Yes (August 2004)

Date of Performance: August 18, 2004
Venue: Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, CA

Expect A Lot From The Yes Summer Tour

Yes live August 2004 - the set designed by Roger Dean (photo: 2004 Jean-Patrice Desjardins)If we judge from their performance in Montreal last Wednesday, you can expect a lot from the present Yes tour that celebrates the 35th Anniversary of the British band. Except for the surprising choice a pieces that didn't always reflect the long history of the band, the five musicians were generous and incredibly tight in the interpretation of many of their classics.

Yes live in August 2004 - Steve Howe (photo: 2004 Jean-Patrice Desjardins)Expect a very enthusiastic Steve Howe on guitar. In Montreal, he was jumping in the air during solos and thrilling the crowd with his face gymnastics. Howe had his whole arsenal of guitars, acoustic and electric. Expect the powerful presence of Chris Squire, who seemed to be incredibly relaxed during the concert. As always, his voice perfectly completed the voice of the lead singer, Jon Anderson.

Yes live August 2004 - Squire (photo: 2004 Jean-Patrice Desjardins)Jon was really in another world that night. He seemed a bit confused between songs. After a few chats that didn't reach the mainly French-speaking crowd, the frontman decided to let the music talk by itself. Jon Anderson, who is celebrating his 60th anniversary this October, never hit a wrong note during the evening. This guy has the word peace written on his face and his voice is as angelic as in the heydays of the group.

After the "Firebird Suite" intro and a few songs, Yes talked seriously with a medley consisting of "Mind Drive" and "South Side Of The Sky." After the first ovation, "Yours Is No Disgrace," then a second ovation.

Yes live in August 2004 - the acoustic set (Photo: Jean-Patrice Desjardins)

Then the roadies brought the "light version" of each member's instrument to the front of the stage for an "unplugged" set (too long for many hardcore fans). We saw, among other songs, the interpretation of a hillbilly "Roundabout" and the ever-appreciated acoustic solo by Steve Howe ("The Clap"). I'm not sure everybody will appreciate this approach of certain classics songs (like "Long Distance Runaround"), but the crowd can see another side of the musicians' personality.

Yes live in Aug 2004 - encore (Photo: 2004 Jean-Patrice Desjardins)The end of the concert was a big crescendo. Yes played two masterpieces. "And You And I" could have remarkably closed the two hour concert, but the band went through a magisterial interpretation of "Awaken." The Montreal crowd stood up two times during the song. I personally consider that moment alone worth the cost of my ticket. It's so good that Rick Wakemen is back with the band.

Dream Theater live in August 2004 on the Yes tourFifty percent of the crowd consisted of young fans of Dream Theater. A mature band that surprised the fans of Yes that did not know them, Dream Theater convinced everyone that there is a future for the symphonic rock and that the legacy of Yes is in good hands.

Expect a lot of good vibes from the present tour that will travel through the United States till the end of September. But don't expect a long keyboard solo by Rick Wakeman, nor by Chris Squire on the bass, nor by Alan White on the drums.

Expect a good show based on the powerful evocation of the songs that made the trademark of the band.


  • Firebird Suite
  • Going For The One
  • Sweet Dreams
  • I've Seen All Good People
  • Mind Drive Part 1
  • South Side of the Sky
  • Mind Drive Part 2
  • Yours Is No Disgrace
  • The Clap (Start of acoustic set)
  • Long Distance Runaround
  • Wonderous Stories
  • Roundabout
  • Owner of a Lonely Heart (End of acoustic set)
  • And You and I
  • Awaken
  • Every Little Thing

Added: August 22nd 2004
Reviewer: Jean-Patrice Desjardins

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