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Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Almost Hits: Yes, “Shoot High, Aim Low” (1987)

Jon Anderson and Trevor Rabin join us to discuss an era when Yes was suddenly expected to craft hit singles — leaving canny updates like this one often completely overlooked.
Call it the Curse of 90125, which spawned the band’s first (and so far, only) No. 1 smash. That led to undue pressure to chart songs, something that was unlikely to happen with a moody, complicated piece like “Shoot High, Aim Low.” For those who stubbornly refuse to stop keeping score, despite Yes’ long history as an album-rock band, this track managed to reach No. 11 on the mainstream rock list — though it failed to place on the Billboard Hot 100. Nevertheless, “Shoot High, Aim Low” has proven to be far sturdier than its turbulent history might suggest.
Going back a few years, Rabin had been unexpectedly thrust into a collaborative environment with Anderson when the Yes’ original singer joined the already long-underway sessions for 90125. It wasn’t until the group reformed to begin work on the follow up, 1987′s Big Generator, that Rabin had an opportunity to get to know Anderson creatively — and to work organically. The results on this duet represent an undisputed early highpoint.
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