Billy Sherwood: Citizen

This week’s Sherwood release is a triumphant, star-studded concept album.

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The well-connected one’s prolific career continues with his eighth solo album, as his titular protagonist flits across time, witnessing significant historical events from the purge of the Cherokee (Trail Of Tears) to the Wall St. Crash (The Great Depression).

The title track opens and sets the tone, with big, ballsy motifs, Hammond organ and neo-prog moments. As well as featuring fellow Circa member Tony Kaye this is all the more poignant for being the last recorded performance by Chris Squire. Throughout, Sherwood plays most of the parts himself (including his first instrument, the drums, and he’s pretty damn handy), and his vocals sounds like Peter Gabriel’s in parts. Further bait for Yes fans are contributions from Rick Wakeman, Geoff Downes and Patrick Moraz, while Jon Davison turns in a terrific performance on the very Yes Written In The Centuries (more energetic and exciting than anything from Heaven And Earth). Elsewhere Alan Parsons, Steve Hackett and Jordan Rudess add their talents, and if it’s not a total success (folk rocker Just Galileo And Me is just saved by its annoyingly catchy and historically dubious chorus) – but if Conspiracy, Lifesigns and 90s Yes are your bag, you will love this record.