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YESTERDAYS

Symphonic Prog • Romania


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Yesterdays picture
Yesterdays biography
Founded in Cluj Napoca, Romania in 2000

About six months ago, I heard YESTERDAYS for the first time, and was really impressed with the exquisite combination of 70's Symphonic influences with Hungarian folk elements, so after I asked the team, the addition was approved immediately.

Due to the problems with the language and lack of information, I asked the band to provide a biography for PA and have received it today, so with no further introduction, here it is:

: : : Iván Melgar Morey, PERU : : :

General Information

YESTERDAYS is a contemporary progressive rock band composed of seven musicians and belonging to the Hungarian minority of Western Romania. This Transylvanian band plays a complex blend of several styles: a basically classic symphonic Prog is redefined here with some jazzy, folk and atmospheric touches - all of these played with a youthful energy, inner light and sunny mood. Lyrics are in both English and Hungarian, and along with the fine instrumental passages they simply find the pathway to any old-school Prog-fan with an open heart and mind.

History

First conceived in 1997, Yesterdays is a lifelong product of the youthful talent of Bogáti-Bokor Ákos. This gifted, multi-instrumentalist, composer and studio wizard is the main driving force behind Yesterdays' starship. Stepping through the many constellations of the band, and working with several musicians, Bogáti-Bokor Ákos has developed his art to the highest standards, combining the classic Steve Howe-Trevor Rabin-Pat Metheny School of guitar playing with an inspired originality. In the early years Yesterdays released some very limited edition, self-produced works. These documents from that first era are now quite difficult-to-find, collectors' items! Years 2005-2006 brought a substantial increase in the band's sound potential, and the line-up and gear proved to be just right to make a jump-start into its next creative stage. Leader Bogáti-Bokor Ákos laid down the basics of the definitive debut album, signing all the music and most of the lyrics as composer-poet-arranger. The result was a work with a spiritual concept, a deep journey into the "Moonlit Garden", the land of an impossible love, the dream of the parts to be made whole, of the paradox of being present and being absent at the same time. And, as has been proving normal in their history, strong faith and steady work has put the band well into the Light. Miracles began to ...
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YESTERDAYS discography


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

3.70 | 54 ratings
Holdfénykert
2006
3.49 | 32 ratings
Colours Caffé
2010
3.92 | 58 ratings
Senki Madara
2018

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

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

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

4.00 | 8 ratings
From The Vault
2018

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

3.33 | 6 ratings
Winter
2012
4.41 | 9 ratings
Almost Like Love
2012
4.05 | 8 ratings
Find Another Light
2015
4.93 | 6 ratings
Várj még
2016
4.00 | 4 ratings
Indulok - érkezel
2016
4.07 | 6 ratings
Tavasz
2017
4.00 | 6 ratings
It's Not the End of the World
2018
4.00 | 1 ratings
Cheesecake (ft. Funk You!)
2019

YESTERDAYS Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Cheesecake (ft. Funk You!) by YESTERDAYS album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2019
4.00 | 1 ratings

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Cheesecake (ft. Funk You!)
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by DenisZhukov

— First review of this album —
4 stars After Yesterdays' third studio album Senki madara I became more aware of this Transylvanian progressive rock project. In 2019 Yesterdays were touring in a duo/trio acoustic format while lead singer Stephanie Semeniuc with band leader Akos Bogati-Bokor formed a funk duo/band.

According to their websites this song was starting off as a funk song, but with the 7/8 time signatures, Moog solo, distorted Chris Squire-esque bass lines it transformed itself into a progressive rock/jazz-rock/jazz-funk song with brass arrangements, analogue synth pads and multiple vocals.

Since this song has been released on Christmas Eve, I consider this short tune a present from the band. A fun little tune with a very upbeat mood, recommended for the fans of the band.

 Senki Madara by YESTERDAYS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.92 | 58 ratings

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Senki Madara
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by TenYearsAfter

4 stars 'A happy marriage between folk and symphonic rock'

In 2010 I witnessed a Dutch gig from Yesterdays, during an interesting triple prog concert with Belgian Mindgames and Dutch Flamborough Head. The band played a few songs from its promising debut album Holdfenykert (2006) and focussed on the new album Colours Caffe (released in 2011). The crowd was very pleased with Yesterdays varied and melodic sound (folk, symphonic rock, jazz, classical), that evening the band made friends. Then it became silent, very silent, until last year when Yesterdays finally released a third effort, entitled Senki Madara (2018).

Like other Hungarian bands Solaris and After Crying the music from Yesterdays is performed by outstanding, mainly classically trained musicians, really a big plus, including the superb female vocals! And also the writing skills are on a high level: very melodic, harmonic and varied compositions, alternating between dreamy folk and 24-carat symphonic rock bombastic eruptions. The colouring with the wide range of instruments is wonderful, from flute, violin, cello, acoustic guitar to Grand piano, Mellotron, Minimoog, Hammond and electric guitars.

My highlights.

Agrol-agra (6:24) : The opener is a varied composition, alternating between mellow (dreamy flute and acoustic guitar) and bombastic (Kashmir-like Mellotron violins, Wakeman style Minimoog flights and Howe sounding guitar), topped with very pleasant native female vocals. The music sounds as a very happy marriage between folk and symphonic rock.

Elmehetsz (4:11) : It starts with acoustic rhythm guitar, Grand piano and dreamy female vocals, then a spacey slide guitar joins. After beautiful work on the flute, the music turns into a bombastic eruption with majestic Mellotron choirs and excellent electric guitar play, with slide and volume pedal.

Hajnalcsillag (4:47) : Remarkable is the Mellotron flute that obviously sounds like Strawberry Fields Forever from The Beatles, blended with fiery electric guitar. Then acoustic rhythm guitar and female vocals, in combination with sensitive electric guitar runs and a Mellotron flute. Gradually the atmosphere becomes more bombastic with howling electric guitar. This is trademark Yesterdays, the flowing shifting moods between folky and symphonic rock, between dreamy and bombastic.

Eso (2:28) A short piece that contains again beautiful dreamy vocals, tastefully blended with subtle slide guitar and Minimoog runs.

Nap (5:54) : First dreamy with a twanging acoustic guitar and soaring flute, then a bombastic eruption with howling electric guitar and Mellotron choirs, fiery guitar runs, distorted bass and cheerful Minimoog flights (Yes but also Belgian Machiavel come to my mind).

Ugy bocsass el (3:42) : The final track is a beauty, I am carried away by the dreamy folky atmosphere featuring flute, twanging acoustic guitar and melancholical violin, topped with wonderful, pretty emotional female vocals, the native language adds an extra dimension, especially in this song!

So I follow the cascades of euphoric four star reviews, a big hand for Yesterdays, and what a comeback album!

 Senki Madara by YESTERDAYS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.92 | 58 ratings

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Senki Madara
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by Windhawk
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Romanian band YESTERDAYS are veterans in their native progressive rock scene, with a history going back almost 20 years at this point. The band have released three studio albums so far. Their most recent production is "Senki Madara", and album that was self released by the band in 2018.

There is a lot to like about Yesterday's third album, and those who really enjoy the gentler aspects of 70's era symphonic progressive rock will most likely find this album to be immensely enjoyable. Especially if the inclusion of folk music elements and the occasional tip of the hat in the direction of jazz is regarded as a positive feature. A well made and solid quality album for the aficionados of vintage era 70's symphonic progressive rock.

 Holdfénykert by YESTERDAYS album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.70 | 54 ratings

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Holdfénykert
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by KKrawczyk

4 stars Another proof that Eastern Europe has a lot to offer to the progressive rock world. Holdfenykert is a very strong debut album from a young band, released in 2006. Band leader Akos Bogati-Bokor (known from many Musea albums, Samurai Of Prog albums, Tabula Smaragdina and You and I) gathered musicians to record the first album of this project. Soon after the release, they played together with PETER BANKS (of Yes) and Flamborough Head (NL) in Budapest.

The album has an acoustic feel, with beautiful flute, acoustic guitars and lots of Mellotrons and Moog solos. The sound is excellent, rich and dynamic.

The first song Napfenykert has odd time signatures, but it flows naturally, great drum fills, poliphonic flute passages, it' instrumental, and a lovely way to start a first album!

Vegtelen is a jazzy, airy song with a strong middle part, very upbeat feel.

Ne felj is more serious prog with Hungarian traditional folk roots (just as their 3rd album called Senki madara), electric pianos, flutes (again) and a PINK FLOYD style solo at the end. One of my favorite tunes!

Ha majd egyszer (If ever) is an excellent acoustic solo guitar tune, with crazy good techniques, it's where Bogati's talent really comes through. A complex tune, and of course Steve HOWE's influence is shown. Perfect and progressive!

It's so Divine is the first song in English on this album, it's jazzy, with beautiful multiple vocals, rich harmonies, nice structures and a great Minimoog sound!

The second half of the album is more progressive and more symphonic and it starts with Hol vagy? (Where are you?). Although this song has some serious Pat Metheny influences, I'd call this prog-fusion, because of the flutes, nice vocal ideas, beautiful piano work and the fantastic ending. The most beautiful music I've heard since Locanda Delle Fate's Forse... album.

Varj meg. Now this is why this album is so unique, this song is really strong... although it starts with acoustic guitars, ebow sounds and even some sitar. It builds slowly and soon we find ourselves in a Moog solo extravaganza over some really tricky time signatures. YES influences all over!

The title song Holdfenykert is a harpsichord-guitar duet, some kind of prelude to the epic called SEVEN.

WOW, just WOW, Seven. This is a true progressive rock masterpiece. It has YES influences but it's nothing like Yes... It starts with a powerful prog intro with parallel moog sounds, complex time signatures then it goes directly into a flute solo and some amazing melodies, polyphonic backing vocals, and a powerful chorus. The second part of the song has some more brilliant surprises, ebow solos, hammond organ and a beautiful coda in 7/8, so they are true to the song's title... yes, this is the second English song on this album.

The album's final song reminded me of Kate Bush's Aerial album, it has a more modern approach, a repetitive rhythm in the intro and a beautiful uplifting ending.

This band keeps surprising me with beautiful music, great songwriting skills, rich dynamics and beautiful sounds. Worth discovering, especially this debut and their third album SENKI MADARA. Great compositions, highly recommended!

 Senki Madara by YESTERDAYS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.92 | 58 ratings

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Senki Madara
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by mekaton

4 stars 'Senki Madara' - Even the name of the album ('Nobody's Bird') reflects the grim mood coming from the lyrics of these Hungarian traditional songs' (I personally felt a rush of sadness flowing through me). Yesterdays manage to borrow influences from the classics of prog and putting it to good use, with great quality, as if it was a concept album, the songs nicely flow one after the other' downstream. In my favourite song 'Ne mondd el' (Don't Say It), the middle part of CD, very nicely composed, the theme being falling into a state of panic. The album doesn't seem to be finished, when (if not for the anthem over victory), but at least expecting a bit of sunlight, it was over, perhaps even more bitter. Not too complicated of a piece, but attractive art rock, I myself needed to listen to it 5 times to truly endulge in all the details. I truly recommend everyone, to take a break from the mainstream music of the present, and give this album couple hours of listen, remembering our old loved ones (Yes, King Crimson, Genesis, ') and in the same time take in a bit of true Hungarian traditional songs as well.
 Senki Madara by YESTERDAYS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.92 | 58 ratings

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Senki Madara
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by KKrawczyk

4 stars We had to wait eight years for the 3rd Yesterdays album, now the group is back with their new album "Senki Madara." There were some member changes but the most important is the arrival of the new singer Stephanie Semeniuc. Such a magnificent voice! Her voice reminds me of the first lead singer of Quidam, and I really like that she sings in Hungarian!

Yesterdays' music is heavily inspired from the 70's, expect some Yes, Jethro Tull, Camel and even After Crying & Nexus influences here. Nexus is a good reference especially for the keyboard sounds (synths & Mellotrons). Although you can clearly name all the influences, be sure that this music is very original and fresh.

The music is well crafted symphonic prog that is mixed with ancient traditional Hungarian folk. I have enjoyed every moment because the songs are divine and airy... so nothing heavy here. The album opens with 'Agrol-Agra' intro on drums, Moog & Mellotron flute and a bass to Chris SQUIRE. Such a nice song to open an album with! 'Rejtsetek el' short but effective ... acoustic guitar in 5/8, flute, the Cello and when the chorus kicks in... Yes mixed with After Crying! Amazing! Another highlight is with 'Elmehetsz'. Intro with 12 string guitar and steel (it couldn't been done better by Steve Howe) with piano, Mellotron and a short time there's a musical quote: 'Soon' by Yes. The song 'Ne mondd el' is in a darker atmosphere and at 2'20'' we fall into the universe Lizard period King Crimson. For this song they've invited Szirtes Edina Mokus who does a fantastic job... haunting voice! I've hear Edina's voice on the latter SOLARIS releases. A little jazzy style 'Szomju madarak' starts with flute, Moog, fretless bass, acoustic guitar. Another excellent piece! I could list you all the titles here, but be sure they are all very good. And as you can see the overall ambience revolves around the 70's with the Mellotron, Moog, flute etc... symphonic music and a beautiful complexity while being melodic in the same time.

The voices are all beautiful, and as I said the lyrics are in beautiful Hungarian, it sounds amazing to my Polish ears. I recommend this album to all symphonic prog lovers and especially for those who are fed up with today's neo-prog movement, where almost every band sounds the same. Let's get thrown back to the seventies.

I need to mention the tasty, beautiful CD cover and the artistic black and white inside booklet. Very well thought concept, it fits the concept perfectly. Ila Ildiko's painting symbolizes the fragile Hungarian past, the bird motif represents the Hungarian songs and there are 3 feathers... as it's the third Yesterdays album! Just beautiful!

In summary, 'Senki madara' is a very beautiful return for this Hungarian band. Yesterdays fully deserves to be discovered with this new album! Warmly recommended!

 Find Another Light by YESTERDAYS album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2015
4.05 | 8 ratings

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Find Another Light
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by DenisZhukov

4 stars Find Another Light was a single by Yesterdays in 2015. It's another prog-hit jam from this band I discovered recently on Bandcamp, thanks to their third studio album "Senki madara".

This song is very catchy, melodic, it could be easily a radio hit if it wasn't composed in 7/8. Starting with a big symphonic prog intro with moog and mellotron, takes us back to Close to the Edge era Yes in a very unique way. Female lead vocals are always strong on Yesterdays recordings, this time Karola Antal's voice takes this song to the next level.

Great drumming by Kimmo Pörsti, drummer of Samurai of Prog and Paidarion, he gives a perfect 7/8 feel that in the same time feels so natural, you won't even notice that we are dealing with a special time signature here.

Bass, guitars, mellotrons and blockflötes/recorders are played by Akos Bogati-Bokor. The middle eight's polyphonic recorder part is a clear Gentle Giant tribute.

It's a very song-based composition, made me think of Neal Morse era Spocks Beard.

All in all this could be part of any good progrock album, it's a nice addition to my Yesterdays collection. Beautiful lyrics, this time in English. Since I conside their Senki madara album one of the best albums in 2018, this older single really lives up to this quality. Highly recommended!

 Holdfénykert by YESTERDAYS album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.70 | 54 ratings

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Holdfénykert
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by ThomasMcGill

4 stars MOONLIT GARDEN (Holdfénykert) is the debut album of YESTERDAYS. I've discovered this band with their recent album "Senki madara" and that made me curious about their earlier works. Holdfénykert is such a strong debut album from a young band back in 2006. It looks like this album was very successful in Hungary, which was later reissued by MUSEA RECORDS in France and later it was released as an audiophile reissue by Finnish label Seacrest Oy. I have this latest issue of the album only.

Such a unique sound with all the obvious seventies prog influences, heavy use of mellotron, minimoog, steel guitar we love in YES, shiny female vocals and airy flutes. Lyrics both in Hungarian and in English.

The second half of the album is the real highlight for me. Starting with Várj még (Just wait) that features beautiful acoustic sounds with sitar and mellotron, flutes and a fantastic moog solo at the end. Hol vagy? (Where are you) is a haunting symphonic rock composition with classical guitar, lots of mellotrons and jazzy backing vocals colored with flute. The most sophisticated prog composition on this album is SEVEN. I've never heard anything like this from an Eastern European band before. Tricky time-signatures, stereo moog sounds, mellotrons all over, cachy melodies and powerful choruses, screaming hammond solos, ebow-driven electric guitar solos and a fantastic coda which reminded me of the ending of YES' Starship Trooper (called WÜRM).

This is a very strong debut album and it can be a nice addition to any symphonic prog lover's collection.

 Senki Madara by YESTERDAYS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.92 | 58 ratings

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Senki Madara
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by ThomasMcGill

5 stars Hungarian prog combo YESTERDAYS is back with their 3rd album. As it was a recent discovery for me (on Bandcamp) it surprised me in a very positive way.

My first impression was also positive, such a beautiful album cover, a fragile representation of a precious musical heritage of Hungarian traditional folk music, three feathers, light and colorful. The booklet inside is black and white, artistic photos of the band members and also with lyrics and some words about the concept: they've used traditional ancient texts and melodies with good tasting symphonic progressive rock.

The music is something really new for those like me, who has trained ears in neo-prog. Of course there are obvious influences of GENESIS and YES, even GENTLE GIANT and AFTER CRYING if we are looking at the symphonic arrangements of the string quartet and cello. The virtuoso flute of Gabor Kecskemeti takes this music to the next level, his playing of bird-imitations and jazzy lines are very impressive. Lovely playing.

They call this album a humble experience, but let's be clear, they shouldn't be that humble, this music is great. I've seen someone mentioning the sound quality of this record and I agree, this is one of the best sounding records ever with all the clear and transparent dynamics. The band even made the full resolution masters available for digital downloads to give the listener the full audiophile experience.

I'm a fan of female vocals in progressive rock and of course MAGENTA and RENAISSANCE comes to mind, but imagine all this kind of music with a deeper alto voice. And with all these multiple vocal harmonies the vocal parts get richer in each song. Stephanie Semeniuc takes the lead roles in most of the songs, but the record features two guest voices also: the well known Hungarian jazz/world music singer Szirtes Edina Mokus (who plays an important role in SOLARIS' recent live concerts too) and Tarsoly Csenge who brings back positive memories with her shiny soprano voice in Hajnalcsillag (Morning Star).

Impressive compositions all over and I must say that this ancient Hungarian music concept really helped bringing this Eastern European prog jem to the next level. Outstanding!

"Senki madara" is the most pleasant surprise for me this year and I consider this highly recommended to those who are not afraid of the exotic sounding Hungarian lyrics (there's a QR code link inside the booklet that takes you to some artistic English translations). Thank you YESTERDAYS! Can't wait to discover the earlier works too!

 Senki Madara by YESTERDAYS album cover Studio Album, 2018
3.92 | 58 ratings

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Senki Madara
Yesterdays Symphonic Prog

Review by DenisZhukov

4 stars Just discovered YESTERDAYS a few weeks ago. There's something original about this group with changing lineups, but with constant quality of ideas, concepts and music of course. I often say that Eastern Europe has a lot to offer to symphonic proggers, and YESTERDAYS is here to prove me right.

Senki madara (which means Noone's Bird) is their fresh release and yet probably their best. It might sound as a cliche, but it has strong YES and GENESIS influences, but in the same time they are totally different, not just some neoprog version of these bands. Yes, it's an Eastern European thing.

The album It happens to be based around some 2-3 hundred years old Hungarian folk songs, this already provides more depth to the whole CD, The arrangements in other hand are very complex, filled with SYMPHONIC PROG moments from the quietest ones to the loudest in every level between. The instrumentation shows that they take GENTLE GIANT, GENESIS and YES for breakfast but with an original taste.

If you are a big fan of mellotron sounds, this album is for you too. Choirs, flutes, mixed strings, brass sounds can be found everywhere, mixed with a real string quartet, beautiful flute virtuoso lines (Kecskemeti Gabor is amazing), rich guitars by Bogati-Bokor Akos and with the most natural drum sound I've heard in the last decade!

I need to write about the lead voices on this album, because the female leads and the rich backing vocals seems to be YESTERDAYS' main weapon. On "Senki madara" the main lead singer is Semeniuc Stephanie. Such a unique voice, such power and yet so much beauty in the quiet parts. Stephanie has an alto voice but she is very confident also in the higher parts. Not a shiny voice, but it has a color that is very original and beautiful. She really gives an extra to this release. The more you listen to her, the more you love her. Szirtes Edina Mokus is the second lead singer (present on two tracks: "Ne mondd el" and "Ugy bocsass el". As I found, she's a well known Hungarian session musician, violinist, vocalist from the fields of world music and jazz. She sings the most fragile and yet most breathtaking songs on this album. Tarsoly Csenge takes the lead on "Hajnalcsillag", well, she is like a female JON ANDERSON (can I say something like this?), a perfect choice for a Symphonic Prog delight. She is a soprano with a shiny high voice full of emotion.

The backing vocals are just amazing, polyphonic arrangements in every song!

Last but not least a few words about the sound of this album: wow! Natural mixing and mastering, clear, transparent sound maybe the best I've heard in years. BOB KATZ would be proud that he's got some talented followers fighting and winning the loudness war.

I think I found one of my favorite prog album of 2018 in Senki madara. I can't believe I haven't came across with YESTERDAYS sooner, they deserve more attention. Lovely music, it's a nice addition to any prog collection. It's so tempting to give 5 stars to this album, but since it's only their 3rd record, I am waiting for their true masterpiece.

Thanks to Ivan_Melgar_M for the artist addition. and to Quinino for the last updates

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