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Album: Can I Play You Something? The Pre-Yes Years, Recordings from 1964-1968
Artist: Peter Banks
1999 Blueprint
CD: BP301CD

Musicians:
Peter Banks: guitar (3, 5-8, 10-13, 15, 16 including solo, 18-21), backing vocals (5, 7, 8, 10-13, 15, 16, 18-20)
Greg Tupper: alto sax (3)
Brad Stephenson: bass (3)
Mark Craney:drums  (3)
Chris Squire: bass (5, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 18-20), lead vocals (18), backing vocals (5, 7, 8, 10, 12, 13, 15, 16, 18-20)
Andrew Jackman: keys (5, 10, 12, 13, 19), backing vocals  (5, 10, 12, 13, 19)
Gunnar Hákonarson: drums (5, 10, 12, 13, 19)
Steve Nardelli: lead vocals (5, 10, 12, 13, 19)
John Tite: lead vocals (6, 11)
Ray Alford: bass (6, 11), backing vocals (11)
Malcolm "Pinnie" Raye: drums (6, 11)
Clive Bailey: lead guitar (7, 8, 15, 16, 18, 20), lead vocals (7, 8, 15, 16, 20)
Alexander Belmont (real name Bob Hagger): drums (7, 8, 15, 16, 18, 20)
Cecilia Quino: vocals (9 uncredited)
Bill Bruford: drums (21)
 

Produced by Kenny Ball (5, 13), Mike Leander (7, 15, 18), John Muir/Denis O'Keefe/Pete Carr/Pete Ritzema (8, 16, 20)
Recorded 1966 (10), 1967 (5, 13), 1968 (7, 8, 15, 16, 18, 20), 1980 (3)
Pre-production: Gerard Johnson, Clive Nolan
Mastering: Chris Thorpe

Cover and design: Mark Wilkinson
Liner notes: Peter Banks, Barbara Kirk
 

Tracks:
1. Can I Play You Something? (0:15)
2. Bang/Crash (0:21)
3. Peter Banks Band: Peter Gunn (5:25)
4. Banks: Hippie Loop [Banks] (0:56)
5. Syn: 14 Hour Technicolour Dream [Nardelli/Jackman] (2:55)
6. The Devil's Disciples: You Better Move On (2:46)
7. Mabel Greer's Toyshop: Beyond and Before (Demo) [Squire/Bailey] (3:43)
8. Mabel Greer's Toyshop: Beyond and Before (What Bass? mix) [Squire/Bailey] (3:56)
9. Banks: Lima Loop [Banks] (0:15)
10. Syn: Grounded (2:19)
11. The Devil's Disciples: For Your Love (2:46)
12. Syn: Flowerman (Demo) [Nardelli/Jackman] (2:38)
13. Syn: Flowerman [Nardelli/Jackman] (2:33)
14. Banks: Yesterdays [Banks] (0:53)
15. Mabel Greer's Toyshop: Electric Funeral (Demo) [Squire/Bailey] (3:19)
16. Mabel Greer's Toyshop: Electric Funeral (Radio Fun Mix) [Squire/Bailey] (4:29)
17. Banks: Cinnamon Touch (Te Amo, Ceci) [Banks] (1:30)
18. Mabel Greer's Toyshop: Get Yourself Together (Demo) [Squire/Bailey] (3:34)
19. Syn: Created by Clive (2:28)
20. Mabel Greer's Toyshop: Images of You and Me (Radio Fun Mix) (4:09)
21. Affirmative Duo: I Saw You! (Bang/Crash) (8:10)
22. Banks: No Time [Banks] (2:27)
 

Notes: The liner notes are in a narrative style, not always detailed and occasionally difficult to interpret, so I've done my best above! The exact spelling of Hákonarson's name has been a matter of some debate. The notes here spell it Hakanarssen, but I believe Hákonarson is actually right.

(3) was recorded live in Los Angeles and is the only released material by the Peter Banks Band, who played live in the period. The two pieces by the Devil's Disciples were recorded in the same session, Banks' first time in a recording studio, aged 17. (8, 16, 20) were recorded for BBC sessions on Top Gear/Night Ride with John Peel. Also recorded in those sessions, but not included here, was "Jeanetta" [Squire/Bailey], which is known in trading circles. (21) is the extended solo section for guitar and percussion from within a live performance of "I See You" by Yes.

Banks' pieces on the albums (including (1, 2)) are partly sound collages and the beginnings and ends of some of the archival material has linking material attached. (4) is based on a Mabel Greer sample. (9) and (17) both refer to Banks' Peruvian (then) fiancée (now wife). The music and the CD tracks are not perfectly aligned, so for example "Peter Gunn" starts in the last few seconds of CD track 2 and ends in the first few seconds of CD track 4.

This is an odd mix, but one put together with a bit more imagination than most archival compilations. The sound quality is often poor. The Syn material is better presented on Original Syn, although (12) is not included in that release. We do have here the only official release of material by Mabel Greer's Toyshop, the immediate predecessor to Yes, and (21) is the earliest officially available recording of completely live Yes (as opposed to BBC sessions). (HP, 24 Mar 05)


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