Retro CD Review: “Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe”

Pat FrancisAlbum Review, MusicLeave a Comment

Anderson Bruford Wakeman HoweOn the eve of their induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame” as members of the band YES, we take a look back at the album created by 4 of tonight’s inductees: Jon Anderson, Bill Bruford, Rick Wakeman and Steve Howe.

In 1988 after the 80’s bombast of the previous two YES albums, “90125” and “Big Generator”, Jon Anderson wanted to get back to a more “Prog-Rock” sound. To do this he recruited past band mates from various incarnations of YES including drummer Bill Bruford, keyboardist Rick Wakeman and guitarist Steve Howe.  Using their surnames the album “Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe” was born.

Released in 1989 “ABWH” was exactly what fans of the classic YES sound were looking for. The album was produced by Anderson and Chris Kimsey (The Rolling Stones, INXS, Soul Asylum) and featured the single “Brother Of Mine” which was an instant hit on FM rock radio. Artwork for the disc was created by longtime YES cover artist Roger Dean. All nine songs covered the aural landscape that YES fans have come to expect from these four musicians. Legendary bassist Tony Levin (King Crimson, Peter Gabriel) was on hand as well to round out the group.

If you are a longtime fan of this album then the best version available was released in 2014 via Esoteric Recordings a division of the massively successful Cherry Red Records label based in the UK. The Esoteric version adds a bonus disc that includes 6 additional edit versions of songs from the original long player.

After 28 years the album still sounds amazing and has definitely stood the test of time.



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Pat Francis currently hosts the popular comedy/music podcast “Rock Solid,” called 1 of the 8 great music podcasts to put in your ears by USA Today and featuring artists such as Melissa Etheridge, Sammy Hagar and Susanna Hoffs. His frequent appearances on Jimmy Pardo’s top rated podcast “Never Not Funny” are fan favorites. Pat began his entertainment career as a stand-up comic in Chicago, IL. After touring the country and performing in 42 states at comedy clubs and colleges, he relocated to Los Angeles, CA. There he appeared as a comedian on Comedy Central, AMC, the UCB and is a yearly regular at the San Francisco Sketchfest. For the past 5 years he has also served as Co-Host of the yearly event Pardcast-A-Thon which to date has raised over 700,000 for Smile Train. When not entertaining people in person he also makes his living as a Story Producer for reality television programs. It is also important to know that Pat is a monkey in a human mask.

Pat FrancisRetro CD Review: “Anderson Bruford Wakeman Howe”