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Yes - Remixes CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

2.14 | 68 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars A hatchet job

The story behind this album runs along the lines of Steve Howe's son Virgil (aka "The Verge") tinkering with his dad's band's track "Heart of the sunrise". Howe Snr. was understandably non-committal about what he heard, but suggested Virgil do some more, resulting in the is album. The chosen tracks are not necessarily Yes' most popular or best known, although the aforementioned "HOTS" plus "Awaken" and "Starship trooper" are included.

I don't have any problem with remixes as such, but I must admit I had hoped that the results would be reasonably faithful to the originals. It would for example have been interesting to hear "Siberian Khatru" set to a dance beat, or the final part of "Awaken" taken to even greater heights. The recent hit single remix of "Owner of a lonely heart" by Max Graham was a credible example of what can be achieved in this field.

What we have here though is dub type remixes of the tracks, where they are stripped of their identity, then clips from them extracted and repeated ad-nauseum. There's no flow to the music, and a dearth of inspiration in the editing.

There's no obvious logic to the tracks which were selected either. The album opens with "Tempus Fugit" from the "Drama" album, and is thus devoid of two parts of the classic Yes sound, namely Anderson's voice and Wakeman's keyboards. The most obvious aspect of the remixing here is the repetition of certain lyrics, such as "Answer to.. Answer to.. Answer to.. YES". Ear catching, but a bit irritating!

Other questionable selections are "Arriving UFO" and "Five percent for nothing", neither of which can be described as obvious choices.

"Starship Trooper" starts with the middle section(!), then jumps about picking random snippets from the song. After a drum and bass interlude, the final "Wurm" section is reasonably recognisable, with a decent synthesiser piece, which appears to be new, to close. "Awaken" starts with the end section, the bit which goes "Like the time I ran away". It too jumps about completely destroying the impact of the track, particularly the mighty build up on the original, as it moves towards the crescendo section.

The final track, "No clowns" appears to take its name from "No opportunity necessary" plus "Circus of heaven". It is something of a catch all, with extracts from a number of Yes tracks from different albums.

Astonishingly, Virgil admits in the sleeve-notes the samples used were taken from vinyl copies of the albums not the master tapes, and that he worked only with a sampler and a 16 track recorder, no PC. This presumably implies that any samples used are simply distortions of the original tracks, not extracts of say just the guitar or bass line.

In summary, while the source tracks are in the main certainly recognisable, the remixing here does nothing to enhance them. One for the curious only.

Easy Livin | 2/5 |


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