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Yes - Relayer CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.37 | 3011 ratings

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Equality 7-2521
3 stars Relayer has its share of good ideas in it, but falls short of real Yes masterpieces. Whereas previously in their catalogue like "Close To The Edge" you could marvel at the holistic nature of the composition, on Relayer I find myself being captured at moments, lost and found again throughout the album. My biggest complain here are the keyboards. Firstly, especially on "Gates of Delirium", the keyboards play almost no substantial role. They seem to be added in as an afterthought like a garnish to make the piece a little prettier. Secondly, Moraz doesn't fit well into the Yes machine. To put in a better perspective for younger readers, it reminds me of when Sherinian joined Dream Theater. Moraz has talent no doubt, but his style of playing and choice of tone just doesn't fit Yes' need.

I really like the hard-edged, chaotic sound they experimented with on "Gates", but before the middle battle section the track does very little for me. The opening gives the air of a second rate "Close To The Edge" and excluding a few good melodies I really don't see the point for the first 13 minutes. I just can't appreciate the cohesion and flow of the track like I can "Close To The Edge". The closing "Soon" section almost redeems every shortfall the song has though. Pound for pound it's probably the most moving thing the band composed.

"Sound Chaser" and "To Be Over" make up the second side of the album. The former has some nice jazzy elements and the only really good keyboard work from Moraz on the album, but Howe's leads leave fall short of their usual quality here. The latter fades in without much notice and fades away with an equally small amount. There's not much to it.

A good album with some great moments, but much less than you expect from Yes. The band seems a little tired at this point and fails to really deliver a complete song.

Equality 7-2521 | 3/5 |


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