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Yes - Relayer CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.37 | 3114 ratings

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5 stars Yes continued their streak of greatness with 1974's incandescent masterpiece, Relayer.

Relayer is very different from other Yes albums, I like to say this was their most hardcore prog album. If Tales was not your cup of tea, Relayer could be. Yet recorded a year apart, they sound nothing alike.

After the tumultuous making of "Tales" and its excruciating tour for some members and fans, the charismatic Rick Wakeman, arguably the groups most famous and beloved member, quits.

Luckily the band still had some momentum even after the mixed responses from Tales and they were wise enough to recruit another master keyboardist, Patrick Moraz. His influence is all over this record, forcing the other members to up their game. This is Yes in hyperdrive. Jon Anderson still had great ideas and this excellent version of Yes put it all to good use. Each member really steps up their playing. Steve Howe gets faster and more varied and Relayer IMO is one of the best guitar records of all time. Chris Squire keeps pace with is funky Rickenbacker sound and imaginative lines. Alan White proves he is more than capable of playing along side these great players and of course Patrick Moraz, whom let's face it as a player was a couple steps up from the rest.

The Gates Of Delirium. Some would call this Yes's all time greatest achievements. I won't argue with that. Even though I am partial to Close To The Edge. In a time when most keyboardists were still getting used to the newfangled synths that were only around for a few years, Patrick Moraz already had an amazing command over them, creating, at the time, by far the most futuristic sounds and soundscapes. This is evident as soon as you start playing The Gates of Delirium. This tune takes the listener from the hell of war and has you ascending to the heavens at the end.

Sound Chaser. One of the most neurotic pieces of music. Yes in Mahavishnu Orchestra mode. An amazing display of speed and dexterity before Steve Howe blasts off on his own playing an incredible symphonic guitar solo almost as if he's telling a story or providing a film score with his guitar. Alan White particularly shines on this song showing his formidable talent. Patrick Moraz plays one of the best synth solos of all time on this as well. Chris Squire's speedy basslines augment this surreal piece.

To Be Over. This song is often overlooked but shouldn't be. After the crazy maelstrom of Sound Chaser, the listener is brought down by some serene guitar sounds with Steve Howe switching between the violin-like sounds of the volume pedal to a sitar-like sound. Moraz joins in gently before Jon Anderson takes you sailing down the river in this amazing orchestral piece. Lots of melodies and great solos from Howe and Moraz.

Unfortunately for prog fans. This was all we were going to get from this lineup. But at least we got this masterpiece of prog.

ster | 5/5 |


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