YES FEATURING ANDERSON RABIN WAKEMAN
VENUE WHISKY A GO GO, LOS ANGELES DATE 26/08/2018
Who would have thought all these years later that we’d be seeing Quintessential Yes: The 50th Anniversary Tour featuring legends Jon Anderson, Trevor Rabin and Rick Wakeman? But that’s exactly what transpires on a beautiful summer night on the Sunset
Strip in West Hollywood at the small yet legendary Whisky A Go Go club.
Tickets to tonight’s show are only $2, the same price they were when Yes first came to America back in 1971. Fans lined up along a sidewalk that stretched up a huge hill, hoping to score a ticket on the day of the concert. Thousands waited in line for hours, but only hundreds were able to get in the door. It was a spectacle. The madness didn’t end there, though, as a crazy show would soon unfold.
The first of the ARW trio to appear onstage are guitarist Trevor Rabin and keyboard maestro Rick Wakeman, and the set starts with the Rabin-led instrumental Cinema
– and it’s one hell of a start. When the two-minute jam ends, singer Jon Anderson makes his way to the stage and they play another offering from the 80s, Hold On. The harmonies of Anderson, Rabin and bassist
Lee Pomeroy are a delight.
For those who have doubts if 73-year-old Anderson still has ‘it’, he does. He sounds superb and his vocal range is intact. What makes the man such a special talent isn’t his vocal ability alone, though – it’s the connection he shows to the words he sings. He’s a showman, and the energy displayed comes deep from within his heart and soul.
The set features a great mixture of both the 70s and 80s eras of Yes, enough to leave fans satisfied no matter which they prefer. I’ve Seen All
Good People, And You And I, Perpetual Change, Roundabout and Owner Of A Lonely Heart are all crowd-pleasers. Heart Of The Sunrise, the longest jam from the album Fragile, is a highlight. The interplay between Rabin and Wakeman is incredible: the intricacy of Rabin’s riffs and Wakeman’s synthesiser sends the crowd into a hard rock frenzy. Wakeman, garbed in his sparkling red wizard-like robe, is still as fluid as ever on the keys. During Rhythm Of Love he puts his own stamp on the song by adding a two-minute keyboard solo, soaring up and down the Minimoog.
Rabin left Yes 35 years ago to have a successful career scoring Hollywood blockbuster films, but his return to the touring stage is smooth and rocking – he plays with a great balance of elegance and intensity. The man is now in his early 60s, but he still looks at ease with a guitar in his hand. While each member of the band is wonderful to watch, this is Rabin’s show. Countless solos are performed and executed at a high level, with a wide variety of different guitar tones used. His name deserves to be mentioned whenever there are discussions about the best guitarists of all time.
All in all, this is a special show with an insanely talented and famous line-up. If you see these men, you won’t be disappointed – you’ll leave the venue with a sense of awe and amazement, wanting to go and see them again.
Jon Anderson, Trevor
Rabin and Rick Wakeman are quintessential Yes, quintessential prog. Here’s hoping their legacies continue to unfold for a while longer.
“THIS IS A SPECIAL SHOW WITH AN INSANELY TALENTED AND FAMOUS LINE-UP.”
ALL SMILES: THE YES MEN CELEBRATE THEIR ANNIVERSARY IN STYLE.