Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography

YWIS

Neo-Prog • Netherlands


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Ywis picture
Ywis biography
Formed in 1982, YWIS was the creation of Julian Driessen (keyboards). The roots of this group go all the way back to 1975, but line-up changes and various other reasons saw the name change throughout the years. 1982 saw a new line-up, and thus a new name for this band project, which besides Driessen consisted of Geert van de Burg (vocals), Herman Ruijters (drums), Eric Stap (bass) and Rinus Hollenberg (guitars, backing vocals).

Their debut album, heavily influenced by Canadian bands SAGA and RUSH, was released in 1983. The album sold quite well, and several concerts in Holland and Czechoslovakia. The band folded in 1985 due to musical differences, following a tour in Bulgaria.

Most of the band members were in close contact the following years though, and when SI Music wanted to re-release their debut album in 1993, they organized a reunion as well - resulting in the reformation of YWIS, who first remastered their debut album prior to it's re-release and then started writing and recording a new album. This time around Driessen wasn't able to participate due to other engagements, and Rene van Spanje was added to the line-up to handle keyboards.

Sophomore album "Leonardo's Dream" saw the light of day in 1995, unfortunately without any promotion by the band. A release party and gig had been in the planning, but what is described as a "private disaster" resulted in these plans being scrapped, and YWIS disbanded shortly after.


WHY IS THIS BAND LISTED AT PROGARCHIVES:
With SAGA as their main influence, YWIS produced two albums of distinctly Neo Progressive rock, and due to that their inclusion was approved by the Neo Progressive team.

Olav Martin Bjørnsen

YWIS forum topics / tours, shows & news


YWIS forum topics
No topics found for : "ywis"
Create a topic now
YWIS tours, shows & news
No topics found for : "ywis"
Post an entries now

YWIS Videos (YouTube and more)


Showing only random 3 | Search and add more videos to YWIS

Buy YWIS Music



More places to buy YWIS music online

YWIS discography


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

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

2.80 | 21 ratings
Ywis
1983
3.73 | 27 ratings
Leonardo's Dream
1995

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

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

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

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

YWIS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Leonardo's Dream by YWIS album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.73 | 27 ratings

BUY
Leonardo's Dream
Ywis Neo-Prog

Review by tszirmay
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Maintaining the promise to look at past, unrecognized gems in the wonderful world of prog, we travel back to 1995 and land in the Netherlands to look at Ywis' second album, Leonardo's Dream. Neo-Prog has an unfortunate and unfair reputation among prog purists for being somewhat formulaic or simplistic, which certainly has some slight merit but the better bands within this genre are really quite capable of providing some serious listening pleasure that stands the test of time, especially when the melodies are topflight. The band put out this marvel and promptly vanished from the scene, seemingly disappointed by the lack of public acceptance for their art, though it does have a decent 3.66 rating on PA. Their brand of neo-prog relies on some obvious influences, most overtly the strong tinges in the style of guitar and drum tone that reminds one of Canadian group Saga, where axeman Ian Crichton and drummer Steve Negus utilize the same philosophy that made Page and Bonham such a powerhouse, as they play off each other rhythmically to create a fresh and powerful sound. This is the sonic template here for guitarist Rinus Hollenberg and Herman Ruijters on the drum kit, who are most adept at interweaving their riffs and beats into a driving and muscular sound to great effect. The compositions and the instrumental work are quite expressive but the cherry on the proverbial sundae is the rather brilliant vocalizing by Geert Van de Burg, who comes across like a proggier version of one of my favourite non-prog singers in Cy Curnin of the Fixx.

The group wastes little time in showcasing their attributes with the athletic opener "Sad Man" where the insistent riffs merge well with the binary drum pattern, lobbying a catchy melody, adding some shifting moods courtesy of the keys and a spirited lead guitar solo that is most successful. The title track keeps the foot on the pedal, pushing forward the undeniable Saga-like feel to flashy levels, a short and sweet blast that basically continues with the choppy yet very catchy "Twist to Release", a trio of tracks that work nicely to set the tone of what is to follow. Van de Burg really does sound like a hybrid Michael Sadler and the afore mentioned Curnin, while guitarist Hollenberg does a neat solo to set the sparks off. The lovely ballad "On My Own" offers a delicate arrangement with strings and a fervent lead vocal, lush with sorrow and sweet melancholy, somewhat reminiscent of Barry Palmer on Triumvirat's powerhouse ballad "For You". The swerving guitar solo is like a sunray crashing through the clouds to take its place in your heart, silky and insistent. An opulent track, really finished off by an unexpectedly ornate piano etude that serves only to add class to the proceedings.

This placid sense of gorgeousness suddenly veers back into a frenzy, an absolute bombastic track with massive vocals but the highlight is the evil guitar solo that shatters, explodes and shudders like an angry volcano. The effusive atmosphere settles down unpredictably in order to serve up a gentler, moodier, and truly breathtaking lead from Hollenberg that would make anyone's jaw drop. Acoustic guitar moment and a vocal to die for into, the poignant "The Allegory" deliberately evolves into a dynamic melody that sticks to the nodes, pushed along by superb organ runs, a solid bass and those throbbing drumbeats. Needless to say, the axe reigns supreme in providing the heat. On the impossibly surprising "Our Flight", I actually thought for a second that this was a Freddie Mercury track, as the style, the crunchy guitar and the roller coaster vocal would have fit nicely on Sheer Hear Attack. Uncanny but the harmony background vocals, the swaggering voice, the intentional beat, the archetypical chorus and that slippery Brian May-like snarly solo is proof positive! A massive groove sets in and Hollenberg puts his own insistent style up for display, a truly gifted player.

Neo is often accused by "sameness" but this album certainly chooses a clever dose of variety as exemplified by the ultra chic instrumental "Trial and Error". On a platform of tic-toc drum patterns (both real and electronic) that sets up a murkier mood, Rinus Hollenberg proves once again that playing his 6-string instrument like a true pro is what this release will leave as a lasting memory. Wow! In fine prog tradition, Ywis close out their final hurrah with a typical 8 minute + epic, "Put the Blame on History", a glowing condemnation of mankind's seemingly unending folly. Colossal biting riffs, intense bass and drums, huge choir vocals and a Van den Burg lead vocal full of piss and vinegar, this message piece has the stamp of any true prog classic. Next, an acoustic guitar solo appears out of nowhere only to be followed by his blistering electric cousin, reverting to the initial verse /chorus. Well thought out, expertly constructed, and played. A really satisfying ending to a superb album.

There is never anything wrong with accessible prog when the passion, the atmosphere, and the melody (PAM) are well though out and pleasurable. These three elements are often found among the higher rated Neo-Prog albums within the Prog universe. This hidden gem is NOT a masterpiece in the classic sense but well worth being added into any prog collection.

4 Da Vinci reveries

 Leonardo's Dream by YWIS album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.73 | 27 ratings

BUY
Leonardo's Dream
Ywis Neo-Prog

Review by toroddfuglesteg

3 stars This one has been ticking along on my CD player for a week without really impressing me. OK, I have heard far worse albums than this album......... and far better ones too.

I have to admit that AOR and AOR tinged Neo Prog is not my favorite kind of noises. Some of it is substantial worse than listening to mating foxes in the garden 0100 in the morning just before an important meeting/exam. But Ywis has thankfully produced a rather good album. Their brand of Neo Prog has a lot of influences from the Toronto scene. The likes of Triumph, Saga and Rush. The heavy metal edge guitars is here. So is the ballads too and the catchy verses and refrains. This album is very commercial AOR focused at times.

Just to repeat myself again; the music is rather good. The musicianship too. The vocals are pretty great. There is nothing here I dislike. But there is very little on this albums who scratches my two braincells too. This is catchy Neo Prog and that's all. A good effort, it is.

3 stars

 Leonardo's Dream by YWIS album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.73 | 27 ratings

BUY
Leonardo's Dream
Ywis Neo-Prog

Review by Marty McFly
Special Collaborator Errors and Omissions Team

4 stars Sounds older than it's year of release. Pleasant surprise, but these are not rare on my journey through Neo-Prog field. Funny thing is that before I discovered this site (and amongst other things, also concept of Neo-P), I wouldn't know how to classify this music. Now I'm here (tm Queen) and do know a little bit more.

Concept album is always pleasant, because it brings into Prog arena (not Arena) more, like spice enhances the food. Melodies are important in Neo (continuing in tradition of Symphonic) and they are quite good. Not nice at all cost, but also not so dark. Average, to be said. But sometimes, it jumps sky high. The best one would probably be Our Flight with nice rhymes, lyrics and refrain.

4(-), Marty is pleased.

 Leonardo's Dream by YWIS album cover Studio Album, 1995
3.73 | 27 ratings

BUY
Leonardo's Dream
Ywis Neo-Prog

Review by progrules
Prog Reviewer

4 stars I just referred to this album in my review of the debut album by Ywis. So this one is better and I'll explain why. The album starts off with Sad man, a powerfull track which gets you in the right mood. Next is the title track, a short compact song in the same vein as the first one, real energetic. Actually this goes also for the third track, though somewhat less impressive. The fourth is a very interesting ballad, emotionally sung by Geert van de Burg and ending with a beautiful piano solo. The 5th track is my personal favourite. The morning roars again is at last a track with a very good guitar solo by Rinus Hollenberg, in fact it's one of the best solos I know and believe me I know quite a lot of those. Almost a 5 star track, this one. The next two are not really the best of the album, still good but of course there will always be quality difference between songs. The 8th track is a tremendous instrumental, far better than the one on their debut album. In fact this entire album is real vigorous and so is the last track, which is resembled by the last track on their debut, only better.

So it's obvious that this successor is better than the debut by this band in every department. It deserves a better rating because of that. So I will give it 4 stars.

 Ywis by YWIS album cover Studio Album, 1983
2.80 | 21 ratings

BUY
Ywis
Ywis Neo-Prog

Review by progrules
Prog Reviewer

3 stars I dusted off this cd because I wanted to review it, played it again and looked for some back ground info about band and CD. Some interesting things came up. This album is already from 1983 which I couldn't remember and re-issued ten years later. What I did remember was that this band is strongly connected to Timelock a favourite band of mine for many years (see me reviews there). The connection is not that strange since both bands are from The Hague in the Netherlands. I don't know the background of this connection and the whole story behind it, just that keyboardist Julian Driessen en guitarist Rinus Hollenberg are (have been) in both bands. The resemblance between the bands is there though not too obvious because Ywis is more leaning to the metal side of neo prog and Timelock is really pure neo prog. We'll concentrate on this one now and what I can say about it is that it's a nice debut without being real spectacular. The first song is almost a protest song against the human race. I remeber an article about Ywis which stated that the problem of Ywis was coming up with suitable lyrics for their songs. For this they hired a female songwriter who amongst others wrote this song for them. The band did the music themselves afterwards. So it's interesting, a song with such lyrics, at least original. Nice track by the way. Next is about an alcohol addict, a somewhat slower song but ok. The third is another good track about a streaker. Interesting songwriter, this woman. In this song is a very nice instrumental part by the way. Then comes an instrumental one which is named after the band, good track. The next three songs are the lesser of this album. Not much to say about them, except for the lyrics of common sense versus bombs, could have been inspired by the cold war which was very actual in 1983. Last song is probably the highlight of the album, starting with an instrumental part added by vocal parts later on, some sort of epic track, at least for Ywis standards. All in all a pretty good debut for Ywis but it's not really essential in prog history. Their successor is much better. 3 stars (3,25).
 Ywis by YWIS album cover Studio Album, 1983
2.80 | 21 ratings

BUY
Ywis
Ywis Neo-Prog

Review by erik neuteboom
Prog Reviewer

2 stars Dutch Prog Nostalgia Part One. I bought this album when it was just released in1983 and remember very well that I noticed on the back cover that the adress of Ywis was in The Hague, my hometown. In those days (just before the Marillion-era) the Dutch progrock scene was not very prolific so every proggish effort was embraced warmly. And I did because I was also a bit proud to be from The Hague too. Ywis their neo-prog sounds pleasant but I have to admit that the level of the compositions is mediocre, the English lyrics are even a bit amateurish (often about war and the human being). The only highlight on Ywis their eponymous album is the instrumental titletrack in which guitarplayer Rinus Hollenberg (later a member of one of the last new Q65 line-ups) delivers excellent, very moving guitarwork. It's a pity that his skills are hardly used because I am sure that he would have been able to add a bit more excitement to Ywis their music on this album. After Ywis their demise, keyboard player Julian Driessen joined other prog bands like The Last Detail, Timelock and For Absent Friends. To everybody's surprise Ywis released a second studio-album entitled Leonardo's Dream in 1995. Unfortunately I cannot tell you about it because I have never heard it. End of the story ...



Thanks to Ivan_Melgar_M for the artist addition.

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

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — jazz music reviews and archives | MetalMusicArchives.com — metal music reviews and archives

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