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Circa: Live (DVD)

Circa is the Yes-offshoot band featuring Billy Sherwood (vocals/bass), Alan White (drums), Tony Kaye (organ/keyboards), and guitarist Jimmy Haun. This new live DVD, available only through the band's website, is a performance from August 2007, and despite it being a pretty low budget affair (financed and put together by the band) it's an enjoyable watch nontheless. Featuring all the songs from the band's debut CD, as well as a near 40 minute instrumental medley of Yes songs from every era of the band's history, and "The More We Live" (written by Sherwood & Chris Squire), Live is perfectly able to scratch your Yes-itch to some degree. Most of the Circa original songs are decent poppy/prog/rock tunes, highlighted by Sherwood's melodic vocals and surprisingly muscular, Squire-like bass work (one of the biggest surprises of the DVD), Haun's sinewy guitar work, the ever present organ tones of Kaye, and White's tricky rhythms. Strongest cuts are "Cut the Ties", "Don't Let Go", "Brotherhood of Men", and "Information Overload". The best way to describe the music of Circa, is sort of a mix of the Squire/Sherwood material with 80's & 90's Yes, although there are certain passages that bring to mind classic 70's Yes as well, especially with some of Haun's guitar work, who is very able to hit some Howe-ish lines from time to time.

Of course, the real hoot here is the Yes medley "Chronological Journey", which brings together little snippets of so many classic tunes, like "Soundchaser", "Parallels", "Close to the Edge", "Tempus Fugit", "Silent Wings of Freedom", "Cinema", "Mind Drive", and many, many others, all crammed into a fun 40 minute jam. Kudos to all the players for really honing in on the Yes sound here, with Kaye perfectly recreating his old stuff as well as Wakeman's, and Sherwood more than sounding like a dead ringer for Squire with his meaty and nimble bass work. Sadly, the production of the DVD doesn't quite measure up to the impressive nature of the band's performance, as the camera work is very choppy, the edits haphazard at times, and there are many instances of shots laying over another. After a while you kind of get used to it, as the band really are working hard and you tend to overlook the DVD's shortcomings.

So, if you are a Yes fan, this will be something to check out, but I think overall Circa have something to offer as well with their original material.

Track Listing
1. Cut the Ties
2. Don't Let Go
3. Together We Are
4. Information Overload
5. Trust in Something
6. Keeper of the Flame
7. Life Going By
8. Look Inside
9. Brotherhood of Man
10. Chronological Journey (YES Medley)
11. The More We Live
12. *Bonus Footage

Added: September 8th 2008
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Circa Website
Hits: 2768
Language: english

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