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Asia - XXX CD (album) cover




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2.99 | 167 ratings

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Easy Livin
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars The old ones are the best

Heard the one about the four great prog musicians who got together and recorded an album of great pop songs? You know, the one where the prog fans collectivity turn up their noses at the band and deride them for having the audacity to record an album devoid of complex time signatures, side long compositions and impenetrable melodies. Well, like all good jokes, it certainly bears repeating, and here it is one more time.

Wait a minute though, what do you mean it is actually true? Well yes (or is that Yes?) and once again Howe, Wetton, Palmer and Downes dare to create a fine album of sophisticated pop songs with great melodies, killer hooks and quality arrangements. Embarrassed as we might be, we once again find ourselves singing along and tapping in time to the beat. It only takes a couple of listens before we can recite "Bury me in willow's" magical chorus word for word. It takes no time at all till we find ourselves cheerfully whistling the tune to "Tomorrow the world" for no reason at all as we walk down the road.

But surely this is unacceptable to a true fan of prog. We must deride this far too enjoyable collection of songs and bemoan the great waste of prog talent once again. We must question the motives of these prog greats, accuse them of reinventing the wheel, and use expressions such as "selling out" while secretly feeling compelled to listen once again to the album.

Or, we can simply be thankful for another fine collection of well crafted songs, superb arrangements and top rate musicianship. The fact that a number of the tracks are developed a bit more than usual, while retaining their instant appeal, is just the icing on the cake.

The choice is simple, decry the album on principle or sit back and enjoy it.

Easy Livin | 4/5 |


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