The Two Sides of Yes

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Rick Wakeman: The Two Sides of Yes
I asked for a Rick Wakeman / Yes CD for my birthday, and this is the one I got. It’s not really Yes music, though. Instead, Rick wrote all new arrangements for 13 songs, and rerecorded them as instrumental tracks, which he performed more or less solo (some sound like multi-track recordings). Half are just piano pieces and the other half have multiple layers of synths on them. If you’re familiar with Yes’ discography, then you already know every song here. If you are a Wakeman fan, the reason for getting this 2-CD set is to listen to his versions of the songs, now that he’s had a lot of practice playing them. To me, they sound too much like elevator music. They’re fine, but lack the genius synth expressions and energy of the original songs. They do work well as background sounds when you’re busy concentrating on something else.

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