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Yes - Going For The One CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

4.03 | 1955 ratings

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2 stars I am amazed this album has received such ecstatic reviews. I first started listening to Yes in 1975, and the first album I discovered was RELAYER, which completely bowled me over, and which has remained one of my all-time favourites. Soon after that (still in '75) I discovered that Yes had released several highly imaginative masterpieces. I also came to love Rick Wakeman's solo-albums, but as soon as I found out that Patrick Moraz had been kicked out of Yes (and that Wakeman had rejoined the band), I was filled with suspicion. What else could this mean, but that Yes was going to sound less experimental and more commercial?

Lo and behold: GOING FOR THE ONE was released, and it proved to be an awful lot of noise. And strangest of all: Wakeman didn't get to play even one noteworthy solo. (His church organ noodling on AWAKEN failed to convinced me.) In my opinion, the best that can be said about GOING FOR THE ONE is that it contains some interesting BITS. Both the title track and PARALLELS, for example, start out strongly but soon descend into chaos. WONDEROUS STORIES is a totally forgettable ditty, one of the few Yes pieces that make me cringe. (CIRCUS OF HEAVEN is another).

TURN OF THE CENTURY is difficult. As a full-grown man I tend to resist the picture of Anderson, Howe and Wakeman as troubadours in silky robes, but if I am honest, the piece still moves me, each time time I play it. There is something truly soul-searching in the way the players search for the right notes.

AWAKEN is a hodge-podge. In the course of the years I've learnt that CLOSE TO THE EDGE (the song, not the album) was 'stitched together' in the studio, and no doubt THE GATES OF DELIRIUM developed in a similar way (the bonus tracks on the recent re-release of RELAYER also point in that direction) - but on AWAKEN you can HEAR the stitches! I don't want to sound totally negative about this piece. Wakeman's piano intro and Steve Howe's first electric solo are undoubtedly impressive, and on recent live DVDs AWAKEN's grand climaxes are performed with majestic control. Unfortunately, on the original album those climaxes sound tinny and chaotic. Moreover, Jon Anderson's lyrics are a turn-off. On previous Yes albums his words were usually incoherent but intriguing. GOING FOR THE ONE was the first Yes LP where he started preaching: 'Be honest with yourself! There's no doubt, no doubt!' etc. etc. I suppose this was his reaction to punk's then fashionable nihilism...

fuxi | 2/5 |


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