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THE SINGLES '89- 95'



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3 stars Unlike their great "The Singles 82 - 88" set of CD's, this one contains almost all what you need to have from the Mark II Marillion repertoire.

Even a bit too much, to be honest. Four times "The Uninvited Guest" is probably excessive. There will be lots of live versions and some demos as well. I would say, that if you own their re-released albums (in the double CD format), this compilation is not essential. You'll even get some "adapted" versions from their early days (but none will be memorable as you can imagine). While Hogarth meets Fish has NEVER been a fave of mine.

Still, the decent price of this compilation (around 30 ?) might well be a good compromise for those of you who don't want to buy the four studio albums covered by this compilation.

You'll get rid of lots of useless moments from their original albums and you will save some of your money when purchasing this set of CD's. So, it is up to you. But do not expect anything great.

Three stars, my friend.

Report this review (#135638)
Posted Friday, August 31, 2007 | Review Permalink
3 stars A gem for collectors

Well, to talk about most of the music contained in here was carrying Owls to Athens, I think. If you already own the remastered double-disc versions of "Seasons end", "Holidays in Eden", "Brave" and "Afraid of Sunlight" you even have many of the non-albums tracks that are featured on here... if not ( watch if you can get them, I think they're all available still ), well, this is worth rather a four-star than a three-star rating for you, cause then you'll get quite a lot of songs and versions that you do not ( but, as a lover and fan of Marillion-h-era, ought to ) have... cause "The Bell in the Sea", "A Collection", Acoustic versions of "Cover my Eyes" & "Sympathy", "The great Escape" with alternate ending, the very inspired "Marouatte Jam" that somehow belongs to "Brave" ( 2 times here ) and quite some other stuff is well worth the investigation. And, in spite of the "Doubles" you get ( 2 X "No One Can", 2 X 7" mix of "Uninvited Guest" - plus 1 X the Album Version and 2 different Live-Versions of that song, which, of course, are no "Doubles" as aren't two different Live-Versions of "Kayleigh" sung by Hogie - but, as I have already mentioned elsewhere, I just can't get myself to like this one that way ), you still get some stuff unavailable elsewhere, with the "crowns" of jewels to be found on two discs of the 12.

The first is CD/Maxi # 6, featuring 7 acoustic tracks from a stripped down-performance by Hogie, Mark and Steve ( or was it Peter ? I'm slightly confused, going to have to check it out once more ) that, taken for themselves, are worth the price of the box already ( Including my personal favorite version of "Holloway Girl" and a great take on the Who's "Substitute" ), splendid !

The second is CD/Maxi # 11 including several Live-versions from the "Brave-Tour" with the opening of the concert in perhaps the best possible ( and available ) Version: "River/Bridge/Living with the big Lie" executed in full perfection ( distinctively better than on "Made again", including the sound ), the encore-section of "Cover my Eyes"/"Slainte Mhath"/"Uninvited Guest" and, absolute top of the cream, "The Space..." in a mind-blowing performance, never heard it as good before.

If you like "Dry Land" ( the song ) then it's here where you get a beautiful Live-Version on Disc # 7, recorded at the same 1991 show from which the first part of "Made Again" was picked from, and if you like Hogie singing stuff from the Fish-Era - "Warm Wet Circles", "That Time of the Night" ( Disc # 3 ) and the ever-welcome ( Hogie can't do it any wrong ! ) "Sugar Mice" ( acoustic versions, Disc # 8 and the afore mentioned Disc # 6 ) will certainly please you.

The Original Maxi's in Germany, though, have somewhat been different. By the time I ordered this box, I thought to have a severe memory of "Garden Party" ( Live, of course ) to be on one of those singles - it was not. Instead of this I got evidence for us Germans to have been kept back a lot of other material on the original Maxis before we got a hold on this box... I'm sure cause I had bought the "Brave"-Ones and "Beautiful" already in 1994/95... so, apart from "Garden Party" missing ( in Germany, I think, it used to be on one of the "Sympathy" editions of which there must have been 2 ), there's been far more in the box than I had expected.

One mistake has to be reported, though. For those of you who do expect "Afraid of Sunrise" on Disc # 12, it's not on there. It's ( the far superior, imo ) "Afraid of Sunlight" ( Album Version ). Printing-error or editing-error ? I don't know. To me, this single exchange is welcome. To me, this box was very welcome.

Cause if it's a fan that you are, it's not only about the music. It's about the artwork as well, and about the "Singles"-Medium. It's a collector's pleasure !

But in terms of music it's not as essential as the remastered albums with the bonus-discs. It's only... if you need to have the Maxis # 6 & #11... just like me... well, add a fourth star in your mind, cause they are essential additions.

Got to take hold of one of those Front-row-club-releases in order to get "Garden Party" sung by Hogie on CD I think. Not it being absolutely essential, I do prefer the Hogie-Era-Material anyway, but it's simply because I have heard the band perform it in Concert in 1994. It was good. Can someone recommend me one and, perhaps, help me get it ?

Report this review (#622786)
Posted Sunday, January 29, 2012 | Review Permalink

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