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Yes - Close To The Edge CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.66 | 4187 ratings

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5 stars Well..It's Close To The Edge... to me, it's like an incredible trip to a mystical, wonderful world in just 37 minutes (that's a paradox: today, punk rock records use to last 40 minutes...) OK, I've only listened to 2 of their records (Fragile and this), but I can barely imagine something better than CTTE... it's so cohesive, touching, powerful... The review:

First than nothing I shall say all the band members were clearly at their finest hour when CTTE was made. You'll see why. Now let's go song by song:

The title track lasts almost 20 minutes, inaugurating a tradition in Yes (as I noticed on "Tales.." or "Relayer") and it starts with some cool jungle-like sounds, just to blow at one minute mark with an impressive melody... I won't get too detailed about its four parts, I'll just generalize a bit: the instrumental work here is absolutely amazing!!! listen to the pianos, organs, basses, guitars, synthetizers, drums, and whatever is in there!... the ryhthm and tempo change several times, acording to the "mood" the song is in (RICK WAKEMAN'S main duty in this album) and I personally found the drum-n-bass work impressive, listen to those drums!. A part that deserves a mention: 8:00 to 14:00, that church-organ! I found incredible how they could put that kind of instrument in the middle of a song and make it all seem cohesive! The backing vocals between the church organ solos, along with JON ANDERSON's powerful voice (yet he has undecifrable lyrics... believe, that ain't a problem) are jaw-dropping. Towards the end of the song, ANDERSON starts singing on higher notes, giving the idea of a "grand finale" and the instruments stop playing around the 17:30 mark, returning to the jungle-like sounds.

Then comes what I consider one the best songs ever made, and clearly the best in prog-rock: And You And I... it's beyond any explanation. A 10-minute ballad, it is also divided in 4 parts, but I won't get detailed about it either... in a few words: everything at its best. It starts with Howe fooling around with harmonics, then bass and drums come in, and the 12-string delivers a stunningly beautiful ring. To complete, WAKEMAN's synths (simulating some kind of flute) as a nice compliment to all of the instrumentation mentioned before. Then, ANDERSON's lyric start. That maybe the BEST intro to a song ever made, I still can't tell you why, you must listen, it is so beautiful it can't be described... this one doesn't have as much tempo changes as the title track, it's quite mellow and kinda "simple"... check out for example the perfect ending (part 4, "Apocalypse"). That's the key word to define it: Perfect!!!

Finally, closing the album, last but not least, "Siberian Khatru"... Yes rocking out!! yeahhhh that's right... a very cool one, last almost 9 minutes, and it's fast and rocking, with some slower parts, with an acoustic guitar, among the fast parts (like I said before, maybe Yes major virtude, cohesion). It features an eletric sitar, a Chinese-like hapsichord and an almost funky guitar!! the bass and drums, like always, marking the pace and doing one stunner of show... It's a great ending for the album, and it has such a positive feel it's almost certain you're gonna turn off your CD player smiling...

Well, that's about it... a few listens should work. A desert island album? Definitively! So far it beats every album I know from my favourite bands.. It's probably Yes' pinnacle as a prog-rock band...

santiagoprog | 5/5 |


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