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Yes - "Going For The One, 1977 (re-release)"
Rhino Records 2003

Every group walks its own path. "Going For The One" (1977) with its last real epic masterpiece Awaken closes the classic seventies Yes era. "Going For The One" is breaking album, somehow familiar turning point in Yes history as "The Yes Album" (1971). Album was recorded in Montreaux near lake Geneva, where Deep Purple found inspiration for their "riff of all riffs" captured in Smoke On The Water. "Going For The One" announces band's harder rocking orientations.

Rick Wakeman came back. Well, having most popular Yesman back in the band, this surely helped to raise sells, but that is not important here. Only music matters! Four shorter songs with heads and tails and one epic piece. Two of them are formatted in more groovy rocking fashion. First is an opener. A title song, that contains no bird's singing or ocean's waving but starts the fire directly through opened rhythm drive and straight forwarded slide guitar riff. Twisting all the way. Song is followed by gentle touching ballad Turn Of The Century that offers again impressive contrast between Rick's grand piano arrangements and Steve's steel pedal knotting. Than strikes Parallels. Heaviest piece, with intense rhythm drive that heads on straight and with no compromise. Rick added Church organ that spices up things and helps to raise the atmosphere. Fourth song "Wondrous Stories" is tenderer and softer moment again, where Jon's vocal, surrounded with Steve's vachalia, is surely pivotal. It turned to became the biggest hit in Yes history.

New sound was crisp and clear as never before, with instruments in production clearly divided, yet filling entire sound range. Surely the finest and most precise Yes production so far. All instruments, Jon's vocals and harmony multiple vocal layers are hanging in balance. New edition contains three bonuses Montreaux's Theme, Vevey (Revisited) and Amazing Grace taken from "Yes Years" (1991) compilation, but the rest of bonus stuff is far more impressive. Rough versions of Going For The One, Parallels (with Alan's Grand Funk fashioned "cow bells" spice drum additions), Turn Of The Century and Awaken that was in it's early version entitled Eastern Number, recalls band's inspiring moments caught during studio jam sessions. A real drug for a listener!

Awaken is epical masterpiece long well over 15minutes. Those of you who already know main Steve's riff that breaks in gathered with floating rhythm platform surely got connected with straight skin through the bone "high vibration". Awaken means band's farewell to classic Yes years, 'cause after Awaken Yes won't assemble similar song with ethereal and medieval effect till let us say Mind Drive from "Keys To Ascension" sessions (1996-97).. Awaken is a kind of a prayer to "...Master of images...", or to everlasting cosmic powers of the Sun (immortal light). "Like the time I ran away, And turned away, And you were standing close to me" are verses that enables us to see a man who is fully running blind by his own fears, but when he find enough courage to look over his shoulder, he is again surrounded by the light of Sun. Cosmic powers ever ascending, forgotten by man long ago, actually never left him alone! Now when he overreached fear of death, he was able to touch the place of eternal light ("...High vibration go on, To the sun, oh let my heart dreaming, Past a mortal as we, Here we can be,..."). As soon as he found prime source of his soul's creation (Sun) again, his life was guided by light. Another amazing Yes fantasy full of strong diverse moods, especially that hypnotic state in its middle section is shivering and outstands among all of them.

This is it! New face of the band and new sound! "Going For The One" gathered old fans and others who were searching for more round-shaped and straight rocking moments! "Going For The One" might be overshadowed by its predecessors, yet catches what Yes were and still are. Band's fresh musical shape delivered new sound by announcing Yes were knocking on the eighties doors!

Author:   Aleš

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