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Marillion - Brave Live 2002 CD (album) cover





4.76 | 54 ratings

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5 stars I guess I have to begin this with an apology to the Fish faithful, because Brave is the best thing Marillion has done. I just watched the DVD with the lights off and the headphones on and (as always) was moved to the point of developing goose flesh. I guess the only thing that compares to listening to Brave is to see it performed in it's entirety. It's absolutely awe-inspiring.

Performed at the Marillion convention in 2002, they essentially treated the crowd to the performance of Brave exactly as it was some 7-8 years prior--from H crumpling a grouping of flowers during "Runaway", to being hauled off stage by hooded figures during the closing moments of "Hard As Love". What Marillion did in 2002 was give the fans a truly memorable gift. Unfortunately, we may never see them perform it in it's entirety again; but, at least we have a momento to have always.

The DVD begins with a brief overview of Braves' them, set against a scene of darkened water. The crowd slowly fades in and you hear those initial guitar wails that warns you to strap yourself's going to be an intense ride. H and Kelly slowly slip into the opening keyboard parts to "Bridge", but it's not until the band unites for "Living With The Big Lie" that you feel the power of this band and this piece of music. H's vocals start off a bit fragile, but gets more sharp as the song (and the show) progresses.

The clash of religions And the loaded prayers Information The face of starvation and the state of the nation

The sense that it's useless And the fear to try Not believing the leaders, the media that feed us Living with the big lie You get used to it

As for the performance, the band was spot on this night. You could tell they truly enjoyed revisiting this masterpiece, as it's treated with passion and respect. H especially gives a powerful performance...and truly steals the show. Whether it's center stage applying makeup to simulate the girl from the story, to sitting beneath a single spotlight during "Hollow Man", to reaching deep inside to deliver a truly memorable performance of "The Great Escape", the night belonged to Steve Hogarth.

I guess I'm a little too quick to offer up an apology to the Fish faithful, for that era of the band's history gave us brilliant music as well. Brave just grabs me for reasons I cannot explain. It's a combination of sonic fury, fierce intensity, and exquisite beauty that isn't heard too often. I can say that I feel sorry for people who don't get Brave or can't appreciate it the way I (and scores of others) can. I wish they could hear it the way I hear it because Brave changed the way I listened to music. Now, with the DVD, it's changed the way I view music. The word 'brilliant' just isn't enough.

E-Dub | 5/5 |


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