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Yes singles part 6 – Tales from Topographic Oceans and Relayer – 319

Relayer featuring Patrick Moraz
Relayer featuring Patrick Moraz

Produced by Robert Nasir, Jeffrey Crecelius, Wayne Hall, Preston Frazier and Bill Govier.

No singles were released from Tales From Topographic Oceans – unless you know differently…so we have skipped right along to Relayer and its single, Soon which had an edit of Sound Chaser on the B side. We also discuss Cruise to the Edge and there’s plenty of other news as well.

  • What does Soon sound like, ripped out of its rightful place in Gates of Delirium?
  • Sound Chaser as a B side? Really?
  • Is there anything else which could have been released?

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

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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

15 replies on “Yes singles part 6 – Tales from Topographic Oceans and Relayer – 319”

All this fascinating speculation as to why Yes decided to release this, that and the other as singles has got me wondering how much of a part Yes actually played in the process. It would be useful to know from someone who actually knows, rather than speculates as we all might be inclined to do, how much say typical major acts or, better still, Yes had.
I would imagine that there was a good deal of contractual obligation going on which might explain the decision to release in certain countries only. Or maybe the record companies could simply take it upon themselves to release a cut. Maybe Yes couldn’t even dictate exactly what was released.

On another tack, these topics really are more interesting when MAK and Kevin have different opinions and discuss their arguments for/against. Keep up the good work and thanks.

Among this speculation about what Yes will play on their UK tour, let’s not forget that when it was announced it was stated they would be playing the whole of sides 1&4 of TFTO plus an excerpt from side 3. That’s what I signed up for and whilst I’ll be happy to see them play just about anything I shall be extremely disappointed if I do not get to hear these. Has anyone heard anything about this?

Thanks for the reminder, Tim. That’s a really good point. I would also definitely like to see that commitment honoured. I get the feeling, though, that they might go for a more eclectic selection, even if only at the London shows. I have heard nothing so far, however.

A few random thoughts regarding the cruise (because when you go on what amounts to a liquid diet for five days, things can get a bit random)…

First, you credited a lot of commentary about the set list to me, which was actually Jeffrey – I just want him to get his due. I mostly kept track of the songs – something I intended to do from the beginning; it was Jeffrey who saw the Yestival show last year and was able to compare substitutions and transpositions.

It’s a nice bit of synchronicity that ‘Soon’ is the subject of most of this week’s podcast, as they included the “full” version of it in the show. It was perfectly done and very moving, with beautiful visuals on the screen as well. Steve’s comment about it was that it was one of Jon’s best melodies, and that it had been “…played at a memorial service recently.” The shows on the cruise were Steve’s first time back on stage after last year’s unfortunate events.

I missed out on this year’s Yes Q&A session as my friend Ken and I were in line for the photo op with Steve Hackett, Marillion and Haken.

However, on Tuesday morning there was a very interesting sit-down discussion event with Steve Hackett and Roger Dean that lasted almost two hours. They talk (OK – Steve does most of the talking and Roger replies a lot) about their influences, the creative process, differences between audio and visual arts, how they actually keep track of all their different ideas… why the Birmingham Symphony Hall is the best music venue in the U.K., how horrible the British school system used to be and what might happen between you and your collection of notebooks when no one is watching (Steve was in QUITE a mood that morning!). As I said – very interesting and wide-ranging; it was fun to watch them follow questions and answers down various rabbit holes.

Trying to keep this all Yes-related (so I don’t go off on another rant about Marillion, Jeff!)) The one show I saw was just about perfect. There were a couple of glitches – which song it was I don’t recall but at one point Billy and Jay sort of stumbled over each other rhythmically, and during the transition from ‘Eclipse’ to ‘The Preacher, The Teacher’ sections of ‘And You And I,’ Billy’s bass pedal got stuck and Steve kept playing the first notes on his acoustic guitar over and over, all while giving Billy the patented “Steve Howe Death Stare.” It was rather funny, and Steve seemed to be in a pretty good mood that evening – it looked to me liked they laughed a bit about it right after. My favorite part of the concert was during ‘Roundabout’ with Alan and Tony: Geoff Downes stood back and let Tony play (the heck out of) the organ solo.

Glass Hammer was the act chosen for the “sail away” show this year, and Jon D. was a guest vocalist for a song or two from their album “If,” which was his first of four with them. He also joined them again for their second show, in a venue known as the Colony Club and he wasn’t quite up to it that night – but, four days of cruising can take it out of you. Also, between Jon and Susie Bogdanowicz, their current and former vocalist, Susie definitely has the best hair!

This was only my second CTTE (nice coincidence, that abbreviation!) but definitely the best one yet… which does mean I’ll be returning next year. It was five days this time, instead of last year’s four, so the schedule seemed a bit more relaxed – we didn’t feel particularly rushed about trying to see everything, and there was more time for events like the aforementioned Hackett/Dean talkathon.

Not much information about next year yet, except for the dates – February fourth thru the ninth – but no artist info other than assuming Yes will be on board yet again.

I haven’t had a chance to get a good look at photos; Yes and Steve Hackett were the only bands I really took a bunch pics – I wanted to watch the shows, not my camera. Once I find the good ones I’ll put them up on the Facebook page.

Thanks as always, gents… BTW – good show this week!

FYI, the cruise video above is from last year in ’17, not earlier this week! I just got home from the cruise and will leave a voice message regarding it tomorrow or Monday. Doug

Loved the episode!
I read through the booklet of the TFTO Blu-Ray edition, and it isn’t clear if the ‘single edits’ included are vintage or done for the special edition – it implies they’re taken from a banded promo version sent to radio stations to make it easier for radio stations to find a portion to play. Listening to them, they sound as choppy as you imagine, but they do help in finding an entry point into music that’s intimidating to get into (even to many Yes fans, like myself). I really do sympathize with the record company and radio in this instance, and totally understand why these were created (even if they’re objectively not very good edits) – Yes were at their cultural height around this time, radio *wanted* to play them and the public wanted to hear them, but TFTO wasn’t an easy sell. We can sneer at radio for not playing 20 minute songs, but radio stations have their needs too – lest we forget, there was other non-Yes music to play, some of it quite good, all of it much shorter and plenty of it the public also wanted to hear. Picking bits and pieces of longer songs to play may sound like heresy to fans, but it was done because there was some enthusiasm to get them on the air in the first place.

As for “Soon”, maybe it’s because I first heard in on the YesYears box set as a separate piece, but I think it sounds just fine all by itself. In fact, I found it mesmerizing when I first heard it. It obviously gains something when heard at the end of “Gates…” but it seems to work fine on its own, as Yes acknowledge by playing “Soon” by itself over the years and including it on various compilations. I’ll acknowledge that by itself, it may sound a bit too ‘new-agey’ for some tastes.

I just scrolled down to the Instagram photos from episode #318 – the two shots of Roger Dean art on the computer screen: both originals were on display in his gallery on the Cruise (including the original pencil sketch version of ‘Badger’), along with lots of other stuff – some HUGE paintings, as big as six feet across. Strangely, there was little to none of anything from Relayer. I didn’t take any photos in the gallery, which was a huge improvement over last year’s – they had him stuck in a corner of the deck thirteen club; this year he had the entire conference center (yeah – they have that on board). Anyway, some paintings had prices stated (the highest I remember was $355,000.00); others simply said “POR,” which, of course, means “Price On Request.” I decided it really means “Price Out of Reach.” Roger is very nice and friendly, even if you walk into his gallery wearing an unofficial, probably unauthorized Relayer shirt . . .

Interesting that Mark has decided to sing a selection of hits from the years. Personally I’d have preferred it had he tried to sing Minnie Ripperton’s “Loving You” including the high notes!

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