Yak were a 4 piece instrumental progressive rock band who played between '82 & '84. The line up consisted of Robin Hodder (guitar), SySnell (bass), John Wynn (drums) & Martin Morgan (keyboards). The band stopped playing when jobs took the members to disperate parts of the UK. The material had only ever been recorded in Lo-Fi but Martin was determined that it should not be 'lost'. In 2003 he set about re-recording 8 of the YAK tracks which were released as the "Dark Side of the Duck" album in Feb '04. Following this and enthused with the response, the band re-formed - original line up, but now with Max Johnson on bass. A live EP, "Does Your Yak Bite ?" was released in 2005, and the same line-up released the jam collection "The Rutland Chronicles" the following year.
This 2008 instrumental CD is one of the best British progressive rock albums in recent memory, pure classic prog, close to Genesis (or Steve Hackett solo) and Camel. Yak are a keys/bass/drums trio, but their sound is bigger than that – after hearing this, you will swear that there is a guitarist in the band, one who has the expressive Hackett/Latimer lead style nailed! In fact, keyboardist Martin Morgan is playing the guitar parts from a keyboard, the best emulation of that sustained electric guitar style we’ve ever heard. Of course a guitarist or two will be required live, as the guitar and keyboard sounds are layered. Just when you’ve despaired of ever hearing a British prog band create the real thing again, you are rescued by a Yak. Sounds like Dave Greenslade jamming with Genesis.
"Yak match raucous, restless energy with uncommon gravitas, making this the rare garage rock-informed record that aims for the upper reaches of Royal Albert Hall." - Pitchfork
"Quest for the Stones" is the third studio album by British instrumental symph/prog band Yak. The music of Yak is instrumental, melodic and according to the reviews it is mostly being categorised in the genre of symphonic progressive rock. "For the uninitiated, the music of YAK harkens back to the golden age of 70s’ symphonic rock from pioneers like Camel and early Genesis; as well as the solo albums of Steve Hackett (which is amazing considering there is no guitarist). Martin emulates the emotional sustained guitar tones of artists like Steve Hackett and Andy Latimer beautifully.
The Rutland Chronicles …a live jam. This was recorded a year after "Does your Yak Bite?" and was the 2nd time we played together - this is another Jam session with some materials later developed as tracks on Journey of the Yak which was recorded 2 years later. Please Note - this album should not be played to small children or in a car with people you don't know and is really for "completionists" - contains improvisation & was recorded in Lo-Fi on a "Cassette Recorder" - an ancient type of recording facility. Digitised at Ruskin Road Studios, Northampton.