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Yes - Magnification CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.73 | 1099 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

5 stars Like many older bands, Yes was looking for their niche after the glory days of the early to mid 70's had ended. The band had fractured and regrouped several times in the years that followed and produced several albums over the next 2 decades, with different styles and varying results. While never producing a terrible album with their last home run being 1983's 90125, in the recent years Yes had produced some quite good albums (Keys 1 & 2, The Ladder) along with albums that were more miss then hit (Talk, Open Your Eyes). Expectations were not running high for 2001's Magnification.

The first thing I heard about this album was from Steve Howe, who came out saying he did not like it.

Wow, what a shock to the system (sorry)! Magnification's lineup did not have a keyboard player and instead incorporated a full orchestra. Jon Anderson vocals have never sounded better. Chris Squire's bass and especially his vocals have been rejuvenated. Alan White gives his usual solid performance and Steve Howe's guitar was very tastefully done. Larry Groupe and the band melded the orchestra's musical color and texture perfectly with the bands playing. It's not as if the orchestra was dropped on top of the album when it was completed. The bands instruments, vocals and the orchestra blended and traded places in the spotlight effortlessly with excellent results. The sound quality is breathtaking.

The only slight complaint is that Magnification should have ended with "In The Presence Of" (my fav track) and that the lyrics can get a bit lightweight, but these are only minor complaints. I'm guessing that Howe's knock on this shiny disk is that his guitar was not as front and center as often as usual.

Unfortunately, Magnification did not sell well and barely dented Billboard's Top 200 List. Jon Anderson was quite disappointed with the dismal sales and stated that it might not be worth the effort to record another studio album again. It has been 8 years and counting since Magnification's release, so if this is Yes' swansong, it is one heck of a way for this brilliant band to go out.

5 Stars!!

tdfloyd | 5/5 |


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