I'm going to have another listen to Snakes and Arrows. It's been awhile. Maybe my opinion has changed.
Far Cry is great. Peart is in fine form on this tune.
Armor and Sword. Still like it - love the groove of the heavy bit, and dig the chimey-sounding guitars. I'm not bothered by Peart's themes of organized religion. There is a lot of bullshit and hypocrisy. But if you don't like the topic, you don't like the topic, I guess. I love Lifeson's lead stuff on this tune, too - a lot of ascending bends.
Workin' Them Angels. Not as sold on this one. Sort of a nothing three chord riff, and maybe a bit too similar to the previous tune, which is better. I think the little bouzouki thing is cool, though. The guitars sound great.
Larger Bowl. I get why people are bugged by this one. Musically it's just not Rush's usual calibre. I'm not wild about the vocal (not just the whoa-whoa-ho junk). I do remember it was a bit of an earworm for me when the album was released, though. Picks up a bit with the solo, which has Lifeson's unique style all over it.
Spindrift is great. Love how it starts with the background stuff, and this is a better example of Lifeson's musical inventiveness. I'd love a version without the "whooo-hooo" junk, but Lee's vocal is pretty damned solid here - he's got lots of power and range.
Main Monkey Business is great - liked it from the start - just a really interesting mix of sounds (with the exception of the vocalizations, which I'd've removed if I were in charge and replaced with some atmospheric lead stuff or, in an ideal world, Moog synthesizer...)
Way the Wind Blows is awesome. Love the opening lead, love how the pace picks up for a bit and then there's a mix of moods - again, though, it has those sort of irritating "whoo-ooh" things in the background. I think I recall from the documentary that Nick the Rascal had Peart redo his drums over the faster parts; say what you want about Rascal as a producer, I think he did good here - there's some fine drumming. Gotta love the 12 string, too - or it might be the Nashville tuned guitar. Lifeson's lead stuff is great here - I particularly dig the bit with the three different guitars, which is mixed really well.
Hope - very pleasing to my ear. It's cool to hear Lifeson do something like this. His attack and articulation on the acoustic are so great here.
Faithless - I'm a bit ambivalent about this one - I'm not wild about how it starts, but I think Lifeson has some very interesting parts (especially in the "all the preaching voices" bit). I'm underwhelmed by the chorus. Lee's voice is strong. Great guitar solo - fantastic tone, and well structured.
Bravest Face - I have to struggle a lot harder to like this one. I can't get past the "preshuss" and many of the other vocal choices. Again, though . . . great solo - seriously great groove in this part.
Good News First - not wild about this. There are some interesting sounds here, and I like some of the lyric lines, but this one is guilty of what a lot of folks have said - the verses are fairly plodding (although it picks up). The bridge bit is pretty decent - sweet sounding acoustics and a subtle keyboard line - is that the mellotron? Decent solo, too. Lifeson's guitars sound great on this record.
Malignant Narcissism - I think this is a great little jam. I love the story behind this, that Rascal recorded Lee noodling around and encouraged them to fab up something in the studio. Would have been a great one to end the record with.
We Hold On - pretty cool. Love the riffing in the chorus, with a bit of squeal in there. I wish they'd have fixed the timing thing with the drums - although it's not as noticeable on the 5.1 mix.
Over all, not a bad record at all. I can tolerate Workin Them Angels and Good News First, but the Larger Bowl . . . can't warm to it.
Edited by toymaker, 23 January 2018 - 11:36 PM.