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Yes - 90125 CD (album) cover

90125

Yes

 

Symphonic Prog

2.92 | 1121 ratings

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7headedchicken
4 stars Over the 3 preceding albums preceding this release, Yes had started to gradually move toward a more accessable sound and songwriting approach, and it can even be said that they'd arrived at full pop/rock with 90125. It's not entirely devoid of prog, though, as the intro and outro to "Changes" is very complex, with an odd meter marimba riff giving way to an intricate fabric of sounds and counterpoints, and even though all of the songs are pop/rock songs, the production is full on prog, with very full arrangements using really fresh sounds that still don't sound dated (orchestra hits aside) even decades later. It's obvious that Tony Kaye did some serious updating for his keyboards, and there are plenty of moments where I even have trouble distinguishing the keys from the guitars, which are played by Trevor Rabin, a very skilled guitarist who I think has a style that was just right for a band like Yes making an album of songs like these. The thing that really makes 90125 as excellent an album as it is, though, is that the songs are all really good. The song order is perfect, hearing the powerful reverb- drenched choruses of "Hold On" after "Owner of a Lonely Heart", followed by the vividly sonic "It Can Happen", with its electric sitar and superbly mixed Squire bass, going into the aforementioned "Changes" intro, was a great production move. The instrumental that opens up Side Two that's named after the original idea for this lineup of the band, is very Asia-like in sound, but also very progressive in composition. That's followed by 3 more very well produced and written pop/rock songs, and the album concludes with the ballad, "Hearts," bearing one of Anderson's sweetest medolies. 90125 is what I'd call a very strong 4.5 album.
7headedchicken | 4/5 |

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