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Yes - Montreux 2003 (DVD) CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.97 | 146 ratings

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4 stars How many people are still working at the (almost) age of sixty, and still enjoying success and still looking like they are enjoying their jobs? YES is one of this fortunate groups of people who are still working, doing their jobs with quality, success and apparent happiness, at that age, as this concert DVD shows them, in my opinion.

The set-list is almost the same as when I saw them playing in my city in December 8th, 2002, with the exception of "And You and I" (they played here "Close to the Edge" instead), "To Be Over" (Howe played here "Leaves of Green" from "The Ancient" instead), and in my city they also played "Starship Trooper" as the first Encore. So, this DVD brings me very good memories from that 2002 concert.

Despite the fact that I like more the set-list from the "Keys to Ascension" DVD (being more varied, in my opinion), this DVD is very good, despite including more songs from the "Fragile" album, which, to be honest, it is not one of my favourite albums from YES. But it was good to listen to "We Have Heaven" (which includes the use of some tapes to help the band to sing the vocals) and the complete version of "South Side of the Sky" (being the first tour on which Wakeman played the piano instrumental section, and the band also played and sang the next section of this song with both sections of the song never played on tour before). In 1971-72 (with Wakeman) and in 1975 (with Moraz) the band only played short versions of this song."Don`t Kill the Whale" wasn`t played since their 1978-79 tours, and it also was good to hear it again, with the additon (like "South Side of the Sky") of guitar/keyboards solos at the end of both songs. Howe also plays an almost complete (but instrumental) acoustic guitar solo version of "To Be Over" in a very good arrangement, with this song not being played by the band since their 1974-75 and 1976 tours with Moraz on keyboards."Heart of the Sunrise" also wasn`t played by the band on tour since 1991-92. "The Fish" also includes bass and drums parts of songs from "Drama" ("Tempus Fugit") and "Tormato" ("On the Silent Wings of Freedom"; why the band didn`t play the whole song?).

The version of "Awaken" included in this DVD is very good, but a bit different that the version included in the "Keys to Ascension" DVD, with this 2003 version including some improvisations and different playing by Wakeman in some parts of the song. I have to say that the main reason to go to see them playing in concert in my city in 2002 was to listen to "Awaken", which is my favourite song from YES, and it wasn`t played by them here in their 1998 and 1999 tours. The other reason was to see YES with Wakeman on keyboards, because in 1998 and 1999 the band didn`t include him in the line-up, with Igor Khoroshev being the keyboard player (doing in those concerts a very good job, in my opinion).

Two songs drom the "Magnification" album are included: the title track and the very good song called "In the Presence of", with Wakeman reading scores while playing on keyboards the orchestral arrangements of these songs (he didn`t play on that album, with Alan White playing a bit of piano on that album). White said in one interview that "In the Presence of " was a song which was mostly composed by him.

I think that this is a very good concert DVD, most "honest" than the "Keys in Ascension" DVD in the sense of not really having overdubs, with the band recorded "as they played in concert". Particularly, Anderson looks tired and making some big efforts to reach the high tones in some songs, but he also looks very happy, really having fun. The band looks particularly very "inspired" while playing "Awaken", with all the musicians closing their eyes while playing! They obviously look older than in previous tours, but they still play very well as individual musicians and as a band.

The quality of the audio and video in this DVD is very good. In ontrast to the "Keys to Ascension" DVD, the band is presented without additional visuals and effects. But I like both DVDs, and in my opinion both are good companion to each other.

Guillermo | 4/5 |


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