Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Chris Squire - Run with the Fox (Chris Squire & Alan White) CD (album) cover


Chris Squire

Symphonic Prog

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Bookmark and Share
2 stars I didn`t expect to find this single in the Prog Archives database, but I saw it today in the updates section of this website. So, I`m going to write a review about it. This single was released in late 1981 before Christmas, almost at the same time that the "Classic Yes" compilation album from Yes was released. By April 1981, Yes had split for the first time after the "Drama" album and tour of 1980, and after this Chris Squire and Alan White spent some time trying to form a band with Jimmy Page from the also then recently defunct LED ZEPPELIN. Despite they rehearsed and recorded some Demos for some months, the projected band called "XYZ" finally was found to be uncompatible in musical styles, and they split. So, some months later it seems that Squire and White had the idea to record this single with the help from Peter Sinfield who wrote the lyrics (while Squire and White maybe only wrote the music), and from the late Andrew Pryce-Jackman who did the orchestral and choral arrangements (and maybe played some keyboards too) for this Christmas song, which is good, with some choral arrangements which sound like inspired by a Church Choir. It also has some piano playing (maybe done by White), plus drums, percussion, bass guitar, and lead and backing vocals (with all vocals maybe only done by Squire). It also has a brief melody played with a recorder (soprano flute). I don`t know if this song was played in the radio in the U.K. then (and it seems that it wasn`t released in the U.S. then), but I listened to this song for the first time in 1991-92 when it was released in the "Yesyears" Box Set from Yes, and now it seems that it is the only release on which this single could be found on CD until this Box Set was discountinued some years ago. I don`t know why Squire and White wanted to record and to release a single like this. Maybe they only did it for fun. But I think that now it is mostly interesting for collectors only. Apparently the B-side was another version of the same song without vocals, but I never have listened to it.

Update (22-May-2015): "Return of the Fox", the "B" side of this single, is an instrumental version of "Run with the Fox", but played with keyboards (by Dave Lawson, former keyboard player with GREENSLADE) and with brief vocals by Nikki Squire (Chris Squire`s then wife), and also without the orchestral and choral arrangements.

Report this review (#1083342)
Posted Friday, November 29, 2013 | Review Permalink
Symphonic Team
3 stars "Beware of the rocks"

Run With The Fox is a non-album single released by Chris Squire and Alan White in 1981. The title song that forms the a- side of the single features lead vocals and bass guitar by Squire and drums and keyboards by White. I have often seen the song being described as a Christmas song, but this is not something that is very obvious to me. It does have a folkier sound compared to the music of Yes and I can readily imagine this being performed by Jethro Tull (which would have been interesting to hear). The flute-like keyboard lines could have been well played by Ian Anderson. While it may not appeal to all Yes fans, I like this song.

The title song appeared on CD for the first time ten years later on the Yesyears box set, but the b-side Return Of The Fox has so far never been released on CD and perhaps never will. As the name indicates, Return Of The Fox is a variation on the main theme from the title song and is basically an instrumental version of the same. Most of the vocals have been replaced by keyboards. This one is not essential, but worth a listen for the curious.

A worthy single release

Report this review (#1444058)
Posted Thursday, July 23, 2015 | Review Permalink
4 stars You can skip this paragraph if you don't want to hear about my personal history with the excellent 1981 single 'Run with the Fox' / 'Return of the Fox' by then ex-Yes members Chris Squire and Alan White. I'm not sure if I'd ever heard of this single before seeing it for sale at a used record shop in 1990 or so.* But I snatched it right up, and rushed home to the record player. The song was completely fantastic, and quickly became one of my favorite Yes-related songs. The record itself was a very special item until the summer of 1991, when "Run with the Fox" (the a-side) was included as track thirteen on Disc 3 of Yesyears, Yes's first retrospective box set. Five or six years later, I was driving outside of Cleveland a few days prior to Christmas, and for the first and only time, I heard "Run with the Fox" on the radio.** Then, in the early 2000s, fabled Yes fan Steve Sullivan posted a clean .mp3 of 'Return of the Fox,' the b-side; and most recently, in 2018, remastered versions of both sides were included as bonus tracks on a "deluxe" reissue of Squire's 1975 solo album Fish Out of Water. For the past fifteen (or so) years - - since my first iPod - - 'Run with the Fox' has been my most-played song of the Christmas season.

The music which forms the basis of both sides is an old English carol known as "On Christmas Night All Christians Sing" or "Sussex Carol," while the lyrics were written primarily or entirely by preėminent prog-rock lyricist Peter Sinfield. And Squire pal Andrew Pryce Jackman created the orchestral parts - - all of which in essence means that neither Squire nor White necessarily composed any part of the single. For his part, Squire included versions of both 'Run with the Fox' and "Sussex Carol" on his 2007 Christmas album, which makes clear how much the former owes the latter.

The a-side, 'Run with the Fox,' is the vocal version, with Squire singing both leads and harmonies. This side also includes an orchestra and choir - - for the full symphonic-prog effect. The flipside, 'Return of the Fox,' is an instrumental except for a few scattered chorus leads sung by Nikki Squire (Squire's then-wife, later of Esquire). The vocal line, opening flute part, and choir chords are played on a synthesizer by David Greenslade (of Greenslade, naturally). There's no choir or orchestra on this side. The rhythm tracks on the two sides - - White's drumkit, Squire's bass, and the piano, tuned percussion, and sleigh bells - - vary only slightly.

And man, those rhythm tracks! White joined Yes in 1972, but when Squire recorded Fish Out of Water three years later, ex- Yes drummer Bill Bruford (White's predecessor) was the sole drummer. Similarly, Squire didn't appear on White's 1976 solo album. But by 1981 White and Squire had become inseparable, both in the recording studio and in terms of their interlocking grooves, as made plain on Yes's Drama. White's drumming has never been especially idiosyncratic, but on this single he sounds exactly like Alan White, especially his use of the tom-toms and the kick during his fill-ins. Meanwhile, Squire pulls out a fair number of his usual bass-guitar tricks, although 'Run with the Fox' doesn't have a signature bass line ą la 'Tempus Fugit' or 'Heart of the Sunrise.' Instead, the rhythmic hook is the piano part (possibly played by Squire, but just as possibly White).

And as good as the rhythm, orchestra, and choir are, 'Run with the Fox' may represent Squire's best vocal performance ever. Its closest competitor, in my book, is 'You By My Side' from Fish Out of Water.

In sum, the a-side is one of my all-time favorites, and it's an essential part of any serious Yes or Chris Squire collection. I'd recommend 'Run with the Fox' to fans of crossover-prog and symphonic pop as well, even including those who aren't fans of Christmas music. If you dig it, you might want to check out Fish Out of Water or Esquire's self-titled first album. [4 stars on the 4-star scale for singles - - see my review page for scale]


*This was Atlantic K11695, the UK release with the small center hole and the picture sleeve with the photo of the fox head on the front. In the intervening years I saw a few other copies for cheap, and picked up the German release (with the painting of a fox running in a nighttime winter scene in the cover) and the US promo. As far as I know the music was identical on each record.

**I recall this as a WMMS broadcast, but that may be incorrect, as MMS had (temporarily) switched formats from AOR to Alternative during the years the event was most likely to have occurred.

Report this review (#2285156)
Posted Monday, December 2, 2019 | Review Permalink

CHRIS SQUIRE Run with the Fox (Chris Squire & Alan White) ratings only

chronological order | showing rating only

Post a review of CHRIS SQUIRE Run with the Fox (Chris Squire & Alan White)

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.