Oh, what might have been. This was one of the best Yes concerts I have ever attended. A beautiful evening, fine company, a great seat in the middle of the orchestra, a peerless set list, and a truly fantastic, electrifying performance from the band.
‘Close to the Edge’, ‘Gates of Delirium’ and ‘Ritual’ from Topographic. For me, it doesn’t get better than that. I never imagined I would see three epics of this stature in one show again. Thankfully, I was wrong.
My hopes have never been higher during and following a Yes show since the 1970s. The old firm of Anderson, Howe, Squire and White joined by the superbly talented Igor Khoroshev on keys.
This excellent combination of the talents means that there is nothing that, in principle, the band cannot perform from their back catalogue, if they so choose. Even more excitingly, such a line up could record some fresh and inspiring Yes music; something truly worth of a new century and millennium.
For me, the gig also enabled a goodly gathering of Yes fans from both sides of the Atlantic. Myself and Henry Potts from Britain, together with Steve Sullivan, Jamison Smeltz, Jim Kirkhope, Jeremy Weissenburger, John Eje Thelin and others from the United States.
All in all it was a magical evening. Then, later on, we sadly heard about Khoroshev’s fall from grace – and, not long after, that he would almost certainly be out of the band permanently following this Masterworks tour.
What a waste of a talent. What a missed opportunity for Yes. I don’t for one moment question the zero tolerance towards this kind of behaviour. It had to be. But the loss of Igor was and is a crying shame. He was a great fit musically, if not in other ways.
Even so, the Nissan Pavilion concert was marvelous. It will stay in my memory for many, many years to come. Special moments with Yes at the top of their musical game. You can’t beat them.
"Yes Star Accused of Assault" Tuesday, July 25, 2000 Compiled from staff and wire reports by Beth Berselli The Washington Post
British supergroup Yes performed at Nissan Pavilion on Sunday night, and apparently the group's 35-year-old keyboardist was not on his best behavior.
Prince William County police say Igor Khoroshev sexually assaulted two female security guards working backstage at the concert, reports The Post's Josh White. A 26-year-old woman who was not identified told police that Khoroshev sat on her lap during a break and tried to put his tongue in her mouth. When she tried to repel his repeated advances, the musician sank his teeth into her neck, leaving a nasty red mark, she said.
Then after the show, Khoroshev allegedly tried again with an unnamed 22-year-old security guard. Police said Khoroshev walked up to this woman, made a few lewd comments and squeezed her buttocks.
Khoroshev has been charged with assault and battery and sexual battery, both misdemeanors. If convicted, he could face up to two years in prison and $5,000 in fines. Yes continues its U.S. tour, playing tonight in Virginia Beach.
I've seen lots of Yes shows, and two already on this tour, but this one was magic. It was a confluence of good things: good company (Mssrs. Potts, Barrow, Weissenberg, Kirkhope, Thelin, Smeltz and a shed full of mostly well-behaved Yes fans) , good seats (middle orchestra), and good vibes between audience and performers. Jon seemed in a transport of ecstasy all night -- at times covering his face in his hands as if he were overcome with emotion. He seemed to be amazing himself, he seemed to be in awe that he was, after all these years, singing these incredible songs for an appeciative audience. And let's not have any more talk of whether this guy is a musician or not, ok? He was bashing away on assorted percussion all night, hitting all his marks like the pro he is. Telling a funny story about the genesis of "Your Move" as he strummed away on guitar. Comapre Jon today to , say, the QPR video, where he's like a deer caught in headlights, and you can see he's grown into his frontman role enormously and now inhabits it comfortably. He radiated genuine joy in being there, and the audience gave it back triplefold.
Squire was in as jovial a mood as I've seen him, strutting magisterially about the stage, as always amazing me with how he carries his Rick lilke it was a piece of balsa wood. It's interesting again to compare his demeanor to that of the 70's, where he was the aloof bass god. Now he still plays the role , but with a wink to the audience and miles lf smiles. He goofed around with Jon , visited Steve a couple of times (I think Howe even looked up at him once ;> ) , gave Igor a mock kick in the ass during the bows (more on this later). And needless to say, was utterly in command of his musical role as well, having a high old time all night, esspecially during his kettle-drum turn in Ritual.
Alan White was right on the money as well. What I noticed as thsi time was how much fun he was having interacting with Igor, having little cowbell duels and such. He seemed fitter and trimmer during the bows than I recall previously, and not as winded. It was also nice to hear Jon give him props during the set, leading to a round of applause.
Steve Howe. Steve was dressed like your grandpa for this one, in short sleeved shirt and slacks, as if he had jsut got back from a round of golf. Whatever he did, it sure charged up his playing. I wasparticularly impressed by his completely new takes on various guitar-solo sections of Ritual.
And then there's Igor. Igor was, for me, perhaps the highlight of this show -- he was *hilarious*. He's taken his insouciant boy persona and run with it, striking imperious poses as he effortlessly ripped through Wakeman's Hammond solo on 'Close to the Edge', playing cymbals and synths and singing all at once, boogeying in 5/4, catching the eyes of the other bandmembers so he can riff with and against them. YEs were much more *entertaining to watch* than I've ever seen them, thanks to the way they've all honed their stagecraft. They'd better hang on to Igor, because with his youth, good looks, love of stage hammery, and of course his excellent chops, he could be a *star* in any modern band. He knows it too. After Ritual, with the audience going bonkers, and the bandmembers approaching the stage front, Igor went into overdrive, cracking us up with 'ozzy' horn hand symbols, trying to lead the audience in a chant of 'I-GOR, I-GOR'. After the encore, with the audience going even more bonkers, he was working the crowd over on Howe's side, inducing Squire to amble over with cup in hand, and give him a mock kick in the keister.
All in all, the BRitish contingent and I agreed later on that we probably have a 'new' classic lineup here. Let's hope is stays together.
I realize this review is short on musical details, but that's because I can't say much when the band manages to make even warhorses like Heart of the Sunrise sound fresh, as they did last night. It was one of tho
Last night's show at the Nissan Pavillion in the DC area was wonderful. The band nailed both Gates and Ritual--no hiccups or stumbles that I could hear.
Sorry I missed out on the preshow meeting of Southside folks. I only got back into town late Saturday and didn't have a chance to check my workplace e-mails where all of the relevant correspondence was.
Quite a week I had: on Saturday the 15th, I went to a great Roger Waters show. A few hours later the Mrs. and I were on a plane for the wild west. Almost a week in internet-unfriendly Wyoming. Saturday the 22nd driving around the Rocky Mountains, and Sunday watching Yes epics on the East Coast. Feels like I've been on tour!! I'm wrung out from just that. I can only imagine how Yes feel after two months of hotels and bus trips.
As far as the show: Everybody's performance was excellent, except maybe for Alan's drumming. He didn't really screw up badly, but he definitely was not playing Gates and Ritual with the feral intensity he did in the '70s, and it showed. I noticed some rather strange drum fills, as well, but fortunately his drumming was competent enough not to detract.
Squire looks and sounds like a man reborn just compared to last year. Nothing more to say there.
Howe was not quite on his "A game", to borrow sports lingo. Maybe his "B game". He muffed a section of "Leaves of Green" and didn't seem to have as many inventive parts in his improvisations as he did last year in Wilkes-Barre. But, he played Gates and Ritual brilliantly. And his performance in Wilkes-Barre last year was unreal--I'm sure not every night is going to be that amazing--even in the classic era I'm sure he had up and down spots. I'm not one of those who thought he looked particularly unhappy on the Ladder tour, but he did seem noticeably 'perkier' last night than he did last year. Maybe just happy to be playing Gates and Ritual, who knows?
Igor is *the* Yes keyboardist now. I thought his playing and sound were wonderful. His background vocals were much more 'ubiquitous' (there's that word!) than on previous tours, and I think his voice blends better than Billy's did.
Kansas was ok. Better than when I saw them open for Styx a few years ago. They didn't have Robby Steinhardt on that earlier tour, and his vocals and violin may be the key to that band's sound. Their sound mix was far too drum heavy, however, and it drowned out a lot of the guitar and keyboard work.
Attendance seemed to be about the same as the '98 show at the same venue, if not a little higher. Approximately 2/3 of the pavillion area was filled and there looked to be at least 200 or so people on the lawn. I would guess about 5-6000 total--but that may be a bit low.
I think I'll leave it there...what a pleasure to have seen CTTE, Gates, and Ritual in the same show. Until this year I couldn't have imagined such a thing would ever happen again.
I must be doing something right, because through sheer dumb luck I was able to see yet another Masterworks show. I'm visiting my Mom in New Jersey, en route to a brief vacation in England, and realised that Yes would be a quick 3-hour drive south. Thanks to Steve Sullivan I scored a couple tickets, recruited a best high-school bud and we were off.
We met Steve, and Henry Potts and Simon Barrow (here from England for the shows) as well as Jeremy Pierce, Count V and Debbie, and Jim Kirkhope at a Maryland restaurant, whet our whistles and caravaned to the show-- getting lost en route, natch. But we arrived with time to spare, to see Kansas's set-- less tight, Phil Ehart having some time issues with fills. Steve Walsh 'emoting' more, still very fun though.
I had seen the first 2 MW shows in Reno and Concord, CA, and thought the energy was high but the performance was off, the material under-rehearsed.
What a difference a month makes. I am so very very happy I got to see another show later in the tour, because it was very very different.
The band's energy was much more focused, less diffused, which made for a far tighter performance, if somewhat less spirited than those bizarre first two shows. Any concerns I had over Alan's current state of musical health were mercifully laid to rest, as not only was he on top of the arrangements but he was playing with GREAT SUBTLETY, caressing the drums like a lover instead of pounding them into submission. Both Gates and Ritual were profound, not a cue dropped, no train-wrecks in HOTS. The boys were communicating, they had definitely found their stride. Jon's percussion work was excellent, not overdone but very resent. Igor was SO animated, cracking me up regularly, completely relaxed and confident, a unique performer. Chris didn't attack his high harmonies with such relish-- Igor is now covering some of them-- in fact, during AGP Chris hollers over to him to "SING!" as his voice was getting a bit weak. The vocal mix wasn't as strong as at Reno, which is the clearest I've ever heard the backing vox. Otherwise the mix was very very good, could have used a bit more bass but I always can.
The middle section of CTTE (before the vocals of IGU, IGD) was VERY VERY cool, Chris and Steve playing some inspired slidey stuff, quite extended. Alan's solo in Ritual (before Igor and Chris and jon come in) was very powerful, the best I've ever heard him. I found myself on numerous occasions wishing I could give him a huge hug, and thank him for reconnecting with himself. Alan gets my vote for m.v.p. this show.
Thanks YES. You still do it to me.
Gates of Delirium is playing behind me now at work, the next day, and I just have to share what a wonderful concert it was last night. I'm from Pittsburgh, actually, but was unable to attend anything closer as I had already planned trips with people. I was so overjoyed to know that the concert at Washington, DC (a misnomer, as the traffic was never that bad) hadn't gone on sale yet. I got orchestra tickets so was able to see and hear and FEEL everything - oh, the bass was so low and strong. What to say....
I already knew the setlist, so there was no surprises there, instead I concentrated in listening and watching everyone play off each other. Just to give you some idea of what a wonderful performance Yes always delivers, my boyfriend has accompanied me to three concerts now, not because he has become a Yes-aholic like I have, but because he knows they put on a good show and also happen to be wonderful musicians. He also likes their music too, a bonus :)
The band... Mr. Howe was his usual excellent self - I've heard people say he is wooden, unemotional, but I know this to be wrong. He is instead restrained in his movements, playing straight man to Mr. Squire's mad bassist - if you will be upstaged, instead go in a completely different direction. I always feel that Steve is playing his instruments for themselves, so they talk and feel and live, and we are simply privileged to watch and listen in on the relationship.
Chris however is the audience magnet, always playing for the laugh and the attention. I've seen Yes play Heart of the Sunrise several times now, and each time he *holds* that bass riff just to watch the audience cry out for it, and each time it's different.
Mr. Khoroshev was great on the keyboards, dancing all over the place. I've sat on the left side of the stage twice now and each time I've seen him talking to the stagehands, having them adjust the keyboards up or down, till they're just right.
As always, by the end of the night I was surprised to see that Mr. White had legs - I keep forgetting he can stand up and move, apart from his drums! He seems so one with them, playing on and on....
And Mr. Anderson's voice was back, recovered from his recent cold. He credited his wife with his speedy recovery and I was very glad to know I would be able to hear it after such a long trip.
Things I remember from last night... I've heard Ritual before on CD, never live, and I know once I thought that Alan White had suddenly developed some extra arms - little did I realize the percussion treat we were to get, to play the music involved. The melody flowed, on and on, and slowly Chris, Steve and Igor dropped out. That left Alan playing and Jon keeping rhythm on metal sticks. The pace kept going, and I wondered if Jon's arms would fall off first or if Alan would be buried under a mound of drums, the way he was pounding them. Then, Igor sneaked back on stage, went and briefly fiddled with something up by his keyboards and picked up a pair of drumsticks. All the while the rhythm is still going. Igor came around the 'boards, and played briefly on the back of a support of a keyboard, when I noticed Chris coming back onstage, *without his bass*. I almost fell over in surprise, then I saw him walking towards the kettle drums and picking up the big sticks for them. The beat changed, slightly, and Igor pivoted to the two small drums set up just in front of his keyboard while Chris prepared to haul on the kettle drums. I've not seen percussion like that since the last performance of the Kodo drummers I attended. I was in such awe, the skill they showed.
The only other song I hadn't heard them perform before was Gates of Delirium, and it was an interesting, if bewildering, experience. I can memorize entire songs (even Yes epics!) note for note, word for word, to the point where I know if something is out of place, but even if I had GoD down by now I don't think I could have fol
What fun. My God. After reading every posting of all previous shows, I had my fears going in as an old prog-crustie. But the band proved more mature, more professional and tighter than I could have ever imagined. What a beautiful thing to be entertained by responsible adults.
While Steve Howe gets a lot of slack for not looking and playing the part of 'rockstar', its clear that he is more concerned about playing things the very best he can than anything else. With this particular show, in his button down short sleeves, dress slacks, short hair, and mercurial ease all night, Steve took on the air of a Les Paul or a Chet Atkins. In short, a living legend who does things with a guitar that few others can or want to. He should be considered a national treasure in England. The clean living is obviously paying off in spades at 53.
Jon was great. The air of cherubim Love, so outwardly grateful, expressing his divine good fortune to have recovered from the throat infection. He was a little thin in spots but hit all the high notes save one which he smoothly modulated down an octave. The comments about rituals were dead on. His emphasis on "...the focus shape ascend knowledge of Love" was unforgettable.
Chris was alive and well. Exciting to watch someone in love with what they do. Yet, not too much hamminess. I never know what to make of the clothes. Then again thats Chris. Would we want him any other way?
Alan has economized over the years, which either leaves you feeling cheated or that he has brilliantly adapted difficult meters for the stage. If I had attended and knew nothing about the setlist played, White single handedly made this difficult music more approachable in a concert setting. Very good.
Igor is an instant asset to the band, having never seen him perform with them before. I agree with others that the synth palette is too zizzy (more pitch less grain is better), but his singing and percussion contributions were absolutely solid. A value-added keyboardist. Woohoo!
It seemed like they nailed everything tonight. They were very sensibly paced and with the exception of a few continuity breaks, cast the familiar spell, that baroque suspension of time that is theirs only, which seems even more effective at the slower tempos. They did all this but with wizard-like calm. When they were younger they were so much more racey. GoD was exceptionally compelling. At the begining of Soon, I was so awash in sobs, my wife had to comfort me. The pain of those notes was so palpable... I couldn't believe how musically Steve played it.
Ritual. Commandingly good. Never heard it better.
No highlight for me. It was evenly remarkable start to finish. If you're reading this guys, thanks so much. I savored every second.
PS - Kansas were wonderful. With just a few notes they charged the atmosphere with that 70s thing. Miracles Out of Nowhere and Dust In The Wind were especially poignant and moving. Sigh. To think we wait years, decades for such moments...
Crowd was probably in the neighborhood of 12-15,000? They always do better when the crowd's bigger and really listening and responding?
The show last night was fantastic. Igor was very low in the mix. He provided the necessary keyboard parts but other than that you could hardly tell he was there. Maybe I'm biased, having seen Yes 4 other times all with Rick, but please bring back Rick!!!!!!! At the very least Patrick or Geoff. Alan was on it. Unlike previous nites he didn't miss a beat. Chris has lost a lot of weight and you could tell he felt good about that. He was jumping around all over the place having a great time. I don't think Steve cracked a smile all night, he just played. Maybe he and Igor don't get along? Of course Jon was on it. The tour program is only $15 and well worth the money. The 2 main t-shirts had the same design on the front with one shirt being white and the other black. Someone told me one dragon fly was female and the other was male? I couldn't tell the difference. If you are expecting the short hits Owner, Leave It, etc... you won't hear them. If you are a die hard fan of the long classic songs then this show is for you.