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Yes - Relayer CD (album) cover

RELAYER

Yes

 

Symphonic Prog

4.36 | 2124 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

retrorocker
4 stars Well, I must admit that this album has grown on me immensly. In The original review I wrote, I gave the album 3 stars, "and all for Gates of Delerium". This is an error I'd like to revise!

Of course, comparisons to Close to the Edge are obvious; "Gates.." Is the opening epic track, followed by "Sound Chaser", (the Siberian Khatru parallel) and then "To Be Over" (the And You And I" stand-in). But because of Moraz's jazz influence, these comparisons are quite limited. "Gates.." does have a lot of the frenetic jamming contrasted with serene beauty, just like CttE, but here the agression is that more pointed and the "Soon" section perfectly coda's the peice... oh hell, you could compare the two all day long, but "Gates..." certainly can't really be faulted, unless the repetition of that musical phrase gets on your nerves, which it shouldn't.

The departure in style is most evident on the track "Sound Chaser", its agressive, angular sections enthuse a jazz style mostly unheard of in Yes's work, and I bet Bruford would have been much more at home drumming on this album! The sharp contrast in style would put off long time devotees of Yes's "classic" lineup (as it did me), but if you've listened to other more esoteric jazz influenced bands such as VdGG & King Crimson, rather than more pastoral bands such as Genesis, you probably will get much more out of this album.

My opinion of "To Be Over" has changed quite considerably; I originally thought it was a bore and let the album down, but now I think it is a classic, easily on par with "And You And I". Go figure. I guess that reviewing prog is sometimes something you shouldn't do on first impressions as Prog is always going to be more complex and layered than is first apparent.

Bottom line, If you liked CttE (and who doesn't??) and are aware that there is a stylistic change toward the jazzy, freeform jammy kinda style (and you like that sort of thing), then there is no reason why you shouldn't listen to this album and like it!

retrorocker | 4/5 |

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