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Generally favorable reviews - based on 12 Critics What's this?

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Universal acclaim- based on 131 Ratings

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  • Summary: Canada's favorite prog rockers return with their first album of new material in six years, eh.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 12
  2. Negative: 0 out of 12
  1. The more time one spends with Vapor Trails, the richer and more nuanced it becomes. Consider this an absolute triumph.
  2. Rush has emerged with more edge and energy than some bands can even dream of.
  3. Vapor Trails is a great, straight-forward hard rock album from a band that actually seems to be getting better as it ages.
  4. 80
    Dispensing with the synthesizers and glossy production that marred previous efforts, the group instead delivers no-frills, arena-ready rockers with a dense, almost punkishly raw sound.
  5. The good news is Vapor Trails is Rush's best album in a decade. The bad news is it's still no Moving Pictures.
  6. Vapor Trails is Rush's most focused effort in many years, thanks to a renewed emphasis on songwriting.
  7. 60
    Vapor Trails combines the cartoonish familiarity of Geddy Lee's helium-tinged vocals and [Neil] Peart's hyperkinetic drumming with the tuneful, concise writing they've favored since 1989's Presto. [Jun/Jul 2002, p.113]

See all 12 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 90 out of 103
  2. Negative: 12 out of 103
  1. Aug 16, 2013
    Rush had to take a break for a few years while Neil Peart recovered from his family dying after the Test For Echo Tour. They came back and did this album. I feel like the fact that they hadn’t been with each other for a while affected them a little bit. They still wrote good stuff, but it just sounded a little weird. It sounded weird, because the music was too crazy for Geddy lee’s voice to keep up with. Geddy’s voice started changing with this album. It was just as high, but weaker, and you could tell that he was really struggling to hit certain notes. Geddy never had a good voice, but they were always able to make it work. I found that this was the one time that it didn’t work. The music sounded louder and crazier then any of their other stuff, but his weaker voice I felt like at times couldn’t keep up with it. When he would sing the song normally it was okay, but when he would try to raise his voice or belt it out he sounded like he was struggling to do it. That is the one flaw with this album. But even though the voice didn’t sound like it always worked for the record it was still a very well written, and well-done record. If they just toned down the distortion and the volume of the album I think Geddy’s voice would have worked for it. The more you listen to it the more it grows on you, because you appreciate the writing. It is a good heavy metal album. These guys never make albums that are bad. They make albums that aren’t perfect like this one, but never make bad ones.

    The best song off of this album is “Secret Touch.” It has a great beat, and very interesting lyrics. It is one of the more unique ones off of the record. It takes them back to their style of doing really long songs, which this one is. It is the longest one off of this CD, but you don’t feel it though. It has been revealed to be one of Geddy Lee’s favorite tracks, and when you listen to it you will understand why. Great song.

    “One Little Victory” is the first track off of the album, and it grabs you with a great beat from Neil Peart, and a really fast guitar played by Alex Lifeson. Though it is definitely one of the highlights off of the track it is one of those songs I was talking about where Geddy’s voice doesn’t always keep up with the heavy music. Once it gets to the chorus I felt like he was trying to belt it out the way he belts out songs like “2112” but he couldn’t because he was losing the strength of his voice. Other then the moments where his voice doesn’t add up it is a very good song.

    “How It Is” I would say is the best track after “Secret Touch.” It has a more interesting sound then most of the songs on this album. It also has some interesting lyrics that are hard to understand, because of the way the song is sung, but when you look them up they are very interesting. Neil Peart is the most underrated lyricist, and it is songs like this that show it.

    The rest of the songs are good, but those are the three that stuck with me the most. However I find that when a guitar gets distorted you can’t hear it clearly, and it can often make songs sound the same. There are several songs off of this album that sound similar to me due to a heavily distorted guitar. They would probably be more unique if they sounded more like the 70’s guitar. Other then a few flaws this is a very good album, with many good songs. It is very energetic, and upbeat music. Every song has a good drive to it. Rush fans will not be disappointed.

See all 103 User Reviews