My fear of pretty much anything ’80s has been tempered today by the purchase of ‘Drama’ by Yes, released in 1980 (maybe recorded in 1979? ha ha), but featuring real drumming from Alan White and some absolutely stunning guitar work by Steve Howe. Perusing the gatefold album cover, I find that the band line-up contains few of the usual suspects – no Jon Anderson or Rick Wakeman/Patrick Moraz. Instead we have Trevor ‘Buggles’Horn on vocals and Geoff Downes on keyboards. Obviously Yes are bigger than the sum of the parts, for the band sound pretty much the same to me as earlier line-ups. Side One’s highlight is the first track, ‘Machine Messiah’, a Howe tour de force. Side Two opens with a nice Chris Squire bass line on ‘Into The Lens’, released as a single at the time. Possibly interesting side note – 4 of the 5 band members sing on this album, the 5th (Downs) uses a vocoder!
There’s even a Roger Dean album cover for good measure. I’m one happy bunny.