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Yes - The Yes Album CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.29 | 2840 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars A conscious step in the right direction. The band are clearly grasping for bigger, more expansive sounds and really are a lot closer to attaining their goal. The weak link in the chain, curiously, is Tony Kaye. His lively organ work, which made the earlier albums seem so colourful, now seems more of a liability. His dogged determination not to update his keyboard sound restrains the band a bit. There's a bit of tentative Moog synthesizer on the album, but it feels added on as an afterthought.

On the other hand, new member Steve Howe on guitar makes this album a true delight to listen to. Basically possessing the same influences, and a similar bag of licks, as his predecessor, he nonetheless seems to operate on a whole new level from the more workmanlike Banks. His frenetic and relentless playing fills up the empty space, creating a virtual guitar-orchestra on "Yours Is No Disgrace" and "Starship Trooper". He also adds a lot more classically-styled acoustic guitar playing, which is an important development for the band's future activities.

The dated psychedelic feel of earlier albums is long gone. The whole album feels fresh and vibrant. The songs have grown to become grand multi-part suites, offering much variety in feel. "Yours Is No Disgrace" offers variations on a theme, bristling with tension and release. "Starship Trooper" is cosmic and exciting. "I've Seen All Good People" captivated the public's interest most, starting with a gradually building, enchanting folk motif before exploding into a jazzy, swinging coda. And "Perpetual Change", with it's demi-orchestral fanfares, pointed the way towards the future.

In short: this is the album where Yes found their voice.

Progbear | 4/5 |


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