|Count Basie Theatre - Red Bank, NJ||04 November 2011||by Karl Sarkozi|
First of all a big thanks to Rick for coming to the East coast of the USA again after five years. It was well worth the wait!
Fans received their first taste of the evening's concert agenda as soon as the lights dimmed and the introduction music began. At first I could not make it out, but once the music became louder, it was Also Sprach Zarathustra, albeit it out of tune! I thought at first something was wrong, but as it went on, I knew it was intentional. People in the audience laughed and knew that they would also be treated to some comedy as well that night.
Rick and Jon played a few tracks from the new CD as well as Yes classics. I was intrigued with the new arrangements Rick made to some Yes songs like "Long Distance Runaround" and "Sweet Dreams". It was like listening to a brand new CD from him. One could see that he takes the music very seriously and it shows. Once they did "Awaken" I was sure Rick would use pipe organ sounds to show why the keyboard parts drives that whole song. Sure enough, he did and did not disappoint!
I have not seen Jon perform since 2004, but to me, his voice was spot-on great! Jon made sure that the audience interacted with him which brought more enjoyment to the show. In-between songs there would be some discussion from Jon about how some songs came about where Rick would interject his comedy takes! Everyone laughed and it made the concert that more memorable.
My only critique of the show is that I would have liked to hear other music that Rick and Jon did together, but not necessarily Yes songs. A song like "The Hymn" specifically comes to mind here. I guess that will be another concert someday.