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Circa - Circa CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

3.33 | 48 ratings

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Symphonic Team
2 stars Keepers of the flame

Yes has so many offshoots in terms of solo and side projects that "Yes Related" could almost be considered a subgenre in its own right here at Prog Archives! Circa's four members all have previous connections to Yes. The two core members are Billy Sherwood and Tony Kaye. Billy's association with Yes goes back to the early 90's when he contributed one song to the Union album. He toured with Yes on the Talk tour and then became a full member of the band for Open Your Eyes and The Ladder. Guitarist Jimmy Haun also participated in the creation of Union. Kaye is of course the member of Circa whose history with Yes goes back the furthest as he was a founding members of that band and played on their first three studio albums. In the early 80's Kaye re-joined Yes and recorded a further four studio albums with them. Finally, the drummer in Circa is none other than Alan White who has played with Yes since 1973 until the present day.

Given the members' histories and close association with Yes it should not come as a surprise to anyone that Circa sounds a bit like Yes. Billy Sherwood can even be said to be something of a Chris Squire sound-alike both vocally and on the bass guitar and Jimmy Haun's guitar playing is heavily influenced by that of Steve Howe. As if all these Yes-connections were not enough, Trevor Rabin is credited on two songs and Billy's brother Michael Sherwood (who also played a small part in the Union album) is credited for providing vocoder!

This debut album by the group is a highly professional recording with several good moments, but the material is not the band's strongest. I first heard this album in live format on the Circa: Live DVD where they were performed the whole album. While this album is by no means bad, but it is not the kind of album that deserves to be performed live in its entirety. Thankfully, Circa would go on to make better albums after this one.

I can recommend this album to fans of Yes, but if you have the chance I would say go for the aforementioned Circa: Live DVD instead of this studio album as there you will get all the songs from this album plus a nearly 40 minute long medley of Yes material and one full Yes song.

SouthSideoftheSky | 2/5 |


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