The Present Tense: Background

In this piece, living in the present tense is not a bad thing. You’re not carrying any baggage from the past with you (“Nothing to blame / No victim of consequence”) and you don’t pretend to know what the future holds (“And the future makes no sense”).—Rob Freedman, Rush Vault

“The Present Tense winds down a bit [from opener ‘My favorite Headache’] in terms of aggression, but Geddy’s bass and compositions are no less fantastic. Here is where his voice really starts to shine in its new style—less screaming and more melodic. Many of the tracks on the album are just that—melodic and very reflective.”—King By-Tor on Prog Archives

“‘The Present Tense’ lavishes us with pleasant guitar and bass work, alternating between loud choruses and quiet verses. As will be the case with this album, the vocal melody is incredibly creative and memorable. The bridge doesn’t seem to fit in with the rest of the song, at least at first, but repeated listens can remedy that.”—Epignosis on Prog Archives

“When the acoustic arpeggios of ‘The Present Tense’ that suitably portray the folky verses are traded in for a faux-southern riff as the chorus comfortably slides in, it becomes increasingly clear that musically, none of the musicians are playing off their beat, clearly contributing masterfully to the overall sound. Not once do any of the members participate in over-indulgent wankery or technical ‘progressive’ blather (which is kind of disappointing, to be honest).”— Caleb MacAlpin on Sputnik Music

“‘Working at Perfekt,’ ‘Runaway Train,’ ‘Still,’ and ‘Present Tense’ are very good songs, no doubts here. They rock, they catch and stick their little choruses in your brain like termites on hardwood. The guitar work is, of course, not as great as Lifeson’s and the drum is simple, but done by a popular 90’s icon, Matt Cameron, from the regretfully dead Soundgarden.”—Menswear on Prog Archives

“‘The Present Tense’ surprised me a little bit at how much it reminded me of the Vapor Trails album sound.”—Mellotron Storm on Prog Archives

More about “The Present Tense”

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~ by rvkeeper on March 28, 2011.

 
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