Yes: Keys to Ascension (CD/DVD, Proper/Southbound)

 |   |  1 min read

Yes: Roundabout (live)
Yes: Keys to Ascension (CD/DVD, Proper/Southbound)

San Luis Obispo isn't a name you readily associate with rock music. The picturesque coastal town in northern California -- near Hearst's castle -- still isn't on the radar despite it being the place where Yes -- the original line-up -- relaunched their career in '95.

Well, "relaunched" might be overstating it, but they certainly re-formed in their San Luis Obispo studio (world headquarters of Yes, I believe) and then played a series of concerts in the town's Freemont Theatre in '96.

The result is Keys to Ascension (a typically grandeloquent Yes title, no?) which is a four CD and concert DVD set in a fold-out cover by Roger Dean, the man responsible for some of their finest sleeve art.

In a way it is Yes' greatest . . .What? Hits, pieces, progressions? I guess it isn't their hits because they had only one that I recall (Owner of a Lonely Heart, and that isn't here) but certainly large chunks of Tales from Topographic Oceans, Close to the Edge and such are -- along with some new studio tracks. It is the complete collection which was previously spread over two separate double CD sets.

The DVD -- singer Jon Anderson in what looks like a billowing silk caftan, lots of earnest heads-down playing, background images and other footage of album covers and Nature spliced in -- is . . .

To be truthful this is an awful lot of Yes and if, like me, you thought that double vinyl Tales from Topographic Oceans of '73 was one side too long then don't venture here.

I did my best (two CDs, about half of the grindingly dull DVD) and began my life again.

This has been a consumer service/warning. 

Share It

Your Comments

Phillip Magee - Oct 2, 2010

I thought Tales from Topographic Oceans was actually four-sides too long. As a fourteen year-old the gate-fold sleeve seemed the best thing about it.

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Various Artists: Native America Calling; Music from Indian Country (Trikont/Yellow Eye)

Various Artists: Native America Calling; Music from Indian Country (Trikont/Yellow Eye)

A few Native Amercans have appeared previously at Elsewhere: the late jazz saxophonist Jim Pepper has an Essential Elsewhere album with Comin' and Goin'; the activist, poet, singer and actor John... > Read more

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2011 Fleet Foxes: Helplessness Blues (Sub Pop)

BEST OF ELSEWHERE 2011 Fleet Foxes: Helplessness Blues (Sub Pop)

A propos of not much, Fleet Foxes' chief songwriter Robin Pecknold recently recorded New Zealand singer-songwriter Chris Thompson's Where is My Wild Rose? for an EP and it appears on You Tube (just... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT . . . DARONDO: The soul man who went AWOL

WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT . . . DARONDO: The soul man who went AWOL

To hear William Daron Pullman tell how he got his non-de-disque at the dawn of the Seventies gives an insight into both his smarts, and how he could just as equally be seduced by the money-image... > Read more

DEREK TRUCKS INTERVIEWED (2009): Allman and Clapton, but his own man

DEREK TRUCKS INTERVIEWED (2009): Allman and Clapton, but his own man

For someone yet to hit 30, the Jacksonville, Florida-based singer-guitarist Derek Trucks has achieved a lot. But then, he was almost born to it. His uncle is drummer Butch Trucks of the Allman... > Read more