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Yes

Symphonic Live DVD

Review by Gary Hill

Alright, alright, so Yes seems to be coming out with a live album or video (or both) every time they tour these days. This one is a bit special in some ways, though. After all the tour that it captures, the symphonic one, was somewhat of an experiment. Now with the return of Rick Wakeman to the band it seems like an experiment that will not be repeated. Looking at it that way, it is truly a good thing that the adventure was captured for posterity. So, how is this DVD and what exactly is on it?

It may seem backwards, but first let's hit the bonus stuff located on DVD 2. There are two bonus features here. The first is the video for "Don't Go". Neither the song or the video is very strong, and it really will be of interest to the most diehard fan. The second bonus is called "Dreamtime". It is a compilation of interviews with the members of the band. Now, this is intriguing. There is some real merit to this segment.

Now, we will turn our attention to the video itself. There are few things to be said about this concert film. First, and this may seem a silly point, the little animation segment that serves as the opening title is awesome. Believe it or not, to this reviewer, it alone was almost worth the price of the DVD. The concert film is of exceptionally high quality. Both the video and audio tracks are crisp and clean. The band seemed to be playing quite well that night, and the orchestra was on. There were some nights on the tour where that was not always true. Here the combination really works, and serves to show just why the band thought that this was such a good idea. Also of interest for those who saw the tour in the US is the performance of the title track from the Magnification album. This was a song that they did not perform stateside, and that makes its inclusion here that much more special.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2002 Year Book Volume 1 at lulu.com/strangesound.

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