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    ARW Revisited



    Steve Howe’s recent interview made me go back to the first concert of ARW in Orlando , now nearly six years ago , have a beer and listen to it again (thanks TapeHead) and then reflect on what ARW actually brought to us.

    They are constantly criticised for not producing the new album that they promised but does it mean that they failed or that their legacy isn’t worth something ?

    So what did they do well - obviously it is the 110 number of concerts that they performed :
    • The first live shows which enabled Anderson to sing a full concert of Yes music for thirteen years a moment that many of us thought would never happen again
    • A re-imagining of the songs they played.
    • Almost every song was tweaked and given a Rabin guitar “kick”, or a bit of twisty.distorted guitar. And Wakeman added his swirls and melodies in interesting ways. And then you had THAT voice.
    • They had power, swagger , charisma and seemingly so much fun onstage together
    • Anderson showed that he still was able to sing with amazing accuracy, power and beauty
    • They demonstrated that they still have “got it” as a live performing band
    • One of the best versions of Awaken live
    • They gave us a great live recorded show on CD/BluRay- yes the silly crowd noise is unnecessary, but it can’t take away from how good they looked and sounded playing live.
    So all in all, no regrets, no no regrets at all about ARW.

    I am extremely grateful for what they did AND since Howe isn’t going to have Anderson back, I will keep the candle burning in my mind for a final hurrah from ARW and them just smashing it out of the park again. I am sure old Wakey won't let me down over that final tour he promised me when we spoke :-)

    Oh and in the first show, they gave us Starship Trooper - not sure why they dropped it after that, as it sounds great with some cool bass from Lee, swirls from the keyboard wizard and relatively faithful rendition from Rabin but still adding some different riffs at the end - well worth a listen.

    #2
    It's nice to think about the ARW positives for a while, rather than what they unfortunately didn't manage to achieve. Thank you for reminding us!

    Comment


      #3
      Originally posted by Susanne View Post
      It's nice to think about the ARW positives for a while, rather than what they unfortunately didn't manage to achieve. Thank you for reminding us!
      I’m not quite clear on what they didn’t achieve. They toured for 3 years. That’s what they chose to do.

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by Gtkgasman View Post

        I’m not quite clear on what they didn’t achieve.
        😂😂😂

        ARW? Isn't that an anagram of hype?

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by Yorkshire Square View Post

          😂😂😂

          ARW? Isn't that an anagram of hype?
          LOL. 👍😂

          But - I am of the opinion that this is no different than any other business. If they spouted rhetoric that never realized, and never fulfilled our/a fans expecations, it is really not any responsibility of theirs. THey have no resp to fulfill our desires. And are free to do what they want.

          Now. I’m disappointed it didn’t happen (an lp). But in no way do I feel they owe me anything.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Gtkgasman View Post

            I’m not quite clear on what they didn’t achieve. They toured for 3 years. That’s what they chose to do.
            I was thinking of the lack of the new album they had originally wanted to make. The touring was great. All I meant was that it's nice to focus on the positives from the tours, rather than that there was not any new music (apart from the song 'Fragile' - which I very much like). However, I do now note that by raising this point, I have probably done exactly the opposite of what I had intended - to be happily thinking of what ARW did bring. Apologies for that.

            Comment


              #7
              Originally posted by Susanne View Post

              I was thinking of the lack of the new album they had originally wanted to make. The touring was great. All I meant was that it's nice to focus on the positives from the tours, rather than that there was not any new music (apart from the song 'Fragile' - which I very much like). However, I do now note that by raising this point, I have probably done exactly the opposite of what I had intended - to be happily thinking of what ARW did bring. Apologies for that.
              Haha. That’s funny. Of course. We all wanted that. Most of us anyway. Don’t apologize! I agree it was a positive experience! I Just don’t think they underachieved. They have to make a living. They do it well. And have to make tough decisions I am sure as we all do.

              I paid for 3 shows. I got 3 shows. With Anderson and Wakeman!!!! Cha-Ching. On east cost and flew to Vegas to see em again, and Had dinner with Rick and Jon’s wife. Ok that’s not true - Vegas is true, but rick and Jane just happened to be in same restaurant as me and my wife before the show.😂. I didn’t bother her. I did say hi to RW at the entrance prior and he was a nice man as always.

              And I got a good show on vinyl, cd, dvd. And a ton of downloaded shows and vids.

              If they decide to perform again - I’ll be there!!!

              Comment


                #8
                They dropped ST because they didn't want to play a long encore.

                I will say that I think they failed in Jon's agenda - to have his own version of Yes and go forward with that. But also just a sustainable artistic enterprise. Jon really should have known that there was a limit to how much he could get Trevor to cooperate, just as Trevor should have known that going back out on the road wasn't going to be a cakewalk and that there was a limit to how well he could get along with Jon.

                And I don't think they have a legacy, they didn't do enough to create one sui generis.

                However, I am glad that they decided to do something and give so many people (myself included) the opportunity to witness Trevor performing once again. I loved the 2016 LA show and will remember it fondly for the rest of my days and be grateful I was there. I love "Fragile" and am grateful we got a chance to hear it, finally. And the concert film/album is okay even with the issues I have with it. I'd rather have it than not.

                I think ARW could have been good if everyone was willing to cooperate towards a greater end...but that wasn't ever going to be possible, unfortunately. They don't owe me anything but I do think the whole thing was handled badly overall.
                Last edited by luna65; 01-22-2022, 09:44 AM.
                Rabin-esque
                my labor of love (and obsessive research)
                rabinesque.blogspot.com

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by luna65 View Post
                  They dropped ST because they didn't want to play a long encore.

                  I will say that I think they failed in Jon's agenda - to have his own version of Yes and go forward with that. But also just a sustainable artistic enterprise. Jon really should have known that there was a limit to how much he could get Trevor to cooperate, just as Trevor should have known that going back out on the road wasn't going to be a cakewalk and that there was a limit to how well he could get along with Jon.

                  And I don't think they have a legacy, they didn't do enough to create one sui generis.

                  However, I am glad that they decided to do something and give so many people (myself included) the opportunity to witness Trevor performing once again. I loved the 2016 LA show and will remember it fondly for the rest of my days and be grateful I was there. I love "Fragile" and am grateful we got a chance to hear it, finally. And the concert film/album is okay even with the issue I have with it. I'd rather have it than not.

                  I think ARW could have been good if everyone was willing to cooperate towards a greater end...but that wasn't ever going to be possible, unfortunately. They don't owe me anything but I do think the whole thing was handled badly overall.
                  Well, that saved me typing a long post . I absolutely agree on all accounts. Loved the show I saw in 2017, great memory. The long road leading up to any real activity should have been an indication of how likely it was that creatively speaking (new music) we were going to get anything from them. But all in all I'm glad they did what they did.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Yorkshire Square View Post

                    😂😂😂

                    ARW? Isn't that an anagram of hype?
                    As ever you try and be funny and put down with a one liner.

                    For me they delivered in terms of their live performances and for the reasons that I outlined in the first post.

                    I didn’t write it there - because I wasn’t looking to be inflammatory but I will put it here - the reality of the situation was that they were a better live outfit than Yes0.

                    I realise I have a bias but that was also the conclusion of quite a few objective music writers from the reviews I read at the time.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      It's all about managing expectations. It's always better to under-promise and over-deliver. If they had begun with a low key, surprise announcement that they had got together to tour, playing old music with a new twist, but with no pretensions to be Yes, and no inflated promises about future plans, there would only be positive feelings about them among fans. If it then worked out that new material was completed and recorded in some form (an album would have been my preference too), and further touring on the back of it that would have been a bonus. Or an even better option might have been to record new material first then launch the band and a tour to support it. But what we got was probably the most that could be realistically achieved in any case. It was just unfortunate that the positives got overshadowed by the hype .
                      Last edited by ragtime; 01-22-2022, 01:29 AM.

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Originally posted by luna65 View Post
                        I think ARW could have been good if everyone was willing to cooperate towards a greater end...but that wasn't ever going to be possible, unfortunately. They don't owe me anything but I do think the whole thing was handled badly overall.
                        And there you have it. The lady speaks the truth. Again.

                        I saw a show. It was okay...


                        ...but there were no...


                        ...no, don't go there! 🤣

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by highfell View Post

                          As ever you try and be funny and put down with a one liner.
                          Chill. Whichever version you prefer, we need to recognise that this is just a beat combo on their last trip round the block.

                          Shame Jon never got that Grammy he so dearly wants...

                          Comment


                            #14
                            Originally posted by ragtime View Post
                            It was just unfortunate that the positives got overshadowed by the hype .
                            The only aspect that got a bit hyped was Wakeman saying that there was going to be something big on the 50th anniversary, but he qualified that it might not happen. When they announced there would be an album, it wasn't too long before Rabin said they had enough material to work with but added it would be made "if we have the patience to go through it!" Anderson said in 2016 that the music would likely be released piecemeal and Rabin said in early 2017 that there were four long-form songs written. None of that is hype, but it ultimately didn't happen.

                            Keeping the announcement of a new album on the ARW website was dumb after 2018.

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by Yorkshire Square View Post

                              Chill. Whichever version you prefer, we need to recognise that this is just a beat combo on their last trip round the block.

                              So that is your view of both bands - that is your perrogative.

                              That wasn’t my take : ARW were fresh sounding , full of verve and energy with new live workings of the old songs. Their versions may not have been to everyone’s taste but they didn’t sound like a bunch of has beens.

                              Comment

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