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Yes - Open Your Eyes CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

2.03 | 770 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Prog Reviewer
1 stars The second large disappointment by Yes in the '90s. The first was Union, where fans were teased by the idea of the two Yes' combining. This one was disappointing, because it came on the heels of Keys to Ascension, the albums that finally gave Yes fans hope in great new Yes music that they might not have had since Trevor Rabin joined the band. The Studio tracks on the two KTA albums had been a big return to form, and so, with this their first studio album proper since that period of time, fans could not be blamed for having high expectations.

Thankfully, there was no Roger Dean artwork this time. I say thankfully, because it gave Yes fans a warning. Yes hadn't even really tried with the album arts, so Yes fans had time between when they picked this up at the record store and when they got home to wonder why that might be. To wonder if perhaps the music wasn't the return to form that they had hoped.

In this way, they wouldn't feel quite as disappointed when they played the album for the first time. It starts off alright, if not particularly amazing - up until Universal Garden, it is enjoyable, although nothing comes close to the quality of music that Yes had released prior to that point. But after that point, the music just doesn't work anymore. And being familiar with the story behind this album - that like 90125, it was music not originally intended as Yes music, might make that make a bit more sense. Rick Wakeman's absence (for the fourth time now) might have warned some listeners, although I find that the keyboardist rarely matters in Yes music, for all the keyboardists before this point had been good. But having two new members - Igor Khoroshev on some tracks, and Billy Sherwood joining Steve Howe on guitar and Igor on keys - pretty much tossed the idea of the classic lineup re-uniting out the window. Unlike many previous members, on this album, the new members didn't take the band in a great new direction - a new direction, for sure, but one that not many fans can appreciate.

When I first inserted the disc into iTunes and the fact that the final track was 20 minutes was revealed to me, I was actually excited. Another Yes epic? Surely this album could not be as bad as everyone claimed it was. But it is not an epic in the way that any would expect. It is, in fact, just water sounds with occasional vocals from Open Your Eyes sung overtop. If they had had music from other Yes albums, it might have been a nice moment, a neat medley of the highlights of their career. But with the music being from this album, one of Yes' worst, it is merely tedious.

Overall, even Yes fans should steer clear of this album, and leave it for the completionists.

TheGazzardian | 1/5 |


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