up their set list a little...but the heavy representation of SNAKES AND ARROWS material is still there. Also, more minor, the version of "Secret Touch" is surprisingly sloppy. In addition, the tempo on a couple of pieces (including, sadly, the much-anticipated "Bangkok") is slow.
But I've had a really fun time listening to it. Any serious Rush fan will thoroughly enjoy themselves. Predictably, this is not the way you'd want to introduce a novice to the band...but at this in their careers, Rush is mostly playing for their devotees. Of which I'm proud to call myself a member!
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I've got my own site, www.afilmcritic.com, on which I'm posting my reviews. I am 46 years old, married 25 years, two kids (23 & 18) and currently work in accounting/finance. I spent 15 years … more
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On the heels of their hugely successful 2007 ampitheater tour, Rush is now giving all their fans the chance to aurally experience the concert for themselves with the double album,Snakes & Arrows Live. The live set features perennial favorites like "Tom Sawyer," "The Spirit of Radio," and "YYZ" as well as new fare "Far Cry," "Spindrift," and "The Larger Bowl." Also included is the live rendition of the 2008 Grammy-nominated "Malignant Narcissism" followed by a Rush live staple, a Neil Peart drum solo.Snakes & Arrows Liveis sure to follow in the footsteps of their successful live album Rush in Rio. The Canadian trio has sold over 35 million albums world-wide in their career spanning four decades.