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Marillion - Clutching at Straws CD (album) cover





4.16 | 1373 ratings

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4 stars The Anachronism Part 4: As perfect as can be

If my memory serves me well then this is Fish's favorite and he is proud that "Clutching at Straws" - in spite of the tensions that had grown between him and the rest of the band - became "their best album". I can't disagree because - if you do not prefer "Script" in spite of its inferior drumming - it is ( with Fish, of course, not the best of their entire catalogue ! ).

Here the guys really gave the best they were able to ( without really breaking new ground, though ), and, what's most important to me, it's a very fine collection of songs. Stripped off of the "Concept-Album-Frame" they managed to increase the level of perfection without losing the spark and urge behind the music ( or, with the exception of a few snippets, die in beauty ). I really like it as a whole - "Incommunicado" took the longest time but in recent years I finally got it.

It's close to being a five-star-album ( well, for me, personally, it IS one, but I'd like to keep the "tradition" of not giving straight personal ratings so I can perhaps serve the "average Progfan" a bit more - if there is, and I have "experienced" that for sure there are ), and it deserves all the praises that "Old time Marillion" usually receive, and I can't really understand why it's not rated ( and treasured ) at least as high as its predecessor. To me, on "Misplaced Childhood" there is not a single song with the quality of "Slainte Mhath", "Sugar Mice" or "Warm wet Circles", and not a single moment that can touch me as much as they do, which goes to show: for Rupert - it's more about the songs and the expressions of emotion that they deliver, not about concepts or showcases for how good the musicians can play.

As a biiiig fan of Hogarth-Era-Marillion I don't wonder that Mr. H, when it comes to doing "the old stuff", always looked the best with performing material from this album. It's a great one, and, of course, Fish ( as well as the others ) can be proud of it. Can all the lovers of that "golden era" forgive me that I sincerely need to add that many ( not everything ) that was to come was even better ??? I'm very happy with this band, and, if you like, the greatest of happiness already started here, so it should not be too hard to forgive me, even for those who can't agree.

rupert | 4/5 |


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