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Fragile, At The Boat Race, Cambridge, November 23rd 2000

By Malcolm Bowman

The Roundabout 2000 tour finally drew to an end in Cambridge and was a tough gig for the guys with Tom unable to make it due to personal reasons. So Fragile took to the stage for the first time ever as a five-piece, could they still make the grade? Malcolm Bowman was there and sent us his thoughts on the night. Malcolm's experience is so similar to mine and many others, before he saw Fragile he couldn't believe that a Yes tribute band could really work. Take a read and see what he thought afterwards . . .

 

 
 

"Who do these people think they are?"

I had clicked onto the Fragile web page on a number of occasions, but as a devoted Yes fan of 26 years standing I just could not bring myself to go and see a Yes `tribute band`! Who could possibly perform Yes music to anything approaching an acceptable standard, apart from the Masters themselves? Who do these people think they are?! But then my Yes gig companions said why don`t we go and see Fragile at Cambridge, a mere 15 miles away. I reluctantly agreed, and off we went to the Boat Race. I was fully prepared to walk out after a few minutes if they didn`t get it right! But, as others have stated in their reviews, my fears were unfounded. After only 60 seconds I turned to my friend and gave him the thumbs up sign, which he reciprocated. Here was a band of very competent musicians performing some of the most beautifully crafted rock music ever penned, beautifully! With no word of a lie, on some of the pieces you could have closed your eyes, and it could have been Yes on the stage. And all of the band were `giving it some`, with the notable exception of Jon Bastable on bass, who, if he`d been any more laid back, would have fallen over backwards! Sorry Jon! Your playing, like the rest of the band was excellent! 2 hours of such pieces as Cinema, Yours is no disgrace, Starship Trooper, Awaken, etc., etc., etc., passed by much too quickly. A really memorable evening. I will be scanning their website for the new seasons venues, and will definitely attend more than one Fragile gig next year. Please, if you are a Yes fan, and if you are reading this I assume that you are, please go along and see this band in action. I don`t think you will be disappointed. I certainly wasn`t! My congratulations to Steve, Jon, Mitch, Gonzalo, and Robert. Keep on doin` what you`re doin`.

Malcolm Bowman


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