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Rick Wakeman - Two Sides Of Yes CD (album) cover


Rick Wakeman


Symphonic Prog

3.64 | 51 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars Rick Wakeman is unmistakably one of the greatest keyboard virtuosos of all time. And I say that without reservation, and that includes every genre of music. He made his mark with Yes first, then created another impressive catalog of recordings as a solo artist. [as you can see below -ed]

Two Sides Of Yes - Volumes I and II are classic Yes songs done instrumentally in a way that only Wakeman could recreate them. His talents as a keyboardist are all encompassing, ranging from rock to classical. All of that is explored via his agile and skillful fingers. You will recognize all the songs, and chances are the angelic voice of Jon Anderson will come to mind frequently as you listen. As noted on the back of the CD - "Dazzling selections of the greatest hits by Yes are performed." It couldn't have been put into better context than that.

Volume I and II are extensions of each other, the only difference being that Volume I has a bonus video of Wakeman performing "The Meeting." Dependent on the use of keyboards in a song, the atmospheres vary from the soft-as-a-cloud pristine pureness of new age to their rocking best, reminiscent of his early days with Yes. For instance "Your Move," which starts off Volume I, is done on an acoustic piano and sounds very elegant with strong classical overtones, while "Roundabout" rocks steadily from start to finish with many variations of electronic keyboards weaving their way in and out of the song. He renews his connection to all of the Yes music in a spiritual, loving way, thereby creating new classics out of the old. The beauty of each song is enhanced recurrently with Wakeman's prolific keyboard brilliance.

Old fans will be in all their glory listening to the new versions of these songs. And I am sure there are many music lovers out there who haven't had the pleasure of enjoying this music yet that will be pleasantly satisfied with the scope and breadth of the tastefulness and expertise in the selection of songs and styles that are presented in these two incredible CDs. Wakeman is a legendary figure in music and his influence is as strong and far-reaching as it ever has been. This kind of testament to his ever growing legacy as a keyboard genius just adds further credibility to what I have already stated.

I must give you fair warning though, after you listen to this you had best hide your credit cards and stay off the Internet, as I am sure you will want to buy every Wakeman and Yes CD there is to be had, or try to fill the holes in your present collection. Its time once again to climb aboard the Yes starship and enjoy all the "Wondrous Stories" that continue to unravel and reveal different personalities in each song as time passes. This is a must collection for any Yes fan, and a no-brainer for the legions of prog-rock lovers.

Muzikman | 5/5 |


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