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TALK

Yes

Symphonic Prog


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Yes Talk album cover
3.03 | 675 ratings | 65 reviews | 10% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential


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Studio Album, released in 1994

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. The Calling (Rabin - Anderson - Squire) (6:56)
2. I Am Waiting (Rabin - Anderson) (7:25)
3. Real Love (Squire - Rabin - Anderson) (8:49)
4. State Of Play (Rabin - Anderson) (5:00)
5. Walls (Rabin - Hodgson - Anderson) (4:57)
6. Where Will You Be (Rabin - Anderson) (6:09)
7. Endless Dream (Rabin - Anderson) (15:44):
a) Silent Spring (Instrumental) (1:56)
b) Talk (11:56)
c) Endless Dream (1:58)

Total Time: 55:02

Bonus track on 2002 Collector's Edition:
8. The Calling (Special Version) (8:08)

Lyrics

Search YES Talk lyrics

Music tabs (tablatures)

Search YES Talk tabs

Line-up / Musicians

- Jon Anderson / vocals
- Chris Squire / bass and vocals
- Tony Kaye / keyboards
- Alan White / drums
- Trevor Rabin / guitars, keyboards and vocals

Releases information

CD Victory Music 383-480-033-2 (1994)

CD Collector's Edition: JVC Victor International Inc. / Spitfire Records SPT 15209-2 (2002). Contains 1 bonus track.

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Tarcisio Moura for the last updates
Edit this entry

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YES Talk ratings distribution


3.03
(675 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(10%)
10%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(27%)
27%
Good, but non-essential (37%)
37%
Collectors/fans only (16%)
16%
Poor. Only for completionists (10%)
10%

YES Talk reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars Contains an overlooked Yes masterpiece

Yes were really in turmoil around the time this album came out. Anderson, White and Squire are still present, but Howe, and Wakeman have gone off separately in other directions. In their place, Trevor Rabin comes in to contribute guitar, production, engineering, co-writing of the songs, keyboards, vocals, and programming (not to mention running the canteen, and curing all know diseases!), and Tony Kaye returns with his Hammond organ.

The resulting album is more in the "Big Generator", "Open your eyes" mould, than "Close to the edge" or "Relayer".

That said, it does have two quite stunning tracks. "I am waiting" is a melodic soft rock song, the sort Boston are so good at. The track has a magnificent slide guitar riff which alternates with Anderson's vocals on the verses to create a beautiful piece.

Notable as "I am waiting" is, it is easily surpassed by "The endless dream". Had this track been recorded by the "classic" line up, it would by now be a regular part of the Yes live set. This 15 minute masterpiece weaves its way through the serenity of "Awaken", the drama of "Gates of Delirium", and the pomp of "And you and I" to form something which ranks among the absolute best pieces Yes have ever recorded. Rabin's guitar work on the track is superb, and vocally the harmonies are as strong as Yes have ever achieved.

The remaining tracks are more standard Rabin-with-Yes fare. Be assured though, this album is essential for anyone who enjoys Yes, or indeed melodic prog in general, for "The endless dream" alone.

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Send comments to Easy Livin (BETA) | Report this review (#13871) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Review by Guillermo
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Between 1992-94, Yes had the bad luck to sign a contract with a new label which went bankrupt later. The new label wanted the 90125 line-up, so the main responsibility fell in Trevor Rabin, who again did the best job he could, recording this album in his studio, using computers and advanced recording technology. So, one of the things I don`t like very much from this album is the very "clear and clean" sound of the tracks, very processed by studio technology. But the album is still good, maybe the most "progressive" done by this line-up, with also having the most Radio oriented song from all the songs of this album (I heard it in the Radio), "Walls", a song composed by Rabin with Roger Hodgson (ex- Supertramp) and Jon Anderson. The best songs are: "I am Waiting" (the best of all), "State of Play" (the heaviest of all) and "Endless Dream" (Rabin`s "Awaken", as I call it). "I Am Waiting" is a very good ballad. "State of Play" is almost heavy metal, with very good drums and guitars. "Endless Dream" has a mixture of Rabin`s style with some of the old Yes of the seventies. As Rabin played the main keyboards in this album, Tony Kaye`s organ is there only sometimes.Sometimes in the past I called this album "Talk, by Trevor Rabin AND Yes".

Update (21-March-2011): After watching in youtube to some videos recorded during the "Talk" tour, now I can say that this album is the best that YES recorded with Trevor Rabin. But the live versions are much better, less "polished" and played with energy and feeling, particularly in the case of "Endless Dream", with longer guitar solos by Rabin, and "I am Waiting". The only song they didnīt play from this album was "State of Play", but all the other songs from this album sound much better played live. For all these reasons this album now deserves a four star rating from me.

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Send comments to Guillermo (BETA) | Report this review (#13874) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, September 17, 2004

Review by Eetu Pellonpää
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
1 stars The aestethics of the album covers of this record describe it's overall quality from my viewpoint : Terrible! I loaned this abomination from my friend's father, and I was devastated by the fact that the band was still being steered by TREVOR RABIN, and the focus was on commercial oriented pop rock. I'm sorry that I can't appreciate this. But if you are open to this kind of music, maybe you should try to give this album a listen then...

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Send comments to Eetu Pellonpää (BETA) | Report this review (#13884) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, April 01, 2005

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I agree that this album is not one of the best albums by YES but whenever I consider this album with an open mind, it's a very good one. Musically, it's mostly a straight forward rock music but it has some enrichment in its composition. Take an example the album opener "The Calling" which is basically a straight forward and upbeat rock music. But when I look into details there are some important elements that are rarely found in typical rock music. This includes the opening acoustic guitar parts by Rabin or the guitar solo in alternate with keyboard during interlude; it's different kind of rock music. "I Am Waiting" is a nice song that starts with a soft guitar work followed with a bit symphonic music featuring Rabin's guitar solo. This is the kind of music you would never imagined YES would have ever played, knowing their classic albums like "Fragile" or "The Album" or "Close To The Edge". But, forgetting the classic albums, you will find that enjoying this album is quite rewarding. Trevor Rabin, a young guitarist, is a very talented musician where he could infuse the new Yes sound that can be enjoyed by a wider audience.

"Where Will You Be" (6:03) brings the band to another venture in their musical journey as this song is a percussion-based music with acoustic instruments. "Endless Dream" (15:41) is an excellent track which starts with nice repeated piano chords followed with guitar solo and fast tempo music. Duration-wise it qualifies the YES oldies with 15 minutes duration. But most interestingly is the richness of composition the band offers with this track. A combination of piano, distant vocal and guitar works has characterized this song.

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#44545) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, August 27, 2005

Review by Zitro
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars 3.5 stars

This is one of Yes' strongest albums after their brilliant Going for the One and easily their best with Rabin (even if he controls the band here more than ever). This album sounds very different from Yes and sounds more like a collaboration from Trevor and Jon Anderson in the vocal department. The production is perfect, althrough that isn't necesarily good for some prog purists. The moods vary from rockers to ballads to some weird stuff in the epic. All the songs are at least good and have some of the best melodies from Jon on the mid-late Yes career.

The Calling starts the album with a bang! This is not the standard big dumb pop-rocker that heads to the charts. This album has some interesting things like keyboard/guitar interplay in the instrumental section, and the way the outro is done which aren't very common on the radio. Besides that, it frickin' rocks and has some sweet guitar and hammond organ soloing. The choruses are catchy and the guitar riff in the intro and outro is a great way to start/finish the song. 7/10

I am Waiting is a great ballad with some simple, yet effective melodies sung with passion, and talk and response elements in vocalizations as well as harmonies. The instrumentation compliments the mood very well and makes this piece one of the best efforts from Rabin. There are also heavier parts, but don't feel out of place. 7.5/10

Real Love a highlight here with one of the best choruses I've ever heard from Yes. The guitar riffing in the beginning is very interesting and holds my attention while the instrumentation is very inspired and proggy. A similar guitar riff is played on distorted guitars after its first chorus. By the way, the choruses have extremely beautiful vocals. Also, the guitar solo at the end is unusually wild and interesting. 8/10

State of Play has a harder edge with a guitar riff close to metal. The choruses sadly are not as great as the ones in hte previous tracks but they end with a bang and lead to the great verses. There's a neat instrumental section in the middle. 6.5/10

Walls is a basic pop/rocker that seems to be aimed for radioplay. Pretty good actually, but I prefer The Calling. 5.5/10

Where Will You Be is yet another highlight of the album. It is a spacey, celestial, percussion-driven piece with absolutely wonderful playing (including a heavenly laid- back guitar solo at minutes 3-4). The singing here is great. 8.5/10

Endless Dream is overall a well done epic, although not as good as their epics in the past. It begins with a bombastic intro full of electric guitar and fast pianos. The second section "talk" has distorted vocals and restrained piano playing. The great "talk talk listening" melody is introduced here and after a short instrumental break, a weird section occurs. While at first it made me imagine a guitar vomiting all over the studio, I kinda got used to this unusual electronic moment and admit that the arrangements are pretty well done. The talk talk listening melody is played again and is followed by a somewhat spacey part which brings back the piano playing of the first section. The guitars here soar. Talk talk listening is played again which is never bad as the theme is strong althrough the climax is not as strong as I would have wished it to be. The third is a soft finale bringing back the melodies of Endless Dream and those weird guitar effects. 6/10

So there you have it, a strong album that some yes fans didn't bother to approach. This is the proggiest and most inspired album from their mid-late career, even if the lineup doesn't seem promising, and the already good members don't seem to do a lot (chris Squire). However, Jon Anderson sings as good as always with his celestial voice, Alan White pounds the drums with power and style, and Trevor sings great vocals while playing at his best.

I recommend it, it is a great album.

Highlights: Real Love, Where Will You Be

Let Downs: Walls

My Grade: B-

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Send comments to Zitro (BETA) | Report this review (#79149) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Review by richardh
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Most Yes beyond 1980 is c**p so it was quite refreshing to discover this very underrated gem from the early nineties.

This is still the Rabin era but it has a freshness and quality of sound that is far better than 90125 and The Big Generator. Alan White plays the drums as well as I've heard him while the songs are strong. Certainly not one to be avoided.

You might be pleasantly surprised in fact!

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Send comments to richardh (BETA) | Report this review (#79374) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, May 26, 2006

Review by Queen By-Tor
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars As a huge Yes fan I must say I was somewhat disappointed by this ablum. I do like it, don't get me wrong (hence the 3 stars) but something about it just isn't right. This could be the presence of Trevor Rabin as opposed to the great Steve Howe, and it could also be the fact that we're in the 90s now. For the record, this album does sound very 90s, from the mellowness of most of the tracks (both a strong and weak point for the album) and the almost hip-hop beat of some of the songs (State of play, I'm looking at you!).

Let's take at some of the songs, shall we?

The Calling - I like this track a lot, it's a nice little ditty that's not too long and not too short, it has a nice tempo, but I think it could have been better still. Overall, a good opener, and likely one of the best tracks on the album.

I am waiting - This is where the album starts to lose me. I'd like to say I can really get into this song, because it's fairly well written, but it's too quiet, for one, and it drags on for far too long in my opinion.

Real Love - This is a cool song, and I like it a lot. It's eerie, and this one is obne of the songs I think could have been made longer! That's not a complaint against the song either, I think it's great.

State Of Play - OKay, here's what you get when a 70s band tries to land a hit in the 90s. I have a soft spot for this song, because it's kind of fun. However! I don't think Yes should be in this kind of territoy! It's far too poppy, far to mainstream and well... I have things against it like people have things against "Don't Go" from Magnification.

Walls - This is a track where it all seems to come together well. It is, I'll admit, still a little too mainstream, but it's still a good track overall. It's nice and mellow, suiting the mood of the album, and it is still a little poppy. But again, overall a good song.

Where Will You Be - This one is way too much like I am Waiting. Slow and quiet! So... there's really not much left to say about this song... It's the album's absolute low-point.

Endless Dream - I'm going to review this 3-track song as one song. This is a great little 90s "epic" that clocks at almost 16 minutes total, and is where Yes Should have been going on this album. It starts with the intro, Silent Spring, which is likely the best instrumental opener since Cinema, which, even if you didn't like 90215, was a cool song. Ths gives way to the middle part of the song and album's title track "Talk" which is quiet again, but very well written and put together. The song ends with Endless Dream, which doesn't sound much different from Talk. All in all, this song is probably the only thing that keeps me coming back to this record.

All in all this is a record that's good as background music, or maybe to entertain some friends that like Hip-hop. I don't know, whatever you want. I personally think it's a good album in a musical sence, but I think it's a bad Yes album.

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Send comments to Queen By-Tor (BETA) | Report this review (#89679) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, September 14, 2006

Review by ClemofNazareth
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Folk Researcher
3 stars This is kind of a forgotten Yes album in some ways. It failed to really make any waves when it came out in the midst of a heavy college indie and grunge period in music, which is partially reflected in the generic Victory label that released it.

This certainly isn’t much of a progressive work, but it is several standards above where many of the former prog heroes were at the time. And I will say it iis nowhere near as vapid as the previous two albums 90125 and Big Generator (Union only partially counts since it’s really more like two bands who decided to split production costs by releasing on the same album). The songs here are mostly quite mellow, although Trevor Rabin manages several soaring guitar-scream solos that for the most part seem contrived and out-of- place. It’s also an album with compositions that seem geared toward a concert setting. I would imagine there were plenty of disposable lighter tributes in the live shows for this tour, especially during songs like “I Am Waiting” and “Where Will You Be”. One of those two was chosen as a class song by some midwestern American high-school graduating class I’m quite sure. Maybe both of them. And “Walls” sounds like some kind of Peter Cetera solo work for sure. Nothing wrong with that I suppose, but it's worth pointing out.

The music here is much more guitar-focused than the band’s previous albums, and there is a great deal of collaboration between Jon Anderson, Chris Squire, and Rabin on both songwriting and vocals.

The strongest tracks here are the two opening “The Calling” and to a lesser extent "I Am Waiting”. Both are centered on Rabin’s guitar and Anderson’s sappy lyrics, but for the first time in several years the band takes the time to develop each song to include some interesting instrumentation to augment the angst-a-thon singing. “I Am Waiting” in particular has several modest guitar features that are lightly accented by Squire’s bass.

The band revives an almost forgotten tradition of including an extended, multi-section piece at the end entitled “Endless Dream”. The differences between this and some of the epic tracks in the band’s early album are significant. The lyrics are quite trite compared to the majesty of “Gates of Delirium” or “Heart of the Sunrise” or “Awaken”. And the keyboards (where they stand out at all) are very mild-mannered. But the track has several extended instrumentals that highlight mostly Rabin and Squire but are more interesting than two or three more slow-dance tunes.

I guess Rabin and Tony Kaye left after this album, which maybe is a good thing or Keys to Ascension might not have happened. Who knows.

This is a step up from most of what the band had been churning out up till this point in the decade or so since the music started being more about egos and income, and less about music. So it is what it is. If I were discovering Yes for the first time with this album there’s a good chance I wouldn’t pursue them any further. But for long-time fans, this is a good step in a positive direction after several years of really annoying diversions. Three stars is probably ever-so-slightly too high, but two is definitely not enough – this is better than just a collector’s piece. And better times are ahead for the band, at least for a few years.

peace

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Posted Saturday, September 16, 2006

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
1 stars I felt in love with Yes in 1973 (I was fourteen) when I discovered YesSongs. You can easily understand that this album is not really my cup of tea. Their good studio times (IMO) stopped in 1980 with "Drama" (although "Tormato" was rather weak) and they recovered in 1996 releasing some new ones on "Keys" I and II. In the meantime well ...a live album, some compilation ones and very, very poor original work (although "90125" was better than average).

This album is almost as bad as Big Generator ! AOR tunes without heart nor emotion; bunch of loudy drumming, repetitive songs etc. Like "The Calling", "Real Love" (real bad), or "Walls". "Same for "Where Will You Be" : over six minutes of the most boring stuff you can think of : completely useless. "I am Waiting" is just above par (which is not difficult on this album). At least it has a good catchy melody and some emotional guitar play.

The bottom is probably "State Of Play" : hard rock oriented at times, not oriented at all during most of the song : dreadful. Then the suite "Endless Dream" (almost forteen minutes). It only starts being OK after almost seven minutes. So, even this one is half boring. Do not spend any money on this one. One star, what else can I say ? I wish that Yes never produced this one either.

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Posted Saturday, January 06, 2007

Review by febus
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / In Memoriam
3 stars THE LAST RABIN CONTRIBUTION!

I don't know what happened exactly between UNION and TALK, but the 80s line-up reunited tp produce one last album. This is the last TREVOR RABIN appearance with YES, but he will leave with a bang. On TALK, RABIN is not sharing any leadership with Anderson. This is a RABIN album with YES members as back-up band; no less. I think the only contribution of JON ANDERSON is limited to the lyrics.

TREVOR RABIN plays guitar ,sings, plays keyboards (yes,Tony KAYE playsonly hammond) , programs, engineers, and of course produces the album through a computer; did i mention he composes the songs as well?? and of course, i am sure he told the other 4 members that the services of designer ROGER DEAN were again no longer needed, thus back to ugly and dull cover artwork; i guess his choice of covers is not his strong point.

Like any other RABIN-era Yes album, we have a mixed bag of horrible plain pop songs that tend to sound all the same after a while.Trevor RABIN knows how to find hooks when composing, the problem after a while, it's always a little bit the same thing, repeated ad nauseam.

So what's good, what's bad? Let start with the ugly, the cold production of the album.The album is like the cover,it has no warmth, no coziness, that's bland sound with almost all the time, horrible drums on the forefront. And believe me , ALAN WHITE is not being asked to copy BILL BRUFORD; You could have put a drum machine and it would sound the same. Also The bass playing from CHRIS SQUIRE has become almost non-existent. Whatever happened to the old glorious basslines from YESteryear? That's the very bad part.Some songs are irritating like the horrible ''state of play'' or the dull ''walls'' .

But after that, that's not bad at all: ''The Calling'' is classic pop songs but with good hooks and nice arrangements. ''I am waiting'' is just plain beautiful ballad as is ''where will you be'', which could sound like old YES. And for the first time in years, YES comes back with an epic ''endless dream''. I guess RABIN wanted to show that he could compose an epic too as he was about to leave the band. Oh! this is not ''The gates of delirium'' or other good oldie from the glorious times, but that's a very interesting 15mn piece of music with a lot of rythm changes, sometimes hard-rocking, sometimes sweet and peaceful. This is almost a solo piece as TREVOR RABIN is in charge of guitars and keyboards and do a lot of vocals l I guess it was his swansong, his testament when saying goodbye to YES.

So with some good parts, some excellent parts, some dull parts and some ugly parts, with a horrible production, i would put classify this album as average..... so let's go with 3 stars. But good news: the great YES is about to return soon!!

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Send comments to febus (BETA) | Report this review (#127195) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, June 30, 2007

Review by E-Dub
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Speaking as a fan of both Rabin and Rabin-less Yes, I feel that both eras have something to offer. As much as the purists may dislike what Rabin had to offer, there is no denying that Yes was introduced to legions of new fans with the more radio friendly of 90125. Although there was a bit of a hiccup with Big Generator, and an on and off again flirtation with the classic lineup, the 90125 lineup reconvened in 1994 with Talk. This is a brilliantly performed album that embodies the spirit of Yes. Sorry, purists, but it really does.

The albums initial track "The Calling" has a pretty driving rhythmic beat held down by Squire and White, mixed in with some excellent exchanges of Hammond organ work by Kaye, and Rabin's flashy guitar wizardry. A very nice anthemic way to begin Talk.

"I Am Waiting" is a bit soft spoken kicked off with an almost Hawaiian-esque guitar slide. Anderson's vocals displays that almost whisper-like tone one minute, but he can definitely turn on the jets when the emotion dictates...and this song is pure emotion. Maybe on the light side of Yes in any form, but I'm not above recognizing beauty in a song. Absolutely sublime.

"Real Love" takes on a more 'grunge" sounding guitar riff and a bit more down and dirty for Yes. Not my favorite from this disc, but they really turn it on for "State Of Play", which is excellent. Excellent rhythm anchoring by White and Squire, which soaring, heartfelt vocals. Rabin really paints a nice image with his playing with both light and heavy sections. Probably the best song on the disc.

"Walls" sounds like something leftover from 90125. Simply a great tune with stellar production and with one of Rabin's best guitar solos towards the end that sounds a bit like Lindsey Buckingham of Fleetwood Mac. The acoustic guitar adds a nice tone to the song.

"Where Will You Be" has a bit of a Tangerine Dream/Shadowfax sound to it. Very atmospheric and low in tonal quality. Not a lot of changes or anything dynamic with this one, but a good song. Rabin (again) displays his virtuosity on the guitar. Nice stuff.

Well lookie here!!! A Yes epic from the Rabin era!!! "Endless Dream" clocks in at around 13 minutes and is divided into 3 sections. I'm sure old Yes fans would still find something wrong with this; however, this is a brilliantly executed Yes ballad. Sure, it's not "Gates Of Delirium" or "Close To The Edge", but it's so nice to see what this incarnation of Yes are capable of when they prog out...and they do a damn fine job. Different mood changes with strong vocal harmonies. This and "Real Love" are my two favorites, but I find the whole disc excellent!

I'm one of a handful of people on this site that enjoys the Rabin era of Yes. 90125 is what really introduced me to Yes and provoked me into getting...well....almost everything they've ever released. I would have hoped that a strong disc like Talk would've seen more releases from this lineup, but I don't think it's going to happen...unfortunately. With Talk you have the best of both worlds as it pertains to West Yes: very melodic with a bit more of a hard rock sound, but lovely balance of layers and harmonies. A brilliant disc.

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Send comments to E-Dub (BETA) | Report this review (#129939) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, July 23, 2007

Review by progaardvark
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars After the Union tour, Wakeman, Bruford, and Howe left the unwieldy group of eight, leaving behind the 90125 formation of Yes. Rabin wanted to reintroduce Yes to the 1990's with a leaner, more guitar-oriented style. In taking this role, Rabin ensured that he would have a hand in every song on the album Talk, released in 1994. The results were surprisingly better than expected for the Rabin version of Yes. This sounded only vaguely similar to their previous works of Big Generator and 90125. Talk was also many miles better than the terrible Union album of 1991.

Much of Talk is again radio friendly AOR material, but it has a good number of longer tracks. Some of these are not very memorable and a few are easily "skippable" events on your CD player. Rabin's guitar work is probably at the best it has ever been. Many of the solos are reminiscent of his Can't Look Away solo album from 1989. He certainly has come a long way from 90125. The best and most creative song on the album is the three-part Endless Dream, timing in at over 15 minutes. It is the answer to what would a Trevor Rabin prog rock song sound like. In my opinion it's the best song under the Yes moniker since the Drama album.

Endless Dream unfortunately does not save Talk from various levels of mediocrity from the shorter material. But it does keep it from being a one-star or two-star affair. Fans of classic Yes will probably not like this album. Fans of the 1980s Yes might like some of it. Die-hard Yes fans will have mixed feelings, some enjoying it, some not. A mixed bag. I think it's fairly good, but not a chance at being essential in any way. Three stars.

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Send comments to progaardvark (BETA) | Report this review (#130312) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, July 26, 2007

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Team
3 stars Let's talk about Cinema's best album!

The first couple of times I heard this album I didn't much like it. I have changed my mind - I now like this album. I find it to be much better than both 90125 and Big Generator and almost as good as the underrated but slightly disjointed Union.

While Union (as well as the Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe project) had represented a step towards a more classic Yes sound, Talk was more in line with 80's Yes. This is hardly surprising given the people involved; this is Cinema once again - Anderson, Squire, White, Kaye and Rabin. But they seem to have been reminded of their past from touring with the masters Steve Howe, Rick Wakeman and Bill Bruford on the Union tour. They feel slightly refreshed here somehow.

While Trevor Rabin's best songs ever had been of the Union album, he continues to (co-)write some good ones here too. Of special interest is the long piece which outshines most of the things Rabin has ever done. It is hardly Close To The Edge, but any such comparison is out of place. This album cannot be compared with the classic Yes albums of the 70's, it must be compared with the relevant 80's and 90's albums. And while it is not the best even of these, it is the best one made by this line-up of the band.

As a Yes fanatic I enjoy this, though not essential for everybody.

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Posted Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Review by Gooner
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars _Talk_ along with _The Ladder_ and _Magnification_ are all excellent addtions to any prog.rock collection. Admittedly, I curiously checked out Yes in the '80s and was sadly disappointed save a few decent tracks (can't throw the baby out with the bathwater). _Talk_ is return to form for Yes since _Going For The One_ and some may say _Drama_. Yes doing as Yes does. If hits the radio...great! If not, so what! :-)

The Calling was the single on _Talk_. I remember hearing it on the radio in London, Ontario, Canada back in the day...and had the same feeling when I heard Deep Purple's _Perfect Strangers_ LP in 1984. They're back! Sadly, _Talk_ was a diamond in the rough for Yes since _Open Your Eyes_(the follow up) was a real turkey(corrected on _The Ladder_). _Talk_ is a pleasant sounding album, very reminiscent of tracks like Turn Of The Century(from Going For The One) and Onward(Tormato!). As mentioned, _Endless Dream_ is the classic here, some parts quite heavy bordering on _metal_ without the cliches. A highly enjoyable set recommended for any prog. rock collection.

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Send comments to Gooner (BETA) | Report this review (#178200) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, July 25, 2008

Review by russellk
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars YES accidentally entered the prog metal lists with this album - or, at least it sometimes seems to me. I'm not sure how else to describe this rather heavy, somewhat turgid and one-dimensional offering other than as distinctly average prog metal.

A series of poor albums had rendered YES largely irrelevant by the time this effort emerged in 1994. The faux-union of 1991 had been abandoned, and YES Mk - er, whatever - had been abandoned. The personnel left were those of the '90125/Big Generator' period, which probably says enough for most users of this site. To my ear this album sits uncomfortably between the slick, progressive '90125' and the laboured, underwhelming 'Big Generator', with snippets of outstanding music unfortunately leavened by sections of insipid AOR and pointless repetition. It's not like YES - of any incarnation - to subject us to so many repetitive phrases. I'm used to creativity from this band, not procrastination. Get on with it!

In the 'outstanding music' camp is the track 'Real Love' - though even this goes on too long without offering meaningful progression of themes - and the superb guitar melody line from 'I Am Waiting'. The latter song is graced by a glorious motif, introduced first at the 20 second mark, a tune to make the heart break - and criminally wasted in a song that offers nothing else of significance apart from this minute-long phrase repeated twice more. I can't help wondering what a great songwriter would have made of this gift from the music gods.

So-so tracks include the three-part 'epic' that concludes the record, a series of heavier moments separated by rather pointless atmospherics; the pleasant, inoffensive opener 'The Calling'; and the eastern-sounding 'Where will You Be'. Unfortunately, their major 'commercial' thrust, the twin tracks 'State of Play' and 'Walls', are duds. If you want it to be played on the radio, it has to be fun, or catchy, anything but bland music that outstays its welcome on first listen. I've never wanted to hear either track again.

Good bits, poor bits, and ho-hum bits do not an excellent album make. At least it's of distinctly higher quality that its two predecessors: with a bit of work, and had it appeared a decade earlier, it might have been a worthy successor to the outstanding '90125'. But it didn't, and few people noticed this release. For all intents and purposes YES was history. And that's where they would retreat to after the poor reception this album received.

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Posted Thursday, August 14, 2008

Review by poslednijat_colobar
PROG REVIEWER
1 stars Oh...awful!Really the worst progressive album by Yes (if I don't count Big Generator,which is another genre).Totally boring and banal;I think the first and the last song are these things,that save the album from absolute failure.They are the only attempts for making something satisfying in this album.Obviously Trevor Rabin is the factor for destroying the musical capabilities of Yes.They have four albums with him and the three of them (without Union) are poor clones of Yes' music.Union is classic for me,but because of Steve Howe.Every little thing from the album goes wrong.The musical synchrony between the musicians and the songwriting are totally poor!.The reason for this maybe is the crisis of progressive rock as whole at the time - the second worst period for progressive rock after the middle of the 80's,which is the worst one.1.5 stars from me,because of The Calling and partly - Endless Dream.

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Send comments to poslednijat_colobar (BETA) | Report this review (#184731) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, October 04, 2008

Review by lazland
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Following the disaster that was Union, Wakeman, Howe, and Bruford quit (again) leaving the future of the band in serious doubt. However, Atlantic Records founder Ahmet Ertegun approached the Yes West incarnation to ask them to record an LP on his new Victory Records label, assuming that the world would rush out and buy son of 90125 in their masses. Unfortunately, it didn't quite work out like that - the album was very poorly publicised, the critics all but ignored it, and the label went bust. This incarnation of the band would never record again. Oh well....

All of this is a shame, because this is a criminally underrated album. Rabin did just about all of the writing and production, but, crucially, he allowed Anderson a strong voice in its making that had been absent from previous albums, and Jon responded in kind, producing an incredible vocal performance and willing the band to succeed.

The Calling opens the album in fine style. This is an old fashioned rock track, and Alan White is on particularly good form with loud drums.

I am Waiting is one of the finest love songs produced by the band, starting with a deceptively thoughtful guitar piece by Rabin, opening up to a full blown rock anthem, before settling down again. Rabin is tremendous on this. One of the best tracks the band produced after the so called classic period ended.

Real Love and State of Play are both fine rock epics, and the band really push out their credentials as both a progressive band and a rock band credible to fans in an era when grunge dominated.

Walls slows the tempo down a great deal. This is the one track that survived to CD the daliance Squire, Rabin, and White had with Roger Hodgson, formerly of Supertramp.. It has some of that band's quirkiness, with Rabin and Anderson certainly enjoying a great deal the vocal interplay on the chorus.

Where will you Be is a fine atmospheric piece that again shows Rabin at his finest. The man really did bring a lot to Yes. He's no Howe (who is?), but a distinct vocal and guitar style of his own added to the band certainly.

The Endless Dream trilogy has long been painted as this incarnation's Close to the Edge. To compare the two is ridiculous. It is, though, fantastic. Some exceptionally brooding guitar work, contrasts with Anderson's soaring lyrics. When he sings It's the first time, telling us this life, you realise just what a return to form this song and album are. The Talk Talk section features some fine vocal harmonies and band instrumental interplay. Over 15 minutes of pure prog heaven, this is amongst the finest pieces by any incarnartion of the band.

Very much misunderstood by some fans and critics alike, I would urge all prog fans to get this LP. It really is a fine example of a band supposedly on its last legs shouting out to the world that they still had the creativity and musical nouse to produce a great work. What a shame it didn't translate into vast success at the time.

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Send comments to lazland (BETA) | Report this review (#205867) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, March 09, 2009

Review by Epignosis
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Eclectic Prog Team
3 stars This is a great Yes album that I think gets bundled together with the lackluster music they were producing after the thankfully temporary departure of their guitarist. For the year it was made, it is great work from an amazing band.

"The Calling" Heavy vocal arrangements and instrumentation begin the album after some springy guitar work, and it's clear that in spite of not being a progressive rock masterpiece, Yes had a good thing going with this album. Trevor Rabin's country-tinged guitar licks and Tony Kaye's soulful organ make me forget for a while the glorious days of Steve Howe and Rick Wakeman.

"I am Waiting" Perhaps my favorite song is this fantastic interplay between Rabin's screaming electric guitar and Anderson's vocals. It has a gentle verse with sweet guitar and lovely vocals. This is easily one of my favorites on this album.

"Real Love" This song has an unconventional melody and some great music. The arrangement is full of shimmering guitar and keyboards, as well as some heavy-hitting bass and percussion.

"State of Play" Gritty, screaming guitar begins this throwback to the 1980s. The verses are fast-paced and over acoustic guitar. It becomes a more beautiful and palatable piece of music about halfway through though.

"Walls" A great pop song that I'd heard on the radio a few times (I remember hearing it on the album for the first time and going, that was Yes?), this song has an excellent verse melody and an even better chorus. Rabin's vocals are exceptionally good as Anderson pops in and out between lines. Rabin's sweet countrified guitar licks are also clear evidence that he is one of the best guitarists in music.

"Where Will You Be" Soft keyboards and hand percussion begin this pleasing but somewhat bland track. Once more, the guitar is tasteful and gorgeous.

"Endless Dream: Silent Spring" The beginning of this epic piece, which was allegedly leftover from a 1979 demo, has been compared to "Awaken" with its lovely piano introduction, but this is a darker work, with heavy guitar, thundering drums, an odd time signature and a complex arrangement.

"The Endless Dream: Talk" After the onslaught that came prior, there is a calm. Plinking piano introduces Rabin's distant and thin voice before the music gradually builds. There's definitely a 1980s groove to part of this amazing track, but not so much that the music becomes cringe-inducing. Anderson's vocals are absolutely gorgeous over the acoustic guitar and Squire backing him up. The dark instrumental section over halfway in is a tad on the experimental side, with haunting piano and explosive punctuations from the rest of the band. This is a lost masterpiece.

"Endless Dream: Endless Dream" In summary, had "Endless Dream" been recorded with the classic lineup in the 1970s, this would probably get the attention and praise is deserves but doesn't get from Yes fans. The last bit is a soft revisiting of one of the main melodies, and is such a serene way to end a sadly overlooked work.

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Send comments to Epignosis (BETA) | Report this review (#218721) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, May 28, 2009

Review by The Quiet One
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Talk with Trevor Rabin about Prog and this album will pop up in the conversation...

Back in the 80s Yes had transformed into a successful Pop Rock band with some pretty catchy hit singles, however that only lasted for two albums(90125 and Big Generator). When the band or record label decided to join all line-ups Yes had had up to that moment(well, most of them), a new disaster, even more disastrous than Tormato, surged; this was Union (a.k.a.''Onion''). However I'm sure all members who participated in that album realized what was the quality of that album and soon decided to ''disband'' even if they really didn't play all together with the exception on the tour of it. The Rabin-era returned in full form to release another Pop Rock record in the likes of their 80s hit albums. This time, heavier and proggier: definitely not a soft love songs pop rock band they were anymore, Trevor delivers some pretty heavy riffs and Alan White supports a very loud, typical 90s, drumming. Jon and Chris play nicely, though no wonders to be expected, while Tony can bring back some of his prog momentum, though not much, but definitely greater than that from his 80s simple playing.

Talk is indeed a massive great hard rockin', AOR, record with prog leanings here and there, in which culminate with the longest song, Endless Dream, an overlooked gem dealing with Rabin's most accomplished effort with the band, pop sensibilities are also featured, so don't expect a modern Close to the Edge. Though it's indeed unique and brilliant by its own means.

Real Love is a tune that shows perfectly what I mean by hard rockin' and different to their 80's Pop stuff. Yes it's catchy and it's indeed Pop, yet it's pretty dark and daring from what you expect from a typical Pop song, the dark and daring aspects are due to Rabin's menacing guitar bites and riffs including some good back up from Tony's organ.

The Calling is the perfect balance between both sides from the album, being the single, it's a damn good one. A catchy riff to beg for if you're a AOR fan or even a man with sensibilities about good rockin' riffs. It shares, like you may have noticed, the rock edge from its riff and White's loud, unstoppable, drumming beat, while the pop sensibilities are from its chorus.

Buy this album if you're in a need of good pop rock that rocks pretty loud for it being pop music. While also those who are curious about what Rabin could really support to the band, this album is it, you got his superb solos and riffs, and an entire 15 minute symphonic-inspired rock song written by him and Mr. Anderson. However don't get this if you can't digest loud drum beats and 90s style hard-rock. And of course, if you can't listen to any tiny bit of Pop/AOR music, this should get crossed-out from your buy-list.

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Posted Monday, August 24, 2009

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Talk" is the 14th full-length studio album by UK progressive rock act Yes. The album was released through Victory Music in March 1994. "Talk" features the same lineup which recorded both "90125 (1983)" and "Big Generator (1987)". So if we consider the "Union (1991)" album as a project idea, the recording lineup had actually been quite stabile since the early eighties. "Talk" is produced by guitarist/vocalist Trevor Rabin and features a very clean sound.

Most of the songs on the album are actually surprisingly good IMO. Itīs only "The Calling" and "Walls" with their AOR influenced sound that donīt appeal much to me. Songs like "State of Play", the epic "Endless Dream" and especially my favorite on the album "Real Love" really gave me a good listening experience. While the album isnīt overtly progressive there are sections here and there that keeps the album interesting. The vocal harmonies are as present as ever and Iīm actually quite impressed by Jon Anderson and Chris Squire on this album. The musicianship is excellent and the compositions are generally of high quality on the album.

While this is by no means Yes most interesting or memorable effort to date, itīs a pretty good album and a 2.5 - 3 star (55%) rating is deserved. Some albums end up surprising you and the quality of "Talk" was certainly a surprise to me.

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Posted Saturday, November 14, 2009

Review by TheGazzardian
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Bruford, Wakeman, and Howe depart Yes for the second (or in Wakeman's case, third) time, and we are left with the '80s lineup that brought us such hits as Owner of a Lonely Heart and Big Generator. But this time, they actually manage to make some interesting music.

To be fair, this is still radio oriented rock, but it has more prog than it has before, and I must be honest, some of my favorite pop Yes tracks come off this album. (Something about the track Walls has me loving it). But not much else can be said about this album ... the production was a bit slicker, the methods used to record this album were a bit more modern, but it is really just more of the same stuff we've heard in the '80s, if pulled off a bit better (in my opinion).

But there is Endless Dream. Somehow, I just absolutely love this song. From the airy vocals, to the pleasant piano parts, to the distorted guitars, this song always pumps me up. It is the only epic that Yes did during the Rabin era, and it makes me wish they had spent more time writing music like this instead of the stuff that they did in the '80s. This is a great marriage between Jon and Trevor's songwriting, this is them doing it right!

If you are a Yes fan, it is worth hearing for this track alone. If you are not, this album still isn't as bad as their other stuff, and Endless Dream should still be enjoyable. Unfortunately, there's really not much else here to appeal to the prog fan.

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Posted Saturday, December 12, 2009

Review by thehallway
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars I don't like this album because it doesn't like me. I listen to it and find no [major] flaws, yet theres a feeling it gives me which makes me very disastisfied. The cutting edge production may have something to do with it. It's so clean and processed that you can tell (without knowing beforehand) that it's been recorded track by track, overdub by overdub, as opposed to "live". I get an image of Trevor Rabin frantically pressing buttons on a home pc while various Yes members enter the studio one at a time and lay down their part. It's just not very real.

Once I get past this hurdle, the music itself has little to offer as well. The first few songs are a compositional improvement from previous 'Yes-West' albums, or they seem to be on the surface anyway. But their lengths are actually rather unecessary; themes are repeated too often and nothing is developed in an original or "un-generic" way. The more radio-friendly tracks are dire (in a really cringe-worthy way, not like the '90125' singles which actually had some groove). Then there is 'Endless Dream'. The structure of this 15-minute let down is VERY amateurish, with random gaps in the music where Rabin shows off his production skills and clever sound effects. It could be appropiately cropped and become an epic 10-minuter with a much better pace. The artwork for 'Talk' (if you can call it that) is childish [lazy], and the members of Yes sound constantly confused or bored throughout the whole album. Only Rabin knows what he's doing, but it's him that is responsible for general poor quality. Unlike an album where you can ignore anything you don't like, I actually feel like these songs were designed to annoy me; it has this hidden darkness about it that forces me beyond mere indifference.

I gave 'Talk' a fair chance, listening to it over and over. But it's one of the few albums where my first impressions haven't changed. And my first impressions were that Trevor Rabin accidentally wrote the word Yes on his evil 1994 solo album.

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Posted Thursday, April 22, 2010

Review by Sinusoid
PROG REVIEWER
1 stars There really isn't that much to say.

Having been a Yes fan for quite some time now, and having exhausted much of their classic discography, I was due for a major disappointment from them. The only era I had not yet sought out was the Trevor Rabin era. However, I've had slight familiarity with scattered songs from 90125, BIG GENERATOR, and UNION, all of them being shallow or annoying. I had not heard anything from TALK before buying, and I have been told that TALK is the best Rabin-era Yes album. I took a chance.

To say I felt duped would be too insulting, so let me say that TALK is one of the most deceiving albums I have purchased. We're not in prog territory here; we're in the lame 90's pop arena. Even if I've heard later Yes albums chronologically, this batch of tunes contains the worst Jon Anderson vocals I've ever heard. The backing vocals aren't cringeworthy, but follow the corniest patterns. Being more of a pop record, the instruments are all subdued save for ''Silent Spring'' and a couple of solos in ''The Calling''; I sometimes wonder if Tony Kaye acutally played on the album because he's only credited with playing the Hammond organ, and that instrument only shows up in patches.

The most insulting thing about TALK is that most songs are hideously longer than they need to be. I will always be waiting for ''I Am Waiting'' and ''Real Love'' to go somewhere, but neither do; just two sterile pop songs with prog lengths. Most of the rest, save the epic, fall into banal, forgettable pop. ''Endless Dream'' had a chance to save the album from doom; it's length alone made you think of the Yes of old, and on ''Silent Spring'', the band is finally able to cut loose and lay out a full frontal assault on your ears. Even the main ''Endless Dream'' starts off nicely with a quiet piano section. However, by minute two, we're in overly dressed AOR territory with the most sterile sound Yes has ever embraced. ''Endless Dream'' slowly de-generates itself over the elongated fifteen minutes it's given.

Yes let me down here. It sounds as if they're trying to look hip and cool to the 90's youngsters by catering to their musical style. Unfortunately, it sounds so awkward coming from a band that gave us tracks like ''Perpetual Change''. It's like if your grandmother started speaking in texting lingo to impress you. It just doesn't work. Unless AOR is your thing, stay away.

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Posted Monday, July 19, 2010

Review by Tarcisio Moura
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Talk is a kind of īforgottenī Yes album. It made no impact at all when it was released and even fans donīt usually mention much about this CD. Even if the line up was the the same as the highly commercial successful 90126 and Big Generator, the timing seemed to be wrong. After all it was the year of the grunge movement and I guess most long time fans were tired of so many personell and musical changes. After that frankesntein project called Union, people seemed to get fed up with Yes. And I canīt say I was not one of them. I only got this CD a few weeks ago. And I must say I was surprised by the good quality of this work.

Unlike a lot of latter day Yes albums, this one does not have a few good tracks in the beginning and then boring or repetitive stuff to fill it up. All the songs here are good and although the quality varies, none is really bad or even weak to my ears. Ok, this is not up to their classic stuff (except one, see more about it below) and the sound here is quite different. This is Trevor Rabinīs brain child: the guy wrote just about everything (Anderson and Squire do share some credits, but after reading the story behind this album on the book Close to The Edge, The Story Of Yes, I believe their contributions were minimal). Rabins also plays all the guitars, most of the keyboards, sings a little, does the production, programming and engineering. So it is no wonder that sometimes Talk sounds like a Rabinīs solo album backed by Yes. Considering the groupīs last effords, that was not a bad idea.

I was not expecting much. Most of the sutff here is not surprisingly similar to their early 80īs output, but definitly Rabin seemed to be in tune with the times and the album is much more guitar oriented (the keyboards are always in the background). But they did produce one great song: the epic Endless Dream is one of Yes best tunes ever: a wonderful symphonic track in all its glorious 15 minutes. I agree with the reviewer who said that if it was recorded by the classic line up it would be feature in any best of compilation. This track alone is worth the price of the CD. But there is more, even if a bit AOR-like much of the time. Songs like State Of Play and Real Love are other highlights. And the remaining ones are all good, with some great vocal harmonies and very good playing. The down side of the CD is the drum sound: too mechanical for my liking. Production overall is quite good.

Conclusion: not one of Yes best albums, of course, but still much better than I thought. Different, but very good. A nice goodbye to the Trevor Rabin era. If you liked 90125 and Big Generator then you should not miss this one. Rating: 3.5 stars.

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Posted Monday, September 06, 2010

Review by snobb
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars In mid 90-s Yes became a half-forgotten dinosaur, living from his past more than from some new music they could release. It looked no-one expected they can record something at the level of their works from mid 70-s, and as rule such expectation have their confirmation with each new band's release.

Talk is Yes characteristic recording from that period of time. Being one of inventors of keys/synth based bombastic melodic rock, they transformed their experience to sound music market requested in 90-s.

In all this album isn't bad, but musically it's really different from symphonic prog. Keyboards-led melodic pop-rock with soft-rock and some pure pop elements it is. Being an experienced and skilled musicians, music they play is of good quality even if genre is such faceless and hopeless, as stated above.

Compositions are all straightforward, music is simplified till maximum, but Anderson's vocals still sound great and album just confirms even such ersatz music could be played at professional level.

Hardly could imagine any real prog rock fan will be satisfied by listening of such Yes version, but from other hand big army of melodic pop-rock fans can be really attracted by this music's level of quality. Possibly, not a bad release for newcomers to prog (from pop music side).

My rating is 2+.

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Posted Thursday, November 04, 2010

Review by octopus-4
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR RIO/Avant/Zeuhl Team
3 stars At least there is a sort of continuity from 90125 to this album. It's evident since "The Calling". Rabin's songwriting is a trademark, one can like it or not, but this is the sound of YES in the 80s and the 90s.

It's the western side of YES, so this album can't be different from what it is. It's the pop side of the band, but as in 90125 and in Union, it doesn't mean bad. ( I can't say the same of Big Generator).

The melodies are catchy and even the instrumental interludes are "easy" compared to what Steve Howe and Peter Banks before have made us used to in the early days. Is it bad? No, it's just different. I think the reason of the quite poor ratings given to the YES albums after Drama are because of fans disappointment, but would those discs have been released by anybody else, they would probably be considered differently.

Try to imagine "I Am Waiting" sitting in a neo-prog album and not sung by Anderson. How would you rate it? What I mean is that from an absolute point of view this is a good album with some highlights and without moments really weak. Forget that under this name have been released things like The Yes Album, CTTE and TFTO. This is a different band that makes different music.

This album is an improvement respect to Big Generator (easy to be) and Union. I don't consider ABWH as that's another band again.

"Real Love" is more interesting than most of the songs on the two mentioned albums, and not so pop, too regardless the very catchy chorus.

"State of Play" and "Walls" are the poppier songs, and the second is effectively TOO POP, but a radio-friendly song in an album can be tolerated.

"Where Will You Be" seems to be more an Anderson's effort. It's the kind of songs that are easy to find in his solo works, including the excellent Olias of Sunhillow. I cosider it a highlight.

"Endless Dream " would have been a side-long song in the vinyl era, now it's just a long one. This track is the only one reminding really to the old masterpieces. I can't compare it to CTTE, but after the chaotic intro that reminds to the more famous intro of CTTE, Anderson sings a melody over a piano. It's not Wakeman, but this song sends me to "Going For The One" (The album not the song). The main theme of The Calling is reprised by the piano, like this song is closing a circle. Well it's not a concept album (or if it is I'm not aware), however reminds of this kind are typical of concept albums.

3 stars, but rounded down.

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Posted Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JazzRock/Fusion Teams
1 stars This album just might beat "Open Your Eyes" as the worst Yes album of all time. If you took away Endless Dream it would certainly have that prize. The first six tracks are drab, forgettable, uninspired, middle of the road pieces that do not belong under the Yes banner.

It's so bad it elevates "Union" and "Big Generator" to a higher status.

Endless Dream, although it tries to be a progressive Yes epic, has a problem as well. It's like a big ball rolling down Quality Hill. The first (all too short) section, Silent Spring, is the best thing to come out of this Yes lineup. The second part, Talk, begins as a fair sounding Yes piece, but gets blander and blander as it meanders along, until the ending section, Endless Dream, brings us back to what is wrong with the first six songs.

You know what? Even with Endless Dream, this is the worst Yes album of all time.

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Posted Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Review by Anthony H.
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Yes: Talk [1994]

Rating: 6/10

Talk is a stylistically unique album and is somewhat controversial among Yes fans. After the relative failure of Union, Yes found the eight-member band to be untenable and returned to the 80s lineup. I'm not one to defend the Rabin era; I think that his time in Yes produced some weak music that was completely unworthy of the band's name. However, Talk (his final album with the band) contains many strong moments. Talk is a slightly progified version of the pop-rock present on the prior Rabin albums. It's similar to the Rabin-penned songs on Union, except with good musicianship and respectable songwriting. Although there are some glaring flaws, there are many good, and even a few great, songs to be found here.

"The Calling" opens the album in an upbeat fashion with an anthem chorus and some almost country-like guitar. "I am Waiting" is an overlong yet enjoyable ballad with hard-rock moments. "Real Love" is a personal favorite of mine, with an excellent chorus and some strong guitar work. "State of Play" is a boring rock song despite the decent acoustic guitar playing. "Walls" is a poorly-executed track with hints of country-rock. Rabin sings the majority of this song (as if Anderson wasn't good enough). "Where Will You Be" is a relaxing soft-rock song centered on light percussion and a subdued guitar riff. Anderson sounds great here, and Rabin performs an excellent acoustic guitar solo. The fifteen-minute "Endless Dream" suite closes the album. It starts off heavy with "Silent Spring", focusing on rapid piano playing and crunchy guitar. "Talk" begins with very quiet vocals from Rabin over piano, and transitions between hard and soft rock. Solid synth and emotive vocals are in abundance. The suite closes with a brief self-titled reprise.

Even though Talk has some great moments, many factors prevent it from being excellent. There are some weak songs, particularly the atrocious "Walls", and many of the strong songs are overlong; this was most likely an attempt to make the album more prog, but many fantastic motifs end up being repeated and drawn out. Also, Rabin's unexciting vocals are often shoved into places in which Anderson could have been much more effective. This album is far away from the classic Yes sound, but the band managed to do their best with this style. While unessential, Talk is a competent release and is by far the best album of the Rabin era.

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Posted Saturday, March 12, 2011

Review by colorofmoney91
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Talk is a much better album than the previous three by Yes. This album marks strengthened songwriting, which was greatly missed during the '80s. Still incredibly poppy overall, but definitely more fun to listen to. The progressive elements of Yes finally make a return as well.

One thing that is definitely noticeable while listening to this album is that the sound isn't just a bombardment of '80s sound effects anymore. There is actual song writing, and the instruments sound much more organic. The band also start using their technical ability much more to craft music that is progressive, but also fun and probably still appealing to the pop fans that they most likely gained during the '80s.

Like with the previous three albums, there isn't really much to say about Talk. It's far more enjoyable than the previous three, and definitely more progressive with far improved songwriting, but this is another album in the Yes discography that can safely be skipped over. If you were a fan of Yes in the '80 then this album will most likely be very nice to listen to, otherwise I would stay away.

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Posted Friday, April 08, 2011

Review by tarkus1980
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars After the complete and utter disaster of Union, it's understandable that the band took a couple of years off to try and regain some semblance of direction in its sound. Bill Bruford took his paycheck and bolted, never to return, while Steve Howe (supposedly) was becoming enough of an irritant to other band members that he was paid to go away and leave Yes alone. Rabin and Wakeman actually became good friends on the Union tour (it's obvious that Wakeman enjoyed playing YesWest material, as evidenced by recordings from that tour), and there were rumors of both Rabin and Wakeman working together on the next Yes album. But alas, it was not to be. A new record label, Victory, had recently opened for business under the ownership of an associate of Yes, and offered Yes a recording contract on certain grounds. These grounds were (a) that they use the 90125 lineup (so no Wakeman) and that (b) Trevor Rabin produce. It might not have been the direction fans wanted, but it was a direction, and that was good enough for the band.

Now, as a result of this condition, many fans automatically dismiss this album as a Rabin solo-project with only marginal input from Anderson. I fell into this trap once, but actual historical fact shows something substantially different. Fact is, with Rabin in control, he was free from any outside pressures to produce Owner-like hit singles, and this meant he could freely collaborate with Anderson without looking over his shoulder for the disapproval of record executives. The result, then, is that Anderson has FAR more input on this album than on any other YesWest record, and the focused vision of Jon and Trevor produced results that proved that Union was merely an unfortunate fluke. For the first time, Rabin was free to try and help create a Yes album, and in many ways he succeeded. The songwriting is very strong, the instrumental parts are powerful without sounding stupidly generic (like on much of BG), there's a good dose of atmospherics, and the harmonies are nice.

So why only a *** rating (albeit a high one)? Well, for a couple of reasons. The first is the production. It's very good from a technical standpoint, but the problem is it's too good. The sound has obviously been processed again and again to remove any blemishes, and the result is that the final product is sterile like nothing else in the Yes catalogue. It's squeaky clean and completely anti-septic, but at the price of sucking the very life out of the songs at times. It's no wonder then, that when placed in a live environment, these songs suddenly kick like few other things can, whereas here I'm somewhat left scratching my head.

The other problem is that there are a couple of cheeseball moments so severe that I can't help but lower the rating out of good conscience. One of these happens in the otherwise gorgeous "I Am Waiting," where the swaying anthemically beautiful melody is interrupted by a stupid hard-rock break with Trevor's generic screams making me ashamed to play an otherwise wonderful track in front of my friends. The other of these happens in "Endless Dream," during a section that honestly sounds like the guitars are belching and vomiting (even though it's just Trevor processing his guitar sound into oblivion. Bleh). A shame, since the piece is pretty damn much perfect otherwise.

But other than those the problems, the songs are pretty much fine. "The Calling" is an incredible anthemic opening, a jaw-droppingly ecstatic way to resume your Yes listening- experience after suffering through Onion. There's a neat wall-of-sound effect to the vocal harmonies, while Anderson serenades us with some of his usual metaphysical jibberish/goodness over a terrific vocal melody, and the instrumental parts are just fun to listen to. Tony Kaye gets a wonderfully energetic Hammond Organ solo in the middle (a side note: Trevor is credited with all the keyboard parts on this album except for Hammond Organ, which may seem egomaniacal at first but is actually an admission of how it'd been all along in YesWest. Where's Geoff Downes when you need him?), Trevor messes with a weird chord sequence that's incredibly engaging, and in the end it all fades out with a plaintive "In the beginning is the future ..." Wow.

Nothing else on the album ends up as start-to-finish entertaining as the opener, but that doesn't mean that parts of other songs don't exceed much of that one. "I Am Waiting" has some incredibly pretty, emotion-seeped guitar work from Trevor, and the actual song successfully weaves together enough solid balladeering ideas to make three good songs. Again, chop out the "It happened in the water" break in the middle, and you have a pretty much flawless track. In the pop vein, we have the terrific single (actually written originally by Trevor with Roger Hodgson, during the ABWH era) "Walls," with a chorus that will drive many "traditional" Yes fans up the wall but that makes the well-done-pop-lover in me smile with glee. And I'm not about to deny the goodness of the verse melody, even if it is sung exclusively by Trevor.

A few others don't grab me quite as much, but they're still good in the end. "Where Will You Be" doesn't really jump out at me in this version, as it seems to just kinda simmer at a sleepy level, but as a live version shows, it's a neat atmospheric piece after all. And besides, the lyrics are cute in their spirituality, a pondering of where current friends will be when you and they are reincarnated elsewhere. Elsewhere, "State of Play" is a little too "dancey" in places for me, but the main verse melody and the middle eight are just incredible in their catchiness and beauty - the only thing that ends up seriously bugging me is the excessive "sterilization" of Jon's voice when he sings "It's just a state of play" right before a generic hard riff in the middle of the track. And of course, there's "Real Love," the piece that suffers the most from the mellow production. It has a nice riff, a good melody, and I don't even mind the extended ending anymore, but the intensity is sucked out of it as if by a vacuum cleaner thanks to the production. This would especially become GREAT in live performance, with the percussion becoming deep and booming and giving it a drive the piece so desperately needs.

Closing things out, we have YesWest's stab at a Yes epic, entitled "Endless Dream." Jon and Trevor cowrote it, as with the rest of the material, and it should be no surprise that both expressed great love for the piece. It is somewhat derivative from a strictly prog perspective, but nobody here is claiming it exceeds "Gates" or anything like that. The opening is a powerful blast back to progressive days past, with thunderous drumming from Alan and powerful playing from Trevor, while the rest of the piece (except for the stupid guitar sounds in the "Tin Jesus" part) alternates between ethereal ambience and pretty vocal melodies graced with gorgeous harmonies. It is said by Anderson that the vocal harmonies literally brought him to tears while singing, and knowing Jon, I can believe it, because they really are so very very pretty (especially when it seems the voices are just melting around me during the climactic "We call this surrender slowly towards the north AND THIS ENDLESS DREEEEEAM"). And hey, the overall construction is very clever - there are thematic reprisals at just the right time, with effective alternations in intensity and beauty, and a wonderful coda that fades things out. Not to mention that Trevor pulls out some more of his pretty guitar work (a la in the end of "Hearts" or in the best parts of "I Am Waiting"), which makes the sound that much fuller and more powerful. The piece has its flaws, sure, and I was only able to really appreciate the magnificence of this version after sampling a live version, but it still deserves its place among the late-period classics of the band.

Unfortunately, the album sold horridly, mainly because Victory forgot to, you know, PUBLICIZE the album at all. Victory ended up going bankrupt fairly quickly, and unfortunately this has resulted in the album currently being out of print. Too bad - for all the (unwarranted) abuse Trevor has gotten from hardcore fans (and Steve Howe) for this album, it's really quite good.

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Posted Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Review by Conor Fynes
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars 'Talk' - Yes (43/100)

Talk is a point of confusion for me in so many ways. Long before I ever got around to checking out Yes' fourteenth album, I'd heard reports that it was the so-called saving grace of the Trevor Rabin era. Some rose-tinted listeners went as far to say it ranked up there with the band's classic material. This high regard was sharp contrast to the hideously sell-outish album art, which may very well be one of the least appealing covers I've ever seen. If anything, the cognitive dissonance going into Talk made the anticipation that much more compelling. I was excited to find out what I'd think of it- after all, it couldn't be any worse than Union... Right?

It's just my luck that there's no definitive, one-size-fits-all answer with Yes' 1994 would-be comeback. The disastrous collaboration of the old and new band incarnations on Union was a severe misstep, but nothing on that album was as mind-numbing and lifeless as some of the songs here. I mean, it's as if Yes suffered dementia for several songs' length and dawdled into the bleak abyss of Adult Contemporary soft rock anaesthesia, precisely true to what the awful cover might have suggested. At the same time, Talk manages to be a fulfilling swansong to the Rabin era, thanks exclusively to the fifteen minute suite "Endless Dream". You often hear people discussing progressive epics as the centrepiece or highlight of an album. In the case of Talk, "Endless Dream" is just the highlight; it's the only goddamned worthy cut Yes managed to conjure this time around. But all every estimate, it just about makes this awful mess worthwhile.

While the double-casting on Union gave the album a bi-polar strain between their prog and pop sides, Talk demonstrates conflicting halves to a far greater extent. The first five tracks, from the dreadful mid-tempo rocker "The Calling" to the pukey FM fodder "Walls" are a string of songs that showcase a lifeless, anaesthetized Yes, not even going through their own motions so much as taking part in the sterile AOR purgatory for rock stars who 'lost it' somewhere along the way. Say what you will about 90125 or Big Generator; they were far less sophisticated than what Yes was used to doing, but the songwriting was often fun and catchy. The aforementioned tracks are so queasy and saccharine that I can't see the catch or quality from any angle. I've always thought of AOR as the most nullifying genre of music out there, but the first half of Talk is bad even by that standard. I'd suggest that these songs be nice listening for someone on a solitary road trip who found themselves too meek to reach past the middle-of-the-road rock ennui, but that recommendation would make me liable in court if this crap made the driver died asleep at the wheel. I suppose "Real Love" has a decent punch to it, but I'm not going to bother splitting hairs any further than that.

Of the shorter songs, "Where Will You Be" is the only redemption. It's as if Yes wanted to offer a buffer zone between the comatose AOR and the suite; "Where Will You Be" isn't particularly impressive, but it's got a spacey Jon Anderson atmosphere that would have otherwise been missing from the album. I don't even think "Where Will You Be" could prepare the listener for what was to come though! Even "Machine Messiah" didn't impress me this much as the fifteen minute "Endless Dream" as Yes epics go. Even though they're pulling an old card from their sleeves in making an epic, Yes have made the clever decision to make it in the image of their modern incarnation, rather than something made to sound like classic prog. The post-production chopping, anthemic melodies and punchy rhythms all scream of Trevor Rabin's presence, and I'd say he earns the biggest credit as to the track's strength. Even as early as his tenure on 90125, Rabin and the rest of Yes struggled to fuse the classic prog style in with the modern pop, and most often they would come up empty- only 90125's "Changes" begged to show the combo was possible. If Union dispelled all notions that the two eras could function together, "Endless Dream" surprises by actively demonstrating that the new era can potentially perform and compose as well as Yes' original vision.

"Endless Dream" opens with some twisted rhythmic work that quickly reminds of "Changes", and showcases some instrumental fireworks rarely heard from the Rabin era. Keeping in tune with "Endless Dream"'s characteristic as a distinctly modern progressive epic, the studio itself becomes an instrument. The most compelling part of the epic comes about five minutes in, where a recording is chopped and sampled, creating a playfully robotic atmosphere unlike anything heard from 'real' instruments. The epic goes on plenty of instrumental detours, including a particularly intense rhythmic burst around the ten minute mark. All of it is held together by a beautiful vocal hook that sounds even more compelling by the album's end. This attempt to achieve the 'best of both worlds' from Yes' two styles is nothing new, but it's only on "Endless Dream" that they finally achieved it. At long last, the Rabin era offers a righteous retort to any of the purists that declared Yes ended with Drama. As it so happens, Rabin wouldn't be with the band past Talk, so even though they finally managed to achieve something big here with "Endless Dream", we wouldn't see this realized potential pursued any further. Instead, we were left with "Open Your Eyes". Go figure. The world is cruel!

Every positive thing people have said about "Endless Dream" is well-deserved and true. It's honestly one of the best tracks of both eras of Yes, and would find itself trailing not far behind "The Gates of Delirium" and "Awaken" if I made a list of their greatest tunes. The fact alone that it's the best thing they had created in close to twenty years makes it worth the experience for any would-be Yes fan. Ending on a note like that, I'm left with a feeling of warmth that only good albums give. I wish the feeling stuck, because as soon as it comes time to play the album again, I'm filled with a sense of dread as I'm reminded there's over half an hour of garbage to wade through before I get to the good stuff. I leave this album with two opinions. Sadly, the negative opinion covers a hell of a lot more of the album's width than the other. There's no single, all-encompassing way I can summarize my feelings towards Talk, maybe save for "What the hell were they thinking?" Check out "Endless Dream", but throw the rest of this forsaken album away.

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Send comments to Conor Fynes (BETA) | Report this review (#1234845) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, August 04, 2014

Latest members reviews

5 stars This receives a criminally low rating in PA, whilst the reviewers in Amazon seem to nearer the mark, in my opinion. Of all the incarnations that Yes became, this 'heavy' version suits the band perfectly. It certainly rocks! What's more, track 2, 'I am waiting', is one of the best Prog. son ... (read more)

Report this review (#1113600) | Posted by sussexbowler | Monday, January 13, 2014 | Review Permanlink

3 stars When Yes came out with this record, I was so pissed about how things went down after the 8-man Union tour that preceded this. I was hoping and praying that the "classic" line-up of Anderson, Bruford (or White), Wakeman, Howe and Squire will emerge as the new Yes. What do we get? The 90125, Big ... (read more)

Report this review (#1010158) | Posted by ster | Friday, August 02, 2013 | Review Permanlink

3 stars The Talk album by Yes is the last with Trevor Rabin. It is filled with many questions - how much involvement was there by Tony Kaye, did Rabin re-record Squire's bass parts so that he's almost not on the album? Thoses answers matter, but we will likely never know the full truth there. I feel ... (read more)

Report this review (#913550) | Posted by wehpanzer | Thursday, February 14, 2013 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I'm astonished at the level of antipathy to this album by so many members. Or I would be if it wasn't for the fact that I felt the same way when I first heard it in 1994. I bought it, as I did all latter-day Yes albums, with some trepidation; hated the cover, and when I played it, hated the album. B ... (read more)

Report this review (#911577) | Posted by bruin69 | Friday, February 08, 2013 | Review Permanlink

1 stars First of all, let me say that Yes is one of my favorite "progressive rock" groups. That is why, it pains me greatly to say that no matter how much I have tried, I could not enjoy this disc. It is unquestionably the absolute nadir of Yes' output. There should have been tell-tale signs. Certainly the ... (read more)

Report this review (#823708) | Posted by Enigmaticus Rex | Wednesday, September 19, 2012 | Review Permanlink

5 stars THE BEST ALBUM OF PHASE OF POP YES Talk drew me in full since I first heard time.Not is as good as CTTE or Relayer (and never would be), but is light-years from 90125 or Big Generator (although I enjoy these albums.) Listen to "Endless Dream"and you'll understand what I'm talking about!This ... (read more)

Report this review (#394246) | Posted by voliveira | Friday, February 04, 2011 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is a very underrated album, in my opinion. Is it anything like CTTE, TFTO, or Relayer? No, of course not. Yes's musical style has changed quite a bit since then, moving to more of a crossover prog sound rather than their earlier symphonic stuff. The few albums before this one were pre ... (read more)

Report this review (#366669) | Posted by InClouds | Tuesday, December 28, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The Yes album 'Talk' is a very good album. Most of the songs have very simple structures, actually. The songs will be verse chorus verse chorus maybe a bit of soloing then verse chorus again, maybe a brief bridge, the bridge being sung by Chris Squire usually. Yet, the music is really engagi ... (read more)

Report this review (#321949) | Posted by Brendan | Tuesday, November 16, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars 4 STARS just because ENDLESS DREAM Yes, Endless Dream is a masterpiece of modern progressive rock. A 15 minutes epic track which is fantastic, and in my opinion the best progressive track of Yes since Awaken. It has Trevor Rabin as the main songwriter, but I`m not a purist so no problem with ... (read more)

Report this review (#300458) | Posted by genbanks | Saturday, September 25, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Here is another Trevor Rabin contribution, in the mid-90's which have seen changes in the standard Yes formation. Was it for good or for bad ? Opinions are diverse in the 'around-Yes world'... I personally think it was going away from the classic sound of the '70's but there are still some good cla ... (read more)

Report this review (#276954) | Posted by Progdaybay | Thursday, April 08, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars ...AND JUSTICE FOR THIS!!! I'm here quoting "Easy Livin" review, to appeal for Yes' "Talk". I like Yes' masterpieces of early 70s, I have been put aside from "Union" and "Open Your Eyes", but please consider that "Talk" contains highly enjoyable music, served with over-the-top production (it was ... (read more)

Report this review (#259200) | Posted by ingmin68 | Monday, January 04, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Talk was one of the first Yes albums I heard, and I only stumbled upon it by chance. It was in a bargain bin in my local supermarket, I think I paid only a few euros for it. Definitely one of the best bargains I've made! I remember that I had Close to the Edge and Going For The One before this ... (read more)

Report this review (#231005) | Posted by nikow | Tuesday, August 11, 2009 | Review Permanlink

2 stars The commercialised Yes of the Rabin era return with Talk. From the pop song Walls to the ethereal Where will you be, Yes continues down the road travelled with 90125 and Big Generator......but with even less success. Rabin's guitar work is middle of the road at best. The vocals of Jon A ... (read more)

Report this review (#189798) | Posted by Isengard | Tuesday, November 18, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is the third album by Rabin line-up called YesWest. I'd like to say that this one is on the order better than the previous, Union, which i gave 3 stars because of that amount of useless songs. The band decided to create much more progressive stuff, and even the epic! The result does not dis ... (read more)

Report this review (#178302) | Posted by Resurrected | Sunday, July 27, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This is one of the most controversial and underrated of Yes albums. (similar case as Big Generator) This album is amazing by all means. It uses innovative techniques, shows one of the greatest skills of musicianship that was ever seen even in Yes standards. But most important are the ideas. This ... (read more)

Report this review (#164212) | Posted by stewe | Tuesday, March 18, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Yes totally aren't playing fair here. Opening with one of the most melodic, driving, groove-laden and CATCHY songs I've ever heard, lead track THE CALLING is a total earworm. It's got a hook that embeds itself in your brainpad and stays there for days. Couple that with the fact that Jon is si ... (read more)

Report this review (#162387) | Posted by akercocke76 | Friday, February 22, 2008 | Review Permanlink

3 stars At least for me, the best Yes Rabin-era album... No, I'm not joking. Maybe is the worst cover Yes album but "Talk" has at least three decent Yes songs that you could put into the better tracks made by this band during the last 70's, 80's and early 90''s. Definetively is not a masterpiece, but t ... (read more)

Report this review (#147510) | Posted by progadicto | Saturday, October 27, 2007 | Review Permanlink

3 stars (Two and a half stars, really.) What I hear in the music of "Talk" is TREVOR RABIN's gambit to (finally) create some actual prog music, and while he doesn't fail at it really, Other than that JON's voice is still here, this is not a YES album in any way at all. This is actually a strong album ... (read more)

Report this review (#109385) | Posted by | Monday, January 29, 2007 | Review Permanlink

3 stars This albums not too bad. Definitely better than Union and Open Your Eyes. The production of this album is similar to Big Generator, but sounds even colder. I think Chris Squire said it sounds like a computer because it was recorded on a computer. It reminds me of the old Monty Python sketch a ... (read more)

Report this review (#104771) | Posted by | Thursday, December 28, 2006 | Review Permanlink

2 stars This is the first album by Yes I bought in 1994. Later on I bought "Close to the edge" I have to admit that I listen much more to "Talk" than to the supposed masterpiece of 1972. It is more fun, because of the slight overproduction and the bombast on this record. But to me it is only to some exte ... (read more)

Report this review (#94921) | Posted by | Wednesday, October 18, 2006 | Review Permanlink

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