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Yes – Yes Acoustic: Guaranteed no Hiss March 23, 2007

Posted by erouhban in Movies/DVD's, Music, Prog Rock.
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yes-ac.JPGIt is very difficult to judge a recorded live performance because a large portion of the charm and ambience encountered in a live show is impossible to convey on CD or DVD. It is even more difficult if you’re judging technical virtuosos YES, especially in an Acoustic set! I was first worried that the quality of the music (not the recording quality!) would be damped by the attempt to convert all their technical genius into un-amplified grand piano aided ballads! But oh boy how happy I was when all my doubts were proven wrong! The DVD is terrific, especially classics ‘Roundabout’ and ‘Good People’ which ironically –as ballads- may very well be the best two versions of the songs I have ever listened to! In addition, I have never imagined hearing Jon Anderson sing so beautiful and deep on stage, the guy now rates No.1 on my best vocalist list, surpassing greats like Roger Daltrey, Freddie Mercury, even most of my favorite jazz singers.

      

The DVD I got has seven wonderful tracks, but ‘Good People’ and ‘Roundabout’ just stand out! They are both ingeniously arranged for an acoustic set, and played flawlessly. The line-up is the second best (second to the one in ‘Fragile’ and ‘Close to the Edge’, in my opinion at least) that yes have ever had, the same one we saw in ‘Tales from Topographic Oceans’ and ‘Relayer’. All this reassures the fact that technical geniuses like YES will have no problem adapting to any environment, be it classical or groovy. This DVD is a must!

Aston Villa 0-0 Liverpool – EPL – 18 Mar. 07 March 19, 2007

Posted by erouhban in Liverpool FC, Sports.
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badgelogo.JPGIn one of the duller matches of Liverpool’s season, Benitez again starts with his defensive minded lineup that did well against Barcelona 11 days ago. However, with both sides disorganized and playing safe, the outcome was an awful game in which the goalkeepers were never tested. I really do hope Liverpool do vary their tactics from time to time especially against very weak sides (like Aston Villa!) giving the players more freedom to score goals. Luckily Liverpool’s neighbors Everton beat Arsenal 1-0 at Goodison Park keeping the race to the automatic Champions League spot interesting!

Roundup – Uefa Champions League – 7 Mar. 07 March 10, 2007

Posted by erouhban in Champions League, Sports.
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chmps.JPGIn a livelier set of matches than the away games, Manchester United beat Lille 1-0 to follow Brits Liverpool and Chelsea into the quarters, AC Milan had to wait to extra time to manage a 1-0 win against Celtic, Bayern Munich beat Real Madrid 2-1 to make it through giving Roy Makaay in the process the record of scoring the fastest goal in the competition’s history (10 seconds was it!), and finally, a never duller Arsenal side only managed a 1-1 draw with PSV and are now out of all cup competitions.

Roundup – Uefa Champions League – 6 Mar. 07 March 10, 2007

Posted by erouhban in Champions League, Liverpool FC, Sports.
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chmps.JPGIn an exact replica of their game against Manchester United 3 days ago, Liverpool lost 1-0 in a game they once again dominated! However, this time they did get to their objective, and they are through to the Champions League quarters at the expense of the defending champions. With a defensive minded lineup, Benitez once again showed what a terrific defensive job the Reds could put on. It was total containment! The Catalans did not breathe until the last 15 minutes or so when they got the goal! Putting all my admiration of the performance aside, I have to voice my concern once again about the lack of attacking firepower! Liverpool’s strikers once again ceased to cause any major trouble in the visitor’s box. A defender and a defensive midfielder were the two who hit the Catalan woodwork. I can go on and on! I’ll just wait until the summer transfer window opens to see if Misters Hicks and Gillett are going to cash in on a major striker, the only path to winning ways!  

Elsewhere, Valencia drew 0-0 at home with Inter to make it through, Chelsea beat Porto 2-1 in London to advance as well, and finally, the surprise of the evening, Roma won away 2-0 against title favorites (in my opinion at least) Lyon to thwart the French’s hopes of a championship title once again.

Liverpool 0-1 Manchester United – EPL – 3 Mar. 07 March 4, 2007

Posted by erouhban in Liverpool FC, Sports.
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badgelogo.JPGThe extent to which football is sometimes deemed a heartbreaker was clearly demonstrated at Anfield yesterday! What a disaster! If I’m not mistaken, it was 11 Liverpool corners to Manchester’s 2 (not to mention all the other statistics in their favor) at the 90th minute when a scramble in the Liverpool box gave John O’shea a last minute winner! I have never seen anything like it; just take a look how high Sir Alex Ferguson jumped when Manchester got the goal.    

However, blaming fate is never a reason for a loss like yesterday’s. If a world class striker was on Liverpool’s side, at least one of the tens of chances would have been converted! The prolific defensive work by the Reds might justify Benitez’s decision to play Gerrard on the right (a subject of continuous controversy) and two defensive minded midfielders in the middle, but the strike force (except for a good Bellamy performance) failed again, and a finisher of the calibre of Henry or Shevshenko is a basic requirement now for a good scoring record! Let’s hope the loss will not affect Tuesday’s clash with Barca. 

Liverpool 4-0 Sheffield United – EPL – 24 Feb. 07 March 3, 2007

Posted by erouhban in Liverpool FC, Sports.
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badgelogo.JPGA good performance from the reds got them a win against a weak Sheffield United side by a whopping 4 goals to nil. 2 goals by Robbie Fowler, a rare one by Sami Hyppia, and another from Steven Gerrard got Liverpool another three points to consolidate their third place position as well as giving them a moral boost before next weeks thriller with Manchester United. Let’s see what happens then!

Roundup – Uefa Champions League – 21 Feb. 07 March 2, 2007

Posted by erouhban in Champions League, Liverpool FC, Sports.
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chmps.JPGThe highlight of the evening, if not of the competition so far, was Liverpool’s emphatic beating of Barcelona 2-1 at the Nou Camp! Defying the odds, (and statistics as well, Liverpool rarely win outside Anfield, let alone while trailing by a goal against giants like Barca!) the reds put on a brave performance and duly reaped the harvest. They now have upper hand against the Catalans in the second leg! The goals came from Bellamy and Riise, who were in the headlines 2 days before but for the wrong reasons, they were both in a brawl! And with each other! All in all Liverpool amaze us with what they can sometimes achieve. However the key to silverware is consistency, maybe next season!  

Elsewhere, FC Porto drew with Chelsea 1-1 in Portugal, Roma drew with Lyon 0-0 in Rome, and finally Inter Milan held Valencia to a 2-2 draw in Milan.  

Roundup – Uefa Champions League – 20 Feb. 07 March 2, 2007

Posted by erouhban in Champions League, Sports.
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chmps.JPGWhat a dull start to the Champions League round of 16. PSV beat a weak Arsenal side 1-0 in Eindhoven, Celtic held AC Milan 0-0 at home, Manchester got the better of poor Lille 1-0 via a controversial Ryan Giggs free kick in France, and finally Real Madrid won 3-2 against an impressive Bayern Munich side at the Bernabeu in what was the only decent game of the evening.