Oh Yes! (or is it No?)

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Fretless
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Oh Yes! (or is it No?)

Unread post by Fretless » Sat Nov 10, 2018 10:58 am

My ever-shifting musical focus has now come to rest on an individual I previously regarded as an over-productive irritation. Stand up Mr. Billy Sherwood.

In the late 80's/early 90's there were very few acts making what one could describe as complex, melodic rock. One of the new lights on the horizon was the band World Trade who's debut album had a pleasant Yes/Rush-like sound with good songs and commercial hooks. It sounded like singer/guitarist Billy Sherwood was announcing his arrival on the musical stage and immediately stating that he had been born to be in that legendary rock dinosaur -Yes.

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World Trade -World Trade- 1989 Full Album

As it happened - Yes were looking for a singer to replace Jon Anderson, who had left the group (again) and Sherwood was invited to join. He didn't feel that he was the right choice but did strike up a close friendship with Chris Squire and work was begun on new tracks which ended up on the 'Union' album. So Billy does appear in the credits and from then on in various supportive roles.

Squire and Sherwood began to write songs for a duo project which Jon Anderson heard (he was back, again) and this turned into 'Open Your Eyes' (1997) where Billy plays guitar and keys.

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YES - OPEN YOUR EYES
Yes - New State Of Mind (Open Your Eyes - 1997)

To be quite honest, I hated this album when it came out - but, like many others, I was waiting for the next 'Close To The Edge' which this wasn't. Coming back to this album after 20-odd years with Open Ears reveals it to be an excellent and powerful rock album with strong songwriting, the usual impeccable musicianship (and vocals) and an intriguing, detailed production/recording. Sorry that this has been so ignored all the years - blame my own prejudices.
Billy recorded this album and had a major say in the production - it shows! In comparison, the next album 'The Ladder'- with the same lineup - is less interesting as producer Roy Thomas Baker treated Yes as yet another corporate rock band and the sparkle that 'Open Your Eyes' has just isn't maintained.

But, there is hope, a fantastic live album from the 'Ladder' tour was recorded: 'Live from House of Blues' with both Sherwood and Howe on guitar and trading licks and solos through a mixture of old and new material. A great recording and lots of fun.

House Of Yes (2000) Part 1- Intro & Yours Is No Disgrace

Chris Squire and Billy did produce their duo albums under the name 'Conspiracy' with a high-tech power-rock sound and Sherwood has his own Yes-spin-off group 'Circa' with Yes founder member Tony Kaye on keys (especially Hammond organ), this group plays powerful, energetic and complex neo-prog.

Sadly Chris Squire died in 2015 leaving a very large hole which he himself nominated to be filled by Billy Sherwood, who is now Yes's permanent bassist.
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Mississippi Blind Child Assburn
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Re: Oh Yes! (or is it No?)

Unread post by Mississippi Blind Child Assburn » Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:44 pm

Sherwood is on that.


.....

Must say I did not think much of the Circa. Even though I LURVS the Hammond.

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Re: Oh Yes! (or is it No?)

Unread post by Mississippi Blind Child Assburn » Mon Nov 12, 2018 4:31 pm

V.A. "A Life in YES: Chris Squire tribute"

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Fretless
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Re: Oh Yes! (or is it No?)

Unread post by Fretless » Mon Nov 12, 2018 7:10 pm

Yes mania here - trying to get a bunch of later live albums and some related stuff.
Just in is the recent-ish 'Topographic Drama' live double set. Haven't listened to it yet.

Apparently, Chris Squire's last recorded work was on 'Citizen'; a Billy Sherwood solo concept album with a whole list of guests from Yes, Steve Hackett and (faints) Alan Parsons !!! (amongst others).
It's on order.
Main: NVA: P50sa - SSP - A40 - LS6 - Cube3
Digits: RPi 2B/Allo DigiOne/Volumio/Tomanek ULPS/AQ Jitterbug
DAC: Metrum Acoustics Musette CD Transport: Cambridge CXC
Headphones (1): AQ NightHawk & Schiit Magni 3
DAC: Cambridge DacMagic Plus + Sbooster LPSU
Headphones (2): AQ NightOwl & MF XCanV3
DAC: Cambridge DacMagic 100 + Sbooster LPSU
Desktop: CD: Arcam CD62T Amp: Kenwood KA-660D
DAC: MF M1DAC Speakers: Mission 760 (Doc-Mods)

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