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Anderson Bruford Wakeman  Howe - Evening of Yes Music Plus CD (album) cover


Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe


Symphonic Prog

3.40 | 92 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars A young person's guide to Yes

With only Chris Squire missing from the "Close to the edge" Yes line up, it makes sense that ABWH chose to emphasise that this was a Yes tour in all but band name. Bass playing duties for this live album are undertaken by Jeff Berlin, although you'd be hard pressed to find him getting due credit on the sleeve notes.

The opening "Firebird suite" is replaced by "Benjamin Britten's Young persons guide to the orchestra", which links into the old Yes number "Time and a word". The opening segment is surprisingly mellow and acoustic, with an unplugged "Owner of a lonely heart" leading to an early acoustic guitar session from Howe. I suspect the track order here does not reflect the live performances, and has been put together with a view to creating a coherent album.

Many of the old favourites are played, including "Close to the edge", "And you and I" "Heart of the sunrise", and "Roundabout". They are excellent if faithful renditions, but with the large number of live Yes albums available, it is questionable whether these versions should be deemed "essential".

Steve Howe's solo spot includes the ubiquitous "Clap" (according to Howe not "THE clap" as it is commonly known!) and "Mood for a day", while Wakeman's is more diverse including "Merlin" from "King Arthur", and the moving "Gone but not forgotten".

There are of course several tracks from the sole ABWH studio album, including "Birthright", "Themes", and the excellent "Brother of mine". Whether the live performance adds anything to the studio versions is however doubtful.

In all, a very good but hardly essential live Yes album.

Easy Livin | 3/5 |


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