Top 10 Best Yes Albums

Best albums by the British progressive rock band Yes.
The Top Ten
1 Close to the Edge

An album that took my a while to get into. But once you get past that jarring chaotic intro, the song and album becomes pure brilliance. The Title Track is non stop great progressive rock that doesn't let you go until the very end. And You And I used to strike me as filler, but it's a slow build up, big pay off song that feels very peaceful. Siberian Khutru is almost the complete opposite of And You And I. Instead of being peaceful, its hard rocking for 9 minutes. This is my all time favorite yes song that features several great sections, my favorite being the one right after the guitar riff intro. Incredible album from beginning to end, 10/10.

2 Fragile

First album I bought in my life, it cost me a fortune being a student in the mid 80's. I didn't know exactly which album I had heard before, just knew it was YES (later it turned out I was looking for Tormato). A bit disappointed at first hearing, because of the purchasing mistake. After listening to it 2nd time I knew it was the best "mistake" of my life when talking about music. For me, personally these three songs: Roundabout, South Side of the Sky, and Heart of the Sunrise (among other masterpieces) in their beauty define the YES sound as I know and love since then. I also love all the other albums, Close to Edge is close to Fragile, it was really difficult for me to decide between these two.

3 The Yes Album

This is one of the yes albums I find to be a bit overrated. On one hand you have very classic amazing songs like Yours is No Disgrace, Starship Troopers (which I find to be a bit overrated), A Venture, And Perpetual Change is pretty good. But The Clap is alright, and I've Seen All Good People is a very good mellow song, bit it doesn't explore enough, but its still a good song. 9.2/10

I thought it was overrated at first but when I really took the time to listen to it, this is when you realize it's just so good. The highlight song in there are Yours is No Disgrace, Starship Trooper and Perpetual Change. That last song is so underrated yet it's one of their best. But all the other songs are amazing too. Great album.

4 Tales from Topographic Oceans

This album is a notoriously hated album, not just by a lot of fans, but by the keyboardist Rick Wakeman. He thought it was so bad that he left the band after it was completed. I do agree that it has a very odd sound and production. It feels like a lot for the instruments are crashing into each other and fighting for frequencies. And this album is their first double album with 4 songs, and a run time of 80 minutes. Each song is about 20 minutes. It is a very boring album in some aspects, but it's also a very rewarding one. It accomplishes having the musical complexity of a normal yes album, and it gives way to experimentation. The first song The Revealing Science of God, it has many nuances of classic yes, as well as weird experimentation. Remembering is a very good mellow song that feels very drawn out. It feels more like a collection of song segments. The Giants is a very disjointed and experimental noodling song. Its good for trying something new and having several instrumental passages, but its way to random and jarring. But the final song Ritual is a very overlooked gem. It is easily the closest thing to their other classic albums from Tales of Topographic Oceans. It does not feel to experimental, ad it is very upbeat and rocking, and peaceful at times too. It's a very bizarre and demanding album, but it has a lot of great music scattered everywhere. 9/10

5 Relayer

This album is very weird at times, especially with the last two tracks. Its very similar to their classic album Close to the Edge in song structure. Long suite, then 2 9 minute or so songs. The beginning Suite Gates of Delirium is in my opinion Yes's most masterfully written progressive song. It has a very peaceful vibe until you reach the classic progressive breakdown at the center of the song. The breakdown sounds like an epic battle, and the band even rolled trash cans around in the studio. Sound Chaser is a bit too long, but it's a very great heavy song. It feels like 2 songs, one of them very fast and crazy, the other is more mid tempo and rocking. Both sections are connected by a very passionate guitar solo from Howe. The last song is my least favorite which is known as To Be Over. It has a very mellow and stonery vibe at the beginning. But halfway through it becomes a great rocking song. This was also my favorite yes album at a time, 9.6/10

6 Going for the One

This one is very hated among some of the yes fans. Some think its too mainstream, but others including myself think it's a classic. This used to be my favorite yes album and it is the album that got me into the band. It is a very easy listen that is more reminiscent of when the band was becoming prog rock. But if you can't get into the first couple songs, your in for a treat with the epic finale that is Awaken! Going For the One is a lot like Permanent Waves because it perfectly fixes prog rock and pop rock. 9.8/10

7 90125

This was the first Yes album I heard. I'm not sure I could call it the best, but it holds a special place in my heart. I understand if this isn't everyone's cup of tea, as it's got that mainstream 80s sound and production. But it nails every hook, and there isn't a single moment where I'm unsatisfied.

This was the first Yes album I bought (I was young at the time). A few MTV videos that were cool. It obviously isn't their best, but I wanted to give it some love.

My first introduction with Yes also not the best but still a great album that I listen now and then.

8 Drama

This one is also not liked by many yes fans because this is the first album that doesn't feature Anderson on vocals. But there are some great and heavy progressive songs on here, but the poppy songs on here really collide with the great songs. They should have kept going into that progressive direction with songs like Machine Messiah instead of making those crap albums 90125 and Big Generator. 8.6/10

It sold no copies when released. I bought it in the cut out bin. In the 80s new wave was the rage. This album hinted at it while still keeping the sound. I know critically speaking their are better albums but this is my hidden gem favorite.

9 Tormato

Why any Yes fan would dislike Tormato is beyond me. It's in my top 5 favorite Yes albums, and I absolutely love most of the songs. Wonderfully crafted.

Very good work, it is a great album don't hate that. So much great.

10 Yes
The Contenders
11 Big Generator

A pretty good YES album. Modern Prog Rock. Some really catchy tunes on this one.

12 Time and a Word

Their early songs were very good. This underrated albums has gems like "Everydays" and "Dear Father" that are very good and not very well-known.

That is one of the better albums from this band, it is better as big generator.

13 Union

I think this is the most underrated. It has all the strong elements of Yes at one album.

The best 'mix' of the different line-ups; the tour was amamzing: 2 guitars, 2 keyboard players, 2 drummers...amazing!

That album from yes is yet even good.

14 Talk
15 The Ladder
16 Yessongs

This is a great live album with all of the best songs of their three most loved "classic" albums on it (except for South Side of the Sky) and then some. If you love The Yes Album, Fragile, and Close to the Edge, you should listen to this triple album. The renditions of all of the songs are really good.

17 Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe

Someone said that this isn't a Yes album. Wrong. Absurd legal entanglements prohibited the name "Yes" on this album, so it was titled after band members. This certainly is a Yes album, and a spectacular and atmospheric one at that.

18 Open Your Eyes
19 Fly from Here

This one is easily one of their most underrated as well. People ignore this one because it is one of Yes's newer albums that doesn't feature Anderson on vocals. But this and the great comeback album Magnification have both a great sound, and amazing songs. Not only does this feel like classic 70s yes, but it's structured like the classic Rush album 2112. The title track is a 20 minute epic suite that is truly one of their best songs. The rest of the songs are really great, but Into the Storm is the true highlight of the normal songs. Fly From Here is a 9.4/10

20 Magnification

This is truly a comeback album for yes. A lot of the albums before this were very good, especially Keys to Ascension, but there is this bizarre, nostalgic, 70s feeling you get from this album. Magnification easily is one of the best sounding yes albums and it succeeds at recapturing the classic 70s yes sound and making it sound heavy, clear, and melodic. It also features a lot of epic moments and orchestral sections. What a great final album for Anderson and it could have been a great finale for the band 8.9/10

21 Keys to Ascension

This is easily one of their most underrated albums. It was released as a double album, half of each cd was a live show, and the other half of each cd was new material. I always got the vibe that they did this to sell the live album which I dint care about. They released a cd known as Keystudio which was all the studio material. Live album aside, this has not only great material, but classic yes material. It features 7 tracks that are all pretty long. Each song brings something new to the table, the almost 20 minute songs like mind drive bring back classic yes noodling and progression. The 7-9 minute songs are very rocking yet not poppy, just like Siberian Khutru. And some of the tracks are very experimental, yet also great. This album is one that you don't want to miss, 9.5/10

22 Keys to Ascension 2
23 Heaven & Earth
24 Mirror to the Sky
25 From a Page
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