Yes have reformed in their most celebrated line-up--Jon Anderson, Chris Squire, Steve Howe, Rick Wakeman and Alan White--and this reunion has been greeted with anticipation by millions of fans worldwide. Keys to Ascension ... more »was recorded in March 1996 during a series of brilliantly staged live concerts at the Freemont Theatre in San Luis Obispo, California. The band gelled magnificently and "Keys to Ascension" proves that all the magic is still there--great vision, stunning technical ability, incredible improvisational skills and imaginative presentation of ideas...timeless Yes music. Songs: Siberian Khatru, Close to the Edge, I've Seen All Good People, Time and a Word, And You and I, The Revealing Science of God, Going for the One, Turn of the Century, America, Onward, Awaken, Roundabout, Starship Trooper. 147 minutes.« less
A good 5.1 DVD audio & video of the classic Yes line up.
R. Passman | Baltimore area, MD United States | 01/08/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"After reading some of the above reviews I wasn't going to buy this DVD. Being a Yes fan, I did anyway and I am pleased that I did. I realized that our amateur reviews need to be taken with a grain of salt. To me the other reviews made the video of "Keys" sound like a "0" on a 1-10 scale. Granted, "Keys" is no George Lucus production, but I found it to be very creative, attractive and enjoyable.I think the video artists did a fine job of creating a video to accompany this concert. I found that most of the effects added to the concept of the music with superimposed water images and Roger Dean album art over the band on parts of Close to the Edge. Yes, there were parts of the video on at least a couple of songs that did not seem befitting, and detracted. There was an occasional imperfect synch of sound and image. There was also the use of a jerky slow motion effect used in a number of places (probably used to fill in gaps) that was less than desirable, but those things represent only a small percent of the total video. So does that make the whole apple bad? Not in my book. You can really see the classic Yes line up perform--up close. As far as sound quality, it is as good as the CDs (which is a great recording compared to the old classic Yes albums), but with the added enhancement of surround sound. The 5.1 is not as well balanced as other discs. On my system, I found that if I decreased the center channel by 4 db and increased the rears by 4 db plus added a 15 ms delay to the rears--it sounded more balanced. I have also listened to the House of Blues 5.1 in the DVD-A version (audio only, no video) from the JVC sampler. This is good and has some real strengths of 5.1 mix separation and clear vocals. The weaknesses are that most of the lead vocals are just on the center channel, the extreme live reverberation in the surround and the drums are not as clear as on "Keys." The DVD-Audio sample of Magnification is great!--one of two BEST recordings/5.1 mixes I have ever heard to date. I've heard 23 DVD-A mixes.In my opinion, I would say "Keys" is a good 5.1 DVD audio/video of the classic Yes line up."
Hard knocked flaws but major material.
lazloleif | g'ville, FL | 12/18/2002
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Remember when they released the Keys to Ascension on CD? Did you feel that the sound and performance was so crisp and magnificent? Here we are in the age of wonderful modern technology and Yes is here to participate in it. Rick Wakeman participation is especially gratifying considering his hiatus as a Yesman. Oh how I WISHED they would release it on DVD. So they did, and I must say the first few minutes I was on the edge of my seat loving it. The sound and video quality was excellent. But then i noticed that the parts of some songs where a Yesman displayed his proficiency of his instrument...was cut off by slow motioned videos of trees swaying, clouds drifting, water falling and other psyhchedlia you can think of. Sometimes these moments fit in quite well, but lets face it, theres overkill. There was also some moments when sound and video were out of sync/unison for sake of "exciting video editing tricks." You notice it towards the end of their opening piece, Siberian Khatru. On the live music track, Alan White is hitting his crash cymbal ONCE and the video shows him hitting a crash FOUR times half a second later. I dont like it when ANY live video does that. Remember video and sound were not in sync in the whole Yessongs video?The thing that attracts me to this dvd is the rareness of some of these songs. Yes doesn't really perform Starship Trooper, Turn of the Century, Going for the One, America and especially Revealing Science of God on a daily basis, more or less it being on DVD. You do see Steve Howe's assortment of vintage classics. You can also awe of Alan Whites array of percussion and cymbals. Speaking of array, check out Wakemans rig...theres over ten keyboards folks. And good ol Squire who interestingly uses guitar amps in conjunction with bass amps to acheive his awesome sound. Despite the two blundering aspects which could have made this a gem, the video footage is priceless and worth it, especially if you are a Yes fan. IF anything, you can listen to it as a high quality CD...just put the tv off and save yourself from frustration and high electricty bills. And if you are in the mood to watch it, it will be a good time. I would only hope they would re-release this video re-edited with all the junk cut out. We would be so lucky."
Come on !! They are better now than then
Robert J. Salo | Anaheim Hills , Ca United States | 03/22/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have seen YES countless times over the years. this DVD is essential for any YES fan. I cant believe Rick Wakeman, he was never THIS good live. All of them really!!!! Alan White is the premier "rock" drummer today. He has no equal. Chris Squire, Steve Howe....its just amazing how good these guys are. Detractors say they are just going through the motions. Check out an 80's or 90's ELP video or something by Genesis if you want to see a band going through the motions......besides, even Siberia goes through the motions!"
This is the YES concert to own if you loved them in the 70s!
David A. Lane | Akron, Ohio | 06/09/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This concert dvd is recorded spectacularly in 5.1 dolby digital. Although I agree with a few Steve Howe fans that this was not his finast performance, keyboardist Rick Wakeman more than makes up for it. This particular line up of Jon Anderson, Steve Howe, Cris Squire, Rick Wakeman, & Alan White is the same line-up that made YES the spectacular live band they were. The thing I love most about this concert is that they dress basically 70's period, play the songs from that era & do so extremely acurrately. The dynamics on this concert are simply incredible to the point of danger on some notes (particularly Wakemans performance during the song Close To The Edge)The pipe organ simply blends with Cris Squire on the bass pedals & boy oh boy be CAREFULL! The singing is like Jon Anderson has stepped through a time portal & if anything, sounds even better than he ever did. His mic skills on this recording are amazing. Over all, it is a must for any YES fan from the 70s!"
Robert J. Salo | 08/26/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I'm not sure if I should buy this DVD because the reviews below -- despite all the four and five stars -- are basically saying "Buy this for the music, not the video." Since I own this same music on CD, I'm not sure if I should buy this just for the video. If you buy a music DVD, you should judge it on the video as well as the audio; it's a package deal. If you think the video and graphics are not worth it, then you should just buy the CD or give the DVD the rating it deserves. What I'm confused about is why everyone is giving this DVD five stars while saying that the video portion is less than great. That makes no sense. Are all of you such blind Yes fans that you can't judge a product of theirs for its true worth?"