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Yes - Fly From Here CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.41 | 1059 ratings

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3 stars Not the best Yes for me.......but each to their own. This is a pleasant album; I think I should be clear on that score from the start. Highlights for me are Trevor Horn's production, Benoit David's vocal performance and Steve Howe's guitar work. Awesome! But unfortunately for me the sum of the individual parts is not greater than the whole and the album - having listened now half a dozen times - doesn't inspire me or motivate me to listen again with anticipation of something that is special. Because new Yes albums WERE special once upon a time.

Track highlights for me are 'Sad Night at the Airfield' (beautiful melody and harmonies) and 'Bumpy Ride' (the most progressive they get on this album) and yet the much lauded long track 'Fly From Here', divided into 6 parts (two of which I've already mentioned) is no more than seperate songs that segue quite awkwardly into each other rather than a long track exploring sounds, textures, moods and progression. 'Madman at the Screens' is promising yet is far too repetive and screams of 'Machine Messiah' light. It's all rather sterile. And I've never understood why Steve Howe - however great a guitarist the man is - feels compelled to deliver what is a solo piece of work on a Yes album. He's done it before with 'The Clap' and I guess at least with 'Mood for a Day' on Fragile, all Yes members of the time were guilty of the same. But here, for what is undoubtedly meant to be a team effort, Steve's solo work 'Solitaire' stands out like a sore thumb.

Had this album been released under the umbrella of another group, I think I might have responded more positively than I have done. Three stars is not a bad result yet the reason it doesn't get more is for the simple fact that as a Yes album it doesn't stand up to the brilliance of previous works. 'Magnification' - now ten years old - was awesome. Yes were still experimenting and the resulting album with orchestra and subsequent symphonic tour was worthy of five stars, so I'm not simply harkening back to the glory days of the early 70s. But 'Magnification' had Jon Anderson stamped all over it and 'Fly from Here' does not. I'm not saying that Jon's songwriting would make all the difference, but on past evidence Jon delivers what I regard as something unique to the Yes stable and no-one has managed yet to fill his shoes. Yes remain a class act but the edge has been lost for now.

Baggiesfaninuk | 3/5 |


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