Hartford Courant from Hartford, Connecticut on April 18, 1991 · Page 64
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Hartford Courant from Hartford, Connecticut · Page 64

Hartford, Connecticut
Issue Date:
Thursday, April 18, 1991
Page 64
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. it f 1 Yes: a weird return of 70s once-weres land '80s wanna-bes X r- Z o u Q CC o u. (- cc X w X r- By ROGER CATLIN Courant Rock Critic Blame classic rock radio formats for the massive return of bands that rightfully called it quits years ago. Constant replay of album favorites from the early 70s can be directly credited with creating sufficient commercial demand to warrant such revivals as Bad Company (although it's minus its famous singer and guitarist). Deep Purple (playing Hartford's Bushnell Memorial tonight) and, perhaps most surprising of all, the current past and present aggregation of Yes. The Yes reunion tour, which plays the Hartford Civic Center tonight, combines members of the classic lineups of Yes with members of an '80s era Yes that managed to have some hits big enough to survive on its own. The show is to feature the in-the-round stage used during the 1978 Yes tour (vindicating whoever decided to store the thing for 12 years) and will also use, according to press releases, "an elaborate, state-of-the-art, hy-drolic sic stage with extraordinary visual effects." Only a year or so ago, it seemed that if these same members convened on an in-the-round stage, it would be a boxing ring. Here's how the problems happened: Yes, which began as an art-rock group in 1968 and made its name with such huge orchestral works as "Roundabout" on the 1972 "Fragile" album, finally threw in the towel 'round about 1980. Its final incarnation replacing singer Jon Anderson and keyboardist Rick Wake-man with Geoff Downes and Trevor Horn (the Buggies!) was an insult and joke to remaining diehard fans. Nobody else was interested. In the mass of solo projects and subsequent bands, Anderson and bassist Chris Squire were going to start a new band in 1983 called Cinema. But since they added two other Yes alumni original drummer Alan White and keyboardist Tony Kaye, along with South African newcomer Trevor Rabin they decided to call it Yes. Their first album with this lineup, "90125" earned them their first No. 1 hit, "Owner of a Lonely Heart" But when the 1985 follow-up, "Big Generator," was not as successful, Anderson broke off. Luckily, there were enough other Yes alumni to join: original drummer Bill Bruford, who later played in King Crimson; Wakeman, who was involved in a number of solo projects; and guitarist Steve Howe, who was in the short-lived supergroup Asia. There began the bitter argument over who was rightful heir to the band name. Two touring versions might work well for the Ringling Bros., but it wasn't enough that fans were twice as likely, with two touring Yes bands, to hear such beloved hits as "And You and I." This was a question of product identification. Yes-generated lawsuits were filed (and later dismissed) in 1989, when Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman and Howe toured, using familiar Roger Dean post-Hobbit graphic designs and many Yes references and a tour title that promised "An Evening of Yes Music, Plus." Neither the tour nor the album did particularly killer business, though. Remaining members of the official Yes rooted around f oi another lead singer. Roger Hodgson of Super-tramp, Steve Walsh of Kansas and even Rob- ) 7 j I vi o I j mil M. ' Arista Their differences behind them, members of the two bands that once claimed the right to use the name Yes have Joined together to form this latest incarnation of the group. bie Nevil, who sang "C'est La Vie," were mentioned as replacements. So in the middle of all this brouhaha, how could this reunion come to be? Blame the spacey, high-voiced Anderson, whose exodus from the '80s Yes started all these problems in the first place. According to liner notes on a promotional compact disc of the new single, "Lift Me Up," Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman and Howe were in Europe preparing their second album while Squire, White, Kaye and Rabin were working on the new Yes project in Los Angeles, "including developing collaborations with a number of singers." Anderson flew to L.A. to work more on the tracks, and he paid a friendly call on Rabin, who let him listen to what he was working on. "When Jon heard the music, he immediately felt he wanted to be a part of it and suggested he add his vocals to the songs," the liner notes say. "Trevor, in turn, realized that Jon's unique vocal style was just what the music needed." Then, the copy says, "it was only logical that Chris add his distinctive vocals to the new ABWH tracks." Therefore, the new album, "Union," due out Tuesday on Arista Records, will feature the tracks from each of the separate albums, as aided by members of the former enemy camps. Call it a loving harmonic convergence or a hard, cold stare at economic reality, but the two bands are back together on stage, best able to handle the Yes oldies themselves. With luck, the tour, which moves to Europe in late May, will last long enough to see the release of a four-CD boxed set in August containing Yes hits and unreleased material. Not that any corporate merger is a completely seamless one. In this case, the largest Yes aggregation ever includes two drummers in Bruford and White, two guitarists in Rabin and Howe and two keyboardists in Wakeman and Kaye. But, thankfully, there's only one bassist Squire. And Anderson will concentrate on singing. "The eight members of Yes will perform together as a group, as soloists, and in a variety of musical combinations," advance press says. Yes, it promises to be a long show. Yes performs at 8 tonight at the Hartford Civic Center, where remaining tickets are $22.50. For more information, call 727-8080. i ret House Specialties Daily Featuring Fresh New Zealand & Norwegian Seafood Early Bird Special: $3 Off each entree 4-6 Daily Mon.-Fri. 11:30-10:00, Sat. 4-10, Sun. 4-9 s 5 48 Hartford Tpke., Vernon, CT 06066 For Reservations Call 643-0256 Manchester Musical Players Present Y 75- JrBllZ POBTEH'S W U Trass Tickets ($10$8): xS 645-1213 or Y a 291-8676 8:00 p.m. Fri.&Sat v April 19, 20, 26, 27 East Catholic Auditorium 115 New State Rd. Manchester, CT Donna Dubt, Director , .Sheila Fueqt Choreographer Victor ferperua Musical Director SECOND STAGE PRODUCTIONS Presents ACTUS FUHTJER A comedy by ABE Burrows Fri-Sat-Sunday April 26th, 27th, & 28th Fri-Sat 7:30 p.m. Sunday-Matinee " 2:00 p.m. Tony Vecchitto Producer Sheehan High School Wallingford, CT tickets $6.00 $5.00 Senior Citizens & students For advance ticket sales call 235-5563 PLANNING ON ENTERING SCHOOL IN '92? THEN THE JUNE LSAT GMAT OR GRE IS THE EXAM TO TAKE. 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