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An Evening of Yes Music Plus (Live)

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Album Review

One of the most convoluted chapters in the history of progressive rock titans Yes — and there are many — is Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe. In 1989 vocalist Jon Anderson, drummer Bill Bruford, keyboardist Rick Wakeman, and guitarist Steve Howe released the gold-selling Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe album (complete with Roger Dean cover art) and embarked on a tour called "An Evening of Yes Music Plus." This created legal problems since Anderson had left the official version of Yes and founding bass guitarist Chris Squire was none too pleased with this marketing tactic. Many longtime fans were ecstatic, since the quartet automatically brought hope for fresh music resembling Yes' adventurous work of the 1970s and genre milestones like Fragile and Close to the Edge; some were left cold by the more polished 1980s commercial style of 90125 and Big Generator. The Evening of Yes Music Plus DVD, directed by Jim Yukich, was filmed at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, CA — the exact date is not listed in the credits — and it presents a nearly equal blend of songs from the new album and Yes classics. Backing personnel include bass guitarist Jeff Berlin (replacing Tony Levin, who recorded the album and did most of the tour but fell ill), rhythm guitarist Milton McDonald (who also played on the album), and keyboardist Julian Colbeck. The concert builds gradually, opening with solo spotlights from Anderson ("Time and a Word," "Teakbois," "Owner of a Lonely Heart"), Howe ("The Clap," "Mood for a Day"), and Wakeman ("Gone But Not Forgotten," "Catherine Parr," "Merlin the Magician"). The pacing of the rest of the concert is well done, blending the best Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe songs such as "Birthright," "Brother of Mine," "The Meeting," and "Order of the Universe" with Yes favorites like "Long Distance Runaround," "I've Seen All Good People," "Close to the Edge," "Heart of the Sunrise," "Roundabout," and "Starship Trooper." The absence of Squire's muscular bass guitar work and underrated harmony vocals is noticeable on the old material, but it's not a deal-breaker in terms of enjoying this concert. Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe came to an end when they merged with the official Yes for 1991's Union — a lousy album but a great tour. More lineup shuffling occurred afterward as Yes marched on. [Note: the double live An Evening of Yes Music Plus, Rovi


Formed: 1989

Genre: Prog-Rock/Art Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s

The group Yes has had a long and complicated history. By 1989, there were two different factions, one led by bassist Chris Squire that owned the rights to the name "Yes," and this one, featuring singer Jon Anderson, drummer Bill Bruford, keyboard player Rick Wakeman, and guitarist Steve Howe. This quartet made an album, titled Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe, and went on the road playing what it called "An Evening of Yes Music, Plus," which occasioned a lawsuit....
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An Evening of Yes Music Plus (Live), Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe
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