Lyle Glidden's comments below about the mix are right on---the playing and enthusiasm by Steve, Chris and Alan was exceptional but the mix shut out Oliver on too many occasions as well as Benoit's lead vocals (although he is clearly challenged in matching the upper range of Jon Anderson). The vocal harmonies were superb though---Chris and Steve were not only right there, but with authority--no fakin'or hangin' back like at many shows of other vintage (or even current for that matter) leading acts. The best part to me though was that Chris, Alan and Steve are still lovin' it whether its in a stadium or in front of 1000 people in the middle of New Hampshire--that's the gift.
I am 54 now and have been to many Yes shows. When I first heard about Jon not being able to tour anymore, I thought, this could be it for my all time favorite band. When I became aware of Benoit David as a replacement, I got hopeful. I went to the show last night with my wife, and was very impressed. We had an hour drive back from Concord to Lebanon and my wife raved about the show all the way. I did need to close my eyes a couple of times as I am so used to seeing Jon up there, but when I did I could hear the Yes I had remembered from 1971 when I was first taken with their unusual sound. I am waiting anxiously for a new studio release from this line up. Thank God for Yes.
Yes at the Capital Center in Concord was a great fit. Yes is a band that really shines in a good hall. The last time I had seen them was at the Casino Ballroom in Nov. 2008.. one of their first gigs with the new line up... Casino was not a good place for YES..too many rowdy drunks and terrible sound ..etc.. BUT last night it was a beautiful experience.. the band took a bit to warm up but the audience's standing ovations and respecet really pumped up the band and you could see and hear how it energized them... a great show.. Machine Messiah was spot on..and very powerful... there were other great moments too.. It was nice to hear more from Olliver and he is warming up more.. I saw him smile a few times.. Chris was sounding great last night.. And Steve.. what can I say? He is still so great.. pushing the limits of his playing and always trying to bring on something new... Finally I want to thank the audience for being so respectful..There was dead silence in Steve's quiet bits and no yelling and catcallling..I am sure the band appreciates that so much.. and loads of standing ovations.. I am so happy to have witnessed this.. good luck guys and keep on keeping on!
Last night's show at the Capitol Ctr. for The Arts was a huge treat in many ways. First off, I got to share my 36th show with my Hubby, Bob who had never seen YES ! Second, we got to meet Benoit and have our Tix autographed in the lobby prior to the show and Third...YES is still an amazing live band nearly 50 years down the road from Dec. of '72 when I first saw them live !
Some of this review is from the perspective of a 17 year veteran of live sound mixing...many of the complaints mentioned from previous legs of the tour are founded and justified ! Benoit's vocals are seriously under mixed a good share of the time! I'm not sure if the Front of House mixer has done his homework on the YES canon of material as the vocal blend was seriously out of balance ! Both Chris and Steve were mixed way too loud in perspective to Benoit's lead vox ! By now...this gross error should have been dealt with ! Also..., either the guitar, bass and drums should come down in the mix or Oliver's keyboards should come up a good 4-5 dB ! The overall sonic quality of the sound reinforcement system is superb...the best in many tours...only the mix needs gross improvement !
As for YES, the band...the band is amazing ! Many songs are reinterpreted in wonderful new ways. Fresh new parts fly throughout the arrangements ! Being a Bass player myself, Chris was on his A+ game in Concord ! His tone and execution were truly outstanding ! Steve was possibly the best I've ever seen him live ! Animated and really fresh and amazing ! Alan seemed a bit subdued except on his "Astral Traveler" solo spot ! Oliver plays extremely well and fills the position of orchestrator in top form. I did notice some of his choices of chords on "Yours Is No Disgrace" were a bit unorthodox and not true to the original voicings on "The YES Album". Benoit's performance of "Onward" was pure bliss ! It is his crowning point in the 2 1/2 hour set !
All in all though, our 3 hour drive South was well worth the effort ! YES are a force to be reckoned with...the 2010 personnel are strong and every bit as good as any show I've seen in the past !
Have no doubts or fears about seeing YES 2010...The band is still a huge thrill and a wonderful evening of great entertainment ! L. G.
My second time seeing Yes after many years ago in Portland. Howe is still a maestro on his guitars - still amazes me after all these year. Squire continues to show off his skills as well with his bass playing style that literally bought down the house, with plaster from the ceiling falling as well. White did a fantastic drum solo that seemed like it was a good 5 minutes that had more energy that I've seen from most other concerts over the years. I honestly was confused when the opening lyrics started as it didn't look like Anderson, but his hauntingly alto style sure was heard. It wasn't Jon, but David sure did blend in nicely thought I wish the sound engineering didn't hide his voice as much as was done last night. The other disappointment was the keyboards - didn't hear as much as previous albums (or my last performance) allowed. Wakeman did a great job in his Dad's place and the couple of solos he did play was very very good. Would have liked to hear more of the traditional organ sounds from Rick's days, but it is 2010 I suppose. All in all, money well spent for a great night of great music. Thank you Steve, Chris, Alan, Benoit, and Oliver. You guys rocked and I would recommend to anyone to seek out a Yes show - you still have it even after all these years. I know, cuz I'm right there with you. ;-)
howdy everyone, just a quick one.they still have it and then some. i was four rows back with my brother on the right hand side of the stage directly in front of oliver and chris. they were amazing.i read all 30 of the MID-HUDSON reviews before the show and the set list so as what to expect. pretty much the same which was ok by me.they were flat out great.steve howe was on fire.chris was just his usual dynamic self. alan white may not have the speed he used to command but boy he can still play the kit. oliver may not have the flash that dad once but for where they are in their lives right now, he certainly does fill the bill. he was nothing short of wonderful.people can be as critical as they want of BENOIT'S vocals but he obviously has it down to a science.being a vocalist myself and having fronted bands for quite awhile,i know really good when i see it and he is nothing short of dynamite.all-in-all,a totally fabulous evening. lets do it again soon.take care folks. PS...........tonight was my 19th YESSHOW since their inception.
It's been over 40 years since I first "discovered" this band that can't really be pigeon-holed as simply a rock band. The showmanship, musicianship and stage presence is unrivaled. Steve Howe obviously has talent that he has yet to discover. Even as he is playing the timeless classics, he inserts new angles and new riffs that make them fresh. Chris Squire and Alan White have proven, once again, why they are still touring. Because they still get it done! If you close your eyes and listen, Benoit David is the voice you heard on the original albums. He fits on stage as if he's been with them for years. Oliver Wakeman, with those big shoes to fill, does so without a problem. He learned at the foot of the master, and he learned well! The Capitol Center audience was obviously loaded with long time fans who had no problem showing appreciation. Even as YES brought down the house... literally. We enjoyed the show immensely and would recommend that you see YES when they come to a venue near you.
The realization that 40 years on one can still see Yes perform, and in such top form is an incredible treat! The 3rd time I'm seeing this lineup, and feel that Benoit and Oliver are much more comfortable. The set list was satisfying (though much the same the last 2 years...I sure wish they'd dust off Soundchaser), and it was great to hear Your Is No Disgrace and South Side of The Sky again, with the latter featuring an extended jam that was particularly intense and hypnotic. How wonderful to have them perform at CCA in Concord, NH, and vibrate the plaster off the ceiling!