DETROIT (Billboard) - Progressive-rock veterans Yes return to the U.S. in February for an 18-date run of small venues that kicks off February 2 in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. and wraps 26 days later in Boca Raton, Fla.
The group’s lineup remains founding bassist Chris Squire, longtime guitarist Steve Howe and drummer Alan White, and 2008 newcomers Oliver Wakeman, son of former band member Rick Wakeman, on keyboards and Benoit David from the Montreal Yes tribute band Close to the Edge in place of Jon Anderson, who has been unable to tour due to health reasons.
“I think they’re doing a tremendous job,” Howe told Billboard.com about Wakeman and David. “We’ve mapped out a period of time for (Yes) to work, so in that period of time things are going to stay as they are now with Oliver and Benoit. Were things to feel right with any other lineup, then that will happen, but at the moment this is what we’re focusing on.”
Yes wraps its European tour Saturday (December 12).
The group has been playing “Aliens,” a new song written by Squire, in some of its shows, but there’s no word yet on prospects for a new Yes album. “We’ve got to build ourselves. We’ve got to pace ourselves like Asia did with ‘Phoenix,'” Howe said, referring to his other band’s 2008 release, the first by Asia’s original lineup in 25 years.
Yes and Asia toured North America together during the summer. “(Asia) kind of had an almost 18-month (touring) run at things, so when we started making a record everything was on solid ground. ... I think that’s how I’d like to approach it with Yes as well, to have a little bit more time to do a little bit more (live) work and playing and then divert to recordings.”
Yes’ last studio album was 2001’s “Magnification,” and it released a “Symphonic Live” album earlier this year.
Tickets for the U.S. tour go on sale Friday (December 11).