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Yes - Tales from Topographic Oceans CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.90 | 2497 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars A very controversial album. To some people, it's a classic. To some people, it's a crap. To me, a classic. I don't see all the arrogance and exaggeration that some say it has. I only see magic, beauty, great instrumentation and lyrics (with some occasional boring parts, I admit). Just 4 songs, let's see them:

The Revealing Science of God (Dance of the Dawn): it has some riffs from 'Ritual', but more beautifully arranged. Good lyrics, great guitar/bass/keyboards. The synthesizer has a great sound here. Good time changes, good rhythm, good melodies, but not great in general. 3 stars.

The Remembering (High the Memory): beautiful and soft melodies throughout the song. This tune has something special, contagious. Its rhythms are very nice and the harmonies are touching, but it's not one of their best songs. 3,5 stars.

The Ancient (Giants Under the Sun): people say this is the worst song on the album. I disagree. If you consider only the first section of the song, of course it's nothing like Yes's best song, but it does improve throughout. The beginning part is similar to 'Sound Chaser', with crazy keyboards, fast drums and some notes on guitar. I like the way the bass and drums play at the same time, keeping that strange rhythm. Then come some keyboard chords and notes. Then, again, the crazy rhythm of bass, drums and guitar, but this time with some cool vocals. The part from 7:02 to 7:30 is PURELY GENTLE GIANT, they must have been inspired by them ! The song keeps all these rhythms and melodies 'till 12:30, when one of the most beautiful melodies Yes ever created begins. Oh, that marvellous acoustic guitar ! Those powerful lyrics and vocals by Anderson ! Indescribable ! 4 stars.

Ritual (Nous Sommes du Soleil): clearly the best song on the album. It is strong, powerful, aggressive, beautiful, inspiring, wonderful. Alan's drumming is very fast and rhythmic, Squire's bass lines are melodic and fit very well the rhythm, Steve's guitar riffs and solos are very well planned, just beautiful. The song was very well executed both by vocalist and musicians. I really love this song, it was one of the first Yes' songs I ever heard. 21:50 of pure pleasure. The bit from 11:06 to 14:20 is cool and exciting. From 14:21 to 16:56, it's powerful and impressive. And, finally, from 16:67 to 19:50, it's melancholic and emotional. A classic to finish this somewhat underestimated album. 100 stars.

So, although it's not a masterpiece, it surely is a must in you Prog collection. 4 stars.

claugroi | 4/5 |


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