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MARILLION

Neo-Prog • United Kingdom


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Marillion picture
Marillion biography
Formed in 1979 in Aylesbury, UK (as Silmarillion, after the Tolkien novel) - Still active as of 2019

Pioneers of the second wave of progressive rock

The Early Years

After some early line-up changes, the first recognisable incarnation of the band was complete by 1982, with FISH (real name Derek William Dick), a charismatic Scottish frontman vocalist, Steve ROTHERY on guitars, Peter Trewavas on bass, Mark Kelly on keyboards, and Mick Pointer on drums.

The band built their reputation the old-fashioned way by gigging extensively, but their profile was also raised by some clever manipulation of the music press, especially journals such as Sounds, in which Fish often interviewed his proposition that the band were "prog with attitude", a new force for the post-punk era.

This profile landed them a record deal with EMI records, and, in 1982, they released an EP Market Square Heroes, which, it is fair to say, had more than a passing resemblance to the Genesis classic, The Knife. Also appearing was a monster prog track called Grendel.

However, it was the release in 1983 of their debut long player, Script For A Jester's Tear, which brought them to the wider attention of the rock world. The album spawned hit singles in Garden Party and He Knows You Know, was critically well received, and reached number 7 in the UK album charts.

The band's progress and workload were relentless after this point. They proved themselves to be somewhat merciless in the pursuit of musical and commercial success by ditching Pointer, who was felt to be sub-standard, and replacing him eventually with, after what the band described as their "Spinal Tap" period for drumming, Ian Mosley, formerly of The Steve Hackett Band. Pointer went on to jointly form Arena, a classic neo outfit who still record today, and still tours his Script era version of Marillion. The difference Mosley made, though, both live and in the studio, was palpable.

The line-up released three more albums; Fugazi, Misplaced Childhood, and, finally Clutching At Straws.

Misplaced Childhood was a massive hit, reaching number 1 in the UK charts in 1985, and responsible for huge hit singles in Kayleigh, Lavender, and Heart of Lothian. By this time, Fish had ditched his trademark face paint, - the music and his sheer personality were a tour de force in them...
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MARILLION discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

MARILLION top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

4.23 | 2011 ratings
Script For A Jester's Tear
1983
3.98 | 1353 ratings
Fugazi
1984
4.25 | 2149 ratings
Misplaced Childhood
1985
4.16 | 1344 ratings
Clutching At Straws
1987
3.75 | 881 ratings
Seasons End
1989
3.12 | 662 ratings
Holidays In Eden
1991
3.96 | 1055 ratings
Brave
1994
3.80 | 710 ratings
Afraid Of Sunlight
1995
3.43 | 575 ratings
This Strange Engine
1997
2.71 | 520 ratings
Radiation
1998
3.11 | 491 ratings
Marillion.com
1999
3.37 | 554 ratings
Anoraknophobia
2001
4.10 | 1094 ratings
Marbles
2004
3.04 | 535 ratings
Somewhere Else
2007
3.34 | 571 ratings
Happiness Is The Road
2008
2.76 | 361 ratings
Less Is More
2009
3.58 | 618 ratings
Sounds That Can't Be Made
2012
3.65 | 344 ratings
F E A R (F*** Everyone And Run)
2016

MARILLION Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.86 | 319 ratings
Real to Reel
1984
3.85 | 318 ratings
The Thieving Magpie - La Gazza Ladra
1988
2.35 | 29 ratings
Live at the Borderline
1992
3.31 | 34 ratings
Live in Glasgow
1993
3.56 | 50 ratings
Live in Caracas
1993
4.11 | 96 ratings
Live From Loreley
1995
3.45 | 150 ratings
Made Again
1996
3.56 | 65 ratings
Live At The Walls
1998
3.67 | 40 ratings
Piston Broke
1998
3.17 | 26 ratings
Marillionrochester
1998
3.22 | 36 ratings
Zodiac
1999
3.71 | 80 ratings
Anorak in the UK Live
2002
4.10 | 50 ratings
Brave Live 2002
2003
3.47 | 15 ratings
Christmas In The Chapel
2003
4.50 | 50 ratings
Curtain Call - A Live Archive 1983 - 1988
2004
4.18 | 105 ratings
Marbles Live
2005
3.97 | 53 ratings
Marbles By The Sea
2005
3.55 | 43 ratings
Popular Music
2005
3.54 | 16 ratings
Bootleg Bingo
2005
3.67 | 39 ratings
Smoke
2006
3.81 | 45 ratings
Mirrors
2006
4.01 | 55 ratings
Family
2007
3.69 | 43 ratings
Friends
2007
3.68 | 32 ratings
Somewhere In London
2007
4.47 | 101 ratings
Early Stages: The Official Bootlegs 1982-1987
2008
4.45 | 109 ratings
Recital of the Script
2009
4.28 | 107 ratings
Live From Loreley
2009
3.80 | 31 ratings
Happiness Is Cologne
2009
3.70 | 28 ratings
High Voltage
2010
3.84 | 47 ratings
The Official Bootleg Box Set Vol. 2
2010
3.70 | 49 ratings
Tumbling Down The Years
2010
4.09 | 48 ratings
size matters
2010
3.87 | 28 ratings
Live In Montréal // Saturday
2010
3.89 | 27 ratings
Live In Montréal // Sunday
2010
3.82 | 26 ratings
Live In Montréal // Friday
2011
3.79 | 28 ratings
holidays in eden live
2011
3.93 | 52 ratings
Live From Cadogan Hall
2011
3.88 | 22 ratings
Afraid of Sunlight Live
2011
3.64 | 20 ratings
This Strange Engine Live
2011
3.79 | 23 ratings
Seasons End Live
2011
3.77 | 24 ratings
A-Z Live 2011
2012
3.93 | 41 ratings
Sounds Live
2012
3.78 | 21 ratings
The Glow Must Go On
2012
3.67 | 27 ratings
Clocks Already Ticking
2013
3.92 | 33 ratings
Brave Live 2013
2013
4.33 | 3 ratings
Best of Montréal
2013
3.50 | 2 ratings
Best of Leamington
2013
4.33 | 12 ratings
Live At The Forum
2014
4.64 | 25 ratings
Sunday Night Above The Rain
2014
3.89 | 9 ratings
A Monstrously Festive(al) Christmas
2015
4.56 | 18 ratings
Waves and Numb3rs
2016
4.29 | 23 ratings
Marbles In The Park
2016
4.47 | 19 ratings
Singles Night
2016
4.29 | 7 ratings
The Gold - Best of Convention 2017
2017
4.00 | 4 ratings
Live In Chile
2017
4.60 | 20 ratings
All One Tonight - Live at the Royal Albert Hall
2018
4.17 | 6 ratings
marillion.cl/viernes.noche
2019
4.00 | 5 ratings
marillion.cl/dotcom
2019
4.00 | 5 ratings
marillion.cl/en.marquee
2019

MARILLION Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.37 | 169 ratings
Recital Of The Script
1983
3.42 | 33 ratings
Video
1984
2.64 | 30 ratings
1982-86 The Videos
1986
3.74 | 34 ratings
A Singles Collection
1992
4.73 | 63 ratings
Brave Live 2002
2002
2.87 | 17 ratings
Shot In The Dark
2002
4.59 | 17 ratings
A Piss-up in a Brewery
2002
3.18 | 47 ratings
The EMI Singles Collection
2002
3.68 | 61 ratings
From Stoke Row To Ipanema - A Year In The Life (DVD)
2003
3.93 | 22 ratings
Christmas In The Chapel
2003
4.22 | 18 ratings
Before First Light (Afraid of Sunlight Live 2003)
2003
4.45 | 147 ratings
Live from Loreley
2004
4.00 | 77 ratings
Marbles On The Road
2004
2.78 | 52 ratings
Brave - The Film
2004
4.19 | 29 ratings
Wish You Were Here
2005
4.33 | 9 ratings
Colours And Sound
2006
4.21 | 60 ratings
Somewhere In London
2007
4.33 | 21 ratings
Bootleg Butlins
2007
3.75 | 11 ratings
Thank You Whoever You Are / Most Toys
2007
3.56 | 17 ratings
Something Else
2007
4.50 | 14 ratings
This Strange Convention
2009
4.67 | 6 ratings
M Tube: An Introduction To Marillion On DVD
2010
4.49 | 56 ratings
Out Of Season
2010
4.12 | 48 ratings
Live At Cadogan Hall
2011
4.64 | 25 ratings
Live In Montréal
2011
4.47 | 26 ratings
Holidays In Zelande
2012
4.03 | 30 ratings
Brave Live 2013
2013
4.86 | 7 ratings
A Sunday Night Above The Rain
2014
4.29 | 17 ratings
Breaking Records
2015
4.18 | 15 ratings
Out Of The Box
2016
4.69 | 13 ratings
Marbles in the Park
2016
4.73 | 22 ratings
All One Tonight
2018

MARILLION Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.50 | 209 ratings
B'Sides Themselves
1988
2.94 | 77 ratings
A Singles Collection - Six of One, Half a Dozen of the Other
1992
1.72 | 11 ratings
Marillion Music Collection
1993
4.12 | 14 ratings
The Originals
1995
2.89 | 41 ratings
Kayleigh
1996
3.80 | 9 ratings
The Best of Marillion
1996
4.00 | 3 ratings
Essential Collection
1996
3.33 | 51 ratings
The Best of Both Worlds (2 cd boxset)
1997
4.08 | 84 ratings
Real to Reel - Brief Encounter
1997
3.14 | 10 ratings
Kayleigh - The Essential Collection
1998
2.21 | 62 ratings
Marillion and the Positive Light - Tales from the Engine Room
1998
4.17 | 48 ratings
The singles '82 - 88'
2000
3.28 | 9 ratings
Refracted! - From dusk 'till dot, Volume 1
2001
3.57 | 7 ratings
Another DAT at the Office
2001
3.22 | 9 ratings
Fall Out
2002
3.19 | 17 ratings
marillion.co.uk
2002
3.21 | 9 ratings
AWOL: A Marillion Solo Projects Sampler
2002
3.52 | 30 ratings
The singles '89- 95'
2002
3.86 | 7 ratings
The Best Of Marillion (EMI Compilation)
2003
4.20 | 5 ratings
Warm Wet Circles
2003
3.29 | 12 ratings
marillion.co.uk (2005 Version)
2005
4.40 | 5 ratings
Classics
2009
4.50 | 2 ratings
Keep The Noise Down
2010
4.88 | 8 ratings
Misplaced Childhood / Script For A Jester's Tear
2011
4.60 | 5 ratings
4 Albums
2011
4.00 | 4 ratings
Greatest Hits On CD & DVD
2012
4.25 | 16 ratings
Marillion.Best.Live
2012
4.00 | 9 ratings
Sounds That Can't Be Made Special Edition
2013
5.00 | 1 ratings
5 Album Set
2013
4.11 | 9 ratings
Early Stages : The Highlights
2013
2.38 | 7 ratings
Best Sounds
2014
4.33 | 26 ratings
A Sunday Night Above the Rain
2014
2.92 | 12 ratings
A Collection Of Recycled Gifts
2014
4.47 | 24 ratings
Misplaced Childhood
2017
4.64 | 14 ratings
Brave (Deluxe Edition, Limited Edition)
2018
4.83 | 17 ratings
Clutching At Straws
2018
4.24 | 21 ratings
With Friends from the Orchestra
2019
4.89 | 9 ratings
Afraid Of Sunlight (Limited Deluxe Edition)
2019
4.92 | 6 ratings
Script For A Jester's Tear (2020 Limited Deluxe Edition)
2020

MARILLION Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.90 | 119 ratings
Market Square Heroes
1982
3.91 | 49 ratings
Garden Party
1983
4.18 | 46 ratings
He Knows You Know
1983
3.87 | 43 ratings
Punch and Judy
1984
3.64 | 59 ratings
Assassing
1984
3.36 | 60 ratings
Kayleigh
1985
4.14 | 7 ratings
The Story So Far...
1985
3.71 | 57 ratings
Lavender
1985
3.56 | 57 ratings
Heart of Lothian
1985
2.68 | 72 ratings
Brief Encounter
1986
4.09 | 13 ratings
Garden Party Live
1986
3.97 | 29 ratings
Lady Nina
1986
4.00 | 39 ratings
Sugar Mice
1987
3.69 | 36 ratings
Incommunicado
1987
3.95 | 37 ratings
Warm Wet Circles
1987
2.98 | 22 ratings
Incommunicado & Sugar Mice - Video
1987
4.07 | 27 ratings
Freaks
1988
3.62 | 21 ratings
Uninvited Guest
1989
4.21 | 28 ratings
Easter
1989
3.43 | 21 ratings
hooks in you
1989
3.17 | 22 ratings
No One Can
1991
3.00 | 14 ratings
Cover My Eyes (Pain And Heaven)
1991
3.00 | 12 ratings
Dry Land
1991
3.25 | 4 ratings
No One Can
1992
3.64 | 22 ratings
Sympathy
1992
3.45 | 23 ratings
Sympathy
1992
3.75 | 12 ratings
No One Can
1992
4.20 | 5 ratings
The Hollow Man
1994
4.17 | 6 ratings
The Hollow Man
1994
4.00 | 6 ratings
Alone Again In The Lap Of Luxury
1994
4.00 | 5 ratings
Alone Again In The Lap Of Luxury
1994
3.75 | 20 ratings
Beautiful
1995
2.90 | 20 ratings
Beautiful
1995
4.10 | 21 ratings
The Making of Brave
1995
4.04 | 18 ratings
Man of a Thousand Faces
1997
3.67 | 15 ratings
Eighty Days
1997
2.98 | 19 ratings
These Chains (Single)
1998
3.00 | 8 ratings
Marillion & the Web Christmas 1998
1998
3.40 | 10 ratings
Marillion.Christmas
1999
4.00 | 2 ratings
Rich
1999
2.77 | 14 ratings
Marillion.co.uk
2000
3.75 | 8 ratings
Crash Course - An Introduction to Marillion
2001
2.73 | 16 ratings
A Verry Barry Christmas
2001
4.23 | 13 ratings
Between You And Me / Map Of The World
2001
3.87 | 18 ratings
Christmas 2000: A Piss-Up In A Brewery
2001
3.22 | 4 ratings
Front Row Club Issue 7
2002
4.13 | 6 ratings
Le Spectrum, Montréal, Canada, 6 September 1997 (Front Row Club 008)
2002
3.80 | 5 ratings
Christmas 2002: Santa And His Elvis
2002
3.00 | 1 ratings
Caught in the Net - The Making of Marillion.com
2002
4.05 | 10 ratings
Say Cheese, Christmas With Marillion
2003
4.00 | 1 ratings
View From The Balcony (A Front Row Club Sampler)
2003
3.00 | 9 ratings
Christmas 2004: Baubles
2004
2.14 | 11 ratings
Remixomatosis
2004
4.00 | 1 ratings
The Damage (Live)
2004
4.20 | 5 ratings
Christmas 2005 : Merry Xmas To Our Flock
2005
2.49 | 12 ratings
A Handful Of Marbles
2005
3.33 | 3 ratings
Unzipped - The Making Of Anoraknophobia
2006
3.75 | 4 ratings
Christmas 2006: The Jingle Book
2006
3.00 | 1 ratings
See It Like a Baby
2007
4.00 | 4 ratings
Christmas 2007: Somewhere Elf
2007
2.73 | 13 ratings
Thank You Whoever You Are
2007
3.15 | 11 ratings
Thank You Whoever You Are / Most Toys
2007
4.00 | 6 ratings
ABC, Glasgow, Scotland. 9 November 2008
2008
3.75 | 4 ratings
The Basement, Newcastle, UK. 10 November 2008
2008
4.20 | 5 ratings
Colston Hall, Bristol, UK. 11 November 2008
2008
4.50 | 2 ratings
LMUSU, Leeds, UK. 13 November 2008
2008
4.50 | 2 ratings
Academy, Manchester, UK. 14 November 2008
2008
4.50 | 4 ratings
Opera House, Bournemouth, UK. 15 November 2008
2008
4.00 | 10 ratings
The Forum, London, UK. 19 November 2008
2008
4.50 | 2 ratings
JBs, Dudley, UK. 17 November 2008
2008
4.33 | 3 ratings
Rock City, Nottingham, UK. 18 November 2008
2008
2.42 | 3 ratings
De Waerdse Temple, Heerhugowaard, Netherlands. 21 November
2008
5.00 | 2 ratings
013, Tilburg, Netherlands. 23 November 2008
2008
5.00 | 2 ratings
Vereeniging, Nijmegen, Netherlands. 24 November 2008
2008
4.27 | 6 ratings
E-Werk, Cologne, Germany. 26 November 2008
2008
5.00 | 2 ratings
Le Splendid, Lille, France. 27 November 2008
2008
3.44 | 9 ratings
Christmas 2008: Pudding On The Ritz
2008
3.00 | 1 ratings
Whatever Is Wrong with You
2008
4.04 | 5 ratings
Happiness on the Road - Concorde 2 Brighton - 28 January 2009
2009
4.00 | 2 ratings
Christmas 2009: Snow De Cologne
2009
3.09 | 4 ratings
Crash Course
2009
4.00 | 2 ratings
Christmas 2010: Ding, Dong Loreley On High...
2010
4.00 | 2 ratings
Christmas 2011: Live At The German Space Day 2004
2011
3.33 | 3 ratings
Christmas 2012: Sleighed Again
2012
4.60 | 5 ratings
North American Tour 2012: Irwing Plaza, New York City, USA - 12 June 2012
2012
4.40 | 5 ratings
North American Tour 2012: Irwing Plaza, New York City, USA - 13 June 2012
2012
4.00 | 4 ratings
Crash Course
2013
3.37 | 11 ratings
The Carol Of The Bells
2013
4.00 | 2 ratings
Christmas 2013: Proggin' Around The Christmas Tree
2013
4.00 | 5 ratings
Christmas 2014: Chile For The Time Of Year
2014
3.00 | 1 ratings
Glass Half Full - The Making of Marbles
2015
4.00 | 1 ratings
The New Kings
2016
0.00 | 0 ratings
Festivities, Elation And Rejoicing! Christmas 2016
2016
0.00 | 0 ratings
Christmas At The Club (Christmas 2017)
2017
3.80 | 10 ratings
Living In F E A R
2017
3.00 | 2 ratings
A Star in the East Live in Japan 2018 (Xmas 2018)
2018
3.00 | 1 ratings
Unsound
2018
3.00 | 1 ratings
Mr Taurus - The Making of Somewhere Else
2019
3.00 | 1 ratings
Satellite Navigation - The Making of Happiness Is the Road
2019

MARILLION Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Script For A Jester's Tear by MARILLION album cover Studio Album, 1983
4.23 | 2011 ratings

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Script For A Jester's Tear
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by Hector Enrique

5 stars One of the best debut albums in the history of neo progressive music. After the euphoria of the 70's with the traditional groups of the genre fighting with their own demons to stay current with new proposals that revitalize them, Marillion arises to take the flag and plant it with Script For A Jester's Tear. Although they were not the first of this new wave, they were the renewed blood that the progressive needed to make flow through his veins to stay current.

Not pretending to be a concept album, the one that Fish, singer and frontman, is responsible for all the compositions, Script For A Jester's Tears achieves a cohesion and structure that keeps it solid throughout its 6 songs, covering much more earthly themes than the usual cosmetic and spiritual trips in the genre. Thus, the song that bears the same name on the album is about the painful end of an intense love relationship (it is said to be an autobiography of Fish), the devastating effects of drug use in He Knows You Know; how it is better to leave behind toxic relationships to develop in freedom without being trapped in The Web, the criticisms of bourgeois and elitist society and its frivolities in Garden Party; the dreams of young women for being famous on Chelsea Monday, and finally Forgotten Sons, a tribute to those who returned from the clashes between the English and the Irish in the early 80s with disabilities, and especially those who did not return.

Absolutely recommendable also Grendel, which appeared as side B of the 12 'single, Market Square Heroes, 19 spectacular minutes of a song that in my opinion should have been part of the original album, and to which justice was done 14 years later including it in a bonus disc in the remastering of the original (1997).

There were many criticisms of Fish for the evident similarities of his vocal register with that of Peter Gabriel, and even more so with the music of Genesis, but that does not detract a bit from the value of compositions that did not deny their influences, but on the contrary they took them as an impulse to develop their own path, and that they would reach their peak with the acclaimed Misplaced Childhood 2 years later.

Excellent album and essential for fans of the genre.

 Marbles In The Park by MARILLION album cover Live, 2016
4.29 | 23 ratings

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Marbles In The Park
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by iluvmarillion

4 stars You really don't have to buy a new Marillion studio album. You only have to wait until the band's tour on the road to promote the new album and then buy the live performance of the new album (with the bonus of extras materials which comes with the new music). This is because the band have been playing together for forty years. They can be compared to a classical music string quintet in the way they execute the music. On stage each performer's instrument is an extension of the arm of the other band member's instrument, while Hogarth's lyrical style of delivery (you either love his voice or hate it) serves the purpose of the music. By the time the band gets to perform the new album all the nuances of the music have been explored and improved upon and you get to hear a superior product.

The above is a general rule. There are one or two exceptions. Marbles is that exception. The single CD edition of the Marbles studio album is the best work of the Hogarth Marillion era and should be celebrated as their finest work. Any highlights package of the H era music would have to include Fantastic Place and Neverland. I would personally add You're Gone, which is a perfect bridge between the intro, The Invisible Man and the slow Angelino. I've never been sold on the Marbles double album studio edition which includes Ocean Cloud. Ocean Cloud is a piece of Space Rock, rather like early Pink Floyd with some David Gilmour type guitar runs from Steve Rothery. Impressive as it is I don't feel it belongs on the Marbles studio album. However here on the live album, Marbles In The Park, the song is fine and works well with the other songs which have been rearranged in appearance order for the audience. With Drilling Holes, you get an interesting back story of it's writing which stems from the early days when Hogarth joined the band and they were recording the Seasons End album. Fish issued the band members with writs. Steve Hogarth was the only one not being sued.

Marbles is Hogarth's best work with Marillion. This live album doesn't quite match the studio album in brilliance. However, it works well as a narrative promoting the album and the audience in Holland would have found themselves in a fantastic place lapping up the familiar music.

 Misplaced Childhood by MARILLION album cover Studio Album, 1985
4.25 | 2149 ratings

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Misplaced Childhood
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by Hector Enrique

5 stars Misplaced Chilodhood is one of those albums in which it seems that everything a group wants to transmit, it achieves from start to finish in a sequence of songs that maintains a level that does not decline, and the pauses that are few, only serve to take a bit of air and continue on the journey that these neoprogressive giants invite us to take. In my opinion, the highest point of the album is located in the sequence that goes from Lavander, going through Bitter Suite and finally Heart of Lothian, which incidentally marks the end of side A. Probably Kayleigh, is the best-known song by Marillion by all, and in fact it is excellent, but I think the previous 3 are one step up. Excellent guitar playing by Steve Rothery, with a smooth and velvety style, as well as intense and deep, which marked the neoprogressive genre onwards, the Mark Kelly keyboards that I consider were its highest point, and the excellent vocal performance of Fish , proud adoptive son of Peter Gabriel. The genre had a before and after, marked by this album, from it a whole new current was generated that still flourishes today.
 Holidays In Eden by MARILLION album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.12 | 662 ratings

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Holidays In Eden
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by iluvmarillion

2 stars It's very rare you take an album home to play, only to discover that the bonus disc composed mostly of demos, is superior to the main album. If I was to grade only the bonus disc against the other albums in Marillion's discography I would have it ahead of albums like Somewhere Else and Radiation. The actual album in my humble opinion is a major letdown.

I feel the issue lies with the inability of the band to follow their own natural instincts that they are a rock band, not a pop band and can't do songs like Queen's We Will Rock You. They should have learned that from the experience in recording Hooks In You, from their previous album, Seasons End, but they seem to be wanting to pursue singles success at the expense of a higher aesthetic of a satisfying album. They basically are to get the formula right in 2000 when they gain financial support from their fan base and start producing their own material, selling the distribution rights to the record company. But this is 1991.

Marillion, have survived as a band for as long as they have without any personal changes, because of the way they function as a quintet. Each instrument in the quintet is a voice and no one voice is dominant over another voice. Marillion songs are architectural in nature and depend on building blocks to create the aesthetic experience. The creative process is more in the way the building blocks come together rather than the germ of the idea behind the song. Because of this the songs require a long gestation period so they can breathe.

The songs on Holidays In Eden weren't given an adequate gestation period. Chris Neil, who is a pop producer, isn't the right producer to engineer Marillion albums. A David Hentschel or Brian Eno would have been a much better choice. The songs are terribly overengineered on the album. The are extraneous guitars everywhere, drumming that's far too heavy for the songs, chorus voices that aren't needed and synthesizers that join in in all the wrong intervals. The material is fine. Splintering Heart, No One Can, Waiting To Happen and Cover My Eyes, which all feature on the live album, Made Again, are great songs and turn out much better there performed live than on this album. The Party is a very intimate song with strong lyrical content and better suited to the themes on the Seasons End album rather than here. The song Holidays In Eden sounds like a song by The Police. Dry Land, which is another intimate song, is given a dance beat. This Town -The Rakes Progress - 100 Nights is really one song. It has all the makings of a fine epic with a great guitar riff near the end but all that is wasted because of the over engineering of the synthesizers and guitars.

David Bowie had the right idea in that you never deliver the perfect album (unless it's the last one you intend making) because you want your audience to be wanting more and you need to hold something back. Also, you never make the same album twice because you need to be constantly challenging yourself as an artist and wanting to take your audience with you. With Marillion, somehow they forgot who they are and the result is Holidays In Eden.

 Script For A Jester's Tear by MARILLION album cover Studio Album, 1983
4.23 | 2011 ratings

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Script For A Jester's Tear
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by Zoltanxvamos

4 stars So, Marillion, one of the founding fathers of Neo-Prog as we know it today. This album was my introduction to the band, and frankly back in the day, I loved this album. This album showed the ideas of bringing a more modern approach to the old Genesis sound that many loved and longed for. Fish's vocals on this album were very reminiscent of Gabriel and his ability to own the stage were incredible. Of course, as time went on, I gradually started to move past this album, I was introduced to Fugazi and fell in love with it, then Misplaced Childhood, and now Seasons End. For me, the music hear still resembles that initial approach at writing Genesis inspired pieces still works, but when you listen to Misplaced Childhood, this album seems like a bit of a ... well... it showed that even though they started off great, they were bound to get better with time. When I listen to this now, I find that the music is still fairly well written and holds up to the standard of their debut such as, catching hooks, thrilling vocals, and the unbelievable character they set when this album came out. The only complaint I have of this album is the drumming. As a drummer, I'm not too impressed by Mick Pointer, he is the John Mayhew of Marillion, competent but not impressive. Thankfully we got Ian Mosley to take over the drum throne and well... we eventually got Misplaced Childhood. I still have a soft spot in my heart for this album, like I said, it was my introduction to this band, but when I listen to every song, from the Title Track to Forgotten Sons, it just doesn't hold up to the bands later releases. I like every song still, but once more, they just ended up doing better albums later on.
 Christmas 2000: A Piss-Up In A Brewery by MARILLION album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 2001
3.87 | 18 ratings

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Christmas 2000: A Piss-Up In A Brewery
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by iluvmarillion

4 stars This was a give away disc to the loyal Marillion fan base back in 2001 and as such I wasn't expecting much. Instead I get music off a recorded hour long live concert they did in the intimate setting I suppose of the Brewery with a few loyal fans there to watch them. They perform songs mostly off Seasons End and Holidays In Eden and do such a good job most of the songs here are as good, if not better than the recorded versions on these albums.

They begin with Go off Marillion.com which has a slow build before it bursts into the main theme. I really can't remember the song being this good from the original album. They then do the pretty little number, After Me (Seasons End) which switches from acoustic guitar to electric piano. Lap Of Luxury, off Brave, is next, which quotes a verse off Afraid Of Sunlight before the band goes back in time to perform Cinderella Search. The main electric piano theme in Cinderella Search then morphs into a stripped down version of The Space in which you get some interesting bass playing from Pete Trewavas.

We now go into music off Holidays In Eden which are mainly acoustic guitar pieces. After they perform Collection, Steve Hogarth introduces Stephanie Sobey-Jones to the stage, who plays Cello on Sympathy and Number One. Cello adds a new dimension to the music and leads you into the right mood to enjoy what I find is the highlight of the disc, a rendition of Dry Land which is totally unlike the version on the Holidays In Eden album. The percussive Gazpacho follows and then they play the Neil Finn number, How Will You Go, from the Crowded House album, Woodface. The concert concludes with Cannibal Surf Babe.

I really wasn't expecting a CD to be this good. The fans attending the Brewery setting would have enjoyed a sparkling concert. The band enjoys a good rapport with the audience. I wish I had been there to enjoy it. This concert should have deserved a more widespread release.

 Less Is More by MARILLION album cover Studio Album, 2009
2.76 | 361 ratings

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Less Is More
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by iluvmarillion

1 stars I idolize Marillion. I love their music. However this semi-acoustic reinterpretation of their repertoire is a major misfire. I remember Yes in one of their live concerts turned Roundabout into a Samba. Musicians can have fun on stage. In the studio is a different matter altogether.

Go doesn't work as a lullaby. Why do we need the oriental introduction on Interior Lulu? Same again for Quartz which is really a jazzy number which needs jazz like playing. At least some small mercy, half way through Quartz, Steve Rothery gets out his electric guitar. Hard As Love is terrible. It sounds like dogs on heat. Out Of This World, as a song, is foolproof. I could do it as a singalong in the pub and it would work. It's Not Your Fault just isn't a good song and wouldn't work in any format. This Is The 21st Century is a great song which has one of Marillion's best riffs running through it. Don't look on this album for it though. Easily the best song on this album is Memory Of Water which is a slow number and suited to an acoustic format.

The three bonus live numbers at the end of the album are better than the rest of the material, but doesn't save it. Pete Trewavas performs some excellent bass playing on Cannibal Surf Babe.

 Script For A Jester's Tear by MARILLION album cover Studio Album, 1983
4.23 | 2011 ratings

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Script For A Jester's Tear
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by NickCrimsonII

4 stars 'Script' is Marillion's debut album released in 1983, just after their absolutely excellent single/EP 'Market Square Heroes' (3 songs, and 26 minutes of playtime).

And from what I hear and see as ratings on the website, I must say that I feel it is just a little bit overrated for what it is. Of course, I believe I understand why this is. The 80s were tough times for prog but also for rock music, in general. Many of the classic bands were exploring poppier sounds, more keyboard-driven and less experimental music was created. So, then came the second wave of progressive bands, which had a strong melancholic feel to them (obviously inspired by the giants of the 70s) mixed with somewhat of a funky groove, which is pretty self-explanatory, given the fact that this was the 80s. These bands were waving the flag of prog and are, of course, the reason why it survived but the quality of many of these records is just not the same as the bands that preceeded them. Many Neo-prog groups and albums from that time sound overblown, uninspiring and dully forgettable at times, not including Marillion in these categories for sure. But these albums were the only thing that the prog fanbase from the 70s could relate to, or if you want, to latch on to, thus many of them are hyperbolized and overly celebrated, when the retrospective is clear.

'Script' is really an impressive debut, there is no doubt about that. It is an excellent addition to any prog rock fan's collection and a must-listen. It really is one of the best things to come out of the 70s but I just cannot give it the five-star rating, because in my ears it does not match 'Misplaced Childhood' or 'Marbles', for example.

Some fantastic, catchy and absolutely gorgeous tunes on here - the title track is quite cinematic, something that will become the trademark of the subgenre, 'He Knows You Know' is undoubtedly my favourite track on the album and I feel like it is one of Marillion's all-time bests, and 'Garden Party' is another really fun track. However, the other three songs just don't do it for me. They are obviously good for what they are but not top-tier songs for Marillion.

And I imagine if they included the three song from 'Market Square Heroes' instead of 'Chelsea Monday', 'The Web', and 'Forgotten Sons'. This would dramatically change my perception of the album. Of course, this is my personal take on it, and it will never happen.

To end it all, I must say that I enjoy the album although it is not an easy listen. And it is definitely not perfect, as the band will prove later and top the 'Script for a Jester's Tear'.

 Script For A Jester's Tear (2020 Limited Deluxe Edition) by MARILLION album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2020
4.92 | 6 ratings

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Script For A Jester's Tear (2020 Limited Deluxe Edition)
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

5 stars The 2020 deluxe version of Script For a Jester's Tear offers up a treasury of wonders. The freshly remastered album, given a careful remix by Andy Bradfield and Avril Mackintosh, feels like a distinct improvement over the previous 1997 remaster of the album; now that the CD mastering "loudness wars" have passed the material is given a bit more room to breathe and it all just sounds fantastic, with new subtleties teased out. They even tease the best out of Mick Pointer's drumming.

The second CD gives the same treatment to the Market Square Heroes EP - with Charting the Single also spruced up as a bonus track. Significantly, the version of Grendel here is not the "Fair Deal Studios version" from the 2CD version of the 1997 reissue, but the studio version which was originally released with the EP - the first time this track has had a proper clean-up on CD since it was issued as part of B'side Themselves. Andy and Avril have worked wonders with this version of the track, dialling back some of the inappropriate sunniness of the earlier mix and investing it with the dark spirit of the Fair Deal Studios version, whilst at the same time bringing out details of the performances that the Fair Deal version obscures. It may be in the running for my favourite rendition of the song now.

Last off, there's a live show from the Marquee from 29th December 1982. If you have the Early Stages boxed set, you'll have the 30th December performance, and the running order between the two is identical, but a) if you have that box and you enjoy it you're probably the sort of person who can't get enough live Fish anyway and b) if you don't have that box, this is a pretty good show from the Script-era lineup.

 Brief Encounter by MARILLION album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1986
2.68 | 72 ratings

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Brief Encounter
Marillion Neo-Prog

Review by VianaProghead
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Review Nº 323

"Brief Encounter" is an EP of Marillion that was released in 1986. It's a compilation with two studio tracks and three live tracks. The two studio tracks are "Lady Nina", which is an extended version of the original track released on the single "Kayleigh" as the B side, in 1985 and "Freaks" which is a single version of the original track which was released on the single "Lavender" as the B side, in 1985 too. The three live tracks were released by EMI, the American label of Capitol Records, in 1986, coinciding with Marillion's live tour on U.S.A and Canada, on that year. Marillion was the band that supported Rush's "Power Windows" live tour, the promotional world live tour of the eleventh studio album of Rush.

Although aimed strictly at the American market and not officially released elsewhere, "Brief Encounter" was very much demanded in Europe especially because Marillion's breakthrough, with the departure of Fish from the band to begins a solo career. It was also important because the band hadn't released any new material in 1986. So, "Brief Encounter" became, in reality, their first work in that year, in terms of studio albums. Because "Brief Encounter" included two non album's tracks, the result was that the EP was widely available as an import record in the European shops.

Curiously, "Brief Encounter" was the only Marillion's release not to feature a cover art by Mark Wilkinson prior to his and Fish's departure from the group in 1988.

"Brief Encounter" has five tracks. The first track "Lady Nina" is one of the two studio tracks on the album. It's a song taken from their single "Kayleigh", in 1985 and it was the B side of that Marillion's single, which was released from their third studio album "Misplaced Childhood", in 1985. It was also released as a separated single on U.S.A., in 1986, and it was the A side of that single. However, this version of "Lady Nina" is a different version, an extended version of the original studio version. Sincerely, I don't like very much of this song, particularly, of this new version. It's possibly one of the the poppiest tracks the band has made, which means the hook is huge. But when the lyrics get flowery they still even work a bit in the context, fortunatelly. Stil, this is a nice and pleasant song to hear but, in reality, it's a song too much pop for my taste, that curiously, reminds me strongly the pop era of Genesis. The second track "Freaks" is the other studio track on the album. It's a song that never was released on any studio album of the band and that appeared on their single "Lavender", in 1985 and it was the B side of that Marillion's single, which was released from their third studio album "Misplaced Childhood". It was also released as a separated single in 1988. I don't dislike this track, really. The non-album "Freaks" is much more than the ticket. This is really a fun Fish's romp. The third track "Kayleigh" is a live version of the single version of a song originally released on their third studio album "Misplaced Childhood". This live version is identical with the one released on their second live album "The Thieving Magpie ? La Gazza Ladra", in 1988. This is maybe the most recognizable Marillion's tune. It's also one of their most accessible tracks. This is a very nice and beautiful live track, used by Marillion for several times as an opener to their live shows in Fish's era. The fourth track "Fugazi" is a live version of the title track originally released on their second studio album "Fugazi", in 1984. This is a great epic track. It's a fantastic track with great mood and a melody that changes all over the song. This is the ending of a great musical journey and an incredible way to close "Fugazi". This live version is also great. The fifth track "Script For a Jester's Tear" is a live version of the title track originally released on their debut studio album "Script For A Jester's Tear", in 1983. This is a fantastic song, a brilliant opener, and is, without any doubt, a memorable musical moment on that album too. It's clearly progressive rock music with a strong melody and sung wonderfully by the magnificent voice of Fish. It's a song that reminds us perfectly well the good old times of the progressive rock music, especially the masterpieces of Genesis in Gabriel's era. This is also a good live version of the original track.

According to the information inside the EP the three live tracks were recorded at the Hammersmith Odeon in London, in 1986. However, other sources say that "Fugazi" and "Script For a Jester's Tear" were probably recorded at De Montford Hall, in Leicester, in 1984. In fact, we can perfectly hear Fish saying "Goodnight Leicester" at the end of "Fugazi".

Conclusion: We can review "Brief Encounter" in two different parts, the studio and the live tracks. Relativelly to the two studio tracks, still that "Freaks" and "Lady Nina" be two nice tracks, they aren't essential in Marillion's catalogue in Fish's era. And I don't like particularly of this new version of "Lady Nina". However, there are fortunately very few weak songs during that musical era. In relation to the three live tracks, I think they're all three excellent live versions of the original tracks. Still, they don't add anything new when compared to the other live versions of those tracks. So, despite "Brief Encounter" doesn't add anything new, is the perfect companion to their debut live album "Real To Reel". Fortunately, both were regrouped and released on one double compilation named "Real To Reel - Brief Encounter".

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

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