Exposé Online banner

Steve Howe — Homebrew 3
(Inside Out Music IOMCD 229, 2005, CD)

by Paul Hightower, Published 2006-05-01

Homebrew 3 Cover art

This is the third edition in Steve Howe¹s collection of archival demo recordings. With this disk the Yes guitarist has pulled together pieces spanning some twenty years, beginning with the period following his stint with Asia and up to 2001’s solo album Natural Timbre. Fans will recognize elements in these recordings that would reappear in songs from various releases, including band projects like GTR, ABWH, and Yes. In these instances Howe’s demos went through significant re-arranging (to use his own analogy, a “meat skewer”) when seen in context of the final recorded product, though, as with the GTR track “Imagining,” it’s interesting to see how the distinctive main riff actually got its start. The parts that would end up on solo recordings fared better, as one might expect. Still, they reveal Howe’s willingness to deconstruct demos to find a melody or thematic idea that could benefit another composition. Most of the ideas are simple, just a few chord changes with perhaps a bridge extension or middle eight, though a few (“Kind of Friends,” for example) show him to be an occasionally gifted songwriter. At his heart Howe is an instrumentalist and even with these demos he can’t resist the layering of multiple guitar elements taken from different instruments (pedal steel, Gibson ES175, classical guitar, etc.) that is his trademark. No doubt his vocals on a few tracks will cause some listeners to flinch, though this album is likely to only find interest with serious fans who’ve accepted that side of Howe long ago.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 33, 2005 releases

Related artist(s): Steve Howe

Latest news

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more

2020-07-12
Judy Dyble RIP – Singer-songwriter Judy Dyble, who was a founding member of Fairport Convention and one of the distinctive voices of the 60s folk revival in Britain, has died at the age of 71. Her passing came at the end of a long illness, though which she continued to work. » Read more

2020-07-06
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more

2020-06-14
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more

2020-05-15
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Qoph - Pyrola – It’s been entirely too long since this Swedish band’s 1998 debut. Since that time, the band has formed their own label and started singing in English. Their basic sound is intact, however,...  (2005) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues