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Yes - Going for the One CD (album) cover

GOING FOR THE ONE

Yes

 

Symphonic Prog

4.04 | 1446 ratings

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Fishy
Prog Reviewer
4 stars In many ways "Going for the one" was a welcome back for Yes. After "Relayer" all band members released solo albums which weren't exactly living up to expectations. In 1976 punk was spotted for the first time and one of the fenomena these young angry people were reacting to was the dinosaur groups of the previous generation and Yes was one of them. Nevertheless Yes released a great album on which they reinvented their sound without compromising to the sound of the late seventies. Wakeman was back on board and this brought a revitalising effect on the band and this is surely noticeable in the music.

Remarkable but true, the title track is the least enjoyable. Clearly penned by Anderson the vocal line is the centre of the song. Although being far from bad, the melody lacks some variety. The arrangement is too chaotic to enjoy every musical part. Wakeman's piano is pure rock and roll and that's also the case for some of Howe's guitars but later on both of the musicians seem to have forgotten they play in a band. Yes is one of the only bands who are able to play their own melodies at the same time while it still sounds good. Well.here it could have been better on some moments. Still not a bad song tough.

"Turn of the century" is one of my all time favourite Yes songs. A delicate song which works the best when listening to it by candlelight. Anderson's angelic vocal lines are carrying the song and the melodies are outstanding. Even if you haven't the foggiest idea what he's singing about, you'll be carried away by his convincing way of putting the words out. The tender acoustic guitar lines and virtuous piano playing are extremely beautiful from start to finish, sometimes taking over the vocal melodies, sometimes accompaniment to it. The second part of the song has more power and several highlighted moments which include some fascinating duels between the piano and stunning electric guitar solo's. Near the end of the song the calm, stylish atmosphere from the beginning is recaptured

I've been told "Parallels" was a leftover from the solo outing of Squire and it may well be, the style matches perfectly the sound of "Fish out of water". The big church organ chords were used as a fundament for this powerful track. Howe's excellent guitar playing, on top of the organ, sounds spectacular. Parallels is a fast song full of vitality which is a proof that the band used the three years hiatus well for regaining inspiration. The band is energetic like hell, it simply rocks ! Once again the arrangements are full of instruments playing at the same time only this time, it is sounding harmonic. The melody of the song is fascinating and catchy. Also the quality of the backing vocals are worth mentioning. Can't believe this didn't make it as a permanent concert classic.

"Wonderous stories" is one of those typical Anderson hippy songs, a beautiful melody with wealthy arrangements which includes some spectacular guitar and harp sounds.

The real magnum opus of this record is "Awaken". An adventurous piece of music with quiet, dreamy sections but bombastic outbursts as well. It starts of with astral tendencies through the angel voice of Anderson and universal sounds provided by Howe and Wakeman. The song goes on with a hypnotic preacher fragment of Anderson with virtuous guitar solo's underneath. This song defintely is Howe's finest moment of the album. The next instrumental break is brilliant, setting the scene for something big to come. When the voice returns it seems ready to rise to heaven. Instead of a climax this is followed by one of the most splendid musical moments Yes ever did. I don't believe anyone has illustrated a sunrise so well. The first sunbeams are just a simple ticking on a triangle but then...every moment sees the birth of some other moving melody or motif provided by keyboards, a harpe, a hypnotic acoustic guitar chord, . This has some trademarks of ambient music avant la lettre. Gradually the sounds are multiplied andl the tension is building up to an overwhelming climax which leaves you breathtaking. This is the best dinosaur track the band ever done. Every second is pure magic ! This track is grabbing the mentality of the seventies perfectly ; evolving from hippy ideals or religious awareness to more personal unfolding like meditation or introspection.

On "Going for the one" Yes finds the perfect balance between musical virtuosity and accessible songs. Most of the tracks are quite short to Yes terms. The sound they are using is fresh like spring, Anderson seems to be in full charge of the song writing. The other members are contributing lots of musicality but little in song writing. The result of this formula is more conventional compositions apart from "Awaken" . I don't mind that as long as it works out fine, maybe on the title tracks someone should have tempered Anderson a bit but all the other tracks are marvellous. The only real weakness of this album is the rather flat sounding production. Most notably the drums aren't coming through like they should. They shouldn't have sacked Orford, the guy knew how to make the band sound. What's the most different when comparing with other Yes albums are the sound of the keyboards ; Wakeman uses lots of church organs and a varied series of new sounds which hasn't occurred before on a Yes record till then. Also the guitars are sounding more elaborate and gentle then before. On a track like "Turn of the century" it's suitable but sometimes there should have been more power. Although I don't consider any Yes album to be perfect, this comes close. The compositions on earlier efforts may be more ambitious, I played this one a lot more than the others. The compositions are easier to get in to, the melodies are inspired, the arrangements are enriched by eastern influences and there's a fully blown symphonic sound present. The joy of playing music is spattered all over this album. I assume it's the return of Wakeman which had this effect on the band. I've been told he wasn't even a full member of the band at the time of recording this wonderful album, he just happened to drop in and was invited to join them for old time sake. Well I guess one thing led to another. 4,5 stars

Fishy | 4/5 |

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