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Extended Versions - The Encore Collection

Review by Gary Hill
So, you've probably seen this set around and wondered what it is and if you should pick it up. Well, I have saved you the trouble and will reveal what is in store for you here. This set is something that seems like the record label finding a way to cash in. If you own the first Keys to Ascension set you have all the songs here. This consists of six tracks taken from that set. As such, it's redundant for those who already own that package, but for those who don't have it, this is not a bad disc. The recordings are solid and you should be able to pick this up fairly inexpensively. Since I've already reviewed all these tracks when I covered that disc, I'll take the track by tracks from that review for consistency.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2008  Volume 3 at
Track by Track Review
Siberian Khatru
Jumping in right at the end of the transition out of "Firebird Suite", it feels a bit anticlimactic for longtime Yes fans. This high-energy progger is performed quite faithfully here, but it seems to lack a bit of the passion of old. Howe`s solo on the outro section is, again, very well performed and exciting, but does not pack quite the punch of the Yessongs version.
This is a live rendition of Yes` arrangement of Paul Simon`s "America." The piece has always been a crowd pleaser, although Yes has not frequently performed it. It is a powerful cut.
Featuring a lovely acoustic guitar intro, this is a pretty performance of a pretty love song. This piece seems to echo nicely around the hall, and Steve Howe adds some juicy guitar riffs to the piece, another first live entry. Although not necessarily a fan favorite, this is a very solid track and a good inclusion here. This one really feels as if it is played with a lot of feeling.
This (meaning the version from KTA) is the only official live recording (at least it was at the time) of this epic piece. It begins with a beautiful piano solo that is played with a definite fire. In fact, this whole piece really seems very alive. This one showcases the musical talents of all the members of the band in a progressive rock arrangement full of drama and numerous changes. "Awaken" certainly is a masterwork.
A bit overplayed, this song is well performed, and certainly classic. However, since there are live versions of this song both on Yessongs and Classic Yes, the inclusion here seems redundant.
Starship Trooper
This is a strong performance of a fairly early Yes prog classic. This tune has always been an audience favorite, and a powerful number.
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