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Fish - Vigil In A Wilderness Of Mirrors CD (album) cover





3.83 | 321 ratings

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Prog Leviathan
Prog Reviewer
2 stars As a dedicated Marillion (and Fish) fan, I openly challenge any who say that they would like this album if it was recorded by anyone OTHER than Fish. "Wilderness" may have a classy production and contain some genuine musical gems... but it is the most bland and unexciting thing Fish has ever recorded.

First the good-- Fish's voice sounds mature and controlled, much more so than his early days with Marillion. He shows some great range, emotion (as always) and personality, one can even pick out his Scottish accent! His lyrics are a mixed bag, but definitely lean towards the good side of things; he presents common themes in an uncommon way, which is the mark of his skill as a songwriter.

But... the album permeates a radio-friendly sound with its ultra-cheesy instrumental sound, which in my opinion sabotages a lot of what Fish is doing behind the mic. The rhythm section is straight-forward and uninspired, while the keys spend way too much of their time playing synthesized strings, horn, and bagpipe (!) hits (a sign of the times, I guess?). The guitar has a few nice moments, but smarty stays the hell out of the way of Fish's melodies, which is the sole source of energy and excitement in this one. As far as songwriting goes, Fish is at best singing about sociological issues (a la "I Like to Watch", "Family Business"), rather than bleeding- heart political ones. Moreover, his poetic monologues and/or spoken word moments are absent here.

As a whole, I can imagine "Vigil" only appealing to Fish fans, but despite its flaws provides enough great vocal moments to please; it's fun for an occasional listen, but made me wanted to listen to "Misplaced Childhood".

Songwriting: 2 Instrumental Performances: 2 Lyrics/Vocals: 3 Style/Emotion/Replay: 2

Prog Leviathan | 2/5 |


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