Monday, February 12, 2007

209. Yes - The Yes Album (1971)

Track Listing

1. Yours Is No Disgrace
2. Clap
3. Starship Trooper: A. Life Seeker/B. Disillusion/C. Wurm
4. I've Seen All Good People: A. Your Move/B. All Good People
5. A Venture
6. Perpetual Change


Ahh Prog as we know it starts here, and good thing too. I love prog, with all its pretentiousness and its profound faults which lead what was supposed to be a serious "work of art". In what other style of music could you have the lyric "Silly Human, Silly Human, Silly Human Race!". None! That's what. Well maybe in a Black Sabbath album which also has a place in my heart.

Prog is beautiful because it is the noble attempt to make something more of popular music, to bring it to a level of erudition similar to that of classical music for example. What is brilliant about it is that it inevitably fails for the simple reason that the concepts behind the albums are usually the kind that would make severe Down patient blush with shame. Too many drugs probably.

Don't get me wrong I love Science Fiction more than the guy next door, actually I am quite proud of my encyclopedic knowledge of all things Fantasy and Science Fiction, however sci-fi symphonic rock is invariably stupid, and Yes have plenty of it. This is, however, offset by brilliant technical skill; this happens not only with Yes but with bands like ELP. Prog bands are usually amazingly gifted but are too ambitious for the collective brain-power of most bands. Yes are no exception, but they still manage to make a very enjoyable album. The tracks are great, if you ignore the lyrics, synths make it big here, and textures are pretty nifty. So get it from Amazon UK or US.

Track Highlights

1. I've Seen All Good People: A. Your Move/B. All Good People
2. Starship Trooper: A. Life Seeker/B. Disillusion/C. Wurm
3. Perpetual Change
4. Yours Is No Disgrace

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

Many features for which Yes became known are demonstrated for the first time on The Yes Album:

* The "democratic" balance of the band -- with each member making his own significant contribution -- is seen here for the first time.

* Steve Howe appeared with the band for the first time and played a very prominent role throughout. His solo acoustic tune, Clap (forever renamed "The Clap" by Anderson's mis-introduction on the live track) has always been a concert favourite of the band and their fans.

* The band began to explore longer songs with Yours Is No Disgrace, Starship Trooper, and Perpetual Change, foreshadowing the many album-side-length tracks that followed on Close to the Edge, Tales from Topographic Oceans and Relayer.

The Yes Album is generally considered a classic 1970s rock album and a highlight of the band's long career. The songs "Starship Trooper" and "I've Seen All Good People" are still staples of classic rock radio. In 2000 Q magazine placed it at number 86 in its list of the 100 Greatest British Albums Ever.

I've Seen All Good People:

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