Deep Album Cuts Vol. 91: Yes

This year's Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, held earlier this month, will air on HBO tomorrow night, and I've already done deep cuts playlists for inductees Pearl Jam, 2Pac, Journey, and Electric Light Orchestra. But I wanted to do one more, for Yes, a band who I've always been really interested in hearing more of. I remember as a teenager, somebody I knew had Tormato on vinyl, and I laughed so hard at what seemed like the goofiest prog rock album title and cover I'd ever seen. But man, that album rocks.

Yes Deep Album Cuts (Spotify playlist):

1. Beyond And Before
2. No Opportunity Necessary, No Experience Needed
3. A Venture
4. South Side Of The Sky
5. Siberian Khatru
6. The Ancient / Giants Under The Sun
7. Sound Chaser
8. Parallels
9. Onward
10. Tempus Fugit
11. Cinema
12. Holy Lamb

Track 1 from Yes (1969)
Track 2 from Time And A Word (1970)
Track 3 from The Yes Album (1971)
Track 4 from Fragile (1971)
Track 5 from Close To The Edge (1972)
Track 6 from Tales From Topographic Oceans (1973)
Track 7 from Relayer (1974)
Track 8 from Going For The One (1977)
Track 9 from Tormato (1978)
Track 10 from Drama (1980)
Track 11 from 90125 (1983)
Track 12 from BiGenerator (1987)

This is the smallest number of tracks I've ever fit into my self-imposed 80-minute time limit, mainly because Yes makes such long songs. Some of their best known singles were edited down heavily from longer album tracks, while even my favorite classic rock radio staple from the band, "Roundabout" clocks in at over 8 minutes. I almost didn't have room for anything from Tales From Topographic Oceans, which is comprised of 4 tracks that each take up an entire side of vinyl, the shortest being 18 minutes long. I avoided some of the best known Yes songs that weren't technically singles like "Yours Is No Disgrace" and "Starship Trooper," partly because there just wasn't room for them.

The R&R HOF, and some of the so-called rock establishment it represents, have a famous anti-prog bent that kept Rush out of the hall for years, and Yes took even longer to get in. But I always thought that perhaps more than any other prog band, Yes has the best of both worlds, with Jon Anderson's voice and some really memorably melodies underpinning even the band's most ambitious and long winded albums.

I really just love the sound of this band, though, and a lot of what they do just feels so fresh to me, that if someone sounded like this today, they'd become my favorite new band. Chris Squire is one of my favorite bassists of all time, I wish I knew how to get Bill Bruford's drum sound or Tony Kaye's synth sound. And of course, Yes had one of the bigger and stranger '80s comebacks of any '70s band, with synth pop maestro Trevor Horn masterminding the blockbuster 90125. And while that stuff sits apart a little bit, it's impressive how much it functions on a continuum with the rest of the Yes catalog and is pretty great in its own right.

Previous playlists in the Deep Album Cuts series:
Vol. 1: Brandy
Vol. 2: Whitney Houston
Vol. 3: Madonna
Vol. 4: My Chemical Romance
Vol. 5: Brad Paisley
Vol. 6: George Jones
Vol. 7: The Doors
Vol. 8: Jay-Z
Vol. 9: Robin Thicke
Vol. 10: R. Kelly
Vol. 11: Fall Out Boy
Vol. 12: TLC
Vol. 13: Pink
Vol. 14: Queen
Vol. 15: Steely Dan
Vol. 16: Trick Daddy
Vol. 17: Paramore
Vol. 18: Elton John
Vol. 19: Missy Elliott
Vol. 20: Mariah Carey
Vol. 21: The Pretenders
Vol. 22: "Weird Al" Yankovic
Vol. 23: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers
Vol. 24: Foo Fighters
Vol. 25: Counting Crows
Vol. 26: T.I.
Vol. 27: Jackson Browne
Vol. 28: Usher
Vol. 29: Mary J. Blige
Vol. 30: The Black Crowes
Vol. 31: Ne-Yo
Vol. 32: Blink-182
Vol. 33: One Direction
Vol. 34: Kelly Clarkson
Vol. 35: The B-52's
Vol. 36: Ludacris
Vol. 37: They Might Be Giants
Vol. 38: T-Pain
Vol. 39: Snoop Dogg
Vol. 40: Ciara
Vol. 41: Creedence Clearwater Revival
Vol. 42: Dwight Yoakam
Vol. 43: Demi Lovato
Vol. 44: Prince
Vol. 45: Duran Duran
Vol. 46: Rihanna
Vol. 47: Janet Jackson
Vol. 48: Sara Bareilles
Vol. 49: Motley Crue
Vol. 50: The Who
Vol. 51: Coldplay
Vol. 52: Alicia Keys
Vol. 53: Stone Temple Pilots
Vol. 54: David Bowie
Vol. 55: The Eagles
Vol. 56: The Beatles
Vol. 57: Beyonce
Vol. 58: Beanie Sigel
Vol. 59: A Tribe Called Quest
Vol. 60: Cheap Trick
Vol. 61: Guns N' Roses
Vol. 62: The Posies
Vol. 63: The Time
Vol. 64: Gucci Mane
Vol. 65: Violent Femmes
Vol. 66: Red Hot Chili Peppers
Vol. 67: Maxwell
Vol. 68: Parliament-Funkadelic
Vol. 69: Chevelle
Vol. 70: Ray Parker Jr. and Raydio
Vol. 71: Fantasia
Vol. 72: Heart
Vol. 73: Pitbull
Vol. 74: Nas
Vol. 75: Monica
Vol. 76: The Cars
Vol. 77: 112
Vol. 78: 2Pac
Vol. 79: Nelly
Vol. 80: Meat Loaf
Vol. 81: AC/DC
Vol. 82: Bruce Springsteen
Vol. 83: Pearl Jam
Vol. 84: Green Day
Vol. 85: George Michael and Wham!
Vol. 86: New Edition
Vol. 87: Chuck Berry
Vol. 88: Electric Light Orchestra
Vol. 89: Chic
Vol. 90: Journey
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