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Yes - The Yes Album CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.29 | 2718 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars 'The Yes Album' is when Yes started to develop their signature prog-rock style. As a result, no less than three songs on this record have become Yes classics, and their first two albums were to become mainly overlooked. However, on this record, there is something quite beautiful, and different to the other classic Yes albums. Whilst 'Close To The Edge', 'Tales...', 'Relayer' etc, take themselves extremely seriously, this album has a lighter, more charming feel to it. Songs like I've Seen All Good People make this album sound like it wants to be your friend.

Yours Is No Disgrace is the first classic from this record. In addition to extremely silly (but still fantastic) lyrics, this song has an amazing instrumental that feels a little improvised. The lyrics are repeated in several different moods, adding to the experimental nature of this wonderful track. The main riff is a killer too.

The Clap is a guitar solo recorded live in London, 1970. This piece is a lot of fun, and the live aspect feels much more appropriate than if this had been a studio track. HOWEver, it's still a solo track, and feels a little bit out of place on this record.

Next is one of my all-time favourite Yes tracks: Starship Trooper. This the first track they ever split into sections. The first and second sections contain amazing lyrics and wonderful melodies, but the third and final section, Würm, is by far the most memorable part of this song, and indeed this album. It is four minutes long, entirely instrumental, and only consists of three chords being played one after the other. In four minutes, Yes do the most amazing job of building up to the spotlight guitar solo finish to this track. This song is simply marvelous. The amount of times I've had to get up from whatever I was doing to perform an improptu air guitar solo is innumerable. This is a prog rock song that will never be forgotten.

The third and final 'classic' from this record is I've Seen All Good People. This is split into two sections, which are wholly seperate from each other. In fact the only way you'd know they are linked is that the lyric 'I've seen all good people turn their heads each day so satisfied I'm on my way.', which is repeated endlessly in the second part, is used twice at the beginning of the first part. The first half, Your Move, is a wonderful acoustic piece, with some of Jon's best lyrics seemingly to concern chess. The second half, All Good People, is more of a rock and roll instrumental with the lyrics repeated over it. A wonderful classic.

On the other hand A Venture is a real obscurity! The writing and the musicianship of this song is very clever, but sadly this song is just nowhere near as memorable as it's counterparts on the record. Listen to hear the wonderful instrumental talents off Messrs Squire, Howe, Kaye and Bruford in the outro to this track!

Perpetual Change has also been relatively overlooked through time, but this piece is very underrated. This song is progressive in every single way (look, I'm even using mannerisms from the song). The instrumental that begins at 4:00 is very experimental, and the most remarkable part of the track is when there are seemingly two Yes's playing at once, one in the left channel, one in the right! The musical future of Bill Bruford is prophesied when he plays the exact drum fill from 21st Century Schizoid Man at 0:38. Great prog track.

This is one of those classic albums that you just need to have if you're a prog fan. I know that there is hardly any need for me to say this, since so many people have done so before me, but it's absolutely true that this is a wonderful record.

baz91 | 5/5 |


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