22 years, 10 months and 4 days ago
Sunday, July 30, 2000
Coca-Cola Lakewood Amphitheatre
My 8th YES show. We visited my father-in-law for the weekend and he babysat while my wife and I attended the concert. She was probably more familiar with songs from KANSAS due to radio. I had a lot of anticipation for "The Gates of Delirium" but the band had some trouble keeping it together. What really ticked me off was during the "Soon" section at the end some jerk a few rows away began shouting for "Roundabout" and I screamed "SHADDUP!!!!"
It is simply impossible for me to write about this concert without comparing it to the one in Charlotte, NC just days earlier.
In general, Charlotte was light, bright, energized, happy.
In Atlanta the band seemed disjointed, out of sorts, pensive...
Steve Howe was the exception as he was unusually animated.
Lakewood Amphitheatre is in the dead center of Atlanta's WORST Ghetto.
Sadly, just another piece of mismanagement in Yes' long history.
There is a perfect venue at the Gwinnet arena in North Atlanta that would be sublime for a Yes concert...
Just like Chastain Park in Atlanta's wealthy neighborhood, where the wine and cheese crowd flood the venue and talk throughout the show, and the neighborhood decibel limit is 75.... Yes just can't quite click, (or play the right place,) in Atlanta.
The sound was too loud and overly muddy this night at Lakewood. We had cotton stuffed in our ears and still could not hear for days afterwards...
Next to the "Return of Rick for the 4th time" tour, this was the best Yes tour I have seen since I started going back in '83. I was a fan starting around '81. The whole 90125 era was ok, and fun live, but this setlist was the one I had waited 15+ years to see. In fact, I really doubted they would ever play these epics again. But lo and behold, they finally did and it was stunning! Easily the tightest set I have seen from them. Gates and Ritual were sonic perfection. Close to the Edge got better as it went on. I think they take Seasons of Man at much too slow a tempo for it to be ferocious like the 70s versions (a big mistake), but once that section passes the rest was pretty sublime. Igor kicked some butt on this night and showed he was obviously genetically bred to be in the Yes keys chair, even if as nothing more than a glorified parrott. It was a pleasure to take my old friend Bart to this show, he hadn't seen them since they played the Omni back in '79 in the round. He was murdered a few months later in a robbery at the place we worked at. I am proud I encouraged him to go to this show as it was probably one of his last fond memories.
Thomas E. Altman
This venue was started by Kansas and soon a driving rain storm again for this loyal Yes fan and married man I ran just before the end of the Kansas set to get my wife and I some rain gear! And then it happened, I heard the intro to "Young Persons Guide To The Orchestra" while putting my wifes rain gear and then mine, my ears were filled with such heavy orchastrated symphonic, glorious moving music. Chris and Allan along with Jon were in a different "State of Mind" for sure. I thought I was on a trip to an amusement park I have only visited in my minds eye! My wife looked at me while the tears filled my eyes and with joy in my heart I responded "I haven't heard this piece of Yes work since my grade school years" She then asked me "Are you okay, why are you crying?" I said "These are tears of joy and peaceful memories, I was thinking about my cousin who died in a car crash-he took me to my first Yes concert" and then we stood with the rest of the crowd to show our appreciation for such an incredible beginning to a very magical evening of true mesmerizing, universal Yes Music that one day the entire world will see and hear as true ecstasy...anyhow we all had a great time and it was worth the time and money for sure! Igor Rocks!
Also in Atlanta, many folks our age brought their kids. During the show, Chris' tunic got bunched up underneath his guitar (this happened in Nashville too) and he turned once giving the audience a good view of his "tights" and a little girl a couple of rows back said, "Look Daddy, he's nearly naked (nekkid) under that top." Ahhh, the joys of Spandex!
In Atlanta, when Jon started reciting the Starship Trooper lyrics a girl behind me started saying...."oh no, oh no...do you think they'll play it? Why is he speaking it, instead of singing it..Ohmigod!Ohmigod, I never knew they were playing this."
Then the music started and the poor girl was put out of her misery. I turned around and saw a look of complete bliss on her face.
Atlanta rocked and the audience stayed on its feet most of the night. I had great seats in the center section thanks to Yesfriend Rog. :-)
I noticed a lot of folks my age brought their kids, and I even saw some fans in their 60's really enjoying the show.
Great crowd and one of best Yesshows ever for me.
I think this is the Yes show I've been waiting for. It was really great. Chris was a ham, but he really added a lot of energy as did Egor. He is fine on the key's and an excellent percussionist. It was a true work of art, for art sake no top forty crap or album selling tour. I even like roundabout for the ending, I can't believe it was ever plaid on the radio-it's so radical musically and lyrically. Don't miss this tour, If I can swing it I'll try to go again!
Steve Howe was the most energized, most active, most fun-loving that we've ever seen him! He had a blast, and so did we, 'til Kendra, the four-year-old Yes-Master had had enough of the lightning and heat, and requested our immediate withdrawl in the midst of Ritual. Moondance Jam deja vu! Hoping for better luck in Cincy.