Rick Wakeman's Greatest Hits (1994)
|A real contradiction in terms this, but nevertheless it seemed like a good idea at the time. A mixture of instrumental versions of both solo tracks and YES tracks it has its moments, but not enough of them for me really.|
|Seemed like a good idea at the time even though I'd stopped drinking way before I started recording!!!|
|Little Known Trivia|
|The drum track on Starship Trooper was inadvertently erased from the master tapes by the engineer who will remain nameless, (but who is often called Stuart Sawney). It took more than a week to replace what Tony Fernandez had done electronically. (Tony had gone on holiday at the end of the recording and so was unavailable to come back to the studio).|
Reniet Ramirez on 12th April 2000 [Other reviews]
It's nice to hear Rick playing his versions of some YES songs. Also a song like "Gone but not forgotten" had made me cry almost everytime I hear it. But I don't think it's right to call this a Hits album when 50% of it is "Journey..." divided in small INSTRUMENTAL pieces.
Max Hult on 14th January 2000 [Other reviews]
Disc one is a bit too soft. The Journey is very good, musically. What's not so good about this 2-cd is the sound. It sounds as if Wakeman played through some MIDI program on the computer. Merlin the Magician is far from as good as the original, but still quite nice. You really miss an orchestra, or at least a band, throughout the whole album.
Bob Perry on 4th October 1999 [Other reviews]
Oh dear. One of those, "If you've heard the original - don't bother with this!" albums. I was sorely dissappointed only because I have the originals - losing Jon Anderson was like losing your fingers (- you can eat but its a struggle!) I liked the updated sounds, but the vocal tracks have been replaced by a feedback lead guitar sample, which desperately needed some pitch bend and vibrato to add the human touch. Unfortunately, this album sounded like it was produced by my XGMidi card. Still, after listening to it, I did want to buy my Allied Carpet!
Gregory Dietz on 17th September 1998 [Other reviews]
I have mixed feelings about this CD. All of the tracks are good in their own right, however, some suffer from comparison to previous versions. On the original Wondrous Stories, Rick's work on the Polymoog was spectacular - see the video if you have any doubts. On the originals of Siberian Khatru and especially Madrigral, Rick's use of the harpsichord was highly melodic and seemed to add a texture that is missing from these version - could he have overdubbed the original melodies? In comparison, these versions sound almost like Elevator music. So what's good?... "Going for the One" and the entire second disk, with the exception of a subdued Gone but Not Forgotten, however, these exceptions seem to confirm the opinion that Rick sometimes plays below his ability. If you already own the "true" greatest hits, "VOYAGE", and the YES originals of the remakes, this CD may gather dust.
Downeast Bruce on 27th July 1997 [Other reviews]
Disc 1: Don't Kill the Whale is absolutely superb! Disc 2: The totally instrumental arrangement of "Journey..." is incredible! In fact, I like it better than the original (I know, "hard to believe"). Catherine of Aragon only makes me wish that Rick would release a 25th anniversary of the 6 Wives.. done in the same style as this version. For some strange reason, when I listen to "Sea Horses", I visualize MIR & the Space Shuttle doing their "Ballet in Space" - the first docking maneuvers between the two.
Time Lady Rabeca on 21st March 1997 [Other reviews]
The first CD in this set features some of Rick's best work with Yes, the second hilights his solo work. Both are completely instrumental, and overall it is a very mellow set. I like the style he redid the Yes material in -- just be prepared to drink a few cups of coffee if you need to stay awake, it tends to be a bit *too* relaxing at times :)