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Fish - The Complete BBC Sessions CD (album) cover





2.83 | 16 ratings

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Cygnus X-2
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
2 stars Fish's BBC sessions is a double disc live album that has two shows recorded from the Vigil and Internal Exile tours. Old Marillion standards and newer Fish material is played with vigor, vitality, and the audience is with Fish all the way. Although the audio quality isn't spectacular, you can hear each musician clearly and you can tell that Mr. Dick is having a blast up on the stage and the audience's rabid participation only goes to show the dedication and the overall love the audience show to Fish.

The first disc is a concert recorded during the Vigil in a Wilderness of Mirrors tour, and it really shows Fish having a blast up on the stage singing and conversing with the crowd. The Vigil material is played with energy and the musicians really get into a groove throughout the entire show. My only complaints lie in some of the Marillion songs played. First off, Punch and Judy has this really uninspired middle section that really throws off the mood of the piece. Script for a Jester's Tear is played perfectly until the very end, when they play the quiet, "Losing on the Swings" motif again and that really throws off the atmosphere of the piece as well. After a rousing version of Warm Wet Circles, the first part of That Time of the Night is played. but it segues into Slainte Mhath. Now if you're like me, you'd rather hear That Time of the Night instead of Slainte Mhath. Fortunately, there's a rollicking version of Fugazi that makes up for all the little hiccups that the other Marillion songs make.

The second disc is from the Internal Exile Tour and has a nice mixture of Vigil pieces as well as old Marillion classics, and all in all half the disc is comprised of Marillion songs (with two versions of Heart of Lothian, don't ask me why he had Heart of Lothian twice in one show). Anyway, the audience participation and their devotion to Fish is also blatantly obvious in this show, they sing right along with Fish during Kayleigh and Incubus with vigor and intensity, it's really quite an aural treat. In my opinion (and the opinion of Mr. Riviere who reviewed this album before me) this disc is an improvement over the first disc, mainly in terms of audio and band performances. The first disc is quite nice set wise, but there is too much of a loose and unprepared feel amongst the band, and those errors are wiped clean from this disc.

In the end, BBC Sessions is another of many live discs from the Vigil/Internal Exile of Fish, and while being a nice collection of new and old, isn't the best Fish live outing available. It's a good addition to any Fish/Marillion fan's collection, but outside of that, there are many other Fish live albums to choose from (his live album to studio album ratio is pretty much 3 to 1), and while this isn't a bad one, there are many I would rate higher. 2.5/5.

Cygnus X-2 | 2/5 |


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