From Sterling Whitaker Of The Examiner
Fans of the superstar British progressive rock group Yes have pointed out many visual similarities between the blockbuster movie Avatar and the artwork of Roger Dean, who provided the cover art for such classic Yes albums as Fragile, Close to the Edge and Tales From Topographic Oceans. In a new interview with Examiner.com former Yes front man Jon Anderson commented on the matter for the first time, saying, "He should have gotten a name check on the movie."
The debate exploded in online forums as soon as Avatar hit theaters, with longtime Roger Dean fans noting the similarities between Dean's floating islands and dragons and those depicted throughout the film. Fans have even made YouTube videos set to Yes music, and several web sites have written articles about the controversy. Other fans have noted the body paint in the film resembles that in Dean's book Magnetic Storm. Still others have pointed out that the film's eco-friendly plot mirrors many of the themes contained in Jon Anderson's own lyrics, particularly from his landmark solo album Olias of Sunhillow, which featured an indigenous culture whose life centers around a tree - another major theme of Avatar.
Asked directly if he saw any Yes or Roger Dean influence in the film, Anderson replied, "For sure Roger Dean. For sure. He should have gotten a name check on the movie.
"The movie is ginormous," Anderson added. "The movie is glorious, I cried all the way through it twice."
The singer explores many of the same themes in his new album Survival & Other Stories, for which he collaborated with a diverse group of musicians via the Internet. Anderson's concerns for spirituality and ecology provide the basis for many tracks, especially "Big Buddha Song," with its pointed references to the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and last year's oil spill disaster.
"People always say, 'Oh, Jon Anderson, the lyrics are all light and dreamy,'" Anderson said. "No, I go for the jugular all the time, but people don't quite get it sometimes."Continue reading on Examiner.com