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Hear Isolated Guitar and Bass from Yes' "Roundabout"

(Image credit: Richard McCaffrey/Getty Images)

Here's another one from the "fun with isolated tracks" files!

It's Steve Howe's isolated guitar (top YouTube player) and Chris Squire's isolated bass (bottom player) from "Roundabout," the classic early 1972 Yes tune from Fragile.

While the bass line pure genius, it is pretty straightforward in its isolated form. What's truly fascinating is how Howe's various guitar parts—played on various guitars—were spliced together into the final track, thus creating a one-of-a-kind musical performance.

Howe mingles acoustic and electric figures, finishing things off with a series of furious electric runs and an atonal solo that doesn't adhere to traditional rock forms.

"Certainly what I felt I was doing was bringing that guitar sound, the Martin 00-18, right to the front of the group, which was not something that I knew would work," Howe said in 1998. "I wondered how much could I play acoustic guitar in a rock band. I’d done it with 'Clap' and 'Starship,' and little bits on 'Yours Is No Disgrace.' My goal on 'Roundabout' was to make the acoustic a feature instrument."

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Damian Fanelli
Damian Fanelli

Damian is Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World magazine. In past lives, he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor, and his non-Pulitzer-Prize-winning stories have appeared in Guitar Aficionado, Vintage Guitar, Total Guitar and countless other publications, including 13.7 metric tons of daily newspapers. He's written liner notes for major-label releases, including Stevie Ray Vaughan's 'The Complete Epic Recordings Collection' (Sony Legacy) and has interviewed everyone from Yngwie Malmsteen to Kevin Bacon (with a few memorable Eric Clapton and Ty Tabor chats thrown into the mix). Damian, a former member of Brooklyn's The Gas House Gorillas, was the sole guitarist in Mister Neutron, a trio that toured the U.S. and released three albums (one of which appears in the 2015 Disney film 'Tomorrowland' starring George Clooney and Britt Robertson). He's in two NYC-area bands and plays Teles with four-way switches, B-benders and semi-snazzy aftermarket pickups. He quotes Terry-Thomas twice daily.