Episodes YMP Classic Feed

What If…Keystudio had been released as an official Yes album in place of Keys To Ascension & Keys To Ascension 2? 471

Produced by Jeffrey Crecelius, Wayne Hall and Preston Frazier

After a suggestion by Dave Watkinson and a twitter chat between him and Henry Potts, Mark and I have been listening to the compilation album Keystudio and thinning about what could have happened if it had been released in place of Keys to Ascension and Keys to Ascension 2. Please take a listen to our thoughts and then get involved yourself by sending in your thoughts via any of the ways on

  • What could have happened in 1996-7?
  • What if Rick Wakeman had stayed?
  • What would we be listening to now?

Listen to the episode and let us know what you think!

Join us as a Patron!

If you would like to support the Yes Music Podcast financially and also have access to exclusive activity and opportunities, there is a special page you can use to sign up and 2020 is the time to join us:

Become a Patron!

Bag yourself a fabulous piece of YMP history before it’s too late…

Head over to the YMP Emporium to…

  • Pre-order a YMP Trivia Card Game ‘The Answer Is Yes!’ – going into production very soon
  • Order the unique Full Union art print – available now
Tony Kaye at the Cinema sessions
The Full Union! Available now.
This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 3027936C-1DB1-4547-9348-55D147FE907A-1024x768-1.jpeg
Artist’s impression of The Answer Is Yes! card game. Pre-order now.

Show notes and links:

Join us in August to record episode 500 here:

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is img_4749-1024x680.jpg
Lewis Clarke / West Devon : Yes Tor / CC BY-SA 2.0

Lots more details to follow…

YMP Patrons:


  • Jeffrey Crecelius
  • Preston Frazier and
  • Wayne Hall


Aaron Steelman

Dave Owen

Mark James Lang

Paul Tomei

Joost Maglev

David Heyden

Martin Kjellberg

Paul Wilson

Bob Martilotta


Michael O’Connor

William Hayes
Brian Sullivan

David Pannell

Miguel Falcão

Lobate Scarp

Chris Bandini

David Watkinson

Neal Kaforey

Rachel Hadaway

Craig Estenes


Paul Hailes

Mark ‘Zarkol’ Baggs

Doug Curran

Robert Nasir

Fergus Cubbage

Scott Colombo

Fred Barringer

Scott Smith
Geoff Bailie

Simon Barrow
Geoffrey Mason

Stephen Lambe

Guy R DeRome

Steve Dill

Henrik Antonsson

Steve Perry

Hogne Bø Pettersen

Steve Rode


Steve Scott

Jamie McQuinn

Steven Roehr

Ken Fuller

Terence Sadler

Michael Handerhan

Tim Stannard


Todd Dudley

John Cowan

Tony Handley

John Holden

Joseph Cottrell

John Parry

Keith Hoisington

John Thomson

Barry Gorsky

Alan Begg

Robert and David

Please subscribe!

If you are still listening to the podcast on the website, please consider subscribing so you don’t risk missing anything:

Subscribe on Apple Podcasts
Subscribe on Google Podcasts

Subscribe on Android
Listen on Stitcher

Theme music

The music I use is the last movement of Stravinsky’s Firebird Suite. This has been used as introduction music at many Yes concerts. My theme music is not take from a live concert – I put it together from the following two creative commons sources: thanvannispen and

4 replies on “What If…Keystudio had been released as an official Yes album in place of Keys To Ascension & Keys To Ascension 2? 471”

I’d have bought the live album and not the Keys new material and saved a few quid. This is the point at which I realised that Yes had given up trying to be creative and just wanted money for nothing.

No doubt there is good music on Keystudio. But it is a lesser album. I don’t think it is money for nothing; I think they were just not as coherent and focused a creative force as they were in the early and mid 70s. Lots of water under the bridge; lot’s of branching out and growing apart. By contrast to Keystudio, I think Magnification shows what happens when they were able to work well together after all (or at least 4 of them), and The Ladder shows what happens when a third party is able to guide them.
I’m sure glad to have the material as a separate album. I enjoy it quite a bit. (But it is no Tormato!) And, honestly, it’s better to keep the studio pieces separate from the live performances. I can’t be the only one who thinks that the studio pieces suffer a bit in the original releases from being put next to the live performances? Especially the first volume. Be the One and That That Is are perfectly nice songs, with lots of lovely parts, but they are just not in the same league as the live material on that album.

The other thing I need to say is regarding Mark’s comment regarding it being a double LP. As far as I remember, it was never issued on vinyl at that time. It would have been a CD.

It would have been incredible. The “Keys to Ascension” studio tracks are some of Yes’ ultimate compositions, in my opinion. I first heard them through the Keystudio compilation and they are sequenced very well there. Each track is a gem. It deserved to be the epic mid-late ’90s Yes album that Keystudio displayed it as. “Keys to Ascension” would have been the perfect album title for those songs…and they could have still released the great live Keys tracks under a different name.

“If we don’t give them the keys,
How are they supposed to be ready?
If we don’t give them the keys,
How are they to survive?” – from “Bring Me To The Power”

“Just as long as you bring the power
From the inside
Just as long as you hold the key
From the inside
Ascend and create
Ascend and create
Ascend and create
Ascension!” – from “Mind Drive”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 300 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video, document, spreadsheet, interactive, other. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop file here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.