Age 16, my first Yesshow - what will it be like? I'd listened to Yessongs, worn the vinyl down constantly playing the classics from TYA, Fragile & CttE, it will be like Yessongs, won't it??
Having been barred from travelling to Glasgow for Yesshows'77, my parents scarred me for life by preventing me from seeing the classic line-up in their prime. Instead, I have to make do with Horn & Downes.
Don't get me wrong, Trevor Horn (& Downes to a lesser extent) is a quality act, a true sonic visionary...but he's not a lead vocalist for a top notch prog rock band.
Anyway, to the show, you know the script by now "Trevor has a cold" and "he is too weak to talk, far less sing" and as Trevor himself said in BBC Rock Family Trees, the fans replied, "FUCK OFF!!" (sorry kids, but people in Scotland speak directly.)
Vocals flat throughout, although musically very strong. Machine Messiah was nearly there, with strong support from Fish. The acapella "White Car" preceded by a booming cue from Squire on his bass pedals. I seem to recall a fanzine of the day saying that this was sung as a dedication to John Lennon who was murdered on the 05 Dec-80(right date?) although they had started playing it before that dreadful event (Lennon's murder that is...not Horn's singing...) The only other notable event was during a Steve pedal steel solo on "And You and I" when his Gibson ES-1275 was unbalanced on its stand, and took a right good clatter to the floor - queue Steve's pained expression face. We soon joined him as Trevor sang the final lines of the song.
So, a negative review. Sorry, but that was my first Yesshow. I have 2 or 3 b&w pictures from the show that I'll scan and post soon.
Age and maturity have lead me to appreciate Trevor Horn's work in other ways...just don't let him near that mic!
Jon's show with his "New Life Band" was scheduled for the same venue on the 11 Dec 80, but was canclled due to poor ticket sales (Watkinson's book is wrong by not highlighting this show, and a few others, as cancelled) I had a front row seat - BASTARD!!!!
Subsequently saw Yesshows in 1984, 1998, 2000 and 2001, along with a smattering of solo excursions. Looking forward to Rick in Perth in May 2002 before he jets out to the US. Still have not seen the classic line-up yet, who knows what this year (or next) will bring.
Hugh Macpherson Alva, Central Scotland (April 2002)