Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by Headshok, Apr 10, 2019.
Glad I could save you a little time!
Clutching At Straws is just as good. I’m less familiar with the band’s output after that...
My favorite band
The first time I heard Marillion let me type about it. In 1985 I reckon I had a "girlfriend". She lived on a dirt road off of Florida 2 near Graceville. One night she invited me to her house. I don't remember the drive to her house or anything that happened while I was at her house. Though I thought she was pretty good looking. What I remember was part of the drive west on Florida 2 right after I left her house around one or two in the morning. I turned on the radio. I wasn't really paying much attention to it because it was generic popular 1980s stuff that sounded like other popular 1980s stuff. Then I heard something that I at first thought might be 1970s Genesis until I heard a little bit more of it and thought that it sounded like it was recorded in the 1980s. The singer kept singing of somebody named Kayleigh. Then I found out it was Marillion when the disc jockey said it was. I reckon the thing that made that tune stand out was that it didn't sound like anything I would expect to hear on that radio station. Ever since then whenever I heard "Kayleigh" I thought about driving west on Florida 2 around one or two in the morning. Florida 2 was the place where I saw a whatsit. From a distance I thought it was a sick dog crossing the road. But when I got closer to it I saw that it was much bigger than any dog I had ever seen before. It was roughly about the size of a human. And although it was basically crawling across the road it looked like something that could walk upright if it wanted to.
Yeah, and I think it was Hogarth who said they should have changed their name because of the legacy issue I mentioned. They weren't really "Tolkien Rock" but got saddled with it by the press.
I got into them because I was a big Genesis fan and heard of this band where the singer had a similar Gabriel vibe, and I do think Fish was trying to be a bit much like PG in his Genesis years, though I really enjoyed the records. I wasn't much into the 80's punk/wave/synth-pop stuff so I was always looking for more prog-ish stuff. When Fish left I fell out of touch with them but recently have listened to a lot of their Hogarth material and I like a lot of it. Great band and yes, Rothery is a great guitarist and because they weren't bigger doesn't get the props he deserves.
As for Babe/Styx vs. Kayleigh/Marillion, I'll take the latter anyday. I'm a huge 70's Styx fan, my band in HS played a bunch of Styx tunes, but Cornerstone was the beginning of the end for Styx for me as they just became too cheezy (too much DeYoung control). Kayleigh pushed Marillion onto the radio, but it's a good song and I don't think smarmy like Babe was (or Sister Christian was for Night Ranger, who's first album was pretty good, IMO...interesting that Shaw and Blades would later team up in Damn Yankees).
I think Marillion has done some pretty interesting stuff over the years and was glad when I re-visited them a couple years ago to find they were as prolific as they have been. Lots of stuff to listen to.
I bought Misplaced Childhood when I was 11 based on the singles, it took me a few years to get into it. Steve Hogarth used live in the next village to me, I moved maybe he did too. His daughter dated a young friend of mine who's turning into a good artist himself Harry Pane.
I was around 16 /17 when Marillion broke through here in the UK but I kinda passed them off as Genesis-wanabees ( I was very much into early Genesis at that time ) and I never really gave them much attention up until a couple of years ago.
Again, I have to thank my mate who offered me a free ticket to one of their shows and I went along with little expectation of enjoying the gig too much ….how wrong I was.
Absolutely loved it despite knowing almost none of the material ( they played a couple of Fish era things but mainly Hogarth era stuff)
Went again a few months later ( and the next night to see Steve Rothery play at the launch of his signature model guitar to an invited audience of around 200 fan club members ) and I'm going again in November.
One of finest ( & tightest) live bands I've seen.
Only know the Fish years, though have yet to hear Clutching At Straws.
Saw them on the MC tour - very strong. Fish wrote some brilliant lyrics. Did hang w/ the band after the show in the hotel's bar - all nice guys.
Rothary was a bit too Hackett lite in the early days, but understand he has developed a strong voice since.
Used to travel all over England in the early-mid 80's to watch Marillion play. Probably saw them 30 times or so, from clubs to huge festivals to Xmas party gigs. Never liked them after Fish left though - for me the lyrics were always a huge part of the Marillion attraction. Like a lot of the Fish solo stuff, but it's always been a bit patchier than his Marillion work.
As far as the albums go, for me it's Clutching > Fugazi > Script > Misplaced. Clutching is a brilliant album - so dark. It's a band in the process of breaking up.
I have one of their albums on a minidisc that I like. Hopefully I will come across more of their CDs to check out, they have been on my list for some time.
I got to know Marillion even before their first record was released and saw them numerous times at the old Marquee club and bigger venues around the UK once they became more popular. They were a brilliant live band, especially in the more intimate venues. From the Fish era the first two albums are my favorites although they were much less popular than Clutching and Misplaced. There is something about the atmosphere of those first two recordings that is quite unique and suited to the music.
I have also had the pleasure of seeing the Hogarth version of the band many times. I think that Hogarth did an amazing job with the difficult task of replacing such a charismatic frontman while the band shifted in a complementary way to incorporate Hogarth. They have produced a lot of material over the years which is a little "all over the place", some of it is brilliant and some (to me) uninteresting.
Rothery is probably my favorite guitarist. Not because he is flashy or technical (although his command of vibrato is amazing), but because of his incredible sense of melody. So often his solos are not solos per-se but rather songs within a song.
I don't like their 80's output with Fish, but since 'Holiday' they are one of my fav prog(pop) bands. Hogarth is doing it for me. Immensely charismatic frontman.
They released very strong albums up until 'Strange machine'.
Quite a few weak albums followed, but 'Marbles' and 'Sounds' are fine works.
They are one of the few bands with a very progressive business model.
Maybe what's missing in their oeuvre, is a masterpiece with mass appeal, such as TDSOTM.