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Thread: Seeing them in York: A review

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    Super Mega Yesfan popeyebonaparte's Avatar
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    Seeing them in York: A review

    Well... I think the time has probably come to describe my experience finally seeing Yes (or a form of Yes anyway) in concert.
    I've been a Yes fan all of my life. The very first album I ever bought with my own money was when I was eight and I got Going For The One. I never got a chance to see them when they were last touring with Jon and Rick because I was too young and geographical reasons stopped me from seeing either Official or ARW Yes until now. Enough about that though. What about the show?

    I arrived at the Barbican pretty much straight off the train. I was pretty conscious of definitely being the youngest person in the building, a fact that was pointed out to me various times along the evening. The doors opened, I got my programme and made my way to my seat where I waited for the start of the show. After about half an hour the lights went down and a wave of anticipation hit me, probably the rest of the audience too, as the opening music began. I've not listened to it since but my thought at the time was that it was pretty much the worst qualities of Rabin and the worst qualities of Wakeman gloriously amalgamated into an unlistenable flurry. Rabin in "excited orhcestra" mode, Wakeman with his worst tones playing a million notes to no consequence. Still, ---- it, THE BAND ARE ON!!!
    First came Molino and Hornall to tentative applause. Then Wakeman and Rabin, to raptuous applause, who went to centre stage and shared a hug before going to their respective positions. Rabin struck the first chord and Cinema began.

    This being one of my favourite Yes pieces, I was thrilled. And on came Jon. He's exactly like you'd expect him really.
    Hold On began with a frenzied Wakeman introduction which, as much as I love Rick, was completely out of place. This is a view I've heald pretty much since I first heard this arrangement. Still, into the song. Again, a track I love to bits. Jon Anderson is amazing. I can't say that enough. AMAZING. Because not only is he singing songs he originally sang 40 odd years ago with the exact same passion, his voice has not aged at all. How many rock singers from the 70s still sound like they did on their records? Well he never really was a rock singer but I digress.
    Next up was Perpetual Change. It was good but by now, being a guitarist, I was closely scrutinizing Trevor's playing. And I have to say much as I like him, he was not on top form. It seems to me he's lost the strength in his grip which can happen to guitarists after a period of not playing much. In Trevor's case this is 25 years so... His one trick which he uses to get out of it is the fast playing of scales which the compressor covers for him until he has to rest on a note for more than a second. And often loses it. I don't mean to have a go at all but this was what I was seeing on the night. So as I was trying to focus more and more on the general expereince of seeing Yes I just kept focusing on this.

    And You And I was amazing but I was still disappointed with Rabin. I wish he wouldn't skip the acoustic intro and the particular arrangement that he uses kills the momentum in a way. Jon manages to lift it back up effortlessly though and I didn't hear any evidence of the melody being changed as was so fervently reported here.

    Rhythm Of Love is another one I've been really into recently and it definitely lifted my mood for the second half of the set. Amusingly, Jon had completely forgotten that there was an intermission saying "I've just been told there's an interval" or words to that effect.

    As I got up I was still pretty despondent and decided I couldn't let my experience of finally seeing Yes be ruined by lack of interest. Sobriety was the problem, clearly so I ran for the bar and got two pints of lager which I then proceeded to down immediately, getting a third one for the rest of the show (which didn't last until the end of I Am Waiting I'm sorry to say)

    Second half began with I Am Waiting which is the only Yes song I've heard that I actively dislike. I just find it boring. It goes nowhere and takes a while in doing so. But then...
    The rest of the show took off like a jet engine. Either Rabin miraculously got much better, the whole band did or I just began to concentrate on the music as one. I suspect the lager played an important part.
    HEART OF THE SUNRISE WAS AMAZING. Holy christ. Just the power of the music. Jon's singing is sublime and in person it just takes everything to a higher level. The whole band were firing on all cilinders. And I'll also take this opportunity to say that Niall Hornal is brilliant. He completely exceeded my expectations in every possible area throughout the gig.
    Without a moment to really catch your breath from the mammoth onslaught just witnessed, the band go straight into Awaken.
    Now, even though I don't like the arrangement they're doing on this tour it was incredible. No words can do it justice so I won't try.
    Owner was great fun as was the walkabout. It's supposed to be fun for christ sake!

    They left the stage, came back on and did Roundabout. I'm pretty sure they're back to the original full length version. Which is great! Jon encouraged everyone to stand and dance and sing along. Halfway through the track I thought "---- it, this is my chance" I got up from my seat and ran down the aisle to the very edge of the stage right below Rabin. No barrier or anything. We held eye contact as both of us sang "I'll be there with yooooou!" and after the song was over came over and shook our hands, bumped fists, etc. He seemed like a really nice fella to be honest with you.

    Then it was over. They left the stage, I managed to get a setlist from one of the roadies and ran for the stage door.
    Sure enough, five minutes later out comes Rabin. I was surprised how few people were there. Literally me and two other fans. He was just about to get in to his car when I said "Hey Trevor! Thanks so much for all the music and a great show!" He stopped, turned around said "Ahh thank you man! It's people like you who are into it that do it for us" or words to that effect. Then he walked around the car and gave me a hug and said "You're a musician, I can tell!" I was in disbelief. "Yeah, I'm a guitarist!" "Yeah, I can tell!" And with that he was off.
    I turned around and right behind me was Rick. I said to him the same, thanks for the music and that and he kind of nodded, said OK and made for his car (he was driving himself, by the way his numberplate is pure genius). It was raining a bit so I can see why he wanted to just get out in a hurry. One of the other two people there asked him for a photograph which he obliged. That was when I went into fanboy mode for a second and thanked him again for some reason which got "Ok you're welcome" and off he went.
    Jon took half an hour before he came out. He's just like you'd expect if you watch the RnRHOF press conference thing. On another planet, literally. I think he kind of made out what I said to him and he did shake my hand I think (can't remember properly). And then he was off.

    The rest of the night was spent trying to find an open pub in the rain sodden streets of York but the experience I had is one that will stay with me for the rest of my life. Particuarly Rabin was so nice to me I still can't quite believe it.

    However I do have to say this. What I saw wasn't Yes. It was half of Yes. Jon, Rick and Steve need to put their differences aside before it's too late. Not for the fans, not for the band, not for Chris. For the music. Because what is going on now is tainting the music at least for me. Yes music has always been the ultimate expression of happiness, joy, love and positivity. I think as fans a lot of us are too involved in the --------, certainly I have been. I no longer enjoy listening to a lot of 70s Yes albums because it's no longer about that message. It's become an unbelievably silly feud between a bunch of old men acting like five year olds in a playground.
    Peace, love, long live rock n roll





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    Sept 8 2016 R.I.P Dex rePete's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Great review - glad you enjoyed it.
    -Pete


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    War ... just breaks the soul Bluegrunt's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Thanks for the review, and I understand the many conflicting emotions you appear to have felt. Whether it's Yes or ARW, there is something absolutely special about seeing this music played live. I'm so pleased you've now had the chance, and hopefully you now appreciate why some of us are so crazy about seeing this band live, in whichever variation is available.

    Yes live is a magical, musical experience, and I'm happy that you've experienced it.
    Lame, naive, laughable and stupid

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    Dr. Fish will see you now. luna65's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    I'm happy for you that you got to meet Trevor - he can be really kind and gracious in those situations.
    "If you slice me in two, I’m prog all the way through.”
    - Mr. Poms

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    Founder/Owner 1yesfan's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    I suspect you will see TR in a diff light now in some ways based on your interaction with him?
    "YES" - Music that could make God cry with joy. Either you get it or you don't.

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    Super Insane Yesfan barra1's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Thanks for the review. Hope it is not the only time you see Yes music played live

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    Mega Yesfan dantalion90125's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Your review brings back memories of seeing Yes for the first time during the Going for the One tour, Empire Pool, Wembley.
    Many year’s ago, went by train too. Luckily the classic line up. Enjoyed the band in its many forms since. Some amazing, some very good.....can’t ever recall coming away from a gig flat or disappointed.
    Whilst you experienced a Yes style show at York I’m pleased you were able to see Jon with his voice back on form. He’s the spiritual essence of Yes and takes the band up another level.
    Almost joined you at the stage door but it was a wet Wednesday night and with this pre show VIP ticket thing they’re so keen on these days they seem no longer keen to hang around signing stuff after the gig.
    As you seemed disappointed by the guitar stylings of Trevor R, make sure you get to a Yes O gig with Steve H. One of the remaing key members whom is at the top of his game.

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    onward... somissound's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Sounds like a fun night! Thanks for the review.

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    ˙ƃuoɹʍ ǝuoƃ ʎlɹɐǝlɔ sɐɥ ƃuᴉɥʇǝɯos relayerone's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Quote Originally Posted by somissound View Post
    Sounds like a fun night! Thanks for the review.
    Thanks for the review, good read. Rabin is one of the very few Yes or former Yes members I haven't met in person, good to know he's approachable.
    Jon Anderson *is* amazing, totally.

    For some reason too I thought you were older, mid 50's maybe.
    Possessio is nine-tenths of the word.

    Music:♩♪♫♬ Volume: ▁ ▂ ▃ ▄ ▅ ▆ █ 110 %

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    Super Mega Yesfan popeyebonaparte's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Quote Originally Posted by 1yesfan View Post
    I suspect you will see TR in a diff light now in some ways based on your interaction with him?
    I've always thought Trevor seemed like a really nice fella all round. I know I was a Trevor basher until about two years ago but getting into more 80s rock like Whitesnake and Def Leppard made me understand the true value of his contribution to Yes. Right now 90125 and BG are probably the Yes albums I enjoy listening to the most.
    But the meeting did utterly surpass any expectations I may have had. I felt a bit bad about what I said about his playing during the 1st half of the gig but that was also my perception at the time so it would be dishonest not to include it.
    I'll say it again. Lovely meeting him, an absolute gentleman.
    Peace, love, long live rock n roll

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    The said Remark Ceasar's Palace's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Thorough review. From your account it seems Jon’s voice is even better than I thought. Because the closing lines of Heart Of The Sunrise have so much power and emotion, it’s impressing that Jon manages to pull that off these days.

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    Dr. Fish will see you now. luna65's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Quote Originally Posted by popeyebonaparte View Post
    I felt a bit bad about what I said about his playing during the 1st half of the gig but that was also my perception at the time so it would be dishonest not to include it.
    And it is entirely possible to hold opposing views of someone's personality versus their professional ability. I've encountered a few people over the years who were the inverse of that: amazing musician but I wouldn't want to actually know them offstage.
    "If you slice me in two, I’m prog all the way through.”
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    Insane Yesfan Laddr's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Excellent review and what a great experience!
    Close To The Edge of a Topographical Ocean

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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    I can feel the excitement seeing Yes the first time. It is a honest review and fine to struggle with someone you admire, like Rabin, if you just felt so. One other thought - even If I really liked the new AYAI and Awaken I can absolutely understand that those versions may not be perfect for someone who sees the band the first time. Well, they seem to irritate also others who have seen them multiple times
    Last edited by PeterCologne; 07-11-2018 at 05:32 PM.

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    onward... somissound's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Quote Originally Posted by Ceasar's Palace View Post
    Thorough review. From your account it seems Jon’s voice is even better than I thought. Because the closing lines of Heart Of The Sunrise have so much power and emotion, it’s impressing that Jon manages to pull that off these days.
    When I saw ARW he was really good for all he's been through. Only struggled with his lower register on a few, especially the Meeting. I wondered if it was because they are playing the songs tuned down a step, and maybe the high parts are easier to hit, but the lower ones are just too low...? Either way it was awesome just to see him up there and hear the iconic voice :)

    Quote Originally Posted by luna65 View Post
    And it is entirely possible to hold opposing views of someone's personality versus their professional ability. I've encountered a few people over the years who were the inverse of that: amazing musician but I wouldn't want to actually know them offstage.
    You got that right! I've had a few pleasant surprises over the years, and few huge bummers. But Trevor seems like a pretty cool dude.

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    Dr. Fish will see you now. luna65's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Quote Originally Posted by somissound View Post
    But Trevor seems like a pretty cool dude.
    Obvious bias, of course, but he really is.
    "If you slice me in two, I’m prog all the way through.”
    - Mr. Poms

    https://rabinesque.blogspot.com/

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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    I always found Jon's voice sounded a little weak at the start of most shows and it would get better during the show. I wondered if that was why they would often open with a song that has strong vocals from Chris and Steve or Trevor.

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    Mega Yesfan highfell's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Quote Originally Posted by popeyebonaparte View Post
    Well... I think the time has probably come to describe my experience finally seeing Yes (or a form of Yes anyway) in concert.
    I've been a Yes fan all of my life. The very first album I ever bought with my own money was when I was eight and I got Going For The One. I never got a chance to see them when they were last touring with Jon and Rick because I was too young and geographical reasons stopped me from seeing either Official or ARW Yes until now. Enough about that though. What about the show?

    I arrived at the Barbican pretty much straight off the train. I was pretty conscious of definitely being the youngest person in the building, a fact that was pointed out to me various times along the evening. The doors opened, I got my programme and made my way to my seat where I waited for the start of the show. After about half an hour the lights went down and a wave of anticipation hit me, probably the rest of the audience too, as the opening music began. I've not listened to it since but my thought at the time was that it was pretty much the worst qualities of Rabin and the worst qualities of Wakeman gloriously amalgamated into an unlistenable flurry. Rabin in "excited orhcestra" mode, Wakeman with his worst tones playing a million notes to no consequence. Still, ---- it, THE BAND ARE ON!!!
    First came Molino and Hornall to tentative applause. Then Wakeman and Rabin, to raptuous applause, who went to centre stage and shared a hug before going to their respective positions. Rabin struck the first chord and Cinema began.

    This being one of my favourite Yes pieces, I was thrilled. And on came Jon. He's exactly like you'd expect him really.
    Hold On began with a frenzied Wakeman introduction which, as much as I love Rick, was completely out of place. This is a view I've heald pretty much since I first heard this arrangement. Still, into the song. Again, a track I love to bits. Jon Anderson is amazing. I can't say that enough. AMAZING. Because not only is he singing songs he originally sang 40 odd years ago with the exact same passion, his voice has not aged at all. How many rock singers from the 70s still sound like they did on their records? Well he never really was a rock singer but I digress.
    Next up was Perpetual Change. It was good but by now, being a guitarist, I was closely scrutinizing Trevor's playing. And I have to say much as I like him, he was not on top form. It seems to me he's lost the strength in his grip which can happen to guitarists after a period of not playing much. In Trevor's case this is 25 years so... His one trick which he uses to get out of it is the fast playing of scales which the compressor covers for him until he has to rest on a note for more than a second. And often loses it. I don't mean to have a go at all but this was what I was seeing on the night. So as I was trying to focus more and more on the general expereince of seeing Yes I just kept focusing on this.

    And You And I was amazing but I was still disappointed with Rabin. I wish he wouldn't skip the acoustic intro and the particular arrangement that he uses kills the momentum in a way. Jon manages to lift it back up effortlessly though and I didn't hear any evidence of the melody being changed as was so fervently reported here.

    Rhythm Of Love is another one I've been really into recently and it definitely lifted my mood for the second half of the set. Amusingly, Jon had completely forgotten that there was an intermission saying "I've just been told there's an interval" or words to that effect.

    As I got up I was still pretty despondent and decided I couldn't let my experience of finally seeing Yes be ruined by lack of interest. Sobriety was the problem, clearly so I ran for the bar and got two pints of lager which I then proceeded to down immediately, getting a third one for the rest of the show (which didn't last until the end of I Am Waiting I'm sorry to say)

    Second half began with I Am Waiting which is the only Yes song I've heard that I actively dislike. I just find it boring. It goes nowhere and takes a while in doing so. But then...
    The rest of the show took off like a jet engine. Either Rabin miraculously got much better, the whole band did or I just began to concentrate on the music as one. I suspect the lager played an important part.
    HEART OF THE SUNRISE WAS AMAZING. Holy christ. Just the power of the music. Jon's singing is sublime and in person it just takes everything to a higher level. The whole band were firing on all cilinders. And I'll also take this opportunity to say that Niall Hornal is brilliant. He completely exceeded my expectations in every possible area throughout the gig.
    Without a moment to really catch your breath from the mammoth onslaught just witnessed, the band go straight into Awaken.
    Now, even though I don't like the arrangement they're doing on this tour it was incredible. No words can do it justice so I won't try.
    Owner was great fun as was the walkabout. It's supposed to be fun for christ sake!

    They left the stage, came back on and did Roundabout. I'm pretty sure they're back to the original full length version. Which is great! Jon encouraged everyone to stand and dance and sing along. Halfway through the track I thought "---- it, this is my chance" I got up from my seat and ran down the aisle to the very edge of the stage right below Rabin. No barrier or anything. We held eye contact as both of us sang "I'll be there with yooooou!" and after the song was over came over and shook our hands, bumped fists, etc. He seemed like a really nice fella to be honest with you.

    Then it was over. They left the stage, I managed to get a setlist from one of the roadies and ran for the stage door.
    Sure enough, five minutes later out comes Rabin. I was surprised how few people were there. Literally me and two other fans. He was just about to get in to his car when I said "Hey Trevor! Thanks so much for all the music and a great show!" He stopped, turned around said "Ahh thank you man! It's people like you who are into it that do it for us" or words to that effect. Then he walked around the car and gave me a hug and said "You're a musician, I can tell!" I was in disbelief. "Yeah, I'm a guitarist!" "Yeah, I can tell!" And with that he was off.
    I turned around and right behind me was Rick. I said to him the same, thanks for the music and that and he kind of nodded, said OK and made for his car (he was driving himself, by the way his numberplate is pure genius). It was raining a bit so I can see why he wanted to just get out in a hurry. One of the other two people there asked him for a photograph which he obliged. That was when I went into fanboy mode for a second and thanked him again for some reason which got "Ok you're welcome" and off he went.
    Jon took half an hour before he came out. He's just like you'd expect if you watch the RnRHOF press conference thing. On another planet, literally. I think he kind of made out what I said to him and he did shake my hand I think (can't remember properly). And then he was off.

    The rest of the night was spent trying to find an open pub in the rain sodden streets of York but the experience I had is one that will stay with me for the rest of my life. Particuarly Rabin was so nice to me I still can't quite believe it.

    However I do have to say this. What I saw wasn't Yes. It was half of Yes. Jon, Rick and Steve need to put their differences aside before it's too late. Not for the fans, not for the band, not for Chris. For the music. Because what is going on now is tainting the music at least for me. Yes music has always been the ultimate expression of happiness, joy, love and positivity. I think as fans a lot of us are too involved in the --------, certainly I have been. I no longer enjoy listening to a lot of 70s Yes albums because it's no longer about that message. It's become an unbelievably silly feud between a bunch of old men acting like five year olds in a playground.
    Great to read and a great story. Had I known where the stage door was, I would have joined you. And you saved yourself the extra £100 for the meet and greet that I enjoyed!

    In my brief meeting, I found them all welcoming and quite chatty. You can tell Trevor is a genuinely nice guy and very normal. Rick is clearly an outgoing extrovert and Jon was very spiritual. I have to say there is something different/special about him. It is hard to describe but it is as if he is not quite in our world or is just viewing things from a completely different perspective. He has a karma about him.

    What amazesme is that is that at 51 - if I have your age correct - and being a life long fan of Yes , this was your first time seeing them live. Glad you made it in the end !

  19. #19
    Super Mega Yesfan popeyebonaparte's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Quote Originally Posted by highfell View Post
    What amazesme is that is that at 51 - if I have your age correct - and being a life long fan of Yes , this was your first time seeing them live. Glad you made it in the end !
    What on earth would give you the impression of me being 51?
    Peace, love, long live rock n roll

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    Mega Yesfan highfell's Avatar
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    Re: Seeing them in York: A review

    Quote Originally Posted by popeyebonaparte View Post
    What on earth would give you the impression of me being 51?
    Actually 49 - 77 less 8 = 1969. My maths was poor ��

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