I'm sorry but this is not remotely a five-star product. In fact it is a profoundly disappointing work from a journalist who was at the epicentre of the progressive music explosion from 1966-. Much as one doesn't like to put the boot into someone's work, one should do in this case because I doubt that Welch was sweating his way through the archival material at the British Library (St Pancras and Colindale) in order to give the world his very best work and I wonder how extensive was his collection of fresh interview material...
It isn't that the result of a seemingly under-researched project is terrible, just that it's terribly disappointing, not least the quality of Chris's writing which fails to rise above the painfully mediocre. It doesn't help either that he fell out of love with Yes music as early as 1973 with the release of Tales From Topographic Oceans, the same year he brutally trashed another fabulous landmark in the history of modern music: Jethro Tull's A Passion Play [for the record, a teenage Alice was at 3 of the 5 Yes Rainbow gigs in December of that year for the British premier of Oceans and was at Wembley Empire Pool to see Tull re-produce A Passion Play]. It isn't the case that a biographer has to be in love with the subject's art from A-Z; not at all. However, this brief volume reads as though the enthusiasm just wasn't there for the task. The title - a typically dimwitted publisher's gambit to maximise sales potential - serves as a metaphor for the result of the project. Instead, get Dan Hedges' book - and it's got better pictures.
ps One day someone ought to write a book entitled The Tragic Death of Progressive Rock Music which would chart the fall of the genre thanks to Chris and his mid-70s colleagues (and their successors) who knifed this magnificent artistic flowering of the mid-60s in the throat, heart, back and groin as well as describing and analysing its magnificent achievements.