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Yes - Drama CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.78 | 1666 ratings

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4 stars Forget everything you've heard, and forget who you think "is Yes" and whether or not you think Yes can still "be Yes" without Jon Anderson. The answer to such questions, of course, is that CHRIS SQUIRE is Yes and that as long as he is in the band, it sure as hell is still Yes! This is not simply "a good album considering the circumstances" (Jon's absence), this is one of the best albums they ever made, and that's not something this die-hard Yes fan would say lightly. After Tormato, the boys seem almost unchained by Jon's absence (to say nothing of Rick), and proceed to unleash one of the most bone-crunchingly progressive albums in their catalog, and without a doubt the best album of 1980. MACHINE MESSIAH manages to redeem "tunes" like Circus of Heaven (Tormato) by being as shamelessly aggressive as Circus was twee, and Chris and Steve's instrumental display throughout the whole album is simply mindblowing. Chris's amped-up basslines dominate the music to a degree not seen since the FRAGILE days (we even get a bass solo!), and Steve's guitars sweep and soar with a metallic edge that is unique unto this album only. In fact, this album gets my vote along with RELAYER for being the most splendorous showcase for Steve Howe's incomparable talent. If you have any doubts as to the progressive nature of this album (1980 remember), just throw on "Into The Lense" and listen to the hyper-rhythmic accuracy of the opening arrangement, and doubt no more. One of my favorite Yes albums.
corbet | 4/5 |


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