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  • 90125
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4.3 out of 5 stars55
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 24 March 2004
An absolute gem of an album, proving that, irrespective of the vagaries of fashion, talent will out. Yes descended into something of a chaotic state after "Tormato" with all manner of splinter groups, super groups and solo projects taking place. "Drama" was little more than a holding exercise, but with the recruitment of Trevor Horn (ex-Buggles) on production duties, Yes were leading the field yet again.
There are no duff tracks (altho' "Changes" and "Hold On" are a little AOR for my liking), and "Owner of a Lonely Heart", "It Can Happen", "Our Song" and "Hearts" are absolutely breathtaking - power pop combined with stunning musicianship and fantastic arrangements. It wipes the floor with any of the 5-minute-wonder rubbish that passes as rock these days.
The album was recorded in 1983, but it sounds space-aged even today, thanks to the genius of Trevor Horn. The remaster is just fantastic - I've just listened to it on a rubbishy £30 Matsui stereo and it STILL sounds miles better than the original CD issue. Generous provision of extra tracks and informative sleevenotes too.
Anyone who wants to understand why Yes are SO much more than "prog rock dinosaurs" (GOD I hate that phrase) - BUY THIS ALBUM!
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VINE VOICEon 18 February 2004
There was an air of horror among many Yes-fans when this album first came out. Gone was the epic, indeed quasi-symphonic, sound of old - this was a band who, through Trevor Horn's production and new guitarist Trevor Rabin's heavier tendencies, was embracing the future. What's more, the future worked!
The glossy sheen of these songs still sounds fantastic, and "Owner of a Lonely Heart" is a great pop song (calm down all you prog fans to whom the word 'pop' is anathema!), but Yes hadn't entirely abandoned their penchant for the grandiose, as many of the other tracks testify.
The sleeve notes make it plain that this was almost a Chris Squire/Trevor Rabin project until Jon Anderson was lured back to the fold, and the Cinema version of "It Can Happen" gives a hint of what this group might have sounded like.
My only (slight) problem with this re-release is that it omits the opportunity to include some other remixes that were issued at the time (I've got them on a cassette single and I'd like to get them on CD before the tape wears out!).
44 comments16 of 17 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
When this 1983 project was initiated, bassist Chris Squire was the only participant founder-member of Yes and using the `Yes' name for the band was not even considered. South African songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Trevor Rabin was the main driver of the project, and his profound influence endows the music of `90125' with its special flavour (though it must be said it's a flavour not to the taste of some die-hard fans).

On hearing the initial recordings Jon Anderson was intrigued and enticed into the project solely as the lead voice; Anderson had always been the principal visionary, composer and arranger of Yes' music in the 1970s but took a back seat here. Yes founder-member Tony Kaye, absent from the band since 1971, did much of the keyboard work (the remainder done by Rabin) and Alan White on drums means that this is really a Yes album minus Steve Howe, and with Rabin in the driving seat.

The result? A unique Yes album with a very 1980s feel and some memorable songs. Not only the no. 1 hit single `Owner of a lonely heart' but other songs like `It can happen' and `Leave it' are lively, upbeat and full of energy, a real departure from the classic Yes compositionally but nevertheless recognizably embodying the `Yes Sound'. The instrumental `Cinema' was deservedly Grammy-nominated, though it didn't win.

Production values (thanks to Trevor Horn) are top-notch and the Rhino remaster in particular is absolutely terrific, a joy to listen to with all the instruments clear and sharp and with excellent dynamics.

`90125' is proof positive that a band like Yes can completely re-invent itself in a good way, retaining its virtuoso musicianship and masterfully tight arrangements whilst embracing a new era to win over a new audience. If you liked Yes in the 1970s, or even more if you didn't like them - give `90125' a listen: either way, you'll likely be pleasantly surprised, and might even be won over.
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on 6 August 2007
After the Drama album and tour of 1980, Jon Anderson replacement Trevor Horn went into music production and guitarist Steve Howe eloped with keyboardist Geoff Downes to form the hugely successful Asia. That left bassist Chris Squire and drummer Alan White to pick up the pieces.
Although they never admitted that Yes had split up, there was no doubt that it was over. However, along came guitarist/keyboardist/songwriter/producer Trevor Rabin, followed by original Yes keyboard player, Tony Kaye. They formed a group called Cinema which looked set to record with Trevor Horn as producer, and then Jon Anderson, who had got to hear some of the Cinema music, decided he wanted to sing on it, and a new look eighties version of Yes was born.
There is more to 90125 than meets the eye. To say it's a commercial sell out is quite untrue.
'Owner Of A Lonely Heart' may have chart/radio friendly appeal, but the vocals and bass playing are distinctly Yes. It also benefits from some exciting Trevor Rabin guitarwork. It works as almost a 'Roundabout' for the eighties.
'Hold On' is typical 1980's arena rock, but the vocal harmonies are unmistakably Yes.
'It Can Happen' is a traditional Yes number with a Steve Howe esque sitar/guitar sound and a memorable melody.
'Changes' has some complex instrumental passages, hammered home with some powerful drumming, and good vocal interplay between Anderson and Rabin.
'Cinema' is a good instrumental workout which I feel should have opened the album, and this leads into the poppy 'Leave It'. I must admit I'm not a fan of this track, but having said that, it works as almost a 1980s version of 'Your Move' from The Yes Album.
'Our Song' is a fairly forgettable track despite some useful keyboards from Kaye, but next track 'City Of Love' is a real show stopper with some unfamiliar hard rock style vocals from Anderson.
Album closer 'Hearts' is the longest track on the album and is arguably the best track on 90125. The vocals and lyrics are typically Yes-like and the instrumental section is quite superb with hard rock guitar, wrapped around Tony Kaye's classy hammond organ solo, reminiscent of the first three albums that he played on.
The production is probably the best and most innovative of all Yes records, and the modern cover and band logo indicate a fresh approach for a newer band, more relevant to changing musical tastes.
The music on 90125 may be more accessible than any previous Yes record, but the individual performances from the band members are excellent throughout. Special mention has to go to Trevor Rabin who plays as if Steve Howe had never existed. In fact his impact on this album is a similar one to Howe's on The Yes Album. He takes the bull by the horns and gives it everything on guitar. His songwriting is also first class. Rick Wakeman has always admitted that he would have loved to have played in this incarnation of the band, so that has to count for something.
Yes had to make this album if there was any chance of the band continuing to make music in the future. As a Yes record, it is a pivotal one in their history. Taken on it's own, it's a simply cracking album.
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VINE VOICEon 13 March 2013
I was 16, and very late getting to know "proper" music. It sounded so new and different when I first heard "Owner Of A Lonely Heart".

THE BOOKLET (16 pages). Always loved the cover - so modern, clean and sharp (still one of my favs covers by anyone). In this edition the cover, spine and inner sleeve have tried to have been recreated to the best. The inner sleeve is a straight copy but not shrunk. The lyrics are on same green colour, and type fonts and spread over 7 pages. There is also an essay of how 90125 came about. There are a few black & White photos.

THE MUSIC. Clean and sharp - but what was so modern then is so dated now AND THAT IS THE POINT: will YOU like it? For me basically the album is "Pop/rock", not prog. It sounds very '80s. But listening to Radio 2 often, what are the 2 most played Yes songs? Wonderous Stories & Owner of a lonely heart. If you are familiar with 90125 but not the bonus tracks don't worry most of the 6 are good.

THE LINE-UP. JON ANDERSON / TREVOR RABIN / ALAN WHITE / TONY KAYE / and of course CHRIS SQUIRE. But the sound was crafted by producer, TREVOR HORN.

ME. I was already into The Floyd, but disappointed but the lack of music on "The Final Cut" (1983 also). When I heard "Owner..." well I had to know more. I had the LP for Xmas 1983. I have never tired of this LP but was satisfied enough with the original cd sound and owning "YesYears" since its release in 1991, with 2 of the bonus tracks here. But as of yesterday I now own this Remastered and Expanded edition and having only paid £3, well. I slowly bought other Yes - (in order (I think)) 1. THE YES ALBUM 2. GOING FOR THE ONE, 3. CLOSE TO THE EDGE and then the 2 years before ABWH all of their lps. The big surprise for me is when it came to BIG GENERATOR, which sounds similar to 90125 in production styling, I got bored after a few years of Big Generator. Perhaps the 3 year gap was too long and by that time I had discovered the '70s Yes?

SOMETHING SIMILAR. only to mention the stunning (I remember BBC1 broadcasting it years before VHS and loving) 9012LIVE concert. The cd and dvd: 9012 LIVE- THE SOLOS/ Expanded 9012 Live [2006] [DVD]

USELESS TRIVIA. I only knew "Owner.." but still remember Mike Reed announcing a Yes competition on Saturday Superstore (which ran from 1982-7) and telling us, the kids, that you should go and call your dad into the room as this comp would probably be more interesting to him - not in our house. I didn't win... but I didn't enter either!
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on 3 January 2003
Things started to get a bit silly in the Yes camp when Anderson walked out with Wakeman leaving Squire to bring in The Buggles for 'Drama'. Squire believed that Trevor Horn and Geoff Downes could replace Anderson and Wakeman. He was wrong even though Downes was a fantastic keyboard player. Horn had yet to find his true calling behind a mixing desk....until now.
In came South African multi-instrumentalist, singer and songwriter Rabin and it his tunes and harmonies with the returning Anderson and Horn's brilliant production that brought Yes into the pop age.
Gone were the dodgy and dated hippy lyrics and 10 minute bass solos to be replaced by 4/5 minute pop songs. Obviously "Owner..." is the stand out track here but the album is excellent overall. Anderson's voice is never better, reigned in by Horn's crisp and modern production and Rabin's ear for a catchy pop hook. It doesn't get 5 stars for me as Wakeman is missing but then again I am very biased!
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on 14 February 2004
I've been waiting for this CD to get the remaster & reissue treatment for years. It is without doubt the best album of the 80's and for me Yes's best release. Produced to the eye balls, it has some of the finest guitar ever recorded, there are guitar riffs on this CD that you could land a plane on! The songs feel huge, Trevor Horn's production throws everything but the kitchen sink into the mix. 'Owner of a Lonely Heart' hit number one in the US and was the lead single for the album, named by the way after the catalogue number of the CD. It's isn't however the best track, 'Cinema', 'Leave It', 'Changes' all push it close. Great, great album.
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on 12 May 2004
DAMN, DAMN and again DAMN!!!
I saw this new reissue as a second time around remaster.
The first remasters came out in 1994 or thereabouts.
I ordered and received it recently from Amazon and WOW!
This time the remastering has been done properly and the
quality of sound reproduction is FANTASTIC!.
The reason for the openning expletatives is that now I shall
have to renew most of the rest of my YES collection on CD!!
Yes and as they say "Curiosity Killed the Cat", and in this case,
my wallet!
Finally, when are YES going to release a PROPERLY remastered copy
of "BIG GENERATOR"??
Great Album but a DREADFUL original transfer to CD.
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the Eleventh studio Album by the group YES is 90125 from 1983. Jon Anderson returns and the album is produced by Trevor Horn. The album also features the return of Tony Kaye on Keyboard.
The album did well and single "Owner of a lonely heart" charted in the UK and went to number one in the US.
Track listing is 1 owner of a lonely heart 2 hold on 3 it can happen 4 changes
5 cinema 6 Leave it 7 our song 8 city of love 9 Hearts Bonus tracks are 10 leave it (single version) 11 Make it easy (from yesyears) 12 It can happen ( from yesyears) 13 its over (previously unissued) 14 Owner of a lonely heart (alternative mix) 15 Leave it (previously unissued)
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on 26 September 2000
90125 is often regarded by Yes purists as not being "proper" Yes music. The music world was taken by surprise when this highly polished, brilliantly produced album appeared - especially since it came from a band as unfashionable as Yes. 90125 had the hard rocking edge and straightforward riffs (thanks to Trevor Rabin's guitar) that previous Yes albums lacked. Add the straightforward keyboard work of Tony Kaye, the driving bass of Chris Squire and the production by Trevor Horn, and you have one of the classic rock albums of all time.
For me, "Owner of a Lonely Heart" has to be the best Yes track of all. But every song on the album is a perfectly honed piece of rock music. If you listen carefully to "Cinema" and "Hearts", you can also hear the musical link with past Yes music which is often overlooked. The previous album "Drama" provided a foretaste of what was to come. But it needed the clean guitar work of Rabin and the trademark Trevor Horn production to lift 90125 to a new level of musical achievement. This is accessible, listenable rock music. No overblown pretension or superfluous 20 minute excusions into self-indulgence here. Just excellent sounds. This is my favourite album for driving long distance.
Unfortunately, like all unique albums, Yes have been unable to repeat the success of 90125. One problem with the excellent studio production is that the music sounds two-dimensional when played live: just listen to 9012-live the solos. By the time the next studio album, Big Generator, appeared in 87, Yes had lost producer Trever Horn and, with him, they lost that edge which they have been striving to regain ever since.
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