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YES

Symphonic Prog • United Kingdom


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Yes biography
YES formed in 1968 with Jon ANDERSON (vocals), Chris SQUIRE (bass, vocals), Peter BANKS (guitar, vocals), Tony KAYE (keyboards), and Bill BRUFORD (drums). Well-known and influential mainstream progressive from the 1970's, and still around in some form ever since, they were highly influential in their heyday, especially notable for the really creative "Relayer", which included at the time Swiss keyboardist Patrick MORAZ who replaced Rick WAKEMAN

During the 1970s, YES pioneered the use of synthesizers and sound effects in modern music. Driven by Jon's artistic vision, they produced such timeless, symphonic-rock masterworks as "Roundabout," "Close To the Edge," and "Awaken". In the 1980s, YES pushed new digital sampling technologies to their limits, selling millions of records and influencing a generation of digital musicians with classics like "Owner Of A Lonely Heart" and "Rhythm Of Love". Moving through the 1990s and into the new millennium, the band keeps expanding its boundaries by using the latest hard-disk recording techniques and, most recently, working with a full orchestra to create their genre-defying music.

YES gained large popularity with their brand of mysticism and grand-scale compositions. "Fragile" and "Close to the Edge" are considered their best works as it's symphonic, complex, cerebral, spiritual and moving. These albums featured beautiful harmonies and strong, occasionally heavy playing. Also, "Fragile" contained the popular hit song "Roundabout". This was followed by the controversial "Tales from Topographic Oceans" LP, which was a double album consisting of only four 20-minute length suites centering on religious concepts. Also, "Relayer" was their most experimental, yet grandiose and symphonic. They broke up, until the new jewel "Going For The One" and its incredible "Awaken" was issued in 1977. In later years, YES would go through many transformations. There were other very good YES albums after "Going For The One" ("Drama", "Keys To Ascension" and suprisingly "The Ladder") but this is the last great album.

These albums can be found under Various Artists - Concept albums and themed compilations :
Yes - Solo Family Album (19...
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Buy YES Music


Yes AlbumYes Album
Elektra / Wea 2003
Audio CD$5.24
$2.00 (used)
9012590125
Elektra / Wea 2004
Audio CD$5.00
$0.33 (used)
FragileFragile
Atlantic 2011
Audio CD$3.80
$2.90 (used)
Ultimate Yes: 35th Anniversary Collection (3CD, Digi-Pak)Ultimate Yes: 35th Anniversary Collection (3CD, Digi-Pak)
Elektra Catalog Group 2004
Audio CD$15.90
$8.95 (used)
Close to the EdgeClose to the Edge
Elektra / Wea 2003
Audio CD$6.05
$3.45 (used)
Tales From Topographic Oceans: Expanded Edition 3 CD+1 Blu-rayTales From Topographic Oceans: Expanded Edition 3 CD+1 Blu-ray
Import
Panegyric 2016
Audio CD$25.28
$43.73 (used)
Wonderous Stories: Best ofWonderous Stories: Best of
Import
Music Club Deluxe 2014
Audio CD$8.04
DramaDrama
Extra tracks · Import · Remastered
Elektra / Wea 2004
Audio CD$3.79
$4.94 (used)
Fragile: Expanded / RemixedFragile: Expanded / Remixed
Import
Panegyric 2015
Blu-ray Audio$15.51
$15.50 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Hollies - Yes I Will / Nobody 7" Single 1965 USD $12.95 Buy It Now
YES Relayer 1974 UK ATLANTIC 1st PRESS A1/B1, GATEFOLD, EX, Porky USD $84.17 Buy It Now
Yesterdays [Remaster] by Yes (CD, Sep-1994, Atlantic (Label)) USD $9.98 Buy It Now
YES - DEBUT WITH INSERT - 1969 UK ATLANTIC LABEL - EX USD $12.94 Buy It Now
YES ALBUMS X 2 - CLOSE TO THE EDGE WITH INNER / GOING FOR THE ONE G/F SLEEVE EX USD $19.41 Buy It Now
RICK WAKEMAN "SILENT NIGHTS" 1985 1st UK PRESS LP (YES, ABWH) USD $5.81 Buy It Now
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YES ALBUMS X 2 - YESTERDAYS WITH INNER / FRAGILE GATEFOLD SLEEVE USD $14.23 Buy It Now
YES-UNION (STANDARD 2CD) CD NEW USD $20.43 Buy It Now
YES 1991 "Union" NEW/SEALED IN ORGNL LONG BOX wHYPE/SELL STICKER USD $39.95 Buy It Now
Yes - Shows: Lp, Vinyl, Free Shipping, SD-2-510 USD $12.99 Buy It Now
Yes : Yesshows empty promo box for mini lp/Jewe lcase cds USD $59.99 [0 bids]
New & Sealed - Audio Fidelity's SACD - Yes "Going For The One" - No. 1989 USD $59.99 Buy It Now
YES THE YES ALBUM GREEK PRESS 1971 USD $23.99 Buy It Now
JASON MRAZ - YES! *NEW & SEALED CD ALBUM* USD $7.76 Buy It Now
HAPPY MONDAYS JUST SAY YES ORIGINAL ADVERT 15 X 11" POSTER SIZE 12 OCT 1991 USD $14.30 Buy It Now
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YES-YES ALBUM (OGV) VINYL LP NEW USD $57.54 Buy It Now
Classic Yes by Yes CD ~ NEW ~ Sealed USD $7.19 Buy It Now
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Rick Wakeman / YES. Five Classic Albums (2016) USD $12.94 [0 bids]
YES rare CD " SIBERIAN KHATRU" ( LOS ANGELES 1974/1987) USD $20.00 [0 bids]
USD $30.00 Buy It Now
YES CLOSE TO THE EDGE ( 1973 GERMANY VINYL LP ) USD $12.88 Buy It Now
Yes - Fragile - CD - Atlantic - 7567-82667-2. Germany. USD $4.78 Buy It Now
RARE ISLAND SOUL LP THE BUTLER DID IT "YES MUSIC" HAROLD BUTLER ? USD $100.00 Buy It Now
Yes Expanded [Vinyl] YES USD $29.97 Buy It Now
[SOUL/REGGAE]~NM 12"~MAD~MADD COBRA~Flex~[x3]~Yes Or No~[x3 Mixes]~[1992]~ USD $5.90 Buy It Now
SINGLE.reggae.EDDY GRANT 1981.I LOVE YOU, YES I LOVE YOU.ensign label. USD $1.28 [0 bids]
JON ANDERSON (YES) and VANGELIS Short Stories 12" LP German polydor 1980 USD $9.99 Buy It Now
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Yes Twelve Inches On Tape RARE Cassette USD $7.70 Buy It Now
MR. DEEDS - Soundtrack - CD 2002 - Counting Crows Yes Lit Weezer U2 Bowie Travis USD $1.28 [0 bids]
Yes 1971 The Yes Album Vinyl LP Album Classic Rock Music Presswell 1st Pressing USD $28.69 Buy It Now
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JON ANDERSON (Yes) - Magazine Poster USD $5.83 Buy It Now
YES AND STEVE HOWE FLYERS X2 - LARGE FLYERS - APRIL 2015 AND 2014 USD $2.19 [0 bids]
Five Star 45 w/ps IF I SAY YES / LET ME DOWN EASY ~ RCA VG+ to VG++ USD $2.76 Buy It Now
Junior 45 w/ps YES (If You Want Me) / NOT TONIGHT ~ London VG++ USD $2.76 Buy It Now
ETCH (4)/ILK (3) - YOYO RIDDIM/YES RUFF! 12" VINYL, BUN THE GRID, BTG 001 (2016) USD $38.78 Buy It Now
YES 7" WONDEROUS STORIES b/w PARALLELS UK ATLANTIC K10999 1977 PROG ROCK USD $3.82 [0 bids]
JO STAFFORD YES INDEED 4 CD BOXSET WW2 SWEETHEART GI JO 1930S 40S 50S USD $58.26 Buy It Now
YES-YESSTORY-ATCO 7 92202-2USA FATBOX (2 DISCS) CD USD $8.98 Buy It Now
Big Generator by Yes CD Atco 1987 USD $5.20 Buy It Now
YES GOING FOR THE ONE 1977 TRIFOLD SLEEVE LYRIC INNER K-50379-A36/B36 USD $13.51 Buy It Now
YES yesshows CASSETTE Tape album SEALED Prog Psych Rock Double length USD $10.00 Buy It Now
New Oh Yes I Can by David Crosby CD, remastered edition 2003, One Way Records USD $6.69 Buy It Now
LP Record - Yes: Classic Yes / Atlantic SD 19320 - 1981 USD $3.75 Buy It Now
# Yes CD album USD $20.71 Buy It Now
HOT BOOGIE CHILLUN.. Yes Or No / Dinosaur ( Rockabilly) USD $25.89 Buy It Now
TUNE BLENDERS: Oh Yes I Know / Shoo-shoo 45 (repro, blue wax) Vocal Groups USD $25.00 Buy It Now
Yes Yes Yes by Peter Gallway (CD, Mar-2005, Gadfly Records) USD $4.99 Buy It Now
MELISSA ETHERIDGE CD LOT YES I AM BRAVE AND CRAZY NEVER ENOUGH USD $8.99 Buy It Now
Yes - Close to the Edge (Remastered CD 1994) USD $4.86 [0 bids]
Johnson Righeira Foundation - Yes I Know My Way - 12'' USD $5.85 Buy It Now
Yes - Classic Yes LP 1981 Progressive Rock Prog Atlantic Rare Israel Pressing USD $16.99 Buy It Now
YES - Drama LP 1980 Progressive Art Rock Rare Israel Press Gatefold Cover USD $19.99 Buy It Now
Yes We Can! by Maria Muldaur (CD, Sep-2008, Telarc Distribution) NEW USD $5.99 Buy It Now
You Gotta Say Yes to Another Excess by Yello (Cassette) USD $5.99 Buy It Now
Yes Tomato LP album K15058, Canadian limited edition, Island records USD $9.06 Buy It Now
YES THE YES ALBUM SEALED CD NEW REMASTERED USD $4.76 Buy It Now
Yes - Time And A Word (2009 SHM Japanese Mini-LP sleeve CD WPCR-13513) USD $15.95 [0 bids]
Rare Doo-Wop - JEWELS - "A FOOL IN PARADISE" b/w "OH YES I KNOW" on R USD $200.00 Buy It Now
YES **TALK **BRAND NEW DOUBLE RECORD LP VINYL USD $24.98 Buy It Now
3 Melissa Etheridge CD lot: Lucky 04, Yes I Am 92, Skin 01 USD $9.99 Buy It Now
YES. DONT KILL THE WHALE. 7 INCH VINYL SINGLE USD $1.94 [0 bids]
YES Time And A Word WPCR 15902 SACD JAPAN 2014 NEW USD $110.68 Buy It Now
POLYPHONIC SPREE Yes it's true CD 2013 New Release Tripping Daisy USA Seller USD $7.99 Buy It Now
Yes New York [PA] - Various Artists (CD, 2003, Wolfgang Morden) Music Album USD $6.02 Buy It Now
YES - Close To The Edge..LP Replica Sleeve USD $12.94 Buy It Now
YES The Yes LP Album Vinyl Record 1971 Gatefold USD $1.55 [4 bids]
NXWORRIES-YES LAWD (DIG) CD NEW USD $12.38 Buy It Now
Yes - Tormato Record Rare 1978 USD $1.93 [0 bids]
KENNY ROGERS JR. YES NO MAYBE LP MEGA RARE NEAR MINT USD $24.99 Buy It Now
THE SENSATIONS LET ME IN / OH YES I'LL BE FINE 45 RPM ARGO 5405 USD $7.49 Buy It Now
Trevor Rabin Test Pressing ED 5415 Sorrow (Your Heart) Yes LP 12" ST-ED-5415-A USD $21.99 Buy It Now
A.C. TILMON & DETROIT EMERALDS: Rosetta Stone / Yes, I Know I'm In Love 45 (dj, USD $5.00 Buy It Now
Yes - Close To The Edge (2009 SHM Japanese Mini-LP sleeve CD WPCR-13516) USD $16.95 [1 bids]
YES TORMATO orig 1978 Double Page NME Trade Press Advert Poster Size USD $12.94 Buy It Now
YES FIRST PRESSING LP (THE YES ALBUM) ATLANTIC WHITE/PURPLE 2400101 PLAYED TWICE USD $38.85 [0 bids]
DARTS Can´t Get Enough Of Your Love / Don´t Say Yes Scandinavian 45PS 1979 USD $5.20 Buy It Now
Shekinah Glory - Yes - Accompaniment CD NEW USD $7.00 Buy It Now
And the Glass Handed Kites by Mew (CD, 2006 Columbia) The Danish Yes or Muse USD $5.99 Buy It Now
YES LP & INNER SLEEVE (CLOSE TO THE EDGE) ON ATLANTIC ATL 50012 PLAYED TWICE USD $19.42 [0 bids]
YES LEAVE IT - Hello Goodbye mix 12" maxi-single vinyl record from Portugal USD $5.99 Buy It Now
YES RELAYER vinyl gate-fold LP from Portugal USD $25.99 Buy It Now
Yes Your Move mono/stereo short promo 45 Atlantic 1971 USD $3.95 [1 bids]
Yes Soon (From the Gates of Delirium) mono/stereo promo 45 Atlantic USD $4.45 [3 bids]
Yes Run through the Light mono/stereo promo 45 Atlantic 1980 USD $3.95 [0 bids]
Yes Release, Release/Don't Kill the Whale promo 45 Atlantic 1978 USD $3.95 [0 bids]
Asia . Alpha . 1983 . EX . Geffen GHS 4008 . Yes ELP Wetton . Play Tested USD $3.79 Buy It Now
Yes 45 LOVE WILL FIND A WAY / HOLY LAMB ~ VG++ rock Canadian press USD $2.79 Buy It Now

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YES discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

YES top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.24 | 1147 ratings
Yes
1969
3.28 | 1200 ratings
Time And A Word
1970
4.29 | 2507 ratings
The Yes Album
1971
4.44 | 3101 ratings
Fragile
1971
4.66 | 3944 ratings
Close To The Edge
1972
3.90 | 2143 ratings
Tales From Topographic Oceans
1973
4.36 | 2676 ratings
Relayer
1974
4.03 | 1769 ratings
Going For The One
1977
2.97 | 1339 ratings
Tormato
1978
3.76 | 1478 ratings
Drama
1980
2.96 | 1374 ratings
90125
1983
2.50 | 1009 ratings
Big Generator
1987
2.50 | 926 ratings
Union
1991
3.06 | 832 ratings
Talk
1994
2.05 | 731 ratings
Open Your Eyes
1997
3.28 | 863 ratings
The Ladder
1999
3.75 | 983 ratings
Magnification
2001
3.42 | 981 ratings
Fly From Here
2011
2.38 | 500 ratings
Heaven & Earth
2014

YES Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.32 | 843 ratings
Yessongs
1973
3.62 | 436 ratings
Yesshows
1980
2.27 | 223 ratings
9012 Live: The Solos
1985
4.09 | 456 ratings
Keys to Ascension
1996
3.96 | 424 ratings
Keys to Ascension 2
1997
2.57 | 132 ratings
BBC Sessions 1969-1970 Something's Coming (2 Cds)
1997
3.59 | 196 ratings
House of Yes: Live From the House of Blues
2000
2.67 | 37 ratings
Extended Versions
2002
2.91 | 32 ratings
Roundabout: The Best Of Yes- Live
2003
3.84 | 164 ratings
Live at Montreux 2003
2007
4.22 | 269 ratings
Symphonic Live
2009
4.51 | 140 ratings
Keys To Ascension (Full)
2010
3.26 | 34 ratings
Astral Traveller (The BBC Sessions)
2011
3.54 | 120 ratings
In The Present - Live From Lyon
2011
3.61 | 52 ratings
Union Live
2011
2.78 | 49 ratings
Like It Is: Yes at the Bristol Hippodrome
2014
4.20 | 61 ratings
Progeny - Seven Shows from Seventy-Two
2015
3.34 | 48 ratings
Like It Is - Yes at the Mesa Arts Centre
2015

YES Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

3.65 | 159 ratings
Yessongs (DVD)
1973
3.18 | 95 ratings
9012 LIVE (DVD)
1985
4.13 | 84 ratings
Yesyears (DVD)
1991
3.67 | 38 ratings
The Union Tour Live
1991
2.93 | 51 ratings
Greatest Video Hits
1991
4.80 | 5 ratings
The Best Of MusikLaden Live
1999
3.60 | 110 ratings
House Of Yes: Live From The House Of Blues (DVD)
2000
3.69 | 120 ratings
Keys to Ascension (DVD)
2000
4.60 | 303 ratings
Symphonic Live (DVD)
2002
3.09 | 69 ratings
Yesspeak
2003
2.37 | 77 ratings
Live in Philadelphia 1979
2003
3.14 | 33 ratings
Inside Yes 1968-1973
2003
3.57 | 86 ratings
Yes Acoustic: Guaranteed No Hiss
2004
4.29 | 158 ratings
Songs From Tsongas: 35th Anniversary Concert (DVD)
2005
3.43 | 65 ratings
Live 1975 At Q.P.R. Vol. 1
2005
3.34 | 58 ratings
Live 1975 At Q.P.R. Vol. 2
2005
3.62 | 52 ratings
Yes (Classic Artists)
2006
3.94 | 127 ratings
Montreux 2003 (DVD)
2007
3.83 | 43 ratings
Yes - The New Director's Cut
2008
3.83 | 40 ratings
The Lost Broadcasts
2009
3.19 | 28 ratings
Rock Of The 70's
2009
3.90 | 56 ratings
Union - Live
2010
3.00 | 4 ratings
Live Hemel Hempstead Pavillion October 3rd 1971
2013

YES Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.25 | 4 ratings
2 Originals Of Yes
1973
3.09 | 205 ratings
Yesterdays
1975
3.80 | 167 ratings
Classic Yes
1981
3.26 | 107 ratings
Yesyears
1991
3.45 | 72 ratings
Yesstory
1992
3.03 | 70 ratings
Highlights: The Very Best of Yes
1993
2.58 | 31 ratings
The Best of Yes
2000
3.55 | 455 ratings
Keystudio
2001
2.74 | 21 ratings
Yes-today
2002
4.28 | 113 ratings
In A Word
2002
3.13 | 90 ratings
Ultimate Yes: 35th Anniversary Collection
2003
2.14 | 59 ratings
Remixes
2003
2.52 | 23 ratings
Topography: The Yes Anthology
2004
3.23 | 136 ratings
The Word Is Live
2005
3.96 | 24 ratings
Essentially Yes
2006
3.52 | 18 ratings
Collection 2CD: Yes
2008
5.00 | 2 ratings
Wonderous Stories: The Best of Yes
2011
3.94 | 34 ratings
Progeny: Highlights From Seventy-Two
2015

YES Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

4.30 | 22 ratings
Something's Coming
1969
3.47 | 15 ratings
Looking Around
1969
2.82 | 26 ratings
Sweetness / Something's Coming
1969
3.29 | 17 ratings
Sweet Dreams
1970
3.38 | 34 ratings
Time and a Word
1970
3.45 | 45 ratings
Your Move
1971
2.97 | 12 ratings
Roundabout
1972
4.64 | 14 ratings
And You And I (Part 1 & 2)
1972
2.83 | 45 ratings
America
1972
4.73 | 15 ratings
And You And I
1974
2.79 | 14 ratings
Soon
1976
3.26 | 38 ratings
Soon - Sound Chaser - Roundabout
1976
2.40 | 15 ratings
Yes Solos
1976
3.66 | 40 ratings
Wonderous Stories 12''
1977
4.04 | 38 ratings
Going For The One 12''
1977
3.91 | 11 ratings
Turn Of The Century
1977
2.66 | 48 ratings
Don't Kill The Whale
1978
3.01 | 35 ratings
Into The Lens
1980
4.27 | 43 ratings
Roundabout
1981
2.35 | 39 ratings
Owner of a Lonely Heart (promo single)
1983
2.15 | 44 ratings
Owner Of A Lonely Heart
1983
2.72 | 36 ratings
Leave It
1984
2.82 | 21 ratings
Twelve Inches on Tape
1984
3.10 | 32 ratings
It Can Happen
1984
2.33 | 8 ratings
Rhythm Of Love
1987
2.94 | 29 ratings
Love Will Find A Way
1987
2.25 | 37 ratings
Rhythm Of Love (2)
1987
3.33 | 20 ratings
Saving My Heart
1991
2.54 | 40 ratings
Owner Of A Lonely Heart
1991
2.43 | 9 ratings
Lift Me Up
1991
2.73 | 18 ratings
Make It Easy
1991
2.60 | 11 ratings
Yesyears - Sampler
1991
2.60 | 24 ratings
The Calling
1994
3.00 | 2 ratings
Lightning Strikes (She Ay ... Do Wa Bap)
1999
2.83 | 71 ratings
YesSymphonic
2001
2.13 | 4 ratings
Selections From The Word Is Live
2005
3.06 | 61 ratings
We Can Fly
2011

YES Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Going For The One by YES album cover Studio Album, 1977
4.03 | 1769 ratings

BUY
Going For The One
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by grom63

2 stars This review was written because Going for the One is my most unloved album from early-middle period of Yes. But to my surprise it has high ratings on PA. I will try objectively explain my indignation. I apologize in advance for my bad English.

This album completely destroying Yes magic aura that had being all previously time in its first seconds. First composition beginning with rock-n-roll with the continuation variations on this theme. I think, that Yes originally was interesting because their music did not contain this kind of dance music. In addition, it was supplemented by uncountable number of simply formed repeats in the second part, which will be in abundance throughout the album. Following piece is quiet, slow and amorphous. There is nothing yours ears can cling on: random sounds of special effects without clear melody. «Parallels» is dynamic and sounds better in contrast, but no more. «Wonderous Stories» is just boring pop song.

At last there is main epic on this album where on awhile we hear the band YES, however this was not without appearing out of nowhere like sounds of sparkling stars (YES, are you seriously?) and other electronic garbage which begins to predominate over instrumental music. Then the listener is thrown into the swamp of incoherent and uninteresting music, completing all of this with pompous repeats.

Generally, this album can be characterized as permanent flow unconvincingly cheerful music with pseudo-exalted vocal parts and dominating of insipid and at the same time sugary mid-seventies synthesizers. Maybe it was an experiment, but definitely unsuccessful. Prevailing couplet-chorus structure with multiple repeats make impression willful lengthening of composition to reach long play format. Nearly total absence of interesting parts on the "natural" musical instruments, which, moreover, were drowned out by electronics, makes this album completely impersonal and not provoking interest. My score is 2/5 stars, very disappointing after the masterpiece album of 1974.

 Heaven & Earth by YES album cover Studio Album, 2014
2.38 | 500 ratings

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Heaven & Earth
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by dosware

3 stars As a hardcore prog and YES fan, I am surprised they released a decidedly non-prog album. I can empathize with the disappointment voiced by many long time fans of Yes- the archetype of Prog. And that's where my criticism ends.

After my initial WTF experience hearing this mostly sedate and decidedly non-prog album, I realized there was something else unique and artistic happening here. I keep listening to this album- not primarily as a prog fan, but as a fan of emotional and complex pop music long gone from the airwaves. YES remain great songwriters, composing amazing hooks with top production- this album puts current popular music to shame. There is not a bad track on this album.

This is Yes's most innovative album since Drama.

 Classic Yes by YES album cover Boxset/Compilation, 1981
3.80 | 167 ratings

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Classic Yes
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by Lupton

4 stars I have mixed feelings about this album.Given that the intention presumably was to lure the casual fan, not including the studio version of Roundabout seems to me a huge mistake given that that track is arguably their defining moment. To me it is like leaving off "Stairway To Heaven" off a Led Zeppelin best-of.With a bit of tweaking, "Classic Yes" could have been a definitive compilation. Replace the inferior live versions of "Roundabout" and "Seen all Good People" and replace "Long Distance Roundabout/Fish" with "Going For The One" and I think this would have made this a 5 star album. As it is, "Classic Yes" is still an excellent overview of the band's unique brand of Progressive Rock and unlike later compilations, does not try to cover too much ground. Of course the album is worth owning for wonderful cover art by Roger Dean alone.
 Like It Is - Yes at the Mesa Arts Centre by YES album cover Live, 2015
3.34 | 48 ratings

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Like It Is - Yes at the Mesa Arts Centre
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

3 stars "Tell the moon dog, tell the march hare"

The present album is the second of two Like It Is live albums. The idea was to take some of the band's classic albums and perform each album in its entirety "like it is" in its original album running order. On the first Like It Is release it was Going For The One and The Yes Album that got the full treatment and this time it is Close To The Edge and Fragile - two of the absolute masterpieces of progressive Rock. While the first Like It Is album lacked excitement, this second entry in the series is clearly an improvement.

The most interesting tracks here are definitely Cans And Brahms, Five Per Cent For Nothing, and We Have Heaven, which have not been included on a live album before. The original idea for the Fragile studio album was to represent individually the members of the band at the time by having each member do a solo number on the album. Cans And Brahms was Rick Wakeman's individual selection and here we get to hear Geoff Downes perform it. Bill Bruford's Five Per Cent For Nothing is played by Alan White, and Jon Davison sings Jon Anderson's We Have Heaven. I do not think anybody ever expected to hear this! Mood For A Day and The Fish (Schindleria Praematurus) are played by their originators Steve Howe and Chris Squire respectively, the only two members who played on the original Fragile album.

The rest of the tracks from these albums have been included on a multitude of excellent live albums released over the years going back to the otherwordly Yessongs. Even though it is interesting for a fan like me to hear Geoff Downes replicate Rick Wakeman's parts, it is hard to motivate why one should listen to these particular renditions of these classic tracks given how many versions are already available on other live records. The weakest link in the line-up is again Jon Davison who fails to bring anything new and exciting to the songs.

Overall, a good but rather unnecessary live album.

 Like It Is: Yes at the Bristol Hippodrome by YES album cover Live, 2014
2.78 | 49 ratings

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Like It Is: Yes at the Bristol Hippodrome
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
Special Collaborator Symphonic Team

2 stars A (dull) venture

Having released Fly From Here - a belated follow-up to 1980's Drama - in 2011, and with four of the five members that originally played on Drama it would had been the perfect time to resurrect the Drama material and perform it side by side with the "new" Fly From Here material (especially as Jon Anderson was now no longer in the band). I would have loved to have a live album with all the songs from Drama as well as the full Fly From Here suite. The latter has never been featured on an official live recording. They did indeed play a couple Drama songs live and some from Fly From Here, but sadly no official live recording emerged from those shows.

A couple of years later they instead released this live album containing 1971's The Yes Album and 1977's Going For The One albums performed in their entirety. Now, I'm sure it would have been nice to be there on the night, but in the form of a live album this doesn't work so well. One of the charms of live albums is that songs from diverse sources can be heard in a new context. Performing the songs in their original album running order only tends to emphasise how inferior this line up is to the original ones. The weakest link is Jon Davison whose voice is too weak and thin to carry these songs. I catch myself wondering "why am i listening to this instead of the original studio album?" Besides, almost all of these songs have appeared on earlier official live recordings in much better versions. The only rarity is A Venture which haven't appeared on an official live album before.

While I am really glad that Geoff Downes got a second chance with Yes as there clearly was unfinished business there that he got to fulfil by re-joining the band and completing Fly From Here after all those years, it would have made lot more sense for this version of Yes to focus on the material that Downes played on originally instead of having him mimic Tony Kaye and Rick Wakeman which makes a lot less sense.

An unnecessary live release.

 The Ladder by YES album cover Studio Album, 1999
3.28 | 863 ratings

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The Ladder
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by Magnum Vaeltaja
Collaborator Eclectic Prog Team

3 stars As their final hoo-rah of the 20th Century, Yes' "The Ladder" draws the millennium to a close with what may be one of their finest post-70's offerings. Before reading any further, just bear in mind that it isn't a prog album, per se. None of the material on here gets any more complex than "Roundabout" - or even "I've Seen All Good People" for that matter - but the characteristic Yessound could not be more prominently on display. The divine vocal harmonies of Anderson & Co. weave the fabric of the album, and the Squire/White rhythm section gives the material their distinct pulse and drive.

So if you haven't really followed what Yes had been doing since "90125" (or even "Relayer" if you're a true prog purist), what can you expect from "The Ladder"? This hour long work is a melodic rock journey around the world, taking ethnic instruments and sounds and weaving them into the Yes framework. Now I know what you're thinking - this is just a sappy New Age album. And that isn't entirely wrong, as such, but bear in mind that everything with Jon Anderson involved has a fundamentally New Age ethos, with his sun-worship-change-the-world-with-the-power-of- music lyrical motifs. So don't think of this as Yes stooping to the likes of Yanni or Zamfir, but more along the lines of the vapid New Age cliches getting a much-needed Yes facelift.

Ultimately, this endeavour is quite successful. "The Ladder" is a faithful marriage of the positive rock energy of Yes' classic material with the light and affirmative timbres typical of the New Age sound. That isn't to say that there isn't at least a little bit of cheesemaking on this album, of course. If you're the sort who gets openly offended by pop music, then tracks like "It Will Be A Good Day" or "If Only You Knew" will inevitably get you reaching for the barf bags. But as far as I'm concerned, this is an album that's enjoyable from start to finish, with two particular highlights. The ground-shaking, momentous "Homeworld (The Ladder)" and the catchy, driving "New Language" are both fantastic proggy rock tracks that I will shamelessly crank up and belt out each and every time they come on, and it wouldn't surprise me if you find yourself following suit.

I would never consider this to be an essential piece of the Yes oeuvre, but if you're looking for fun, well-produced, and infectiously melodic rock music, then this is a great album to pick up, whether you're a Yes fan or not. 3 stars.

 Close To The Edge by YES album cover Studio Album, 1972
4.66 | 3944 ratings

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Close To The Edge
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by Walkscore

5 stars Studio as Instrument.

What can I add that other haven't about one of the clearly best albums ever made? I think an important point about this album is that it is among the albums that established the recording studio as a compositional instrument in itself. Before the multi-track studio existed, composers worked at home and developed a piece through live rehearsal. Even on the 'Yes Album', the band wrote the songs and developed them at home, while the only studio-written song ("A Venture") is the weaker one on the record. But with 'Fragile' and especially 'Close to the Edge', the band was writing in the studio and using the studio itself as an instrument. By the latter, I mean that the studio allowed the band to play something, listen back, and then decide whether it needed additional instruments or parts, and where it might fit into a song. Also, they would record a section of a piece, stop, and then try out a number of alternate new sections that might fit with the first bit, and then record and graft it on (with producer/engineer Eddie Offord sorting through splices taped across in the control room). This was not possible before the modern recording studio. Bill Bruford has written he remains in wonder of how well the whole thing worked out, given how disorganized the band was when they began. But, like Mike Oldfield's early work, I think this album shows just how important the multi-track studio has become (particularly now in the digital age) and how much it improved, or at least facilitated the improvement, in song-writing capacities. In the case of this album, writing in the studio with the studio as instrument helped produce progressive rock music as we now know it. The evolution and development of the studio is part of this history. At any rate, a wonderful musical album that has retained its integrity and musicality over decades of listens, and it still shines just as bright. I give this album 9.7 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, up there among the highest of my ratings.

 Fragile by YES album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.44 | 3101 ratings

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Fragile
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by Walkscore

4 stars The most essential not-quite-5-star album, ever!

This album contains two of the best pieces ever written: "Heart of the Sunrise" and "Mood for a Day". These were life-changing pieces of music for me, and even after listening to them >1000 times, I still love hearing them, and indeed, find it hard to turn them off if they are on, they are so great. "Heart of the Sunrise" is in my opinion the very best Yes song (followed closely by Close to the Edge, And You and I, and Gates of Delirium), and among the 10-best songs ever written. "Mood for a Day" is a song I taught myself on guitar when I was just a young teenager, and I still love it and play it! Why not 5 stars? While some of the remaining tunes have aged well ("South Side of the Sky") some of the others have not. I can hardly sit through "We Have Heaven" and "Cans and Brahms", and "Long Distance Runaround" and even "Roundabout" get tiring after 1000 listens. So, decidedly mixed. Since I am here scoring the entire album, and there are tunes I can no longer sit through, I can't give this a perfect 5-star review, even if the great tunes help lift it up the average quite high. On balance, I give this album 8.9 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which is just shy of what is needed for 5 stars. But those two songs are essential!

 The Yes Album by YES album cover Studio Album, 1971
4.29 | 2507 ratings

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The Yes Album
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by Walkscore

5 stars So Musical.

This is the album that introduced North America to Yes, with many thinking it was the first Yes album (probably largely due to the title). Their first album with Steve Howe, the album shows that while Peter Banks was good and did not deserve to be treated so poorly, Yes with Steve Howe was going to be another level up. Howe really sparkles on this album, the clear standout player (very notably on Howe-solo "The Clap", an amazing piece of acoustic guitar playing). This is also where Squire would establish his distinct bass style and sound. But the real strength of this album is the song-writing. Each of the four main long pieces ("Yours is No Disgrace", "Starship Trooper", "All Good People", "Perpetual Change" is excellent, a full 10/10, both inventive and original, but also highly musical. The bedrock of their concerts from that point onward, this is the album that cements their place in music history, and upon which they would expand their ideas. Only "A Venture" is not on the same level as the rest of the music, interestingly the one song they wrote as filler while in the studio (but, it is still a nice tune). While 'Close to the Edge' is their best album, this one is up there among the elite, inspiring so many other musicians. I give this 9.4 out of 10 on my 10-point scale.

 Tales From Topographic Oceans by YES album cover Studio Album, 1973
3.90 | 2143 ratings

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Tales From Topographic Oceans
Yes Symphonic Prog

Review by Walkscore

4 stars The Archetype!

While even members of Yes have said they went too pretentious on this album, one can't help but marvel at the model they set up here. A double-album of four side-long compositions that fit together as one statement. I don't think the problem here (to the extent there IS a problem) was the model, nor even the pretentiousness or bombast of the music, but instead merely that they did not give themselves quite enough time to finesse their writing before recording and releasing this. Many bands at the time were under huge pressure from their record companies to get product out the door, and with 'Close to the Edge' scoring big, Yes was under pressure to do even bigger. So, they wrote quickly, padded the long pieces with some filler (especially side 3, which they all admit), while Jon Anderson turned to footnotes for lyrical inspiration, all with an eye to one-upping Close to the Edge. Anderson's lyrics here become further detached from any clear meanings, while for many the music here seemed endless. But unlike the critics, I was amazed at the possibilities presented by this record, and still today see it as a real (flawed) gem. Not the very best Yes music, and certainly not their best lyrics, but still a very important milestone in music, and for Yes. There is a lot of great music on this album, and even though a number of filler sections are less musical, the whole thing fits together very well and each piece/side retains its integrity. The album begins on side 1 by building up over chanting of Anderson's poetry, and blossoms across many themes and good songs in their own right, climaxing with "Ritaul/Nous Sommes Du Soleil" on side 4, which they played (and continued to play) well into the 2000s (as evidenced on the Songs from Tsongas live album). There are too many great musical moments here to describe them all. Saying this, the music is fragmented enough, with enough filler, that it doesn't quite make it to five stars, even though I would say it is "essential" for any serious musical collection. It certainly deserves much recognition for the ambitious model it contributes, and for which it is mostly (almost) successful. Overall, I rate this 8.5 out of 10 on my 10-point scale.

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