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Fragile

Artist: Yes
Label: Atlantic
Catalog#: SD 7211
Format: Vinyl
Country: United States
Released: 1972-01
Tracklist
A1 Roundabout 8:29
A2 Cans And Brahms 1:35
A3 We Have Heaven 1:30
A4 South Side Of The Sky 8:04
B1 Five Per Cent For Nothing 0:35
B2 Long Distance Runaround 3:33
B3 The Fish (Shindleria Praematurus) 2:35
B4 Mood For A Day 2:57
B5 Heart Of The Sunrise 10:34
Credits

Artwork – Roger Dean (4)
Bass Guitar, Vocals – Chris Squire
Drums, Percussion – Bill Bruford
Electric Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals – Steve Howe
Engineer – Eddie Offord*
Mastered By – Dennis King
Organ, Grand Piano, Mellotron, Synthesizer – Rick Wakeman
Producer – Eddie Offord*, Yes
Vocals – Jon Anderson

Notes

1st pressings came with a 4 color page booklet with band photos and artwork by Roger Dean. Labels have release #SD 7211 in upper right next to label logo, later US re-pressings use release # "SD 19132".

Strawberry Bricks Entry: 
Prior to recording their fourth album, Yes went through yet another personnel change: Tony Kaye was given the axe in favor of London's hottest keyboard player at the time. Rick Wakeman, who had just finished a musically unceremonious stretch with the Strawbs, was a Royal College of Music dropout, best known inside the studios (and pubs) of London. Yes offered him the opportunity to flaunt his talent, on the pretext that an infusion of more diverse keyboard sounds would further their music. It did indeed. With its rich vocal harmonies and catchy chorus, the album's opener "Roundabout" stands out as the quintessential prog rock tune; its crowning achievement, though, is one of the coolest bass lines since The Beatles' "Rain." It was an AM radio hit in edited form and an FM radio staple, both of which helped to propel the song to No. 13 in the US singles chart. "South Side of the Sky" displays the band's hand at heavy rock (courtesy of Steve Howe's angular guitar line), albeit with a gorgeous piano break thrown in the middle. But the second side's "Long Distance Runaround/The Fish (Schindleria Praematurus)" and "Heart of the Sunrise" are some of Yes' greatest moments on record. The seemingly innocuous choice of sounds committed to tape—whether it's Bill Bruford's distinct snare, Chris Squire's trebly Rickenbacker bass or one of Wakeman's many keyboards—are sonic perfection; within the prog context, it's perhaps the ultimate recording of the era's analog tones. In contrast to the rest of their catalog, Yes did more with less on Fragile. The musical ideas are by no means simple; they're exceptional. Yet the technical dexterity doesn't become lost in itself, as the deceivingly effortless execution and Spartan production create the band's most organic sounding output. One could even excuse the near-fatal inclusion of individual "ideas" (solo tracks from each member) for not destroying the continuity of the album as a whole. The album reached No. 7 in the UK, while it rose to No. 4 in the US in early 1972. It was also the first Yes album to feature Roger Dean's iconic artwork, on both the cover and the enclosed booklet. [US release date]
Reviews: 
  • my first album

    Album: 
    Fragile

    This was my first album, a birthday gift from my sisters. I first heard Roundabout on AM radio. What an impression it had on me.

  • You Say "Yes" I say "No!"

    Album: 
    Fragile

    This is probably the best record I have ever heard. Second only to Mr. T's Commandments. The flugelhorn work is sublime.

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