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Yes - The Quest CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.07 | 160 ratings

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4 stars At first listening I said: What? Let's Step Beyond, and Believe Again, To Ascend to the Light of The Ages. The base of Yes-world (maybe not only to me) was Squire's heavy rock music balancing with Anderson's positive attitude themes. You know: YES (not NO) My biggest problem with the album the lack of these two things: too few moments of real rock music style, and too much ballad-like musical themes in minor chords. Do you know how many songs end with a clear major chord on this album? 2 out of 8: The Western Edge and A Living Island. All the others are pessimistic in a musical way. So there is too few Darth Vader and almost nothing of Luke Skywalker (as Squire called his heavy themes versus Anderson's happy ones). It's mostly Han Solo :-) It is Yes music Minus The Men :-)

Then I had to modify my review several times, because the more I listen to this album the more I like it! I'm glad if any incarnation of Yes makes music, and goes on Tour. They still can make far better music than almost anyone else in our days. No doubt, The Quest is a difficult stuff. There are no such (on the Yes level) straight forward songs like Step Beyond, It Was All We Knew or Hour of Need. The whole material is harder to get into than previous two Yes albums. And overall it takes maybe a longer time while one makes friends with. But - trust me - worth it! The Ice Bridge: After the first two notes I thought I accidentally started to play Touch & Go from ELPowell :-) Thick orchestration, a very dynamic bass line. A plenty of blending of the lead vocal was strange a bit at the first few times. The Howe-Downes duel is nice! Dare to Know: A complex piece of music with orchestra and with a lot of ideas. It was maybe a mistake to promote the album with this. Minus the Man: My biggest positive turn around compared to the first listening. What a bass line throughout the song! Nice vocal parts as well. I like the ascending chords of the chorus, it is very Yes (BEST MOMENT #4). The overall sound here and there is quite thin. Leave Well Alone: Huh, many switches of many themes. I personally love the 3rd part (BEST MOMENT #1), constructing beautifully, dividing 6 beats to 3-3 then Alan to 2-2-2, when Howe lets go his hands on a loosely-jazzy way like on The Yes Album. It could be a next Wurm, if a cathartic end had been developed. Unfortunately they have missed this opportunity. Doesn't matter, I'm eager to listen to this 3 minutes anytime, any number of times. The Western Edge: The finest progressive rock moment on the album (BEST MOMENT #3), with a nice dissonant vocal, finally a bit faster tempo in the middle. Listen to Billy Sherwood! He quotes Squire in a fantastic way on the whole album. Bass line orchestration as well as vocal harmonies! Hats off Billy! Future Memories: A song with beautiful melody, the rock drummer was given a recreation time :-) Music to My Ears: I love the verse, one of the cutest melodies of Yes history (BEST MOMENT #2), second time further varied, decorated. Lovely! I would have inserted this verse once again before final chorus, too. Almost radio-friendly song but diminished chords break the easy-listening. A Living Island: That lukewarm melody in the first half won't be my favourite. In the second half a kind of finale tries to begin but it doesn't really work. They should ask Neal Morse how to do it!

It must be happened this way: Right after recording the first disc the boys have found the book titled "How to play major chords".

Sister Sleeping Soul: The merriest moment of the whole album (BEST MOMENT #5) in a joyful style of Jon Anderson. IMHO it would have colored the main disc. Ah, and Geoff is back in the studio! Fine fills with the synth. While previous song should have been on the main disc, the last two songs should have never been on a Yes record, unless several years later on an album titled 'Rare takes and mistakes'. Mystery Tour: As a big Beatles fan, and tried to search something in common with the Beatles musically, but there's nothing besides 'Love-love-love'. If ever Steve Howe happens to compile an album with the title: 'My best songs', this should NOT be included. Damaged World: A little light music, starring Steve Howe. We like Steve 'cause he is one of the best guitarist in the world, not for his singing abilities. Downes tries to make up what he missed on disc 1 with synth and organ solos.

Each musician plays his part well, Howe demonstrates his full arsenal, Sherwood and Davison are very OK, Downes is supressed to me and White is correct as always. All in all I can hear the hard work in this project, and love this music more and more day by day. I know that everyone prefers different parts from the long and varied palette of Yes history. Personally I'm missing such uplifting songs as Believe Again, To Ascend and Light of the Ages, which were just the perfect way to reproduce the essential universe of the band, fill me with happiness, put a smile on my face, and make me shout inside: YES. Common Steve, Jon, Billy, Geoff, Alan! Keep up the good work!

kepenu | 4/5 |


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