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Yes - 90125 CD (album) cover

90125

Yes

 

Symphonic Prog

2.92 | 1102 ratings

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daveconn
Prog Reviewer
4 stars ASIA sold millions of records sounding like YES so, turnabout being fair play, YES rejuvenated their career on "90125" by sounding like ASIA. The new version of YES looked a lot like the old version of YES on paper: CHRIS SQUIRE and Alan White invited original keyboardist Tony Kaye and vocalist JON ANDERSON to join, with guitarist TREVOR RABIN the only "new" member. But Rabin turned out to be the heart of "90125" - a brilliant student of contemporary rock who oozed good ideas and guitar licks - and producer TREVOR HORN its brain. HORN makes a point of announcing the band's break with its past right up front: the opening track's arena-size guitar chords and electronic effects declare that the band's once magical machinations are to be replaced by studio wizardry. Using the band's considerable talents (not to mention its brand name) to launch TREVOR RABIN's ideas might seem musical effrontery on the scale of ASIA, but the fact remains that most listeners were willingly duped by the sophisticated production. While some rational part of us knows that "Owner of a Lonely Heart", "It Can Happen" and "Hearts" are nothing more than love songs, the dialogue is elevated to epic proportions by the soaring vocals, masterful arrangements and razor- sharp hooks. It represents a much different chapter than their earlier music, but "90125" is well regarded by most YES fans. Personally, I think the album isn't a good fit for JON ANDERSON; "Hold On" and "City of Love", for example, don't gain anything from his presence. But bringing TONY KAYE back into the fold, even if he sounds nothing like his original self, was a nice move. Even so, the YES moniker is more a convenience than an accurate description.

Critics had long charged that YES' music was pure product, and that appears to be the case here. But what wonderful product it is.

daveconn | 4/5 |

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