Esquire sported a sound that represented the buoyant side of progressive rock, and with Chris Squire's wife singing lead, the band resembled Renaissance in their airy but stable musical approach. With their 1987 debut album, Charles Olins keeps the tracks flowing with his fluent keyboard activities, and guitarist Pat Thrall, most notably of Asia fame, pinches in with some arousing string work that evens out the synthesizer. There are traces of the Yes family all over this album, with Alan White playing drums and Chris Squire singing backup vocals. Even former Yes singer and Buggles mastermind Trevor Horn is involved with the mixing of the tracks. With all these Yes counterparts, it's no surprise that the songs simulate the same type of instrumental and, to an extent, lyrical composition as Yes. With titles like "Up Down Turnaround," and lines such as, "Could you conceive/How it read/A book in a still room/Life is a silent movie," the comparisons are evident. But even with such correlations, tracks like "Hourglass" and "Blossomtime" emit a certain prog flair that sheds its own character and individuality, giving the album some differentiation. This album stands up much better than 1996's Coming Home, which contains barely any artistic motivation.
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AllMusic Review by Mike DeGagne