25 years, 7 months and 10 days ago
Saturday, October 18, 1997
Thursday, February 21, 2013 9:47 PM
I went to this show! I wrote about it on my blog at [Link]
This was the show that I really had waited for and after the disappointing TALK tour it was great to see them cull classics from TALES FROM TOPOGRAPHIC OCEANS to say the least. Even on Rabin tracks like "Rhythm of Love" the band still seemed better. Of course they could have filled that space with something from TORMATO or GOING FOR THE ONE, but that was okay. This was an intimate theater full of real Yes fans. It wasn't full of teeny boppers waiting for "Owner of a Lonely Heart"(which they did play) it was hardcore Yesslaves who had been abused by Trevor Rabin for 14 years!!!!
Yes played their hearts out! An awesome show. The Orpheum provided an intimate Yestific atmosphere to the eve. After sound adjustments ( Rythym Of Love was too over-driven with resulting distortion in the small hall), the show was prime. The new songs "Open Your Eyes" and "Children Of Light" sounded fantastic. Howe was as dynamic as I've ever seen him in years, and his acoustic set was the perfect interlude to what followed. We had heaven during "The Revealing Science Of God". Squire was as animated as ever ( loved his new buzz cut!). Igor is great! Not only did he masterfully manipulate the `88's`, but he's got a great stage persona. The whole balcony rolled (literally!) during "I've Seen All Good Peaple". My buddy wondered if Yes were going to bring the House down literally. The boys showed grace under pressure when this bloke broke onto stage during a song, and hid in front White's kit! Chris showed humanity by shaking the guy's hand before the roadies dragged him to his fate. We arrived early in the front of the theatre, and could hear the practice session - snips of "Heart Of The Sunrise"!! That's where we felt we were that October eve!
I was fortunate enough last night to attend the concert at the Orpheum [in good company: Karen, Jean, Ann and Allan, if you're reading this, HELLO! :-)]
In a few words, this was by far the BEST Yes show I've ever seen. Ok, I've only 5 so far (1984, 1987, 1991 + ABWH). But it was MY best Yes show ever!
1-The band looked GREAT! Chris and Jon have lost weight, Steve has gotten rid of that ponytail, Alan looked fit, as ever. They didn't look like a bunch of old farts lost in the 70's and their new stage clothes gave them an almost boyish look (especially Steve, with his new hairdo). They looked rejunevated, healthy and very happy to be on stage. Anybody who tells they're doing this for the $$$, sorry, I won't believe you! They were having fun!
2-Any bad blood between Chris and Jon seems a thing of the past. Very good vibes all around!
3-Chris Squire stole the show! He was AWESOME! No way to describe how important he is to the band. His bass sound drove the band all night long (very few bass players have such an impact live. During AYAI, his bass pedals sent shivers down my spine). He's such a great showman. Thinking back about the wreck he was during the ONION tour, it's nice to see him with such energy and drive.
4-I wasn't happy when I read that they opened the show with Rhythm of Love. I was so wrong! It's a great opener. I didn't much like that song before the show, but I blew me away last night.
5-I was wrong about the setlist: it's great. Sure they could have dropped Owner or one classic song like All Good People or Roundabout for Silent Wings of Freedom or To Be Over. But that's not so important to me. And You And I is still amazing when you're sitting 5 rows away from the band (like me!).
6-Ivan impressed me tremendously. He's a great keyboard player! I hope he becomes a full-fledged member of Yes. I didn't miss Wakeman at all. He played RSOG better than Rick! (all you Wakeman fan can now start flaming me!) I loved his solos during Roundabout and Starship Trooper. Lots of feeling in his playing. One problem: he's too low in the mix! I hope that changes by the time I see them again in Toronto.
7-The solos were ok. Steve's was a good surprise, since he only played Clap and avoided Mood for a day (I'm sick of both, so only out of 2 was ok). He had the good idea to replace MFAD by Masquerade. And he played my all-time favourite Howe solo piece, "The Ancient". Squire's solo was entertaining, as always. Alan's was short (a good thing when it comes to a drum solo) and sounded like his solo on "Ritual".
8-"Soon" was incredible!!!!! Goosebumps all the way!
To repeat, it was an INCREDIBLE show! I can't wait for November 7, for my second show of the tour. I really don't understand some negative comments I read here. If you're not happy with that show, what does it take to please you?? This was Yes at its best!
Before the show began, spacey sound effects and embellished vocal samples panned across the stage. There were cloth screens draped up around the back of the stage onto which were later projected a tasteful light show that complemented the performance nicely.
The band took the stage and launched into "Rhythm of Love". The performance was unremarkable and the vocals were a bit shaky. Siberian Khatru was also somewhat lackluster and I was afraid that all the negative reviews and reactions to the set list I read here from opening night might have been true.
Then Jon explained that they were going to be on tour for a year and that Alan White insisted that the play the next tune, America. The opening instrumental section was precisely executed. The volume, tempo, and register changes along with the vocals settling in and the mix stabilizing began to indicate what was possible and what was yet to come. The crowd began to sing along and when Steve completed his extended "country" solo (as on KTA) the place was rocking!
Next was "Open Your Eyes" which was OK. Then Jon recalled the CTTE sessions and how the tape was rolling while Steve was still tuning up. Steve checked the harmonics on the 12 string and started "And You And I". When the band kicked into the "majestic" melody, it became apparent how far live sound has come since I saw Yes in the same venue in 1972.
Next, instead of "Now Way We're Gonna Lose", which I have never heard, they went into "Heart Of The Sunrise". At the beginning of Squire's opening instrumental, some guy jumped up on stage. Security was slow to respond compared to some shows I've been to and the guy sat down with his back up against the drum platform and one of Squire's Carvin cabinets. He looked like an autistic child hiding in the corner. I was afraid it was going to get ugly, but Chris, without missing a beat, went over and shook his hand and gestured him to leave. Finally, three stage guys dragged him off the stage. "Heart" then unfolded beautifully.
Then the guy appeared again in the center aisle in front of the stage, this time in a crucifixion posture with two stage guys holding him up under his arms and marching him out. I was 10th row center, so he passed right by me. Seeing this guy more or less floating by, arms outstretched but hands limp and head unnaturally cocked to the side with the pulsing plasma light show and the band cranking was strangely exciting and frightening. I was afraid he had a weapon or was a human bomb or something so we were all quite relieved when he disappeared for the last time.
It was about this time that we began to feel that something remarkable was developing. With Jon gracefully conducting, Steve jumping from one guitar to another and engaging the crowd in his delightfully quirky manner, Chris propelling the band forward, Alan's boyish enthusiasm, the awesome sound and lights, I thought "It continues to improve." I think it was at the end of "Heart" that Jon joined in the applause. It seemed he was acknowledging the audience's part and holding out his arms, palms up, as if to say "Here. See what we can experience."
The two new members performed well and were mixed appropriately. Billy took the main solo in "Owner", sang, and lent nice acoustic guitar texture, especially in "Soon" (which Jon sang flawlessly). When Steve, Chris, Jon, and Billy sang together, as in "Roundabout" and "Revealing" ("moment, moment, moment, moment") the effect was stunning. Igor was there when he needed to be, playing the breaks in "Heart" perfectly, for example, but otherwise was placed back in the mix to the welcome effect of bringing Steve's guitar work at the front, as it should be. Steve Howe was just fabulous. I was so happy to see him playing so well and enjoying himself. He seemed strangely ill at ease when I saw the Union tour.
I have read the negative reactions to the Hartford show and the so called "spoiler" set list pos
This show of shows 10/18, 1997 was one of, if not the best YES shows I have ever seen. This is the first show I can remember that the band played for the fan and not the general public. Look at the play list need I say more . Thanks for a great show, by the way I live in a suburb of Chicago and my friend Jeff flew us out for my 40th birthday. We are also going to see YES in Detroit, Chicago (Rosemont), and Milwaukee. Chris great way of handleing the jerk who jumped on stage, you kept playing when I thought you were going to stop the show. See you guys in a couple weeks.
The following happened during 'Heart of the Sunrise', at the Orpheum in Boston...
Actually, it started, I think, during AYAI...
My seats were from Yesworld (oh, thank the internet gods that I pulled that off!!!!). Seats were just right of center, 3rd row.
Sitting in the first row was one very big dude...just left of center.
During AYAI, another rather large fellow with a big red beard appeared with ushers, and this first guy was asked to leave the seat... I assume he was not properly ticketed for it, or some other Yesworld tix snafu...who knows?
Anyway, the dude being led away resisted, so they had to get some more security guys...he was bigger than any of them...
When more sec guys arrived, they physically pulled him out of the aisle, with him resisting all the way, but they just pulled him along...kind of a sad scene. We thought that was the end of it...but that was just the beginning...
During HOTS, as Squire is going through that amazing lovely bass solo, that same guy comes RUNNING down the aisle, with his sweat shirt in hand, right up to the front of the stage, flips the sweatshirt onto the stage, and climbs up after it! At first, I did not realize it was the same guy, just a fan trying to get too close, and the security people were right behind him, trying to grab his leg as he jumped on the stage, but he slipped from their grasp, and ran right passed Squire (who did not miss a note), and sat himself at the rear of the stage, and curled in fetal position by one of the monitors.
The security guy tried to follow him, which would have been really wild...it was looking like road runner vs coyote ..but another sec guy stopped him...and we all just gawked... the guy on the stage, at this point, looked like he was in the midst of a psychotic episode, and from his eyes, you could tell that ANYTHING might happen. I was waiting for him to try to hurt someone, or attack the equipment.
Security guys crept onstage from the right side, and tried to grab him, but he slipped from their grasp and sat himself by another monitor...by this time, Squire had turned and looked at what was going on, turned back to the audience with a mischevoius smile, and just kept playing, with the guy crouching behind him. As security guys closed in, I held my breath waiting to see what damage an on-stage scuffle among big guys would cause to the stage set (and Squire!!) I should add that, when psycho jumped on the stage, he ran right thru Jon's music stand, destroying it, and sending sheet music or lyric sheets to the floor (so Jon had no cheat sheet for the Revealing chant...you should'a seen Jon's face when he returned to the stage later in HOTS and saw the music stand remnants!).
Just when it seemed like things were going from bizarre to out-of-control, Chris (still never missing a note!!!) turned again toward the guy, and then walked over to him! At first, I thought Chris was going to try to help security remove him...I wondered if he would actually stop playing to do that...but Chris gave the guy a warm smile, and (somehow without missing a note!!!) reached down and shook his hand!!!!!
That act of kindness defused what was growing toward a potential disaster!!
When security came at him again, he let himself be led away...after all, he had something to make up for being thrown out of the first row, and the concert...he had a smile and a handshake from Squire!!!!!
Chris continued with HOTS...Billy came back to the stage, laughing with Chris about it...Jon came back out, looking a bit nervous about the goings on (and then seeing his music stand!!), and Steve was out there, looking like he was ready to duck if things got violent...Steve looked off-stage a couple of times to make sure no one was coming back....
Maybe this incident had something to do with Igor's gaffes during HOTS...I am sure it was very distracting!!!!!
After reading the reviews of the Hartford show I was a bit leery about what I would see and hear in Boston. However the band really was tremendous. I never thought when I was turned on to TFTO that I would hear RSOG played live and I was blown away. It was also great to hear the band play Soon from Relayer.
It seemed as Chris drove the band tonight with his bass playing. He also handled the situation on stage very well keeping the idiot who jumped on stage calm until the security could wisk him off. Chris also amused the crowd by appearing to force Alan White and the rest of the band back to their instruments to continue playing after I think RSOG. I really wish Chris would quit tempting the audience with Tempis Fugit. Play the whole song for once!!!!
I did not think the keyboards were as bad as some said in Hartford. While they were mixed low in the important parts they were brought up to a decent level. There was a mixup on Long Distance Runaround between Steve and Ivan and they wound up stopping and starting the song over again.
For you 90215 fans the band really dropped the ball on Owner of A Lonely Heart. The guitars were nowhere to be found, when they finally got the guitar up to the right levels the song was basically over. It really didn't matter to me however. I wasn't there to hear songs from 90215!!
All in all the band was awesome. There was a feeling of commaradarie(sp?) in the music. The members really seemed to be playing off of each other and really having fun. Maybe it was the small, smoky, acoustically excellent Orpheum that brought this all out. It certainly wasn't there when I saw them at Great Woods and the Centrum.
If you are a YES fan don't miss this tour.
I was up from Florida on business and stuck around an extra day to see this show. And am I glad I did! The set list was great and the only real negative was that the sound mix was too loud and unbalanced for the first half hour or so. Igor was great on keyboards when I could hear him. I thought he played a backup role to much. Jon is still solid and I only caught one WHOOO! and when he did it I understood why. He had no long dialogues about Zonegolia and other wayout stuff as in the past. And I thought the crowd was great. They were very enthusiastic yet were reserved and quiet during the quiet, delicate parts of the songs. Can't wait til they come south!
Merchandise update: For the Boston show, they added a white tour T-shirt (they only had black in Hartford), another white shirt as well. Still no tour programs! Also, the Yes art exhibit was missing again... when will we see this thing?
The funny thing is that [the guy that rushed the stage] sat himself down behind Chris right in front of his cabinets, which were underneath the drum kit. Then he put his hands to his ears and gave the entire audience the "nah-nah" gesture! Chris laughed. When he reached down for the guy, I think he originally meant to help him up, but when he realized that it wasn't going to happen, shook his hand. It was pretty hilarious!
Seeing Yes live is astounding.
First, I have to talk about location. Walking into the Orpheum Theater in Boston was an experience, it was old and well used, slightly falling apart, but it had a certain Yes flavor to it, and seemed very appropriate!
What got me was the tease of a YesMIDI loop or whatever was playing before the concert started. These were snip-its of voice-overs of Anderson - of the new unreleased album (Universal Garden?) and some new-agey stuff. I liked it, but hearing it was such a tease. It created such anticipation!
I met some excellent folks before the show (hi everyone! who went to WZLX Boston Bayside Expo to see Anderson last month)...
They were in excellent form tonight, in Boston (10/18/97). I had 7th row tickets so I could see their wonderful facial expressions. The new guy (Ivan) was young, cute, and very serious about his work...I am hoping he will take Yes to the next generation (if that actually happens).
I apologize if the songs below are slightly out of order. I didn't write it down.
They opened with _Rhythm of Love_ .. Chris was the best! He was totally into this one - if anyone dislikes the tune, I hope they change their mind so they can enjoy the concert!
Next, Jon introduced _America_ as Alan's pick. (He said Alan wouldn't tour without it!) WOW - that rocked. It was very appropriate for a tour piece. It sounds MUCH better live than it does on CD.
The rest was kind of a blur, as I remained in total bliss throughout the whole event.
Something odd happened during one of Squire's solos/licks. During the glorious _And You And I_, a fan (big and burly guy) bent over and kissed the stage. The bodyguards tried to cart him out. He wrestled with them. About 5 minutes later, when Squire was nicely into the *best* part of Heart of the Sunrise, the guy ran onto the stage, slid down by Alan's drum set, and made a face at the crowd. .. I was worried that the show would stop, but Chris kept his cool.
Chris, while still playing, lent a hand to the guy - the crowd roared! The guy got up and moved out of the way, and then was taken off stage.
And as if nothing happened, Yes continued to play with total professionalism...
After 'Heart of the Sunrise' was over, we all cheered for Chris. Tonight, he was Bass God and all around goodfella. While the band was getting ready for the next piece, Jon kept saying something like "Lets hear it for Chris Squire!" -- this happened like 3 times with decent pauses in between each time.
I loved that they played stuff from Tales (Revealing). This was the first time I saw Revealing live. I thought "I must have waited all my life.. for this... MOMENT."
So, in general - it was totally worth the money I spent! Alan was impressive - rocked all night! Squire was a ham, he did the flamingo stance a few times! Jon was clear as a bell, and very personable - waved and smiled. Howe was perfection. Billy and Ivan played with *integrity.* (They are definitely a part of Yes, and not just some extension.)
Rick, if you're reading this.. wished you could have been there too.
So, I must apologize for some of my snide comments about the Hartford show. I really thought it was great and that probably didn't come through.
Secondly, regarding the Boston show... Much improved - partially because Yes was better, partially because the sound in the place was a lot better, and partially because I was in the 4th row. Anyway, Yes rules. No one else comes close. It's fun to nitpick. There are things I'd like to hear that I wish they'd play. I'd like to hear a lot more new stuff.
Jon says they're planning to tour for a year. I wonder if they'll slowly morph from old yes into new yes. In the proces, they'll slowly start to un-mute Sherwood's guitar and mute Howe's until the final show of the tour when they'll play nothing but 90s Yes, including 'Talk" in its entirety.
And, you know what? That wouldn't even be so bad.
I just returned from the boston show, and IT WAS AWESOME!!!!! They were all on the mark, even the new keyboardist. A small change in the set list from Hartford, they played 'Heart Of The Sunrise', and one of Squires solo's included a rendition of 'Tempus Fugit' and 'Gates Of Delirium'. I enjoyed Sherwoods vocals and am glad to see him in the front for a change. THIS IS A MUST SEE SHOW, and i've seen 30! This would be ranked in the top 3!!!!!!!!!!
Wow! What a show. I don't know what all the Hartford people are complaining about but this the the Yes I would like to see continue for a long time.
'Rhythm of Love' was an interesting opener. One of Billy's only shining moments.
'Soon' was mystical...
'The Revealing Science of God' was the high point for me.....
They played 'Heart of the Sunrise' although I didn't see it mentioned in the previous spoilers.....
Igor was amazing... I didn't miss Mr. Wakeman at all.
'Starship Trooper' was mesmorizing........
A great show at a great venue. This was my first time at the Orpheum and I thought it was perfect for Yes.
Minor complaints: Billy didn't seem like a "member" of Yes. I know what he is capable of and he was just a side man for most of the night.
That's all I can think of for now. I've got to rest!