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Daily Archives: September 5, 2017

Knack 2: Platformer Sequel Finds Its Footing

Out today exclusive to PlayStation 4 is Knack 2. It’s a fun platformer, a sort of cross between the Lego games and Uncharted via Ratchet and Clank, with goblins and robots to keep you punching. The original, one of the first titles to come out for the PS4, was pretty pedestrian. Does the second instalment follow in its predecessor’s plodding footsteps, or does Knack 2 punch above its weight? Meet me after the… wait for it… jump! to find out.

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Exclusive: Geoff Downes talks Yes, Asia, keyboards + more

yes-yestival-20172017 has been a banner year for Yes fans, with the group finally inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame after far too a long a wait. While there has been some band turmoil, with two factions touring at the same time, the legacy group featuring Steve Howe, Alan White, Geoff Downes, Jon Davison and Billy Sherwood have let their music do the talking, with their Yestival tour that has seen the group on the road with Carl Palmer’s ELP Experience and Todd Rundgren.

Yes, joined this time out with second drummer and Steve Howe’s son Dylan, has been playing music from the first decade of the band’s existence, beginning with their self-titled 1969 debut through 1980’s Drama. As the online videos and fan raves can attest, the band is delivering on all fronts. As Yes make their way north for Canadian dates, and on the heels of the Yes 50 European Tour announcement that also sees the band preparing a new live album and more, I had the chance to talk to keyboardist Geoff Downes about the state of the band, and his own experiences touring with Asia alongside Journey earlier this summer, which came not long after the passing of Asia founding member/bassist/singer John Wetton.

Andy Burns: You guys have been on the road for Yestival. How’s it been going?

Geoff Downes: Yeah, it’s going really good. The audience response has been really nice.

Andy Burns: You were on a pretty extensive tour with Asia opening for Journey before regrouping with Yes. How was that tour for you? I would think a little bittersweet.

Geoff Downes: Yeah, we had lost John (Wetton) earlier this year, and that was a real blow to all of us. We had committed to the tour even while John was ill, we were all hoping that he would make a recovery, but sadly that didn’t happen. I think it was important to go out and do that tour, we had a really great opportunity to get Asia’s music out into the open, and that’s what John would have wanted. We did a nice tribute to John in the show, and we were very well received by the Journey fans. It was just very sad that John wasn’t there to share that with us.

Andy Burns: Bringing Billy Sherwood into the Asia fold as bassist and vocalist, that was at John’s request? Read the rest of this entry

Songs for the Dead

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Questing! Swords! Necromancy! All of these things are completely foreign to me, sadly. Should it be sad that I’m not familiar with necromancy? I guess there is somewhat of a negative stigma attached to the esoteric art of RAISING THE DEAD. My upbringing tended to skew more science fiction and less fantasy so I was very curious about the independent comic book Songs for the Dead when it was brought to my attention. How did I feel about it? Hit the jump to find out!

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