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Yes - Talk CD (album) cover

TALK

Yes

 

Symphonic Prog

3.05 | 989 ratings

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Magnum Vaeltaja
Special Collaborator
Eclectic Prog Team
4 stars This is without a doubt the finest Yes studio album to come since the 70's and is Trevor Rabin's musical triumph. While we all wish that the Close To The Edge line-up could have stuck around for 40 years making incredibly new progressive odysseys year after year, we all know that that'll never happen. So after two decades of inner tensions and changing musical climates, Yes creates with "Talk" a new, more accessible breed of prog that works on a much more human level while still staying true to the original spiritual nature of the group's early work. Is it as good as Close To The Edge or Relayer? Not really. But is it great music? Of course!

"The Calling" opens the album strong; Jon Anderson is in fine form, the lyrics invoke a wonderful sense of wanderlust, Rabin and Kaye offer great trade-off solos and the production (courtesy of Mr. Rabin) is some of the best I've heard since Boston's debut. Wow! What a start. Afterwards comes "I Am Waiting", a strong progressive song that transitions between quiet, mellow sections and thundering, emotive sections with guitar playing that's mildly reminiscent of Jeff Beck. "Real Love" and "State of Play" take the band into more of a heavy prog/metal territory but they both keep a certain degree of playful Jon Anderson energy. "Walls" is an upbeat, radio-friendly pop rock song that will undoubtedly irritate the most die-hard 70's Yes fans. It's not a terrible song, however, and will likely appeal to anyone who enjoyed Boston's debut album; there are some striking similarities in playing style and timbre.

The masterpiece of the album is its ending suite, "The Endless Dream". It not only features a return to symphonic elements and very strong instrumental cohesion by the group, but it is singlehandedly the most emotionally powerful Yes song I've ever heard, from any era. The lyrics are touching, insightful, encouraging and Trevor's compositional skills amplify their cathartic nature. The finished product is a 16 minute journey through the heart and soul of all humans struggling that fittingly mirrors the shifting political climates of Rabin's homeland South Africa at the time; the album was released only a month before the election that brought in Nelson Mandela as leader and brought an end to Apartheid.

"Talk" is an underrated gem in the Yes discography and more than redeems their 80's output. A 4 star album, if not just for "The Endless Dream" alone.

Magnum Vaeltaja | 4/5 |

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