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Yes - Fragile CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.44 | 3242 ratings

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5 stars My favourite YES album. The beautiful acoustic guitar intro of 'Roundabout' heralds a varied collection of well-crafted tracks. More polished than their previous (very good) album but not as ambitious as their next one, I feel the music on this album strikes a good balance between accessibility and ornateness (although I imagine people who are not fans of Progressive Rock would probably still regard this in the same light as YES' other works).

'Roundabout', 'South Side Of The Sky', 'Long Distance Runaround' and 'Heart Of The Sunrise' were arranged and performed by the band, and the other five tracks were individual ideas, personally arranged and organised by the five members. 'Cans And Brahms' is Wakeman's twist on extracts from Brahms' 4th Symphony in E Minor, 3rd Movement, using electric piano, grand piano, electric harpsichord and synthesizer. 'We Have Heaven' was Jon Anderson's (short) idea, with him providing multi-layered vocals over a repeating theme. 'Five Per Cent For Nothing' is Bruford's jerky 35-second contribution. Squire's 'The Fish' was produced using the different sounds of bass guitars over percussion (nice), and Howe concludes the individual projects with the medieval and Spanish sounding (and very pleasant) 'Mood For A Day' on acoustic guitar.

Apart from the enjoyable individual projects, the four joint efforts are very pleasant indeed. I really like melody and a good tune, and these four longer tracks deliver that. Wakeman's keyboards are more evident than Kaye's were on the previous album (I liked Kaye's keyboard work on the previous album) and are very good, I should add. Wakeman does play an important part in making this album what it is.

The usual YES poetic nonsense lyrics abound. I have to mention "In and around the lake, mountains come out of the sky and stand there" which, to me, conjures up a crystal clear image.

A showcase of the band's individual and collective talent, I'm going with 5 stars on this (Essential: a masterpiece of progressive music).

Fitzcarraldo | 5/5 |


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