Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

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the greenman
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Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113206Post the greenman
Fri Feb 06, 2009 11:03 am

My turn! So I thought we'd have a crack at this little cracker - wow Yes on Speed! Amazing Howe riffs - the mans on fire here, an incredibly jazzy fusion going at a tremendous lick in the rhythym department, underpinned by Moraz's manic keys.. & then there's Jon's lyrics:

Faster moment spent spread tales of change within the sound
Counting form through rhythm electric freedom
Moves to counter-balance stars expound our conscience
All to know and see
The look in your eyes

Passing time will reach as nature relays to set the scene
New encounters spark a true fruition
Guiding lines we touch them
Our bodies balance out the waves
As we accelerate our days
To the look in your eyes

From the moment I reached out to hold
I felt a sound
And what touches our soul slowly moves as touch rebounds
And to know that tempo will continue lost in trance of dances
As rhythm takes another turn
As is my want I only reach
To look in your eyes

Cha -Cha -Cha Cha -Cha
Cha -Cha -Cha Cha -Cha
Cha -Cha -Cha Cha -Cha

& some how it seems to dissolve into the calm & peace of 'To Be Over'..

Have they ever played it live, do we know? I'd think they'd need a snooze after, these days...!

Looking forward to your views!

sound_chaser
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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113208Post sound_chaser
Fri Feb 06, 2009 11:30 am

What a fantastic choice! I think they did play it live on the Relayer tour: I'll have to dig out the boot. This is one of the last songs to tick off my list to actually see played live and although it's unlikely now, you never know. Time to give it a spin.

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Dr_Yes
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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113210Post Dr_Yes
Fri Feb 06, 2009 11:57 am

Yep - they did play it live on that tour. In fact they used to open the show with it.

How cool was that.

Geez I wish I'd been there, but in 1973/4 I was still listening to Mud, Slade, The Osmonds and suchlike :(

I was only six mind you.
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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113211Post fragilesi
Fri Feb 06, 2009 1:30 pm

This was it! This was the first ever Yes song that I ever listened to and possibly aside from Rush's 2112 remains the biggest shock, thrill, confusion, elation I have ever felt from first listening to something.

Sixth form common room, someone had a Walkman, never heard one before . . .

"Hey, can I have a listen?"
"Sure"
"Watcha got on?"
"Yes"
"Hmmph that aging bunch of hippies, what a waste" (to my eternal shame)

A few minutes pass . . .

"Can I have it back now?"
"Make one move towards those headphones and I'll kill you!"

That afternoon I'd bought the vinyl (sorry Mr Morris but double Computer Science was never going to compete) and a voyage of discovery set to last decades began . . . You see for someone brought up on the mighty Quo, Motorhead, Hawkwind etc and who thought Ritchie Blackmore was the world's greatest guitarist I was definitely under prepared for Sound Chaser!!!! The closing lyrics have never been more apt than that day . . .

"From the moment I reached out to hold, I felt a sound
And what touches our soul slowly moves as touch rebounds
And to know that tempo will continue
Lost in trance of dances as rhythm takes another turn
As is my want, I only reach to look in your eyes"

I'll still never forget realising that I had to have been stood there in the middle of the common room slack jawed for several minutes looking like a complete loon! But I was happy! I knew I'd found something special, and here I am over a quarter of a century later excited at talking about it!

I guess according to the rules I have to go listen to it again, to hear it anew . . . I wonder if I'll like it :D .

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113226Post yesireebob
Sat Feb 07, 2009 3:28 am

Sound Chaser is an astonishing piece of music, even for Yes. It makes me wonder if Moraz had stayed on, whether Yes might have gone off in a more prog-jazz-fusion direction. There was some indication this was an option very early on, think of their rendition of I See You on Yes and Everydays on TAAW. But those were covers, and Sound Chaser is about as original as it gets. Steve and Chris were on the top of their game here, with some mind-bending twists and turns. If you didn't know this was Yes, you would almost think they manipulated the tapes! I REALLY wish they would do this live again.

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113227Post happytheman
Sat Feb 07, 2009 3:54 am

Great selection from my favorite Yes album. A recent listen to a boot from the Relayer tour left me speechless. Moraz does quite a number on this track. And Howe gets out there with his solo. Unlike anything before or since. Not sure I want them to return to this one, it's better left preserved. A one off is often better than trying to "improve" on it.

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113230Post sound_chaser
Sat Feb 07, 2009 10:01 am

To me, the tribal chants are symbolic of something special we lost along the way in mankind’s crazy pursuit of building a corporate world, where, instead of joining together as a global village, great swathes of people feel more disenfranchised than ever: our primitive urges have been overrun. I think that’s why it careers along at such a breakneck speed, with the calm centrepiece being like caught in the eye of the needle. Whatever my ramblings as to whether Sound Chaser is prophetic, what cannot be denied is that it is an astonishing piece of music: as daring and out there as Yes ever got. That’s why I’m always a little disappointed with Going For The One: after the sheer brilliance of Relayer, Yes were never so daring again.

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thehallway
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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113231Post thehallway
Sat Feb 07, 2009 4:04 pm

Is this not one of the least listener friendly yes songs? Yet such brilliance! One of my favourite jazz/rock fusion tunes of the era. Moraz does a great job syncopating with Howe and Squire. Cha cha cha, cha cha...
[8]

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Tomfoolery
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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113250Post Tomfoolery
Mon Feb 09, 2009 2:21 pm

I'm surprised that no one's mentioned the absolutely amazing percussion that sprang from Alan White's extremely talented sticks on this track... everyone speaks of Jon's lyrics, Steve's guitar, Chris' bass... all of which are brilliant... but Alan's percussion is just phenomenal.
"The word is love and the time is now, and it's right for me"

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113254Post yesireebob
Mon Feb 09, 2009 4:23 pm

Yes, Alan did a superb job on this entire album. That said, imagine what Bruford could have done with Sound Chaser...

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113256Post fragilesi
Mon Feb 09, 2009 5:05 pm

yesireebob wrote:Yes, Alan did a superb job on this entire album. That said, imagine what Bruford could have done with Sound Chaser...
It's a great point that tomfoolery raises. I'm sure that Bruford would have done great things but I'm glad that White was there. In this case his heightened aggression is part of what makes this such a great song.

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113259Post the greenman
Mon Feb 09, 2009 6:15 pm

altogether the boys done a great job with this song..

I didnt get it at first, but then I didnt get Gates either (I know, heresy). I'm absolutely there now, it just took me a while.

wouldnt it be great if they reached out like this again? Imagine if Magnification had contained songs of this intensity (oh, now someones going to shoot me down & say 'it did').

just reading a couple of reviews (looking for some insight to share with you all) which rate Soundchaser as the WEAKEST of the 3 tunes on the album! you what?! Are they mad?? Well, they're not hearing what I hear!!

which is genius, sheer f***ing genius!

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113266Post Tomfoolery
Mon Feb 09, 2009 8:15 pm

yesireebob wrote:Yes, Alan did a superb job on this entire album. That said, imagine what Bruford could have done with Sound Chaser...

I agree with Fragilesi - Bruford's style of drumming (as demonstrated on the albums he DID perform on - and I'm not saying he's not versatile enough to have changed up if necessary) wouldn't have been as good a fit as Alan's more straight ahead, thundering style was for this particular tune.
"The word is love and the time is now, and it's right for me"

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113268Post Tomfoolery
Mon Feb 09, 2009 8:19 pm

the greenman wrote:altogether the boys done a great job with this song..

I didnt get it at first, but then I didnt get Gates either (I know, heresy). I'm absolutely there now, it just took me a while.


Heresy? Then I'm a heretic! I bought this album in - 1976? 1975? - and HATED it - put it away and didn't touch it for almost 10 years! Pulled it out, listened again, and yanno, it's really not THAT bad. Listened again, and gee, it's actually pretty good... a few more spins and yanno, this is GREAT. Now, it's my all time favorite Yes album, and to my ears, there's not a weak track on it!
"The word is love and the time is now, and it's right for me"

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113278Post yesireebob
Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:18 pm

It was an acquired taste for me, too.

the greenman
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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113280Post the greenman
Mon Feb 09, 2009 10:21 pm

yesireebob wrote:It was an acquired taste for me, too.

Ditto - as I was saying!

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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113365Post Chris2210
Fri Feb 13, 2009 2:48 pm

To my shame I'm responding to this late - almost last minute in terms of its week's worth [though there's no reason anyone can't add to these threads after the 'allotted' week].

That's because this is one of Yes' masterpieces [groan, not another one, you might say]. There's so many really, really great work throughout the catalogue it is an embarrassment of riches. This is the single track from the album that didn't make it onto 'In a Word', which is a shame because it stands out in the work of a band characterised by it's adventurousness on probably their most experimental album as the boldest expression of their incredible musical invention.

I've just listened again and it is truly an astonishing work. Each member of the band puts on a display of dizzying virtuosity - I had forgotten that incredible drum figure of Alan's which carries the song for a stretch in the opening for instance. Keyboards, bass, drums, vocals and guitar all have their place in the spotlight, but this certainly isn't jamming or grandstanding. These are not a clumsy thrown together collection of soloings - each is a cohesive thread in a work for all its staggering complexity of tightly controlled thematic material and unity of direction. The of course there is the cadenza - the only time Howe has done this and it is absolutely brilliant. There is the blinding genius of an instrumentalist at the height of his powers giving us what surely would be considered a masterpiece of thematic exploration were it in the setting of any classical concerto. It also returns the music into 'orchestra' of full arrangement with subtlety, drama and seamless flow.

32+ years on I cant think of anything to match it for boldness of vision. Now that's a masterpiece...
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the greenman
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Re: Yes Song of the Week: Sound Chaser

Post: # 113367Post the greenman
Fri Feb 13, 2009 7:05 pm

excellent comments, guys n gals! I've enjoyed reading them & it's given me a whole new insight into the track.. I'm looking forward to the next.. hmm 'magnification', eh...?

[:idr]

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