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Live Review: Yes

18 November 2014 | 2:35 pm | Max Harrison

Yes left the State Theatre in positive spirits.

Heck Yes. Touring 40 years on, Yes managed to capture their devoted audience on Saturday night, playing two of their seminal albums, Fragile and Close To The Edge, in full. The British progressive rock band has managed to hurdle decades and amalgamated another classic five-piece line-up of stellar musicians.

The show commenced with a climactic instrumental as Yes’ 21-album back catalogue flashed onto the screen ahead, reminding their audience just how long it has been. Without further ado the band walked out with long white hair and a stride blasting into Close To The Edge. Star of the show was Jon Davison, filling in the frontman shoes of Yes with as much hippy devotion as its audience. Any diehard fan could remain proud of his refreshing delivery as Davison performed every song with stunning range. 

Without hiding behind any pretense Yes continued to stride through their album in full to standing ovations. Lifetime-member Chris Squire took to the microphone to welcome the audience, introducing songs from this year’s Heaven And Earth.  Met with less enthusiasm, the band stepped through only two songs taken from the only album recorded with Davison.

Guitar legend Steve Howe licked an introduction into the first notes of their second seminal album for the night, 1971’s Fragile, which everyone seemed to be waiting for. Daring to recreate the energy of this extraordinary album didn’t seem as daunting to the musicians as it would be to any ordinary band. Alas, the musicians seemed to beyond their prime and moved between confident and disconnected bouts of music.

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Walking off stage after their epic Heart Of The Sunrise Yes were welcomed to encore with a further standing ovation. Fans were saluted with classics as the night closed off with an electrifying rendition of 1983’s Owner Of A Lonely Heart. The State Theatre was left in positive spirits from Yes’ trippy performance, armed with genuine psychedelic music, lights and videography. Yes, being the trailblazing progressive rock band that it is can only be found guilty of pretense in charging $50 a shirt, money better spent on Yes’ back catalogue.