“Marbles Live” by Marillion

Artist: Marillion
Title: “Marbles Live”
Label: Intact Recordings
Release Date: 11/1/2005
Genre: Progressive Rock
Rating: 4/5

Marillion is one of the more under-appreciated of the Progressive Rock outfits in existence. Yes, the band has a hardcore and devout following, but outside of those sectors of fans, there are few that realize how great this band can actually be. In 2004 they released “Marbles” and it would be received as one of the best albums in the bands career. Some of the recent experimentation and diversity they delved into had caused them to lose a number of fans (one of them being me) but with “Marbles” the time was right to return to the fold. The music on “Marbles” would continue to show the level of skill the band had as far as Progressive level Popular Music goes but there would be feels from their old style as well as Pink Floyd and Genesis textures that I felt brought a level of familiarity to their sound. The album is a constant in the way of quality and this live recording brings you to one of the many shows where the group performed the record in its entirety. It’s a great live CD if you are a fan of this kind of stuff but is more recommended that the casual listener look into the original CD first and then explore the live effort.

There are a number of great songs on the release such as “Invisible Man” and “Angelina” and given the band makes sure to sound as close to the studio album on the stage, one can appreciate their hard work in maintaining that level of quality for this album. As the CD ended, I remembered one specific thought about the Marillion concert that I caught with friends. It was that Steve Hogarth, their singer, had finally seemed to step out of the shadow of the bands first front man Fish. Of course there are others who might feel he did this years ago, but it took me until “Marbles” to find the band appealing once again. Hogarth proves himself on track after track and along with the ever so tight musical presence of Trewavas, Mosely, Kelly and Rothery continue to demonstrate why Marillion is so special to so many.

Song Listing:
1. The Invisible Man
2. Marbles I
3. You’re Gone
4. Angelina
5. Marbles II
6. Don’t Hurt Yourself
7. Fantastic Place
8. Marbles III
9. The Damage
10. Marbles IV
11. Neverland
12. Estonia

Official Web site: www.marillion.com

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