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Rush - Roll The Bones CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.09 | 796 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
1 stars Where's my thing?

While the previous Presto - the best Rush album since Moving Pictures - had injected some new hope after three weaker albums in Hold Your Fire, Power Windows and Grace Under Pressure, Rush quickly diminished it all again with the utterly lacklustre Roll The Bones - one of their weakest ever, in my opinion. Though released in 1991, I think it is fair to say that this album fits better into the same category as the band's 80's albums and that the next album, 1993's Counterparts, was the beginning of 90's Rush. The keyboards were not yet abandoned at this point and the album has more of an 80's sound compared to later efforts. Roll The Bones is basically built on the same formula as the previous four or five Rush albums, but while albums like Presto and Signals featured inspired compositions, Roll The Bones is consistently uninspired and prosaic. If you take the least inspired tunes from the band's 80's albums and add a rap-section (!) you get Roll The Bones. But the rap section in the title track is just the drop that makes the glass run over. Rush had already reached rock bottom once with the dismal Power Windows and here they do it again with Roll The Bones - my second one star rating for a Rush album.

The ten tracks on Roll The Bones are all between three and a half and five and a half minutes long and they all follow the same basic formula. Every song sounds like something I've heard before on the band's previous albums. The performances are pedestrian and the band sounds as if they are on autopilot. Even if I'm not too excited about Rush's 80's output in general, the band had not sounded as uninspired in years as they do here. The opener Dreamline and the instrumental Where's My Thing? stand out as acceptable, but some other tracks are embarrassments both musically and lyrically.

Prog is, of course, nowhere to be found on this album, but that should come as no surprise to anyone as the band's Prog-phase ended ten years before the release of this album (1981's classic Moving Pictures was their last Prog album as far as I'm concerned). Listening to Roll The Bones now makes me remember why my initial series of Rush reviews did not include their 90's albums. The next album would sadly not be much better.

Roll The Bones is a poor effort from a once great band

SouthSideoftheSky | 1/5 |


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