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Yes - Keys to Ascension CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.05 | 503 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars I am on a mission to listen to everything that Yes has ever recorded, even if I am doing it backwards. Recently I reviewed Keystudio, which was a compilation of outtakes from these two discs, Keys To Ascension (1996) & Keys To Ascension 2 (1997).

Jon Anderson's enduring falsetto has left an indelible mark on progressive rock; his distinctive rich vocals are unparalleled and continue to entertain audiences worldwide. These two discs offer exceptional live tracks as well as excellent studio work. The "classic lineup," which is on tour currently working their way through their huge volume of music, is in stellar form on each of these wonderful two discs sets. Yes, you will hear many of the songs that you have heard repeatedly on live albums before but I sincerely promise that they will not disappoint. Every time you do hear these songs they have something new to offer, a subtle nuance or atmosphere that features another instrument in their all-start lineup, or Anderson approaching his vocals in different way. They always manage to keep you interested with incredibly good musicianship and lead vocals that have not faltered after nearly thirty-five years.

Both discs offer progressive rock entrancements like the magnum opuses "Mind Drive" and "That Is, That Is," which both clock in at nearly 20 minutes each. That one thing you can always count on with Yes, they create multi-leveled songs such as classics like "Close To the Edge" and "And You and I" as if it were a matter of course rather than a long difficult task.

Complete songs within songs, a story within a story, and musical journeys that will live on until the last light goes out in the vast universe. that is how I picture their legacy. Somehow, I cannot imagine any other group that I have heard in this genre play and perform on such a level of consistency and value year after year as they do. I seriously doubt that their output can be duplicated, much less emulated. In a genre known for such intricate and complex arrangements demanding the most intense musicianship there are few that can separated as unique and out of the ordinary, this band is one of those few.

I read a few overly critical reviews of these two albums and took it with a grain of salt. I know anything that this band creates is outstanding and a step ahead of all the rest. If you concur with my thoughts and have not purchased these two fine CD sets then I suggest you do so.

Muzikman | 5/5 |


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