Well, this was to be my first YESSHOW and having just found the band the month after the Drama tour finished I thought I would never see my new heroes. I listened to nothing but YES at this point (14yrs of age) and when I got wind of this album I was a bit crestfallen. Where was the YES I had awakened to? Mind you, I loved that my friends who hated YES actually got into this album due to it`s pop flavour.
This show was played outdoors during the annual Ex and had a backdrop of ferris wheels and various lighted rides. A wonderful site for a show. I cannot recall the opening music, if any, but was blown away by Leave It (did not know that they used recorded vocals for this at the time ) and my date (who hated YES!) was duly impressed. My first impressions were:
Jon was the most awkward man ever to be a lead singer. Also, the best voice in all of rock. Chris was the coolest guy to ever play bass and appeared to float on stage. Trevor was a heavy metal guitarist who did not belong in YES. Steve is not as clean and proficient as Trevor but his melodies, voicing and style were so much a part of YES and so much more interesting and non-standard. I thing Trevor would have been a better choice as the new YES keyboard player, but thats just my wee opinion. Tony was a stark contrast to Rick but fun to watch. I missed Ricks flash and aura. Alan was great, fun loving and clearly a happy guy. Bruford was still my idol but I would later learn that his ideas no longer fit with YES and I would become a huge Alan fan--my drumming is heavily influenced by him and this particular album. The stage was metallic and harsh but the lighting softened things and really synced up well with the show.
I was in heaven when they played YIND and AYAI-Trevor did a fine job on these. Changes was fantastic and Hearts just beautiful. In fact, I was very surprised at how much I loved the show despite the fact that my heroes (Rick and Steve) were missing. Little did I know that they would return only to then miss Chris during the ABWH show which was equally amazing yet totally different.
The art work for this album and tour sucked and my teenage mind yearned to get ahold of a Roger Dean shirt or at least a vintage logo shirt. Ultimately though, I was left a proud YESFAN. Still, I would continue to fantasize about seeing the classic YES and eventually would! Long Live YES.