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Fish - Internal Exile CD (album) cover





3.14 | 218 ratings

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The Prognaut
Prog Reviewer
3 stars I had to go around the bush so many times to come up with a review for this album. Meaning, despite of knowing this isn't certainly the best album by FISH yet the worse of them all. I found so many variations here compared to "Vigil In A Wilderness Of Mirrors", but happened to like them somehow. The album is playful, less whimsical and very amusing. I must confess that listening to this particular album among many others, gets me in the right kind of mood. Maybe it's the simplicities, the unelaborated narrative or the contagious rhythms. "Shadowplay" is for instance, the kind of song that raises my spirit incredibly, it's got this spark to be considered some kind of "Scottish battle song", in the good way I mean. On the other hand and right after, "Credo" is definitely one of my favorite songs by FISH because it's got the lightness and ironically the wit and the beat to make you sing, jump and scream endwise. That happened to me when I sang the song along Derek and other two thousand devoted souls at his last show in Mexico City last August 18th 2006. Just amazing!

It's not that the album goes from astonishing to plain in a matter of chords, for it's the fact that there are no elaborated suites or complex arrangements. "Internal Exile" is as experimental as convincing if you just let the Progressive harshness on the side. The purpose is simple, yes, and it accomplishes quite well. Such thing is displayed over "Just Good Friends", which is to me this fine ballad that reminds me of the emotiveness FISH's got deep inside, but showed in a joyful way. The album is perfectly suited with the unmistakable Frank USHER on lead guitar along Robin BOULT, and hardly to oversight, the presence of Mickey SIMMONDS on his magic keyboards. Almost the entire album goes straightforward, until we reach a real eyebrow rising, underrated track which is "Tongues". For me, the supporting piece of this pleasant experience. Finally, some provocative lyrics, some acid romance and this power so representative of FISH behind the mic. The song is self-collapsing, unique and catchy. Not in the commercial way, but in the way you feel like you've spoken out loud this words some time making you feel the ballad a real part of you. And if it wasn't enough, FISH howling away during the choirs is as fantastic as unbelievable. Honestly, that reminded me of the FISH that once was master of the spotlight during his MARILLION years. Overall, great stuff.

And finally, the song named after this album. Just made me smile out of joy the first time I listened to and still it makes me smile ear to ear. I sense this spiritual freedom, this amusement, the practical and unique of how FISH could get if he determines to do such thing. I confess I've danced to "Internal Exile" more than a couple of times, specially right at the final part where it all goes crazy and surprisingly out of balance. "Say yer Scottish!" I would add in here at the pure style of "Margaret". Incredible song. Very amusing and cheerful. And well, "Something In The Air" is somewhat relaxed and conventional, if hard on my opinion, some sort of rock ballad that scratches the "poppier" more than the "progressive". Very mellow and schmaltzy, but that's just FISH, displaying this kind of unpredictable mood swings whenever he's got the chance to do so. All in all, "Internal Exile" is a good keeper. Yes, non-essential but definitely, different from what we've listened to over the years by FISH.

The Prognaut | 3/5 |


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