“Symphonic Live” by Yes

Artist: Yes
Title: “Symphonic Live”
Label: Eagle Records
Release Date: 2/24/2009
Genre: Progressive Rock
Rating: 4/5 `

Originally presented to the fans of Progressive Rock giants Yes on the DVD that bears the same name comes the audio release of this very concert. The recording was initially done in 2001 as the band toured for their own orchestral album “Magnification” and if you think that you have enjoyed Yes in the past just wait until you hear them do their thing with the added power of a symphony orchestra behind them. These days the idea of bands releasing albums with an orchestras help is not so new or often even exciting but one of the true musical sounds that works with this idea best is the sound of Yes. If you are one of those fans that have been following Yes for a long time then there is a good chance that you already own the DVD companion piece for this album. That fact alone makes the appeal of owning the audio companion for your stereo, music player or just to leave in the car for those long trips somewhat of a necessity. In 2001, the lineup of Yes was John Anderson, Chris Squire, Steve Howe and Alan White and they are joined by the European Festival Orchestra which was conducted by Wilhem Keitel. The music of Yes has always been big in scope and often took the listener to different worlds based on just how many musical doors it was opening in their minds and that made my hearing these classic tunes with the accompaniment of the orchestra a wonderful thing. I did enjoy the new tunes from the “Magnification” CD that were performed but when it came down to it I was more keen on the time honored classics like “Long Distance Runaround”, “I’ve Seen All Good People” and the tune of tunes “Roundabout”. What comes through crystal clear on every song is just how perfectly Yes seem to mesh with the orchestra and neither one overpowers the other as we have found happening on a number of other similar releases.

They include a simple booklet which only folds out to reveal the song titles and really offers no glimpses of the band or the recording as it was done, and I think that this risks getting a little extra interest in ordering the DVD for those who don’t have a copy already. I can however safely recommend this release for not only the progressive minded listener but also the tried and true fan of Classic Rock because it offers everyone a fresh take on some wonderful tunes from the genres history. The two disc set spans a healthy amount of time and it was nice to have this finally delivered on CD for the bands acolytes to enjoy.

Track Listing:
1. Overture
2. Close To The Edge
3. Long Distance Runaround
4. Don’t Go
5. In The Presence Of
6. The Gates Of Delerium
7. Steve Howe Guitar Solo
8. Starship Trooper
9. Magnification
10. Of You And I
11. Ritual
12. I’ve Seen All Good People
13. Owner Of A Lonely Heart
14. Roundabout

Official Website: http://www.yesworld.com

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