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Marillion Popular Music album cover
3.71 | 47 ratings | 4 reviews | 30% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Live, released in 2005

Songs / Tracks Listing

Disc One: (57:28)
1. A Few Words For The Dead (9:40)
2. Dry Land (4:58)
3. When I Meet God (10:14)
4. White Russian (6:17)
5. Estonia (7:51)
6. This Town (3:48)
7. The Rakes Progress (2:43)
8. 100 Nights (5:14)
9. Sugar Mice (6:40)

Disc Two (58:21)
1. Berlin (8:40)
2. Warm Wet Circles (4:18)
3. That Time Of The Night (5:58)
4. Script For A Jester's Tear (9:59)
5. This Strange Engine (22:13)
6. The Space (7:13)

Total Time: 115:49

Line-up / Musicians

- Steve Hogarth / vocals
- Mark Kelly / keyboards
- Ian Mosley / drums
- Steve Rothery / guitars
- Pete Trewavas / basses

Releases information

Racket Records, Catalogue # Racket 25. It's a companion CD of the first disc of "Wish You Were Here" DVD.

Thanks to gatot for the addition
and to ProgLucky for the last updates
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MARILLION Popular Music ratings distribution

(47 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(30%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(57%)
Good, but non-essential (9%)
Collectors/fans only (2%)
Poor. Only for completionists (2%)

MARILLION Popular Music reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars What an EXCELLENT Live set!

When last month offered a March Sales Madness, I purchased "Popular Music" as bonus CD with very good deal of discount on my purchase of Marillion's "Wish You Were Here" DVD (4 disc). Actually I was not interested to have the CD because of two response: First I read some a review about this CD on the net and found only "good" rating ; Second, I was not interested at all with the cover artwork - it's not prog at all. I got confused with the "focus" of the camera shot: is it the trees or the tents that became the focus? The cover also reminds me, pictorially, to the cover artwork of The Tangent "A Place In The Queue" but with different standard with the latter being the top class one! Bravo Ed Unitsky! So why bother buying this live set? But .. because the price is so good, I purchased it anyway.

The two packages containing 3 DVDs and "Popular Music" audio CD were received yesterday and the first thing I opened was the audio CD because it's easier to enjoy as it requires only ears. At first spin I was stunned and did not believe what I heard because it's in fact an excellent record - not just "good". The live set which was recorded Live at Marillion Weekend 2003, Minehead, England, Saturday 15th March 2003, starts off with an ambient "A Few Words for the Dead" continued excellently with "Dry Land" where Rothery gives nice guitar work. I remember the early days of Marillion where this kind of guitar work was the norm. What makes me stunned is the band's performance on "When I Meet God" which I think is really excellent especially the very long guitar solo by Steve Rothery. Great job, Steve! I really enjoy it. It makes an excellent live ambient.

Another surprise is when Fish era tune "White Russian" is performed. At firs I was not expecting something good having Fish-era tunes being presented here because Fish and Hogarth have different vocal timbre; so I was afraid that Hogarth would not fit Fish's job. But, considering that the rest of the band members were those who played during Fish era I only expected the music - not the vocal. But what I got was surprisingly different because I sensed great emotion from the crowd when they sung together with the band as Hogarth was singing as well. Oh, the live vibes were moving up man! I realize now that even with the current Marillion line-up, the band still has loyal fans coming out from Fish-era Marillion. That's good. This track is performed excellently!

"Estonia" is a Hogarth style music continued with three songs which are performed in a whole, seamlessly, as it appeared at studio version of "Holidays In Eden" album. The first part "This Town" is a rocker with typical guitar riffs and nice oldies guitar solo work which I really enjoy. It continues excellently with "The Rakes Progress" and "100 Nights". "Sugar Mice" which concludes Disc One, again, makes the crowd involved emotionally with the band as they sung along with the band. It's cool!!

Disc Two opens with "Berlin" with powerful Hogarth's voice and early style of guitar work by Rothery; continued with "Warm Wet Circle" from "Clutching At Straw" album. Again, Hogarth performs the song excellently with the crowd. Musically the band plays this oldies exactly the same with those live set in the eighties like "La Gazza Ladra / The Thieving Magpie". Great nostalgia with great music. And.. the crazy crowd sing again and creates a very good live nuance. I even imagine if I were there definitely I sung together with all of them and probably I run to the stage and took the microphone and sung along with Hogarth and the crowd. What a memorable experience!. I imagine myself yelling this lyrics "..with her mother kiss on her first brokenheart .. a warm wet circle" together with the crowd. As was the case with studio version this track continues seamlessly with wonderful clavinet work by Mark Kelly on the opening of "That Time of The Night" by which the lyrics were written by Fish in a hotel during Misplaced Tour, thinking about he was leaving the band - which finally he did.

Hold your thought for a second . take a deep breathe . sit back and relax .if there is a cup of coffee in front of you, take a deep sip and enjoy the smell of that coffee .And then pay attention with the next powerful track performed live (which is I think it's the best of any version of this track live set ever in terms of live vibes!) ."Script for A Jester's Tear"!!! Yup, that legendary track that took the prog music industry by surprise in the year 1983. Once Mark Kelly punched the electric piano "Dhenk!" the crowd sing along together enthusiastically "So here I am once more . In a playground of a broken heart . One more experience one more entry in a diary self penned! Yet another emotional suicide ." Oh MY GOD . the crowd is really FANTASTIC! They are SUPERB!!! They sing with their heart and trajecting the positive energy of the show. I have to admit that this is THE BEST live version of "Script For A Jester's Tear" that I have ever listened to. The live vibe is so so dynamic and energetic! If you are Marillion fan of Fish era, you would definitely enjoy this track! I am sure.

The encore comprises two great tracks: "This Strange Engine" and "The Space". I never heard "This Strange Engine" before but this version is truly wonderful. Performed in a very long duration (22 minutes) it has some lyrics of The Police "Spirits In The Material World" sung with Hogarth ambient style. It's really good. "The Space" is my favorite and this version is really good.

Overall, this is a highly recommended CD set if you are a Marillion fan - be it Fish era or Hogarth era. Overall CD is an excellent addition to any prog music collection. Don't believe with the title of "Popular Music" with the association of poppy stuffs because in this set you would get a lot of prog elements. And don't judge this CD by it's cover! I know, it's terrible one but enjoy the music man! You would love it. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Review by ZowieZiggy
2 stars During their previous "Anoraknophobia" tour, Mark II Marillion released a live album with NO Fish era songs. I guess that the fans'reaction was not that great and I presume that it was one the reasons to change their mind and include again some old songs to please the crowd.

In their good "Live in Caracas" (1993), no less than SEVEN songs from the Fish era were recorded and I have to say that I quite liked their rendition (I mean, they were not massacred as in "Live at the Borderline" : a foolish karaokee effort).

Unfortunately, in this live album, the same mood will prevail. Extremely poor version "Sugar Mice", "Warm Wet Circles" and "Script" while "White Russian" is just average. Hoggarth will need or ask the audience assistance to much during these songs. I just hate this.

"Estonia" is of course great (this is one of my preferred Mark II song), but I am a bit dissapointed by the version available for "This Strange Engine". This is another of their good song (at least I feel so) but I won't remind this live version very long.

The other songs of this live album won't keep you awaken. Do not listen to them while you are driving. It is VERY dangerous. You'll just get asleep while doing so.

This live set is ABSOLUTELY NOT directed to the great Fish era fans (although the track list might indicate). Don't be trapped and ignore this one (but I have no doubt about that when I see the very little reviews availbale on PA).

Two stars.

Review by Warthur
4 stars Marillion's live albums hailing from the Marillion Weekends are always something special, since the band always make each of their gigs at those evenings a unique event rather than running through the same old setlist. For one of the 2003 Weekend's gigs, the band actually took a vote amongst convention attendees, and played the winning songs on the vote for the set. The end result is an intriguing mixture of live favourites and songs which the band had very rarely played live and people were desperate to hear.

There's no songs from Afraid of Sunlight, presumably because the entire album was performed on the Friday Night Live set from the 2003 Weekend and there was no point repeating the same songs during the weekend, and interestingly there's nothing from Brave either - perhaps the attendees felt that that material was best experienced as a whole. But aside from those two, the album is an intriguing cross-section of the band's entire career.

A Few Words For the Dead is rescued from the rather middling Radiation album and really shown up for what a top-notch composition it is, there's great performances of Estonia and This Stranger Engine, and there's a bunch of Fish era material too - no less than four songs from Clutching At Straws, plus a rendition of Script For a Jester's Tear where for half the song H essentially only sings an occasional guide vocal as the fans sing most of the lyrics for him

What's particularly interesting is that the setlist as a whole skews towards more progressive material, and finds it in more or less every phase of the band's career. I can't help but wonder whether seeing the entire convention give a vote of confidence in their progressive side helped prompt the band's full-fledged return to unabashed progginess on Marbles. It's a bit overlong, but it's an interesting artifact of the Marillion weekends.

Latest members reviews

4 stars Shame on you MARILLION detractors!!!!... This is by far one of the greatest Marillion live records in a long time. Being a Marillion fan-to-the bone i got really surprised by the strenght of the set. Actually, the entire set list was chosen from marillion's weekend participants polls, they gave w ... (read more)

Report this review (#77655) | Posted by arqwave | Tuesday, May 9, 2006 | Review Permanlink

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