I'm so looking forward to Saturday!
...at the fact that my all time favorite band -- the one I first saw live 35 years ago this month! -- could put on such an amazing performance. Yes is *BACK*, with more energy and a positive vibe than I've seen in many years! Wish I had time to give justice to every detail, but here are some highlights:
* The band was simply firing on all cylinders last night. EVERYONE seemed on fire, with smiles all around, far improved tempos (even YIND and Tempus Fugit -- much better than last year), tighter vocal harmonies (and vocals in general), and a band that felt as loose and positive as arguably ever before.
* Jon -- Introduced early on by Chris as "Yes's new lead vocalist," I cannot give him enough kudos. Not sure if he's the driver or the catalyst to such a happy and tight band, but he contributes SO MUCH in a seemingly humble but very confident, comfortable manner. As others have commented, he not only sings the music, he *owns* it. His love of the material is palpable, and you can tell the band and the audience feel it -- and get it. His vocals were virtually flawless (tho he came in a note or so early on Awaken ["Suns"], and had a slight crack during the high notes of TF), and the entire band seems to have embraced him in a big way. Hard to fathom that he's been with the band for less than a year -- spiritually, he seems to have been with them for a lifetime. If, as Chris has suggested, Yes will carry on in some form for generations to come, I suspect Jon will be literally front and center.
* Geoff -- More comfortable, integrated and just plain talented than I've ever seen him -- and that includes Asia and the Drama tour. As others have noted, it's obvious he respects the music (his solo on Awaken was more true to the recording than many of Wakeman's live versions), and he really shined on the FFH suite. Kudos also for him "filling in" (with his vocoder?) where necessary, e.g. to augment Chris's "We Can Fly" vocal harmonies. Of all the keyboardists who've played on Yes's studio recordings, Geoff gets my vote as by far the most versatile live musician.
* Chris, Steve, Alan -- Not sure what time machine transported them back to an earlier era, but they have clearly found their rhythm -- in more ways than one! Steve was as indefatigable and animated as I've ever seen him; Chris was flawless, hit vocal harmonies I've not seen him hit in years (e.g. on America), and clearly enjoyed himself; and Alan seemed as energized and literally uptempo as I've seen him since at least 2004.
Gotta get back to work, but at this rate, I'll see Yes anytime -- anywhere -- for the next 35 years.
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"In our gardens repose the remains of those that possess beauty without vanity, strength without insolence, courage without ferocity, and the virtues of man without his vices: our pets."
- Lord Byron
Geoff, blew my mind with his patch timbers last week in Denver. I was skeptic of him at first, but now I can see why they booted Wakeman for him.
It just feels so right. It's been far to long since it felt this right. Don't you dare miss a YES concert anymore!
Yuppits, be gone!!!!
Last edited by Yes.2; 08-15-2012 at 01:59 PM.
2 + 2 +2 X 0 = 4
♩♪ ♫♬ C G F F# D B G F E D B G F E F C ♩♪ ♫ ♬ —
Jimbo, I wish I had hooked up with you about that ticket...because I think I was sitting right in front of you in Section 204, Row A! There was a brunette woman in seat 1, no one in 2, me (in tweed jacket) in 3, no one in four, and a bearded guy playing a lot of air instruments (as did I) in seat 5.
One reason we didn't is that I was a bit on the fence about the show since I am busy with work and have a big day today. Driving an hour to and from the show took a bite out of the amount of sleep I got, but it improved my mood immeasurably, so things have worked out! I've been humming all those tunes all day today.
My favorites were probably YIND, America, and Awaken, but seeing all of FFH was great. I still think there's some stuff that could be cut from it, but I liked it going in, and it was better live and pretty impressive that they can keep the parts all straight, too. I felt like "Bumpy Ride" comes out of nowhere a bit on the record, and here it was my favorite part of the performance.
Negatives are pretty hard to come by. Tempus Fugit is just a little ragged at some of the seams, but still excellent. JD's singing seemed to dip a little in the direction of mediocre on Leaves of Green, but that may have just been me. I thought his delivery lost a little steam during Roundabout, but that's probably pretty normal for the end of a show. Overall he was as natural and good as reviewers have been saying. If there must be a replacement, he's it.
Instrumentally, they just seemed locked in almost completely. Reading some reviewers, you'd think Alan was stumbling half dead out of recent shows, and I just don't see it at all. The Chirs/Steve thing is just sick, as it always has been, and there was very little to fault Geoff on, either (I think his Moog sound could use a tweak, especially apparent on HotS.)
This show was just so enjoyable. I am so glad I went. The venue is not bad, either.
01.26.88 Jacksonville, FL (canceled day of) - 08.24.89 Montreal (ABWH) - 04.17.91 Worcester, MA - 07.07.91 Orlando, FL
06.18.94 Binghamton, NY - 09.09.94 New Haven, CT - 04.11.98 Eindhoven, NL - 10.11.98 Kawaguchi, JP - 06.21.00 and 07.31.01 Concord, CA
08.11.02 West Palm Beach, FL - 04.17.04 San Jose, CA - 07.02.09 San Francisco, CA - 08.19.12 San Jose, CA
had a blast in san jose with my girlfriend she and i both felt it was a big improvement on the kihncert performance. though im not sure if i prefer it to the yes asia show.
geoff rocked awaken loved it. the only weak point for us was tempus fugit i think they need to switch it with another drama tune. i thought america was a bit slow starting off but it picked up for me and i enjoyed it a lot (i was not expecting it at all!).
hope everyone else is enjoying the shows ive avoided reviews until now.