Veteran rock outfits Yes and the Allman Brothers Band are readying vintage live recordings for summer release, although of vastly different scope. The Allmans’ single-disc features the band’s original lineup at a 1970 show in Washington, D.C., while in the case of Yes, it’s a three-disc collection spanning 1970 sessions with the BBC’s John Peel to a 1988 show in Houston.
Due July 12 from Sanctuary, the Allmans’ “American University 12/13/70” was previously released by the band on its own label, and has been available as a Japanese import. The set finds guitarist Duane Allman, guitarist/singer Gregg Allman, guitarist/singer Dickey Betts, bassist Berry Oakley and drummers Jaimoe and Butch Trucks in the midst of a tour promoting that year’s “Idlewild South” (Polydor), later dates of which would produce the beloved album “Live From the Fillmore East,” issued in 1971.
The disc boasts seven songs taken from two sets performed at the D.C. institution. Among the highlights is an extended jam on “Statesboro Blues,” as well as an early version of the classic “Whipping Post” that passes the 20-minute mark.
Meanwhile, the majority of Rhino’s “The Word Is Live,” due Aug. 23, is comprised of previously unreleased Yes concert recordings that add up to nearly four hours of performance. The only tracks not making their debut here are the songs “Then” and “For Everyone” from Peel’s show that open the first disc.
Among the notable cuts is an 18-minute version of “Awaken” recorded in 1979 in Chicago and “The Big Medley,” an epic performance that finds every member of the band soloing in Los Angeles in 1978.
Fans will find material played by the band’s original lineup of singer Jon Anderson, bassist Chris Squire, drummer Bill Bruford, keyboardist Tony Kaye and guitarist Peter Banks. The collection also offers contributions from many others who have graced the ranks of Yes through the years: guitarist Steve Howe, keyboardist Rick Wakeman, drummer Alan White, keyboardist Patrick Moraz, vocalist Trevor Horn, keyboardist Geoff Downes and guitarist Trevor Rabin.