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Yes - Time and a Word CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.32 | 1449 ratings

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The Runaway
4 stars We made 5 pounds more than Genesis at that time, so I didn't join them in the end - Peter Banks

Time and a Word was Peter Banks' last album with Yes, and with that, Tony Kaye knew his time was soon to come. This album features use of an orchestra, which is one of the main reasons for Peter's disagreements with the band, and with his guitar being buried in the mix, Peter left shortly afterwards.

This album features a dirty Hammond organ sound played by Tony kaye, and is most recognized with organist Jon Lord of Deep Purple fame. His sound is so rich, and so cathedralic it feels like Kaye IS the orchestra! Bill Bruford has started to get his drum playing rolling and ready for his famous snare sound, featured on albums like Close to the Edge and Fragile. Yes' symphonic sound is really symphonic on this album, especially in terms of composition, and as said in previous reviews, instrumentation.

This album is an epic showcasing of Bruford's drum skills, with maniac rhythms jumping all over him, and he deflects their hits, one by one, with his mighty drumming abilities. Peter Banks once said: "We made 5 pounds more than Genesis at that time, so I didn't join them in the end", but regretted his mistake shortly after departing from Yes, rough day Peter, eh? This album has been overlooked because of many successful, or hoped-to-be-successful albums of 1970, like "In the Wake of Poseidon", which was supposed to be an epic sequel to In the Court, or even Genesis' Trespass.

The writing on this album is fantastic, yet underestimated by many, be it famous rock critics, or just your friend from next door. I agree, some songs were definitely not musts on this album, like Then, or the beginning of Everydays, but they are still musts in order for you to have this album listened to ass a whole. However, things like the louder part of Everydays are what I like to hear; Bruford's cymbals crashing, Chris Squire's high bass notes rocking my woofers, Banks' classically influenced guitar solos, and Tony Kaye's chorale Hammond organ sound are the things that make my day. Sweet Dreams is a Tormato song to me, and by that I mean that its feel and sound are very similar to those in the 1978 Yes album, Tormato. The Prophet sounds a lot like a song off Badger's One Live Badger album, which is coincidentally the band Tony Kaye started after being kicked out of Yes, with it's heavy organ sound and guitar/organ/bass synchronized parts, yet differenting it from the Badger sound are Jon Anderson's vocals and the massive orchestra. The song Astral Traveller is what Banks-Kaye-time-Yes was all about, which is like what happens on Everydays, cymbal crashing, drum bashing, bass slapping, keyboard mashing rock n' roll!

I don't get why Banks was so eager to leave the band after this album: his parts were fantastic, he was mixed just right and was well heard, and he just did a great job overall. Chris Squire is the only Yes member to appear on every Yes album, but not only that, but he has also been in groups The Syn and Mabel Greer's Toyshop, both of which later evolved into Yes. This album is the ending of a very good Yesyear...

4/5, because the orchestra is a few notches below bad, and that does not please me, with it being a very important part of the album, musically. Astral Traveller would be a better fitting album bookend, while Time and a Word sounds more like a mid-album track on Yes's debut album

The Runaway | 4/5 |


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