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





3.81 | 271 ratings

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2 stars Fish's debut album is one of those records that has slipped rapidly down in my estimation. I think when Fish left Marillion, I was inclined to give him a little more leeway as the band's most obvious talent, but now that the blood has long dried, I don't think this album is as strong as Seasons End (as the first Marillion album featured Steve Hogarth it is a way, Vigil's direct competitor). In fact it's probably telling that after hearing how both sides did after the great schism, I lost interest in what either had to offer. Even though this is a solo album, Fish basically worked with a solid group comprising keyboardist Mickey Simmonds, ex-Dire Straits guitarist Hal Lindes, his old friend Frank Usher (also on guitars) and former Big Country drummer Mark Brsezicki. These guys are all solid players, but I don't hear as much personality or song writing talent as I did from Marillion's Mark Kelly and Steve Rothery. There are of course, some strong songs on here. There's the sprawling emotion-laden title track, State Of Mind which flirts with world music in a way that (ahem) Peter Gabriel was doing to greater effect at the same time) and the excellent folky drinking song The Company (which does a superb joy of expressing the sentimal, fatalistic, euphoric outlook of the hopeless drunk). Unfortunately all this is more than countered by mediocre tracks that bear more than a passing resemblance to what The Simple Minds were doing at this time ... the straight-forward radio-friendly Big Wedge (big chorus atop a big production) is a real nadir, but it's the lack of conviction in the slower moving A Gentleman's Excuse Me and View From A Hill and even the ambitious but overly-familiar Cliche that really seal this record's fate. I once stole this album from the record company that distributed it ... I was irate to find that it was sitting unloved in a forgotten pile ... and after sneaking it out through my briefcase, I rushed home excitedly only to find that the CD inside was missing! T'was only many years afterwards that I got hold of the expanded version with 5 bonus tracks ... in a bargain bin no less! But now I think about it, I'm not really sure it was worth the effort. ... 42% on the MPV scale EDIT: Max
Trotsky | 2/5 |


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