Vapor Trails [Explicit Lyrics]

( 94 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
The half decade since Rush's last studio offering hasn't been a pleasant time for the Canadian trio -- what with drummer/lyricist Neil Peart having to cope with the deaths of both his wife and daughter. While an element of darkness crops up on Vapor Trails, it doesn't weigh down the band's artistry. In fact, it seems to have invested Rush's music with a rediscovered visceral edge, a reconnection with humanity. In sharp contrast to the succinct, keyboard-driven material the band has proffered on it past several releases, Vapor Trails evinces a desire to give listeners a few sharp pokes to the nerve center. Alex Lifeson's guitar surges to the fore on the bulk of the ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
The half decade since Rush's last studio offering hasn't been a pleasant time for the Canadian trio -- what with drummer/lyricist Neil Peart having to cope with the deaths of both his wife and daughter. While an element of darkness crops up on Vapor Trails, it doesn't weigh down the band's artistry. In fact, it seems to have invested Rush's music with a rediscovered visceral edge, a reconnection with humanity. In sharp contrast to the succinct, keyboard-driven material the band has proffered on it past several releases, Vapor Trails evinces a desire to give listeners a few sharp pokes to the nerve center. Alex Lifeson's guitar surges to the fore on the bulk of the disc's 13 songs, sometimes simply slamming as on the surprisingly raw opener, "One Little Victory" and sometimes intricately slashing as on "Nocturne," which conjures up images of Rush's headiest days. Peart's lyrics, while certainly indicative of the troubles he's endured, don't lapse into simple autobiography: "The Stars Look Down" and "How It Is" both resonate with complex yet ultimately universal comments on love, loss, and regeneration. While Vapor Trails may give pause to those who have come to expect more gentle musings from Rush, folks who fondly recall the band's reign as power trio kingpins will find following these trails an irresistible journey worth repeating.
All Music Guide - Greg Prato
Most longtime Rush fans realize that a new album from the Canadian trio in the early 21st century is quite an accomplishment. After drummer Neil Peart's much-publicized tragic turn of events in his private life not long after Rush's 1996 release Test for Echo the death of both his teenaged daughter and wife less than a year apart, the group's future was understandably cast into doubt. Slowly but surely, however, the band regained their footing and issued their 17th studio album in 2002, Vapor Trails. You would think that a veteran band entering their fourth decade together would perhaps mellow out a bit, but this doesn't prove to be case, as evidenced by the leadoff track "One Little Victory," while the majority of the album follows the same direct and hard-hitting sound as their past couple of releases fans of the group's more synth-based and sterile mid-'80s style will have to look elsewhere. Peart, who remains the group's main lyricist, opts to conquer such challenging subject matter as the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on "Peaceable Kingdom," while bits of the lyric to "Ghost Rider" "Pack up all those phantoms/Shoulder that invisible load" lead the listener to believe that perhaps the drummer is sharing his personal healing process with the fans. Other standouts include the melodic "Sweet Miracle," the explosive "Out of the Cradle," the mid-paced title track, and "Earthshine," the latter of which showcases how fine Lee's voice has matured especially when compared to his high-piercing shriek on Rush's early albums. All in all, Vapor Trails does an amiable job of signaling the welcome return of Rush.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/14/2002
  • Label: Atlantic
  • UPC: 075678353123
  • Catalog Number: 83531
  • Sales rank: 7,430

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 One Little Victory (5:09)
  2. 2 Ceiling Unlimited (5:28)
  3. 3 Ghost Rider (5:41)
  4. 4 Peaceable Kingdom (5:23)
  5. 5 The Stars Look Down (4:28)
  6. 6 How It Is (4:05)
  7. 7 Vapor Trail (4:57)
  8. 8 Secret Touch (6:34)
  9. 9 Earthshine (5:38)
  10. 10 Sweet Miracle (3:40)
  11. 11 Nocturne (4:49)
  12. 12 Freeze (Part IV of "Fear") (6:21)
  13. 13 Out of the Cradle (5:03)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Rush Primary Artist
Alex Lifeson Acoustic Guitar, Electric Guitar, Mandola
Neil Peart Cymbals, Drums
Technical Credits
Rush Producer
Geddy Lee Engineer
Alex Lifeson Engineer
Paul Northfield Producer, Engineer
Hugh Syme Art Direction, Paintings
Howie Weinberg Mastering
Liam Birt Executive Producer
Pegi Cecconi Executive Producer
Roger Lian Mastering
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 94 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(50)

4 Star

(17)

3 Star

(8)

2 Star

(10)

1 Star

(9)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 94 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    "After all these years maybe it's too late!"

    I would give this zero stars if I could! If Rush wanted to "get back to the basics" thay should've tried a tour down memory lane to the 70's instead of the 90's. This is horrible! After a few listens to this disc, that awesome integrity that has inhabited so many other Rush lp's was still missing. Honestly, they can't be tickled pink with this. But if millions of folks are buying this slop then maybe they are tickled pink. Way to go guys!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Rush's Worst Recording Ever

    Without a doubt, this is the worst recording that Rush has produced in their long career. Gone is the sophistication, complexity, and mature introspection into the bigger questions of life and history (Red Sector A, Power Windows, Subdivisions, etc.). What we are left with is a sound that strangely resembles my blender when I'm making daquiris. I have loved this band for 25 years, even played in a Rush copy band after high school. But now, I crave more taste and insight, not meaningless buzzsaw jams. I am thoroughly disappointed. Two stars only because it's Rush. Another other band, and it'd be one star.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Vapor Trails

    My favorite band of all time! Worst album ever! No guitar solos. They have turned into a boy band.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    The ''no guitar-solo album''

    Boring and generic. Lots of noise and very disjointed songs. No melodies to follow. Sounds like a cut-and-paste-job, done on somebody's computer!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    a Rush of disapointment

    I was really looking forward to this album as Rush have been one of my favourite bands for the past 25 years but alas they seem to have no connection with their past here, seemingly jumping on the nu-metal bandwagon to produce their most mundane and characterless album ever. If you took away the voice, you'd be hard pushed to tell it was Rush, the playing is adequate rather than outstanding as normal and more importantly, the songs are boring, with no memorable parts. They simply sound completely insignificant compared to their former selves. They did the heavy rock thing way back in the early seventies and to be frank they were much better at it back then. The desicion to lose the keyboards has made matters even worse, taking what was left of any trace of sophistication away. I think I'll stick with Caress of Steel if I want the heavier side of the band. Sorry guys! Although I'll probably still go to the tour for old times sake.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    this is a good cd, not there best but far from there worst i enjoyed it

    buy this you will not be sorry

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Just Horrible

    Worst Rush album ever!Way too heavy.Don't buy this cd.Terrible music!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Something's different about the production?

    The first time I listened to the CD, I was in my car. Something sounded different, less crisp and clear. I kept turning down the bass and increasing the treble to hear the music better. However, I decided to test it on a stereo with more channels. It sounded better and more familiar to what I hoped to hear from Rush. I also tried it on headphones. I recommend listening to it on headphones or a good stereo instead of a car radio. Maybe it was just the interference of traffic noise. It's a good CD!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    A triumph! A blend of 70's rush & some of their best rock in the 80's and 90's.

    Unlike many of the reviews in this space, this cd grabbed me from the beginning. It has hard-driving sound and great lyrics. The words are eerie, sometimes simple but mostly upbeat and subtle references to overcoming obstacles and carrying on in a troubled world. I've been listening to Rush since day one and consider 2112, Farewell To Kings and Moving Pictures to be works of Art. Include Vapor Trails in that category which is amazing considering this is their fourth decade of music. Their maturity definitely shows here!!! Rock on and God Bless.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Rush Returns With Triumph, Glory Ablaze..!!!

    This is *the* Rush album of albums. Intense, deeply sonic, modern and still a bit progressive, sweet and at other times with a hurricane punch that reminds people who *need* to be reminded....yes, life can get very dark, nasty, and plain horrid. So, this shows the bitter-sweet, especially summed up so well on "How It Is". The production is the absolute best I think of almost any album ever, very organic, to-the-bone, while some of the mullet-loving 80's Rush fans will wish for some Duran-Duran type of overly-produced slop. Rush...endlessly rocking...into the 21'st century. Bravo, guys!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Give it time - it will grow on you.

    Like others, I've waited for this latest release from Rush for a long time, but after my first few listens I really wasn't sold on it. So I put it away for a good couple of months. I figured that perhaps I missed something, and if I came back fresh later, it may sound more familiar to me. Well, in preparation for their recent performance last weekend (a terrific show at The Gorge I might add), I dove back into the CD and rediscovered the music, and I'm glad I did. On first listen the music, from track to track, seems much the same. Dense. Lacking hooks or tunesmithing that might allow for immediate recognition. The guitars seem layed so thick that one cannot hear beyond them. The vocals seem muffled. However, there is a reward for patience, and these guys have earned that much from me as an enthusiast of their past output, which over the years, save for the Hold Your Fire/Presto slump IMO, has been consistently good to great. After hearing these tracks again, I've discovered the tunes are in there. I can hear them in my head now when I'm not listening to the CD. Geddy's vocals have stretched back to a level I didn't think he could attain anymore. I think he is becoming a smarter singer. I can hear shades of Permanent Waves in some of this, continuing in a way from the Test For Echo CD I've been discovering at the same time. The power of Counterparts is there, while the seemingly cliched Lifeson mid-track solos are not. I guess the grunge comparison some people are making might be based on the soft to hard switches that permiate the music. Peart's drumming is energetic and urgent. His return from the pain of his personal tragedies is a blessing for us all. Are there standout tracks? Not as obviously as on past CDs. Is that a bad thing? I don't think so. The songs are actually all quite the equal of one another to the last track, which is one reason why one may, and I did, think they all sounded the same. Yet, I like listening to each of them, and never have felt inclined to skip a track to get to another. So why only 3 stars? Well that's just a matter of Rush having such a great catalog of releases that are a hard act to follow. Vapor trails is best compared with the previous three CDs, and it is a good first CD back after the long break. My gut feel is that the touring this year will get the creative juices flowing even more for the next studio release, and without wanting to fall into a trap of expectation, I do look forward to what a bright future might hold.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Great songs, but the production is crap

    ..it just kills the mood.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Give it a chance before giving up...rich in subtleties

    I am hoping my review will be helpful to those perplexed by the divisive opinion about this album. When I first listened to it, I hated it. After successive listens, the album has grown on me tremendously. The album has much technical merits, but because Neal Peart is so clever, much of the odd timing is very subtle. Try for example to predict the vocal entrance every time it appears in Earthshine. Freeze is also very tricky. This album is very melodic, but it wasn't apparent to me upon the first listen because the album is so very heavy. I would give this album 5 stars if it had a slow ballad on it, but all in all it is better than Counterparts and much better than Test for Echo.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    high energy album - a few reservations

    Suffice to say it's great that Rush are back. VT sounds fresh and powerful straight away. There ARE memorable songs, great musical moments, and let's face it, few bands can play at this technical level. But technique is the means, not the end. Joy division, for example, were hardly session players, but wrote timeless, unique, atmospheric music nonetheless. I would love to see this band taking a different approach on the next record, focussing on more elegantly structured, strongly melodic songwriting and the reintroduction of synths. (Technology has improved since the 80's!) Alex Lifeson is a wonderful guitar player and I feel his sound benefits greatly from the support of well-chosen synth orchestrations. And yes, I'm a sucker for his solos - they're electrifying. Maybe he could dig out his old Gibsons and Strats too, rather than relying on these slightly too-perfect sounding posh PRS instruments for the whole record. So that's my humble opinion. It's obvious that the album's gone down a storm with the majority of the reviewers, and that's great. I so wish I could have such unreserved admiration...Would definitely see them on tour though. Thanks to the band for all their records.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    One star for talent, one for skill, none for application

    This review feels like an obituary. I was 14 in the year 1976, when I first heard 2112, and from then on each new release was eagerly awaited. Unfortunately "Roll the Bones" was the last time Rush's music excited me. Since then I have checked the music stores, hoping a new Rush album would rekindle the fire, and each time being disappointed. I have to agree with those others who also gave stars only grudgingly; the music is no longer melodic or tuneful. They used to be MASTERS of this. And frankly, I'm long over the crypto-populism which has overtaken the lyric writing. Moral confidence and clarity of purpose used to be hallmarks of Rush's approach to music, it set them apart, and it was beautiful. Now they're hiding everything in some new "mashed potato soup"-style, and it's unbecoming to what we all know these fellows are capable of. The live release was proof that it DID exist. Geddy Lee's voice is better-trained now than it has ever been, but he refuses to let us listen to him sing. All three have chops which they now seem ashamed to let see the light of day. It seems appropriate that the graphics resemble hastily scrawled messages from a dying finger. It didn't fit "Hemispheres" but it does "Vapor Trails"...RIP

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Diversity, Texture, and Genius Define Rush

    Clearly what I consider some of the finest rock music in rock's relatively brief history. A fan since the late 70's, Rush continues to surprise me. Rush is really a state of mind. While maintaining a flavor of ''Rush'', the texture and topography within their music is ever changing....hence Rush's longevity. Perhaps a secret to Rush appreciation lies in listenting to their music in a spatial manner...visualizing each track like a cross-section through a varied landscape. Rush will take you on a suite of emotive journeys to great regions of the world and beyond. I, like so many other Rush fans, tire of comparisons with other prog rock foundations and current flash pan artists. Rush is a form in itself....listen and enjoy them within an absolute, not relative, context. You will find that Rush, like most music, will sound better that way.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    They're BACK!!! With somewhat of a new sound

    Rush's latest album is a very nice comeback album. Somewhat different from past Rush albums with a hint of some classic Rush in there. Songs like Earthshine, Sweet Miracle, and Nocturne give you a sense of Moving Pictures, Permanent Waves era. While One Little Victory gives you a sense of Presto influenced. The new sound wich really doesnt sound much like any other Rush album but is very well put together include songs like Ghost Rider and How it is. There are a few dead tracks on here even though very little, like Secret Touch and Out of the Cradle. The title track Vapor Trail actually reminds me of some older Rush like off Hemisheres or Kings. Overall a very well done radio station friendly album. Wasnt all that big on Test for Echo (actually the only album I havent liked by Rush with the exception of Driven)but this album blows test away. Some Rush fans might be a little offended that the boys seem to be listening to the critics a little and trying to find more radio friendly music but who cares. I love Rush usually no matter what they put out. I would prefer that they stay with what has kept their fan base over the years though, but by no means is this a disappointment. I kinda of liked that they got rid of that 80's sound in all those keyboards. I love the way this band changes withthe times and like I said before they really show signs of doing that here even though there are some good songs and signs of the past. My favorite song on this album is Earthshine. Very well written song. Thanks boys for another good effort. See you in July!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Vapor Trails a BIG HIT

    Vapor Trails is a BIG HIT amongst most Rush fans I've spoken with. A great comeback album after long hiatus....songs like earthshine, sweet miracle, and stars look down are perfect signs of some classic rush songwriting. One little victory shows some signs of Presto era and a great new sound in Ghost Rider. Great job by the boys this time. I was mildly disappointed in their last effort, Test for Echo. This was definitely a goodsign of more great things to come.. Great job guys!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    RUSH the next generation

    After four albums and a live album RUSH has forged yet another sound. Vapor Trails explores a very pop yet very RUSH sound. The trio have certainly added new gem into their archive of sonic classics. The vocals are excellent, but they're all very radio...very chorusy. The music is full of simple complexities...but all the songs are similar in tempo and overall sound. It's a good album...I would be surprised if they didn't release more tracks off of it to the radio. ''EarthShine'' I think exemplifies the RUSH sound past and present...A really great tune. The lyrics on this album I think are especially weak...but the vocal melodies more than make up for it. The drumming, guitar, and bass are solid...and flawless as would be expected from Mr Peart, Leifson, and Lee...but very basic...nothing overly boisterous or that jumps out and makes you say ''Cool..!!'' A lot of producing went into this album...and the production work on it I'd give an A+...as far as the writing...and the over all sound a solid B But definitely worth adding to your RUSH collection.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Sounds good to me

    Another long-time Rush fan here. Loved them since 2112, including the later stuff, though a few of the more recent albums didn't grab me quite as much. I really liked Counterparts, and that was the last album that I really gave 5 stars to. Vapor Trails has a nice feel throughout and Geddy's voice sounds as good as ever, Give these guys the credit they deserve!

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 94 Customer Reviews