Sunday, 1 March 2015

2014 polls: bad news for Heaven & Earth, but better news for other Yes releases

The results for two big fan-voted polls of progressive rock in 2014 are now in, and there's a fair amount of Yes-related interest. First the bad news: in the DPRP Annual Poll (374 responses), Heaven & Earth won Biggest Disappointment, by a large margin over Pink Floyd's The Endless River. Prog magazine's Readers' Poll has a similar category, Non-Event of the Year, with Heaven & Earth 4th (behind No High Voltage Festival; the Sum of the Parts Genesis documentary; and Kate Bush only playing London).

Other categories had better news for the band. Yes were 1st (Relayer) and 6th (The Yes Album) in Prog's Reissue of the Year category, and 8th in the magazine's Multimedia of the Year for Like It Is (won by Transatlantic's KaLIVEoscope). Likewise, Like It Is was 7th in DPRP's Best DVD section (again won by KaLIVEoscope).

Prog's Event of the Year was won by Kate Bush's live shows, but Rick Wakeman (who writes a regular column for the magazine) came 3rd for his Journey to the Centre of the Earth 40th anniversary tour, while King Crimson's return was 4th and Cruise to the Edge, 6th. DPRP's Prog Happening of the Year category was won by the return of Pink Floyd, with King Crimson's return now 2nd and prog cruises in general, 3rd. (Wakeman's Journey shows received only 2 votes with DPRP, making them 17th equal.)

DPRP has a separate Best Concerts category. King Crimson came 5th equal for their 13 Sep 2014 show, although in a large field, 3 votes was all you needed for 5th equal. The category was won by Transatlantic's 14 Mar 2014 show in Amsterdam; with the "D" in DPRP being Dutch, the Amsterdam shows tend to do well.

The two polls differed somewhat on individual players. Wakeman topped the keyboardist category for Prog, but he only got a single vote in the DPRP poll, where Geoff Downes came 7th equal. Wakeman was also 3rd in Prog's Man of the Year category, which was won by Steven Wilson. Steve Howe made 7th in Prog's guitar list, but also only got a single vote with DPRP. (Steve Rothery won both best guitarist votes.) Similarly, Tony Levin came 3rd in Prog's bassist poll (won by Nick Beggs), but had a single vote with DPRP (won by Pete Trewavas).

Not much happening in the best vocalist categories. Jon Davison's 2 votes for his performance on Heaven & Earth got him 22nd equal with DPRP (won by Peter Nicholls). He also got 1 vote for his performance on Glass Hammer's Ode to Echo, but there were no votes for any other Yes vocalists. (Prog only gave top tens, but there were no Yes men in Prog's male vocalist category, won by Joe Payne, while their female section was won by Lee Douglas.) Alan White and Dylan Howe both got 1 vote for DPRP's Best Drummer (won by Mike Portnoy). (Again no-one in Prog's top ten, also won by Portnoy.)

Prog's Album of the Year was Opeth's Pale Communion (3rd with DPRP), with the only Yes-related entry being Dave Kerzner's New World, on which Billy Sherwood guests, coming in 10th. Kerzner was also 4th in the Tip for 2015 section with Prog, won by iamthemorning, and 3rd Best Newcomer with DPRP, won by Synaesthesia.

DPRP's Best Album was IQ's The Road of Bones (3rd with Prog), with the highest Yes-related entry being United Progressive Fraternity's Fall in Love with the World 14th, on which Jon Anderson guests, with New World coming next at 24. Ode to Echo (with Jon Davison) was 42nd and Heaven & Earth was 50th.

DPRP also has a Best Tracks category, won by IQ's "The Road of Bones". The top Yes-related entry here was "Subway Walls" at 35th equal. The only others in the top 100 were "Believe Again" and Glass Hammer's "The Garden of Hedon" (if Davison appears on that track) tied at 89.

Finally, Heaven & Earth managed 8th equal for Best Artwork at DPRP.

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