The Classic Tales of Yes Tour 2024

Following their recent acclaimed tour in the USA, progressive legends YES are set to return to UK stages in May and June.

Hot on the heels of their hugely successful ‘Classic Tales Of Yes’ American Tour, Progressive Rock legends, YES, are poised to hit the road in the UK once more on a 9-date trek across the country starting on 23rd May at the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester and ending in London on 4th June at the prestigious Royal Albert Hall, a fitting end for such a majestic band.

‘The Classic Tales Of Yes Tour’ will see YES mining their rich catalogue to deliver a career spanning set of classics, rarely played vintage cuts and new songs from 1970’s ‘Time and a Word’ right up to ‘Mirror To The Sky’, their 23rd album released last year, together with a special section celebrating the 50th anniversary of their momentous ‘Tales From The Topographic Oceans’ opus.

Every show will feature a Roger Dean gallery in the venue’s foyer area. Dean’s masterful artwork of striking other-worldly landscapes has graced classic album covers and posters.  He has sold more than one hundred million copies worldwide.  His artwork appears on the cover of the current YES album Mirror To The Sky. Roger is planning to be at each show on the tour, to meet with fans.

Steve Howe, whose association with Yes began in 1970, along with Geoff Downes, a member of the 1980 ‘Drama’ era line-up are joined by Jon Davison, lead vocalist in Yes for well over a decade now; Billy Sherwood on bass, hand-picked by original bassist Chris Squire and Jay Schellen, who worked closely with Alan White, on drums completing the line-up.

YES are very much looking forward to playing in Europe and the UK during April, May and June this year. It’s been a while since we toured here and we’ve really missed you all.”  says Steve Howe

Geoff Downes goes on to say: “We’re very much looking forward to bringing the Classic Tales of YES Tour to the UK and Europe.   It promises to be one of our most interesting sets to date, scanning through much of YES’s history and with some previously unheard pieces together with music from out latest album, ‘Mirror To The Sky’. As always, we’re committed to pushing new boundaries and are very excited to be performing another chapter in the rich legacy of the band.

Jon D. here, My band mates and I are very pleased and excited to bring to the UK and parts of the EU our current set of classic Yes music which, covering the rich spectrum of Yestory, delighted US fans last fall. We’ll be performing many song favourites but also adding rarities, some of which haven’t been performed in decades!  Let’s all join together in May, band and audience alike, in celebrating what’s best about Yes music. See you there!”

“Very much looking forward to playing all this wonderful YES music across Europe and the UK. It’s an interesting set of music and one that spans the many decades of the bands unique and rich history” continues Billy Sherwood

Jay Schellen says: “I’m very excited and looking forward to performing our 2024 Classic Tales Of YES tour in the UK. This collection of songs is unique in many ways. A classic YES show, thrilling and dynamic!  I’m sure our fans will be excited and pleased as well!” 

The Classic Tales of YES UK Tour Dates 2024

Thursday 23 May                Manchester               Bridgewater Hall*

Friday 24 May                      Glasgow                    Royal Concert Hall*

Sunday 26 May                    Liverpool                    Philharmonic Hall*

Tuesday 28 May                  York                            Barbican*

Wednesday 29 May             Southend                   Cliffs Pavilion*

Friday 31May                       Bristol                       Beacon

Saturday 1 June                   Birmingham               Symphony Hall*

Sunday 2 June                     Gateshead               The Glasshouse (formerly The Sage*)

Tuesday 4 June                  London                     Royal Albert Hall

*UK Shows rescheduled from 2023, all tickets remain valid.

Buy UK and European tickets from Live – Yesworld

and UK tickets Bookings Direct – Yes Tickets and Dates 2024 (seetickets.com)

What The Media Said About The Yes USA Tour

“It was fantastic to see the band dig deep and play selections such as ‘It Will Be A Good Day (The River)’, a song not played live since 2000. What tale can be complete without digging up ‘Tales From Topographic Oceans’. The band did a condensed reimagined version which ended the main set with a thunderous ovation. Consider it a treat that YES still exists in 2023.”

Joseph Suto, ROCK SHOW CRITIQUE

“This show is bound to please and have something for everyone. Everyone together produces a sound that is almost indistinguishable from the earlier incarnations. The only real difference is the improvement of technology and better fidelity. If you have enjoyed Yes in the past, you will enjoy this show and if you have never seen them, there is no better time than now.”

Kim Hansen, GHOST CULT MAG

About YES

Steve Howe: guitars, backing vocals (1970 –1981, 1990–1992, 1995–present)

Geoff Downes: keyboards (1980–1981, 2011–present)

Jon Davison: lead vocals, acoustic guitar (2012–present)

Billy Sherwood: guitar, backing vocals ((1994, 1997–2000), bass guitar, backing vocals (2015–present)

Jay Schellen: drums and percussion (2016-present)

Formed in 1968 by Jon Anderson and the late, and much-missed, Chris Squire, YES have been one of the most innovative, influential and best-loved bands in rock music history. Their 1970s albums The Yes AlbumFragileClose To The EdgeYessongs (a triple live album set), Tales From Topographic Oceans, Relayer and Going For The One were ground-breaking in musical style and content. Their music also became synonymous with artist Roger Dean whose distinctive YES logo design and artwork adorned the lavish gatefold presentation sleeves of many YES albums.

With sales of over 50 million records, the Grammy-award winning YES were inducted into The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 2017 where they performed Roundabout from the album Fragile and the FM radio-friendly Owner Of A Lonely Heart from the 1985 album 90125.

YES released their 22nd studio album in 2021, The Quest, produced by Steve Howe and which went to No. 1 in the UK Rock Albums Chart and entered the Official UK Album Chart at No. 20.

In 2022 came the sad news that drummer Alan White, ever-present in the YES line-up for 50 years, had passed away. The news came shortly before the band embarked on their classic, genre-defining album Close To The Edge 50th Anniversary Tour, which he was intending to be a part of until ill-health determined otherwise. The tour was dedicated to Alan.

In February 2023, ahead of the news of the new studio album Mirror To The Sky, YES confirmed Jay Schellen as the new permanent drummer with YES, hand-picked to step into his mentor and friend Alan White’s role. “I had done the 2016 tour on my own for Alan,” says Jay. “From late 2017 onwards, we had a beautiful partnership. I learned and discovered so much about Alan’s style. His passion and creativity was phenomenal. The new album has Alan’s presence all over it. It is inside of us. So, this is still, in my heart, Alan just being present and with us, and with me, in a big way.”

Mirror To The Sky, YES’ 23rd studio album, was released on 19 May 2023 to universally positive reviews in the music press. ‘Mirror to the Sky is very much a band album, where all five members…  have been at the top of their game’, stated The Progressive Aspect. ‘YES will continue to have a role to play in shaping the future sounds of prog.’

YES Announce European Dates For The Classic Tales Of Yes Tour in 2024

Following their recent acclaimed tour in the USA, progressive legends YES have announced European dates for The Classic Tales of YES Tour 2024.   

Tickets go on sale on Friday 8th December at 10am GMT/11.00am CET  https://www.yesworld.com/live/

Buy UK tickets from https://bookingsdirect.seetickets.com/tour/yes/

The Classic Tales of YES Tour 2024 will include many iconic tracks from the YES back-catalogue covering fifty-plus years.    The tour will also include a celebration of the 50th Anniversary of Tales from Topographic Oceans as well as music from their current album Mirror To The Sky.

YES are: Steve Howe (guitars, vocals), Geoff Downes (keyboards), Jon Davison (vocals and acoustic guitar), Billy Sherwood (bass guitar, vocals) and drummer Jay Schellen.

The evening will begin with an on-site presentation by world-renowned artist and designer Roger Dean, whose masterful artwork of striking other-worldly landscapes has graced classic album covers and posters, most prominently by YES and Asia. Every show will feature a Roger Dean gallery in the venue’s reception/foyer area. His work – which also appears on the cover of their current album Mirror to the Sky – has sold more than one hundred million copies worldwide.

We’re all excited to be bringing our show home to Europe and the UK!”  says Steve Howe, “We’ve selected a new playlist of Yes music but with some firm favourites in there too, of course! To keep our performances fresh, we ‘now’ carry our own lights, so we can present a consistent show each night, designed for us by William …….. Looking forward to seeing you out there!” 

“We are very much looking forward to the 2024 European leg of our YES Classic Tales Tour. Having recently completed the US, we are now really excited to bring that out to all our fans in the UK and Europe. It promises to be one of our most interesting sets to date, scanning through much of YES’s history and with some previously unheard pieces as well as music from our latest album, ‘Mirror To The Sky’. Bring it on and see you all out there!” Best, Geoff Downes

The Classic Tales of YES European and UK Tour 2024 dates are as follows:   Go to www.yesworld.com/livefor all ticketing information.

Europe

April 2024

Tuesday 30              Portugal        Lisbon Sabres        Sagres Campo Pequeno** 

May 2024

Thursday 2                Spain             Madrid                        Riviera 

Friday 3                     Spain              Barcelona                   Sala Paral·lel 62

Sunday 5                  Italy                 Rome                          La Nuvola 

Monday 6                  Italy                 Milan                          Teatro Arcimboldi

Wednesday 8           Italy                 Padova                      Gran Teatro Geox

Thursday 9              Switzerland  Zurich                        Kongresshaus**                               

Saturday 11              Austria            Vienna                       Simm City 

Sunday 12                 Germany        Berlin                          Theater am Potsdamer Platz

Tuesday 14               Germany        Halle                           Steintor-Variete

Wednesday 15         Belgium          Antwerp                     De Roma

Friday 17                            Netherlands Arnhem                     Music SacrumTheatre**

Wednesday 18        Germany       Moenchengladbach  Red Box**

Monday 20               France           Paris                          Salle Pleyel**

Tuesday 21              Luxembourg Luxembourg            Rockhall**

UK Dates 

Thursday 23 May                             Manchester               Bridgewater Hall*

Friday 24 May                                  Glasgow                    Royal Concert Hall*

Sunday 26 May                                Liverpool                    Philharmonic*

Tuesday 28 May                              York                            Barbican*

Wednesday 29 May                         Southend                   Cliffs Pavilion*

Friday 31 May                                   Bristol                         Beacon

Saturday 1 June                               Birmingham               Symphony Hall*

Sunday 2 June                                 Gateshead                Sage*

Tuesday 4 June                               London                      Royal Albert Hall

**European shows in bold are rescheduled from 2023 and tickets remain valid

*UK Shows rescheduled from 2023, all tickets remain valid.

European tickets go onsale on Friday 8th December at 10am GMT/ 11.00am CET from https://www.yesworld.com/live/

UK tickets from https://bookingsdirect.seetickets.com/tour/yes/

About YES

Steve Howe: guitars, backing vocals (1970 –1981, 1990–1992, 1995–present)
Geoff Downes: keyboards (1980–1981, 2011–present)
Jon Davison: lead vocals, acoustic guitar (2012–present)

Billy Sherwood: guitar, backing vocals ((1994, 1997–2000), bass guitar, backing vocals (2015–present)

Jay Schellen: drums and percussion

Formed in 1968 by Jon Anderson and the late, and much-missed, Chris Squire, YES have been one of the most innovative, influential and best-loved bands in rock music history. Their 1970s albums The Yes AlbumFragileClose To The EdgeYessongs (a triple live album set), Tales From Topographic Oceans, Relayer and Going For The One were ground-breaking in musical style and content. Their music also became synonymous with artist Roger Dean whose distinctive YES logo design and artwork adorned the lavish gatefold presentation sleeves of many YES albums.

With sales of over 50 million records, the Grammy-award winning YES were inducted into The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 2017 where they performed Roundabout from the album Fragile and the FM radio-friendly Owner Of A Lonely Heart from the 1985 album 90125.

YES released their 22nd studio album in 2021, The Quest, produced by Steve Howe and which went to No. 1 in the UK Rock Albums Chart and entered the Official UK Album Chart at No. 20.

In 2022 came the sad news that drummer Alan White, ever-present in the YES line-up for 50 years, had passed away. The news came shortly before the band embarked on their classic, genre-defining album Close To The Edge 50th Anniversary Tour which they dedicated to Alan.

In February 2023, ahead of the news of the new studio album Mirror To The Sky, YES confirmed Jay Schellen as the new permanent drummer with YES, hand-picked to step into his mentor and friend Alan White’s role. “I had done the 2016 tour on my own for Alan,” says Jay. “From late 2017 onwards, we had a beautiful partnership. I learned and discovered so much about Alan’s style. His passion and creativity was phenomenal. The new album has Alan’s presence all over it. It is inside of us. So, this is still, in my heart, Alan just being present and with us, and with me, in a big way.”

Mirror To The Sky, YES’ 23rd studio album, was released on 19 May 2023 to universally positive reviews in the music press. ‘Mirror to the Sky is very much a band album, where all five members…  have been at the top of their game’, stated The Progressive Aspect. ‘YES will continue to have a role to play in shaping the future sounds of prog.’

John Wenlock-Smith interviews Steve Howe

John Wenlock-Smith: Good day Steve, trust you are well?

Steve Howe: Hello John, yes, I’m fine thanks, trust you are too?

JWS: Let’s talk about the new Yes album, ‘Mirror To The Sky’

SH: If you have questions, I should have the answers!  

JWS: Is there an underlying theme to the album? 

SH: Yes have only done one themed album (‘Tales From Topographic Oceans’), other things we have talked about but aren’t really thematically related as such. 

JWS: I’ve heard the new album, I like it and the fact that you are doing longer songs. Once again, I think it is an approach that really works for you. 

SH: After ‘The Quest’ and the good reaction it received, we were inspired to carry on and content to make more new music as we had songs written to work with. This album is the result of that time. 

JWS I saw you in Manchester, it was very good and I enjoyed it a lot. You turned in a good show that day.

SH: Thank you, glad you enjoyed it. We enjoyed that short run of shows and it went down well, apart from York which didn’t go so well, I’m afraid.

JWS: I have a question from my friend who asks about your involvement with Queen’s ‘Innuendo’ album. How did that come about? 

SH: I was in Montreux in a restaurant that I like when a guy called Martin spotted me and invited me to the studio (Mountain Studios, where Yes recorded the ‘Going For The One’ album). As I’d finished my meal, I happily went with him to the studio and the band wanted to play me the album. After which they asked me to play on the track Innuendo, as they wanted something extra in the guitar department.

When I pointed out that Brian had done lots of guitar they said they’d still like me to play on it and gave me free rein to play whatever I liked. So they played me the track and I just improvised as I am quite used to doing that, jumping in and creating on the fly. They liked what they heard so, after we’d had dinner together, we returned to the studio and put the two takes together, making what you hear on the album. It was a fun day with great friends. 

JWS: I have a question about GTR. Wow come you didn’t record a second album? Is that something you would consider revisiting 30 years on?  

SH: Well we did record a live album for King Biscuit Hour in Germany, I think? (it was actually in Los Angeles in 1996) but we split the band after that and, whilst certain parties wanted us to do it again, it adds a certain complexity with managers and timings etc. Finding time in what I’m doing now means doing it all again would be a huge undertaking. I’ve moved on from those days, although I did enjoy that time, we had a lot of fun doing those tours. It was easier to revisit Asia actually but, again, I had to curtail that as I was busy with Yes

JWS: So, Yes is your main focus these days then?  

SH: It is really, especially as we are on a creative roll at the moment, things are going well, plus I still have my solo stuff around to keep me occupied. 

JWS: So the tour this year was postponed because of insurance issues? I was looking forward to the ‘Relayer’ shows actually.

SH: Yes, we decided to postpone those shows after a few years of uncertainty over them and the insurance was a major factor, but not the only factor.

JWS: You probably have lots of demand on your time with everything you are involved with? 

SH: Well, actually, I don’t. I have Yes and my solo stuff and I control what I do so that I run it, not the other way around.  

JWS: I’ve written a review about it (the new album), I was generally positive about it, I said that Genesis and King Crimson have ended and Deep Purple and BOC are nearing the end and, really, we should respect that and appreciate you while we still have you.

SH: Good perspective and insight for us all, I think! 

JWS: Well, I think that’s it from me apart from to say thank you for your time and trust the album goes well for you and hope to see you next year in Manchester  

SH: Thank you John.

 The new Yes album, ‘Mirror To The Sky’, is out now and available to order here:

Mirror To The Sky (lnk.to)

  

 The band will be performing ‘The Classic Tales of Yes’ Tour in 2024:

Review – Yes – Mirror To The Sky – by John Wenlock-Smith

It’s May 2023 and the world of Yes has been busy with stuff, namely cancelling the previously, hotly anticipated ‘Relayer’ tour because of insurance issues and also the soon to be released second blast of creativity that began with 2021’s ‘The Quest’ album and short UK tour in the wake of the passing of Alan White! That album, ‘The Quest’, was an interesting one as it firmly established Steve Howe’s ongoing leadership and steerage of the band, of which he is now the sole link to the ground-breaking group he joined in 1970. Steve was also very instrumental in their achieving significant success with their golden age of Atlantic albums in the early to mid 1970’s with the classic releases ‘The Yes Album’, ‘Close To The Edge’ and ‘Fragile’

‘Mirror To The Sky’ definitely has more than a touch of those halcyon days with it consisting of six longer tracks and three extra tracks on a second disc. All very promising you may say but is it any good or does it paddle previously visited waters and add very little of merit? Both good questions, I personally think that any new Yes music warrants a listen as, despite many folks dismissal of Yes now as a poorer version of the real thing, I actually see much merit in having the band still active. After all, with both King Crimson and Genesis calling it a day now and Deep Purple and Aerosmith possibly approaching their last days of existence, to still have these stalwarts prepared to go out and tread the boards is both heart warming and very worthy of seeing. The last time I saw Yes in Manchester, they played a strong set with Steve being on especially fine form, yes, notes may have been missed but the intent was still there and the fire still burned for sure. 

This album opens strongly with the vibrant Cut From The Stars, which is about dark skies, light pollution and the beauty of being able to see the stars clearly without the disturbance of excessive urban lights. Many folks won’t have experienced the clarity that is offered when urban lighting hasn’t reduced the amount of stars visible to the naked eye. This song is a good one with strong vocals and Billy Sherwood’s bass lines being very reminiscent of Chris Squire and really grace the track. All Connected continues the trend with some graceful pedal steel guitar lines opening the track. This has definite nods to earlier Yes days, Jon Davidson having definitely grown into his role as lead singer and here he really convinces as his vocals certainly evidence the spirit of Jon Anderson while also retaining his own stamp on proceedings, a difficult task but one he manages with style. Steve Howe’s strong guitar work is very prevalent on this track, playing some great lines and licks throughout. Steve has always been a tasteful player who plays to support the song rather than to overpower it. His restraint is important and that knowledge allows the music to swell and pulsate in a pleasing and satisfying manner. 

Luminosity is another longer song and these longer format tracks really suit the group as they allow the band room to improvise and explore musically, which suits and reaffirms their validity and raison d’etre. It also harkens back to their 1970’s heyday where longer tracks were their normal way of working. I feel this method and manner of working suits them best. It also makes for good listening, well it does for me at least and I think they have really made an important musical statement with this album saying in effect, yes we are still here, making the music we want in a way that you can hopefully want to connect with, appreciate and enjoy. Come and join us, judge for yourself we are not a tribute act and we do still have validity and worth. This album shows that commitment to me, Yes may have had their problems and issues over recent times but here we see a band still hungry for approval and not content to fall back on former glories. They are still keen to make good progressive music for the 21st Century and get out to folk and deliver that same quality of experience as they have previously done.  

This album may not have the same strength and impact as ‘Close To The Edge’ but it certainly tries and plays to their strengths remarkably well, well that’s what this says to me anyway! I also must mention the albums longest track, the epic Mirror To The Sky which, at nearly fourteen minutes in length, is the albums centrepiece. The song opens with some solid guitar lines from Steve and a gentle acoustic guitar before being joined by Billy’s fine bass and strong drumming from Jay Schellen and more solid fluid guitar parts from Steve, all before a word is sung. This three minute instrumental opening section leads into emotive vocals from Jon Davidson, ‘dream of a sky without fire’ being the refrain. This is a moody soundscape that builds slowly and solidly and the song progresses well with its various sections combining to create an epic whole. It is a well crafted track that shows the sum is greater than the whole and that, only together, does the group really make sense. There is a great guitar riff that runs throughout that really elevates the track as it is very impressive and effective sounding. More clipped arpeggios lead to a mellow keyboard section in which atmospherics and harmonic touches add to the overall sound palette. This is all most impressive sounding with great bass playing holding it all together and a superb descending guitar riff with orchestrations from Geoff Downes before Steve Howe takes flight delivering a fiery solo which, along with Geoff’s elegant orchestrations, brings this satisfying track to a mighty fine conclusion. 

The final track of the main album, Circles Of Time, is a gentle, mostly acoustic driven, track with more fine Jon Davison vocals and a gentle tambourine helping to deliver some rhythmic impetus. A suitably subdued Steve Howe solo also graces the track and this one really works for me as it is a gentle close to a really good solid set of tracks.

The bonus disc has three tracks, a longer piece called Unknown Place that is bass heavy and is a rather good, medium-paced, number yet is one that allows good guitar and bass interaction. It is quite punchy number and repeated plays reveal it to be a very strong track. Billy Sherwood really shines and you can see why Chris Squire wanted him to take his place in Yes. Also impressive on this track are Geoff Downes‘ commanding organ parts that sound great, very Wakeman-esque really and, overall, this track is really rather a good one. The other two songs, One Second Is Enough and Magic Potion are good but don’t really generate the same excitement for me, both are pleasant and well delivered but not essential for me, although I really do like that bass!

So there you have it, nine tracks over two discs and the vast majority is really great music. In today’s era, compared to some of the bland music being made, this will do very nicely thank you! It will be interesting to see how this translates to a live environment next year on the UK tour. 

Released 19th May, 2023

Order the album here:

Yes – Cut from the Stars (lnk.to)

YES Announce UK Dates For The CLASSIC TALES OF YES Tour 2024

Progressive legends YES have announced UK dates for the Classic Tales of YES Tour 2024. The 9 UK dates includes a visit to London’s Royal Albert Hall and the Bristol Beacon together with 7 dates rescheduled from the 2023 UK tour, for which all tickets remain valid.

YES are delighted to include the Royal Albert Hall among their 2024 UK tour dates having first played this prestige venue in 1968 and many times since through their illustrious career. Tickets for the Royal Albert Hall show (Tuesday 4 June 2024) and Bristol Beacon (Friday 31 May 2024) go on sale on at 12noon on Friday 12th May 2023.

The tour will feature Steve Howe (guitars, vocals), Geoff Downes (keyboards), Billy Sherwood (bass guitar, vocals), Jon Davison (vocals and acoustic guitar) and new drummer Jay Schellen. Jay began playing with YES, in 2016, when long-serving drummer Alan White was beset by health issues. Following Alan’s untimely passing in 2022, it is with Alan’s blessing that Jay has permanently joined the band.

The Classic Tales of YES Tour 2024 promises to include many iconic tracks from the YES back-catalogue covering fifty-plus years and, possibly, music from the new album Mirror To The Sky (to be released on InsideOutMusic/Sony Music on the 19th May 2023).

Looking forward to the Classic Tales of YES Tour, Steve Howe said:  “We’re putting together a great setlist covering the length and breadth of YES’ career.”

As always, we are committed to pushing new boundaries and are very excited to be performing another chapter in the rich legacy of the band,” added Geoff Downes.

The Classic Tales of YES Tour 2024 dates are as follows: 

Thursday 23 May                 Manchester               Bridgewater Hall*

Friday 24 May                      Glasgow                    Royal Concert Hall*

Sunday 26 May                  Liverpool                    Philharmonic Hall*

Tuesday 28 May                  York                            Barbican*

Wednesday 29 May             Southend                   Cliffs Pavilion*

Friday 31May                       Bristol                       Beacon

Saturday 1 June                   Birmingham               Symphony Hall*

Sunday 2 June                     Gateshead                The Sage*

Tuesday 4 June                  London                     Royal Albert Hall

*Show rescheduled from 2023, all tickets remain valid.

Bristol Beacon and London Royal Albert Hall tickets go on sale on Friday 12 May 2023 at 12noon.  Buy tickets fromhttps://bookingsdirect.seetickets.com/tour/yes/

About YES

Steve Howe: guitars, backing vocals (1970 –1981, 1990–1992, 1995–present)
Geoff Downes: keyboards (1980–1981, 2011–present)
Jon Davison: lead vocals, acoustic guitar (2012–present)

Billy Sherwood: guitar, backing vocals ((1994, 1997–2000), bass guitar, backing vocals (2015–present)

Jay Schellen: drums and percussion

Formed in 1968 by Jon Anderson and the late, and much-missed, Chris Squire, YES have been one of the most innovative, influential and best-loved bands in rock music history. Their 1970s albums The Yes AlbumFragileClose To The EdgeYessongs (a triple live album set), Tales From Topographic Oceans, Relayer and Going For The One were ground-breaking in musical style and content. Their music also became synonymous with artist Roger Dean whose distinctive YES logo design and artwork adorned the lavish gatefold presentation sleeves of many YES albums.

With sales of over 50 million records, the Grammy-award winning YES were inducted into The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame in 2017 where they performed Roundabout from the album Fragile and the FM radio-friendly Owner Of A Lonely Heart from the 1985 album 90125.

YES released their 22nd studio album in 2021, The Quest, produced by Steve Howe and which went to No. 1 in the UK Rock Albums Chart and entered the Official UK Album Chart at No. 20.

In 2022 came the sad news that drummer Alan White, ever-present in the YES line-up for 50 years, had passed away. The news came shortly before the band embarked on their classic, genre-defining album Close To The Edge 50th Anniversary Tour which they dedicated to Alan.

In February 2023, ahead of the news of the new studio album Mirror To The Sky, YES confirmed Jay Schellen as the new permanent drummer with YES, hand-picked to step into his mentor and friend Alan White’s role. “I had done the 2016 tour on my own for Alan,” says Jay. “From late 2017 onwards, we had a beautiful partnership. I learned and discovered so much about Alan’s style. His passion and creativity was phenomenal. The new album has Alan’s presence all over it. It is inside of us. So, this is still, in my heart, Alan just being present and with us, and with me, in a big way.”

YES launch ‘All Connected’; second single from ‘Mirror To The Sky’

YES, who are Steve Howe, Geoff Downes, Jon Davison, Billy Sherwood & Jay Schellen, are pleased to announce their new studio album Mirror To The Sky on InsideOutMusic/Sony Music on the 19th May 2023. “This is a very important album for the band,”says Steve Howe, Yes’ longest serving member, master guitarist, and producer of Mirror To The Sky“We kept the continuity in the approach we established on The Quest, but we haven’t repeated ourselves. That was the main thing. As Yes did in the seventies from one album to another, we’re growing and moving forward. In later years, Yes often got going but then didn’t do the next thing. This album is demonstrative of us growing, and building again.” For Yes, that “next thing” is a collection of high energy, intricate, lush and layered new studio songs for an album which adds to the band’s much heralded legacy, while charting a path to exciting future times ahead.

Today, the band are pleased to launch the video for the album’s second single. Listen to and watch ‘All Connected’ here:

Jon Davison comments: “I, along with my Yes band mates are excited to announce that the second single from our new album, Mirror to the Sky is out now. It’s entitled, All Connected, and it’s a longer piece, clocking in at a challenging 9 minutes. Steve added a beautifully poignant instrumental steel part which starts the journey. This section emotionally builds and crescendos into a glorious lead way for the vocals to begin telling their story. Billy composed complex and compelling musical themes which I helped to arrange, and we both composed vocals and lyrics, each of us singing our respective parts, making for a rich vocal tapestry.”

Billy Sherwood adds: “The initial idea came from a musical sketch I’d created using the idea of our “connectivity” in regards to communications in the modern age. It’s very exciting to know YES are maintaining that edge and energy we all know and love, this track is firing on all cylinders. Hope you enjoy it as much as we did creating it.”

You can also watch the previously released video for ‘Cut From The Stars’ here: https://youtu.be/NdEF-vMO8vc

‘Mirror To The Sky’ will be available on several formats, all featuring artwork by long-time Yes artist & collaborator Roger Dean:

Ltd Deluxe Electric Blue 2LP+2CD+Blu-ray Artbook with poster

Ltd Deluxe 2CD+Blu-ray Artbook

Ltd 2CD Digipak

Standard CD Jewel case

Gatefold 2LP+LP-Booklet

Digital Album

The blu-ray editions include the album as Dolby Atmos, 5.1 Surround Sound, Instrumental Versions & Hi-Res Stereo Mixes.

Pre-order now here: https://Yes-Band.lnk.to/MirrorToTheSky

The tracklisting is as follows:

CD1:

1. Cut From The Stars 05:27

2. All Connected 09:02

3. Luminosity 09:04

4. Living Out Their Dream 04:45

5. Mirror to the Sky 13:53

6. Circles of Time 04:59

CD2:

1. Unknown Place 08:15

2. One Second Is Enough 04:04

3. Magic Potion 04:08

As they were wrapping up The Quest, Yes found themselves with song sketches, structures, and ideas that were demanding attention. Yes received unconditional support from InsideOut boss Thomas Waber, who encouraged them to keep going in the studio, months before The Quest would even go on sale. It was like throwing gasoline on their creative fire.

“When we delivered everything, and they were just getting the vinyl and everything into production for manufacturing, we were still very much in that creative zone,” explains Steve Howe“That belief that Thomas had in us really meant a lot,” he says.

“We truly get along as people,” says Jon Davison“I feel like everyone’s focused inward to the greater circle, concentric to the core of highest standards that define Yes. It’s a wonderful thing to witness and of which to play a part. I believe this reflects vibrantly in the music and the creative input that each one is willing to apply, not for the benefit of the individual, but for the greater whole that is Yes.”

“There was a lot of material floating around because the band hadn’t done anything in the studio for so long. Ideas were just copious,”says bassist Billy Sherwood“The pace of it was fast. As soon as we were finished with The Quest, and the mix had come out, we took a couple of little breaks there to catch our breath. But there was still music flowing around in the loop. It was just constantly being looked at and worked on. As we were all home and in that mode, things started progressing quite swiftly. We just went one album into another without really announcing, ‘Hey, we’re working on a second record right now.’ We just continued to work on material. It came about pretty naturally, and then we refined it as the process went on. But the initial bursts — there was a lot of material around!”

Much to everyone’s delight, including that of longtime-fan Thomas Waber, Yes have pushed into territory they practically invented — the prog rock epic — albeit in a thoroughly new and modern way. “I always felt that it would be great to have stuff that’s a little bit more epic,”he says, although he resisted the temptation to push for something that would be too formatted and could come off as contrived. He just gave the band space to do what they do and let things develop. “They were so excited by The Quest and the momentum they had that they went straight back in to the studio. What they were writing, even early on, was obviously headed in that epic direction — what Yes music really is to me. It is almost a genre onto itself. It is ‘Yes Music.’ Mirror To The Sky certainly is Yes Music.”

Mirror To The Sky features not one, but four tracks clocking in at over eight minutes, with the sweeping and cinematic title track coming in just shy of fourteen minutes. What’s more, the tracks, like Yes’ best, take the listener on a wide dynamically ranging journey of soundscapes which also showcase Steve Howe’s dazzling guitars, Jon Davison’s angelic, crystalline vocals, Billy Sherwood’s deftly dancing bass, keyboard wizard Geoff Downes’ impeccable sounds, exquisite melodies and fills, and Jay Schellen’s masterfully controlled explosions, on drums.

Jay Schellen, who has been touring with the band since 2016, was hand-picked to step into his mentor and friend Alan White’s role when White sadly passed away in 2022. “I had done the 2016 Topographic Drama tour on my own for Alan,” says Jay. “From late 2017 onwards, we had a partnership, and a beautiful partnership, I might add. I learned so much, and discovered so much about Alan’s style, and why it was the way it was. It fit his personality so perfectly. This album has Alan’s presence all over it. It is inside of us. So this is still, in my heart, Alan just being present and with us, and with me, in a big way.”

YES announce new studio album ‘Mirror To The Sky’ for release 19th May 2023; launch first single ‘Cut From The Stars’

YES, who are Steve Howe, Geoff Downes, Jon Davison, Billy Sherwood & Jay Schellen, are pleased to announce their new studio album Mirror To The Sky on InsideOutMusic/Sony Music on the 19th May 2023. “This is a very important album for the band,” says Steve Howe, Yes’ longest serving member, master guitarist, and producer of Mirror To The Sky“We kept the continuity in the approach we established on The Quest, but we haven’t repeated ourselves. That was the main thing. As Yes did in the seventies from one album to another, we’re growing and moving forward. In later years, Yes often got going but then didn’t do the next thing. This album is demonstrative of us growing, and building again.” For Yes, that “next thing” is a collection of high energy, intricate, lush and layered new studio songs for an album which adds to the band’s much heralded legacy, while charting a path to exciting future times ahead.

Today also sees the launch of the first track taken from the album. Listen to Cut From The Stars & watch the video here:

‘Mirror To The Sky’ will be available on several formats, all featuring artwork by longtime Yes artist & collaborator Roger Dean: 

Ltd Deluxe Electric Blue 2LP+2CD+Blu-ray Artbook with poster

Ltd Deluxe 2CD+Blu-ray Artbook

Ltd 2CD Digipak

Standard CD Jewelcase

Gatefold 2LP+LP-Booklet

Digital Album

The blu-ray editions include the album as Dolby Atmos, 5.1 Surround Sound, Instrumental Versions & Hi-Res Stereo Mixes.

Pre-order now here: https://Yes-Band.lnk.to/MirrorToTheSky

The tracklisting is as follows:

CD1:

1. Cut From The Stars 05:27

2. All Connected 09:02

3. Luminosity 09:04

4. Living Out Their Dream 04:45

5. Mirror to the Sky 13:53

6. Circles of Time 04:59

CD2:

1. Unknown Place 08:15

2. One Second Is Enough 04:04

3. Magic Potion 04:08

As they were wrapping up The Quest, Yes found themselves with song sketches, structures, and ideas that were demanding attention. Yes received unconditional support from InsideOut boss Thomas Waber, who encouraged them to keep going in the studio, months before The Quest would even go on sale. It was like throwing gasoline on their creative fire.

“When we delivered everything, and they were just getting the vinyl and everything into production for manufacturing, we were still very much in that creative zone,” explains Steve Howe. “That belief that Thomas had in us really meant a lot,” he says.

“We truly get along as people,” says Jon Davison“I feel like everyone’s focused inward to the greater circle, concentric to the core of highest standards that define Yes. It’s a wonderful thing to witness and of which to play a part. I believe this reflects vibrantly in the music and the creative input that each one is willing to apply, not for the benefit of the individual, but for the greater whole that is Yes.”

“There was a lot of material floating around because the band hadn’t done anything in the studio for so long. Ideas were just copious,” says bassist Billy Sherwood“The pace of it was fast. As soon as we were finished with The Quest, and the mix had come out, we took a couple of little breaks there to catch our breath. But there was still music flowing around in the loop. It was just constantly being looked at and worked on. As we were all home and in that mode, things started progressing quite swiftly. We just went one album into another without really announcing, ‘Hey, we’re working on a second record right now.’ We just continued to work on material. It came about pretty naturally, and then we refined it as the process went on. But the initial bursts — there was a lot of material around!”

Much to everyone’s delight, including that of longtime-fan Thomas Waber, Yes have pushed into territory they practically invented — the prog rock epic — albeit in a thoroughly new and modern way. “I always felt that it would be great to have stuff that’s a little bit more epic,” he says, although he resisted the temptation to push for something that would be too formatted and could come off as contrived. He just gave the band space to do what they do and let things develop. “They were so excited by The Quest and the momentum they had that they went straight back in to the studio. What they were writing, even early on, was obviously headed in that epic direction — what Yes music really is to me. It is almost a genre onto itself. It is ‘Yes Music.’ Mirror To The Sky certainly is Yes Music.”

Mirror To The Sky features not one, but four tracks clocking in at over eight minutes, with the sweeping and cinematic title track coming in just shy of fourteen minutes. What’s more, the tracks, like Yes’ best, take the listener on a wide dynamically ranging journey of soundscapes which also showcase Steve Howe’s dazzling guitars, keyboard wizard Geoff Downes’ impeccable sounds, exquisite melodies and fills, Jon Davison’s angelic, crystalline vocals, Billy Sherwood’s deftly dancing bass and Jay Schellen’s masterfully controlled explosions, on drums.

Jay Schellen, who has been touring with the band since 2016, was hand-picked to step into his mentor and friend Alan White’s role when White sadly passed away in 2022. “I had done the 2016 Topographic Drama tour on my own for Alan,” say Jay. “From late 2017 onwards, we had a partnership, and a beautiful partnership, I might add. I learned so much, and discovered so much about Alan’s style, and why it was the way it was. It fit his personality so perfectly. This album has Alan’s presence all over it. It is inside of us. So this is still, in my heart, Alan just being present and with us, and with me, in a big way.”

Review – ASIA – FANTASIA, LIVE IN TOKYO 2007

2023 seems to be the year of the multiple vinyl live album, first The Tangent with the triple vinyl release of the excellent ‘Pyramids, Stars & More: The Tangent Live Recordings 2004-2017’ and then Transatlantic with a quadruple (yes, you read that right!) vinyl release of the monumental ‘The Final Flight: Live at L’Olympia’. Well, it’;s now the turn of venerable prog supergroup ASIA with a triple vinyl version of ‘FANTASIA, LIVE IN TOKYO 2007’, have we got another slam dunk brilliant release? read on and you will find out…

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of ASIA’s formation, this exciting 18-track live show from their 2007 world tour features the reformed original line-up pooling the talents of lead vocalist/bassist John Wetton (King Crimson), Steve Howe (guitars, Yes), Geoff Downes (keyboards, Yes and Buggles) and drummer Carl Palmer from Emerson, Lake & Palmer.

The setlist focusses on their globally successful 1982 debut album ‘Asia‘ and features key tracks Only Time Will Tell, Sole Survivor and their worldwide anthem Heat Of The Moment along with select tracks from their second LP ‘Alpha‘ and one song each from the band members’ previous bands – Video Killed The Radio Star, RoundaboutFanfare For The Common Man and The Court Of The Crimson King.

The package itself is a rather fine thing with artwork form the legendary Roger Dean and a very knowledgeable LP sized booklet telling the whole story behind the concert.

Now, to me, live albums can either be good or bad, there is nothing worse than a badly performed version of a classic song with a horrendous mix from the sound desk meaning you really cannot tell what you are listening to but, when done well, they can become a lasting monument to some of our favourite musicians.

I’ll cut the suspense and get to the point, this new live release is absolutely fantastic for the die hard Asia fan and newcomers to the band alike. Stand out highlights for me are the obvious ones. The versions of Heat Of The Moment and Sole Survivor are without a doubt the best live versions you are likely to hear, John Wetton’s distinctive vocals are on seriously good form and you can literally feel the dynamism and intensity in his performance. His banter with the crowd is particularly good between songs and means there is never any lull or drop in energy levels from the band or the crowd.

Wildest Dreams, Without You, Don’t Cry, Here Comes The Feeling, the hits keep coming with passion and fervour and you really get to feel the strong bond between Wetton and Carl Palmer, a very tight rhythm section indeed. The inclusion of tracks form the band member’s previous bands is also a masterstroke, I found myself mesmerised by Roundabout, one of my favourite tracks from Yes and you can hear that Steve Howe is having the time of his life as his guitar literally dances through this classic track. John Wetton does a great job on vocals for Video Killed The Radio Star but it’s really Geoff Downes time to shine on this track and I can’t help but break into a smile when the intro to the song begins. Downes is obviously having a blast on a wonderfully inspired version of Fanfare For The Common Man and the quartet’s delivery of the King Crimson mainstay, The Court Of The Crimson King is positively masterful.

This three LP boxset is a wonderful way to spend an evening and the format definitely gives you a feeling of nostalgia, it’s full of memories and a lasting legacy for four of progressive rock’s greatest musicians having the time of their life, they really don’t make them like this anymore! As the last notes of Heat Of The Moment play out and the audience’s cheers and applause fade out, I can’t help but wish I’d been there that evening, right in the midst of what was obviously an amazing concert and experience and that’s what the best live albums do, isn’t it?

Released 24th February, 2023

Order the boxset here:

Fantasia – Live In Tokyo (lnk.to)

Jay Schellen joins YES as a permanent member

YES are delighted to announce that drummer Jay Schellen has joined the band as a permanent member.  Following the sad passing of our iconic drummer, Alan White on 26th May 2022, Jay will fulfil Alan’s wishes in becoming the new drummer with YES.

Jay Schellen was Alan White’s choice to stand in during the Topographic Drama tour, in 2016, and shared drumming duties with him from 2018 onwards. Jay had previously played alongside YES’ keyboardist Geoff Downes and late bassist Chris Squire together with long working relationships with Alan and YES bass guitarist Billy Sherwood.  This gave Jay a deep insight into the workings of the dynamic rhythm section that drives YES’ music.

Steve Howe says “We’re all delighted to welcome Jay officially into the fold! He’s been a great support throughout the last seven years, and we couldn’t have found a better all round team player.”

I am thrilled to become the new drummer with YES,” says Jay. “I grew up playing along to YES records and I am proud to have worked so closely with my musical hero and great friend Alan White these past few years. I will strive to honour his memory as we drive towards the future with the band.”

Asia Release 3 LP Version Of ‘FANTASIA, LIVE IN TOKYO 2007’ on 24th February

Multi-platinum selling English supergroup ASIA announce they are to release for the first time ever on vinyl ASIA ‘FANTASIA, LIVE IN TOKYO 2007’ as a 3LP set.  Recorded on Asia’s 25th anniversary 2007 world tour, and featuring the reformed original line-up, FANTASIA, LIVE IN TOKYO 2007 is to be issued on vinyl as a 3LP set with booklet, including band photos, and sleeve notes through BMG Records on 24th February 2023.

Pre-order it here: https://asiaband.lnk.to/fantasia3LPPR

Celebrating the 25th anniversary of ASIA’s formation, this exciting 18-track live show from their 2007 world tour features the reformed original line-up pooling the talents of lead vocalist/bassist John Wetton (King Crimson), Steve Howe (guitars, Yes), Geoff Downes (keyboards, Yes and Buggles) and drummer Carl Palmer from Emerson, Lake & Palmer.

The setlist focusses on their globally successful 1982 debut album Asia and features key tracks Only Time Will Tell, Sole Survivor and their worldwide anthem Heat Of The Moment along with select tracks from their second LP Alpha and one song each from the band members’ previous bands – Video Killed The Radio Star, Roundabout, Fanfare For The Common Man and The Court Of The Crimson King.

Album artwork is by legendary designer Roger Dean, who produced all the ASIA original albums covers.

By simultaneously celebrating their debut album alongside the legacy of their foundational bands, the four band members crafted a standing testament to their collective impact on the world of music. Fantasia is a clear reminder of the majestic legacy of this incredible band and to the artistic pedigree of the four original members of ASIA.

For ASIA fans, this exciting live show is an indispensable set.

Tracklist:

Side A

1.Time Again

2. Wildest Dreams

3. One Step Closer

Side B

1. Roundabout

2. Without You

Side C           

1. Cutting It Fine

2. Intersection Blues

3. Fanfare For The Common Man

Side D

1. The Smile Has Left Your Eyes

2. Don’t Cry

3. In The Court Of The Crimson King

4. Here Comes The Feeling

Side E

1. Video Killed The Radio Star

2. The Heat Goes On

3. Only Time Will Tell

Side F

1. Sole Survivor

2. Ride Easy

3. Heat Of The Moment

About ASIA

Pooling the talents of bassist/vocalist John Wetton, drummer Carl Palmer, keyboardist Geoff Downes and guitarist Steve HoweASIA immediately became the epitome of a supergroup of rock aristocracy and the natural heir to its members’ legendary bands of the 70s – King Crimson, Emerson Lake & Palmer, The Buggles and Yes.

Leaving behind their progressive roots, ASIA embraced the commercial FM rock sound that dominated US airwaves and took that, and the new MTV video channel, by storm.  The single Heat Of The Moment was a world-wide monster smash and their eponymous 1982 debut album spent an incredible 9 weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard chart as Asia became the biggest selling album of the year and world tour dates sold out.

A second album, Alpha, was released in 1983. The four original members reconvened in 2006 for a world tour, to celebrate the 25th anniversary of that incredible success, and the album Phoenix followed.

While the members were still heavily involved in other projects, they came together again to record Omega in 2010 and XXX in 2012, both albums were acclaimed by their faithful fans and supported by more world tours.

Steve Howe stepped back from ASIA to concentrate on his work with YES and was absent for 2014’s Gravitas. Following this tour came the news of John Wetton’s treatment for cancer, a fight he sadly lost in 2017.

ASIA – FANTASIA LIVE IN TOKYO 2007 – 3 LP SET – out 24th February 2023

Website: https://originalasia.com/