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Marillion - Marbles In The Park CD (album) cover





4.30 | 25 ratings

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4 stars Marbles seems to be the Marillion album that's liked by people who don't really care for the band. I think that's because of two reasons. First off, the band have been trying to find a "independent" rock sound somewhat akin to bands like Radiohead, and two, because they actually succeeded in developing a very organic and sincere musical formula that showcases itself in Marbles.

I suppose the attraction of a live album from a band like Marillion is the thrill of listening to them perform " without a net". The net being the comfort of the studio where any mistakes or flubs can be fixed. What is immediately striking is how well Hogarth's vocals warm up, after the first few songs, to allow him to go into near dog whistle highs, while Steve Rothery effortlessly reproduces his manifold guitar leads, his playing often a duet with Hogath's vocals on songs like "Drilling Holes" and the epic closer "Neverland".

What's also interesting is the Dutch audience's familiarity with the Marbles' material. What's more interesting is the crowd clapping in 4/4 time to the opening stanzas of the song "Genie" before the band shift gears and go into a slower time signature for the song's remaining verses and chorus, as the hard to follow beat causes the mass clapping to immediately cease, showing that Marillion's music, fortunately, still can't be danced to.

The band never misses a beat on this double CD live offering of Marbles (the previous live Marble album concerts being truncated single CD editions), and the sound, as usual for Marillion live albums, is stellar. I can only see this album appealing to diehard fans of the studio album, but for those who view that album as a 5 star masterpiece, Marbles In The Park is essential.

SteveG | 4/5 |


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