Posts tagged ‘yes’

April 10, 2014

Album 0449: Yes – Close To The Edge

Yes-CloseToTheEdge

Release Date: 1972
Genre: Progressive Rock

Tracklisting:

1. Close To The Edge

    I. The Solid Time Of Change
    II. Total Mass Retain
    III. I Get Up, I Get Down
    IV. Seasons Of Man (18:43)

2. And You And I
    I. Cord Of Life
    II. Eclipse
    III. The Preacher, The Teacher
    IV. Apocalypse (10:09)

3. Siberian Khatru (09:01)
4. America (single edit) (04:13)
5. Total Mass Retain (03:21)
6. And You And I
    I. Cord Of Life
    II. Eclipse
    III. The Preacher, The Teacher
    IV. Apocalypse (alternative version) (10:18)

7. Siberia (studio run through) (09:20)

Total Length: 01:05:04

Close To The Edge is an epic song that begins and takes up a huge chunk of the album. The Solid Time Of Change begins this piece with some craziness, as all the instruments kind of go off and do their own thing until it all comes back down to earth. It brings us into the main theme of the track, and I quite like it. Total Mass Retain is a fun section of the track, and I’ll speak more on it later. I Get Up, I Get Down is probably the coolest and most progressive section. The song slows way down, and we get some neat atmosphere building. Things really come to a head when a huge church organ comes in. It sounds cacophonous at first, but the melody comes through and it’s quite gorgeous. Seasons Of Man ends this whole track well, and it makes for a great, epic song.

And You And I is by far my favorite song on here though. After a little bit of musing, Cord Of Life begins this track with a buildup to a fantastic melody. The section ends with the main phrase coming out, and it gets stuck in my head so easily. Eclipse is kind of out there, but it’s still fantastic. The Preacher, The Teacher continues being great, and has so many bits that stick with me. Apocalypse ends things well, and it makes for a song I won’t get tired of listening to for a very long time.

Siberian Khatru is kind of a jam song, though it’s highly structured. I haven’t fallen in love with it, at least in comparison to the reverence the song gets. It’s kind of a nuts song with a ton of cool stuff in it, but it hasn’t really gripped me. Doesn’t stop me from appreciating it. America is a cover that they did elsewhere, and this is actually the edited down version. The original was over ten minutes long, so this one I think loses a lot and until I found that out I couldn’t figure out why they would make the song like this.

Total Mass Retain is the section from the opening track edited and put out as a single, though rearranged a bit to have a new intro and uses some other bits from the rest of the track. It actually kind of holds up well on its own, though it’s for sure not my preferred way to listen to it. The alternative version of And You And I has a fair amount of differences, it’s kind of rougher and the keyboards are different. It’s not as polished as the final version, but the magic of the song is still there, frankly. Siberia is a run-through of the similarly titled song in the studio. It’s as rough as the track before it, but again still has all of the great qualities of the final version. I like this album more each time I hear it, more specifically referring to the main three tracks. It kind of breezes by and is a joy to listen to.

Final Rating: 8.5/10

September 12, 2013

Album 0345: Yes – Drama

yes-drama

Release Date: 1980
Genre: Progressive Rock

Tracklisting:

1. Machine Messiah (10:28)
2. White Car (01:21)
3. Does It Really Happen? (06:36)
4. Into The Lens (08:32)
5. Run Through The Light (04:43)
6. Tempus Fugit (05:22)
7. Into The Lens (I Am A Camera) (03:48)
8. Run Through The Light (04:31)
9. Have We Really Got To Go Through This (03:43)
10. Song No. 4 (Satellite) (07:32)
11. Tempus Fugit (05:40)
12. White Car (01:11)
13. Dancing Through The Light (03:17)
14. Golden Age (05:58)
15. In The Tower (02:55)
16. Friend Of A Friend (03:38)

Total Length: 01:19:14

Machine Messiah starts off this classic album with itself being a classic track. The song has a great intro, and just keeps pace for the whole song. Even in the slower, acoustic section the song just keeps driving and it never once gets boring. Just great classic Yes, even if Jon Anderson and Alan Wakeman weren’t in the band at the time. White Car is a fun little track, it’s almost too big of a track compared to its length, but that’s what helps make it special.

Does It Really Happen? has a really cool rhythm, as well as a super-neat a capella section followed by some really fun-sounding percussion. The song isn’t the best on here, but it is still pretty great. Into The Lens is probably my favorite track on the album, it’s just so upbeat and just a tad bit off and I can’t help but sing along the whole time. The intro is also cool, as well as all the little neat bits throughout.

Run Through The Light is fantastic as well. The chorus is simply amazing and it can get stuck in my head for days. Tempus Fugit is a bit more nuts and pretty enjoyable, but personally a bit disappointing as the end to the regular album after the last two tracks. Into The Lens (I Am A Camera) is the single version of the song, and it is okay but of course loses a bit.

Run Through The Light is also the single version, and this arrangement makes the whole song feel a bit slower and not as good. Have We Really Got To Go Through This is a decent instrumental, kind of basic though. Song No. 4 (Satellite) is a longer instrumental, though it feels a bit more like a jam. It’s okay but I don’t really listen to it often. Tempus Fugit is from tracking sessions, and the next track is as well. It seems like the lyrics aren’t quite finished as at some points there are just vocalizations instead. It’s kind of a neat look into the studio.

White Car is completely different, with more focus on just the vocals rather than a symphonic edge. Dancing Through The Light begins the last group of songs from the ‘Paris sessions’. This track is like an odd remix of the original, but I kind of dig it. Golden Age is upbeat and interesting, but honestly goes on a bit long. In The Tower seems to have the same idea as White Car, a little song that tells a story. It’s kind of neat. Friend Of A Friend is an alright track as well. I really love the main album but honestly don’t pay attention to the bonus stuff too much.

Final Rating: 8.5/10

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November 23, 2012

Album 0171: Yes – Relayer

Release Date: 1974
Genre: Progressive Rock

Tracklisting:

1. The Gates Of Delirium

    I. Prelude
    II. Battle
    III. Soon (21:54)

2. Sound Chaser (09:31)
3. To Be Over (09:04)
4. Soon (04:18)
5. Sound Chaser (single edit) (03:14)
6. The Gates Of Delirium (studio run-through) (21:17)

Total Length: 01:09:17

The Gates Of Delirium starts with the Prelude, full of weird keyboard effects and while it kind of sounds good everything is a bit muddled. When the vocals come in things are good though, I just always enjoy this band’s vocal melodies and what they can do with things like that. Once the Battle begins it is just a constant barrage of cool instrumental parts, and while it’s not as memorable as some other Yes tracks things are still good here. Soon closes out the track and is a fairly nice ballad. I really like the keyboard work, and the vocals again take the cake.

Sound Chaser has another odd intro, but once you can get into the groove of the song it’s highly enjoyable. It’s mostly instrumental and is pretty much the band going nuts minus one slow section in the middle. I really like the yelled vocals that happen at two points. To Be Over is kind of harder to figure out and get used to than the 22 minute song, but it’s full of great things. Probably the most outright ‘proggy’ track on the album and the band just continues to impress me.

Soon is just the last section of the big song clipped, it was released as a single this way. While it works fine simply because it’s well written and such, there is not near as much emotional impact without the huge buildup that the whole track gives. Sound Chaser‘s single edit actually kind of works but is completely unnecessary because this isn’t the type of song to typically get popular, and so there’s no reason to listen to it when the full song exists.

The last track is a ‘live’ studio run-through of the whole band playing The Gates Of Delirium. The song is much the same, and the band plays it excellently but considering what this track is, it really relegates itself to bonus track for me. It was more like a recording of the song for themselves to reference more than anything, so there are some imperfections throughout, and I don’t really ever need to listen to it. Of all the Yes albums I’ve heard, this is probably my current least favorite but that still isn’t saying a whole lot because the music on here is pretty top notch.

Final Rating: 8.5/10

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