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Yes - Relayer CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.37 | 3000 ratings

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5 stars Incredible album by a band of masters, that is one way to describe Relayer. This is often referred to as a quintessential prog album, and there's definetely a reason for that. The biggest reason is the track "Gates of Delirium" which takes up the first half of the album.

Gates is a flawless composition featuring most original Yes members and Alan White on drums with Patrick Moraz on keyboards. Through the entire composition (not song may I add, because unlike many prog compositions, this one is hugely symphonic in structure), the listener is flung through an emotional journey of both bombastic chaos and immense sorrow. It begins innocently enough, but grows eventually into a giant technical and complex middle section with the keyboard sounds crashing all around. It finishes off in the touching "Soon" section, and Steve Howe's guitars become so soaring that it will bring prog fans' tears to the eyes.

"Gates of Delirium" itself is good enough to be a masterpiece of itself, which is why this is essential. The second half of the album may be slightly dissapointing though. The dense jazzy "Sound Chaser" may sound to some like a technical mess, with the band masturbating their instruments. There's a section where it is only Howe playing his guitar by himself, just note after note of wankery. It is a wonder how such a master player in the previous composition loses his tact and loses it in this song.

"To Be Over" is nicer though. Blends of different guitar esque string instruments at a slow pace make it a nice progressive 'ballad' type track. Absolutely beautiful, wonderful way to close the album.

Relayer is a masterpiece album, if only for "Gates of Delirium". The other tracks, while not flawless, are good tunes that a prog fan should enjoy. If not, the first track should suffice for them. It is essential for any prog fan.

topofsm | 5/5 |


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