Yes
Yesshows


4.0
excellent

Review

by e210013 USER (89 Reviews)
April 16th, 2018 | 25 replies


Release Date: 1980 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Not as good as Yessongs, but still is a great album. It remains a great testimony of Yes as a live act.

“Yesshows” is the second live album of Yes and was released in 1980. The line up on the album is Jon Anderson, Steve Howe, Rick Wakeman, Patrick Moraz, Chris Squire and Alan White.


“Yessongs”, was the first Yes’ live album that was bound to be a classic. That 1973 triple LP was emblazoned with a hypnotic Roger Dean cover and comprised of material from double-header progressive rock behemoths “Fragile” and “Close To The Edge”. In any superficial comparison, “Yesshows” couldn’t possibly stack up. With its awkward snow scene cover, also made by Dean, and the track list spanning critically panned albums like “Tales From Topographic Oceans” and “Tormato”, it hardly screams an essential purchase. But “Yesshows”, released in November 1980, is just as essential as any of the band’s late 70’s albums, with songs that often improve upon their studio counterparts.

Yes broke up for the first time in 1978 after “Tormato”, and in the attempt at replacing Jon Anderson and Rick Wakeman by Trevor Horn and Geoff Downes, it was then they released their tenth studio album “Drama”. “Yesshows” is the second live album of Yes and was released in 1980, shortly after the release of “Drama”. Issued when Yes were about to disband, soon after this live album, “Yesshows” is a very important live document of their late 70’s era. “Drama” is an album with a different line up because Anderson and Wakeman left the band. The remaining members of the group Steve Howe, Chris Squire and Alan White joined two other musicians Horn and Downes, two ex-The Buggles members.

“Yesshows” is a double live album consisting of recordings from 1976 and 1978. “Yesshows” comprises live performances ranging from the summer of 1976 to the supporting tour for their last studio album “Tormato”, in 1978, in several locations. Like the band previous debut live album “Yessongs”, “Yesshows” begins with a classical music recording of Igor Stravinsky’s the “Firebird Suite”. Although, Rick Wakeman is the main keyboardist on the most tracks, the 1976 performances are featured by Patrick Moraz, the keyboardist of Yes in that time, after Wakeman have left the band after the release of “Tales From Topographic Oceans”. After the release of “Relayer” and just before the recording of “Going For The One”, Patrick Moraz left also the band and Wakeman returned to recording and release that album.

About the tracks, “Parallels”, “Going For The One” and “Wonderous Stories” were originally released on “Going For The One”, “Time And A Word” on “Time And A Word”, “The Gates Of Delirium” on “Relayer”, “Don’t Kill The Whale” on “Tormato” and “Ritual (Nous Sommes Du Soleil)” on “Tales From Topographic Oceans”. As happened with “Yessongs”, the recording sessions were taken from several locations in Europe United States, between 1976 and 1978.

The material on the album is from the post “Close To The Edge” period, with the exception of “Time And A Word”, and the album serves as a superb supplement to the live classic “Yessongs”. The band is in top shape and delivers great performances of the material. “Parallels” sounds better here than it did on “Going For The One” and the same goes for “Time And A Word” that works better without the orchestra on the studio version. “The Gates Of Delirium” is another demonstration of the fact that Yes was one of the best progressive rock live bands ever. Most of the second album is taken up of what I consider to be the ultimate version of “Ritual”. The track is spread over both sides of the album and it kicks the ass off the studio version on every level, despite the great quality of its studio version. Best of all, Yes retain their enviable ability to ably re-create the complex and challenging passages with a soul that is occasionally lacking from the studio counterparts. The more involved works, especially the Moraz performances on "The Gates of Delirium" and the nearly half hour "Ritual", are fuelled by a continuous energy. They build on the structure established from the respective tracks, yet even the most intricate elements and dynamics are amplified in their decisiveness and command.


Conclusion: “Yesshows” comprises different recordings from different live performances between 1976 and 1978, including two different line ups. “Yesshows” has negative points and positive points. The negative points are the inclusion of “Time And A Word” and “Don’t Kill The Whale” that despite are two good songs hadn’t quality enough to be chosen, and the non-inclusion of any song from “Close To The Edge” is unjustifiable. The production is not great too. The positive points are the presence of Moraz, which is very rare on any Yes’ live album, and the fantastic performance of the band on “The Gates Of Delirium” and “Ritual”. This is more evident on “Ritual”, because is a longer version due to the extended percussion section. It seems even a new song. It’s interesting to see the different interpretations of Moraz and Wakeman of the same track. “Yesshows” isn’t as good as “Yessongs”, but remains as a great live album and an essential piece of the all music catalogue of Yes. It represents a great testimony of the 70’s, too.


Music was my first love.
John Miles (Rebel)



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user ratings (63)
Chart.
3.9
excellent
other reviews of this album
heartscore (4.5)
Close second to Yessongs...



Comments:Add a Comment 
e210013
April 16th 2018


1841 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is my second choice for another review of a live Yes's album, after "Yessongs". I could have chosen another live album, since Yes was a great live band and released several great live albums during their long career. Maybe some of them could be better, or at least in the same level. But I decided to choose "Yesshows" due to two reasons. Despite isn't as good as "Yessongs", I think it's a perfect companion to that album and above all it has the rare presence of Patrick Moraz on a Yes's live album. So, somew, as happened with "Drama", this is also another unique album of the band.

Divaman
April 16th 2018


2009 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

So true, e. Another good choice.

Digging: Frankie Cosmos - Vessel

rodrigo90
April 16th 2018


4092 Comments


I Would have chosen another song from tormato if I had mix the CD. I mean don't kill the whale is great, but future times and arriving UFO are even better.

Jethro42
April 16th 2018


15274 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

The setlist could have been better, but songs are all well executed, except maybe for ''Time and a Word'' that seems out of place, and it seems that Steve Howe didn't know what to do with it. He keeps on doing random guitar solos all the way. I think a simple acoustic guitar would do the trick. ..

''Gates of Delirium'' is worth the price of admission on its own. It's still more powerful than the original. ''The Ritual'' is too long and it goes nowhere for the extended drum solo part. The original version is better with Wakeman on board. I'm not really a fan of Patrick Moraz into a Yes context, even if he did a good job on Relayer. ''Don't Kill the Whale'' and ''Wonderous Stories'' are not songs that shine live, but the former is one of the best Tormato's tracks and I would have replaced the latter by ''Awaken'' or ''And You And I'' for instance. ''Parallels'' is a decent opener, but it's my least favorite from Going for the One. My rating could be a 3.5, but it's a good companion for Yessongs.

Good review e21, bro.

Jethro42
April 16th 2018


15274 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@rodrigo, ''Arriving UFO'' is nothing too special except for its keyboard ''riff'' that is a Tormato's highlight alone.

e210013
April 16th 2018


1841 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks, Diva. I was sure you would appreciate my choice.

e210013
April 16th 2018


1841 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"I Would have chosen another song from tormato if I had mix the CD."

I agree with you rodrigo. I don't like "Don't Kill The Whale" but I don't like "Arriving UFO" either. But "Future Times/Rejoice" would be a perfect choice.

Thanks for your comment, pal.

rodrigo90
April 16th 2018


4092 Comments


@rodrigo, ''Arriving UFO'' is nothing too special except for its keyboard ''riff'' that is a Tormato's highlight alone.

I think I made a point in some of the reviews of e210013 saying that I love tormato from top to bottom, so that's the explanation what I appreciate the album so much, even if the most hardcore yes fan thinks that it's the worst thing they did in the 70's

rodrigo90
April 16th 2018


4092 Comments


Maybe you're right that songs like arriving UFO and circus of heaven are silly and childish, but I listen to them from another point of view.

rodrigo90
April 16th 2018


4092 Comments


When I chose to buy that album I had 2 options, tormato or close to the edge, and I chose tormato and I'm not regretful. Maybe the album is bad produced, but I think the songs are wonderful not at fragile or going for the one level, but they're awesome

rodrigo90
April 16th 2018


4092 Comments


In a way I tend to worship albums that most of people find disgusting or awful, I think it's a virtue because I like to see beyond what most listeners find in the songs and while I agree that albums like big generator and talk are a piece of crap, I did apprecciate albums like tormato, and then there were three and even king crimson's beat.

e210013
April 16th 2018


1841 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I agree with almost all you wrote, Jethro. "Time And A Word" is really out of place but this one a better version than the original. The live version of "Gates Of Delirium" is absolutely gorgeous and fantastic. About "Ritual", you may be right. But you know I love "Tales", so for me is a bless to listen to this live version. Especially in this case since we ha ve a different keyboard interpretation from other keyboardist. Besides, you know we have different perspectives about Moraz. I like very much the keyboard work of Moraz on Yes.You know I don't like "Don't Kill The Whale", this isn't a typical Yes' track. And "Wonderous Stories" doesn't shine live and is more Anderson track for a solo album of him.

Thanks, bro. It's always a pleasure to read your points of view.

e210013
April 16th 2018


1841 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

In what concerns to me I've no problem with your taste, rodrigo. But you're right. The hard prog fans of Yes tend to dislike the album because it doesn't sound to their classic sound and is a bit popish. Besides that, the album was recorded at the height of the punk movement and Yes were not very sure of the way to go. Personally, you know I don't dislike the album. It has some good tracks. But I don't like particularly of three songs of the album. "Don't Kill The Whale", I don't like of its direct ecologist lyrics. They have nothing to do with the traditional lyrics of Yes. "Arriving UFO" is a weird track in terms of lyrics and music. And "Cicus Of Heaven" is a bit cheesy and childish song for Yes' album. It's more proper for a Anderson's solo album.



Divaman
April 16th 2018


2009 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I definitely like having a live recording of Yes' Patrick Moraz period.

e210013
April 16th 2018


1841 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nice. By the way. What do you think about Moraz on Yes, Diva?

Jethro42
April 16th 2018


15274 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, e21 is right, rodrigo. For Tormato, it shows that Yes has moved away from their natural inclination to do heartfelt, epic progressive rock songs because at that time, it was the advent of punk and new-wave, so they were under the pressure of their record label to do radio-friendly music. So it was hard for Yes to remain Yes, and they were not too good in doing AOR music. Tormato is not bad, but it's not great for the classic Yes standards.

And Then There Were Three and Beat are easier to appreciate. The former is a good companion to Duke, and the latter is a good companion to Discipline. On the other hand, Tormato is all alone in style. It has good ideas, but it shows the band did transform too much their songs to pop rock.

e210013
April 16th 2018


1841 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, you're right Jethro. Both are good companions to their previous albums. But we can't say the same with "Tormato" in relation to "Going For The One". "Going For The One" has the classic sound of Yes, still. But about King Crimson, "Discipline" is definetelly a much better album than "Beat". About Genesis, despite I prefer clearly "And Then There Were Three" to "Duke", I can admit they're much closer.

Veldin
April 16th 2018


3189 Comments


awesome review, pos'd mate. I will be jamming this for the first time tonight !

Divaman
April 17th 2018


2009 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I liked Moraz, e. I'm basically a Wakeman guy, but for me, Moraz was one of the few who could capably fill Wakeman's shoes.

e210013
April 17th 2018


1841 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks Veldin. I think the album deserves it. Still, I continue thinking that there is great live albums all over all these years in any kind of music style. So, I expect more love for live albums, in general, on Sptutnik. Unfortunatelly, it seems that it isn't a fact.



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