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Fish - Vigil In A Wilderness Of Mirrors CD (album) cover





3.82 | 324 ratings

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3 stars Some people say that it's a shame Fish left Marillion. However, with this solo career, we now have two great neo-prog bands/artists. Vigil is a great example of that. The line up is much wider than with Marillion, but in this first album the music is very close to Marillion, though a bit more conventionally.

Fish's touch on the songs is still great. The melodies are very catchy and the lyrics, as always, remain at least as brilliant as the music.

Vigil, the opening track is one of the best on the album. It's melodic and powerful. the story is nice, and I gives the album a good direction to go. At this point his former band had taken a different approach, so this was more than welcome to those who live in the past.

Big Wedge is much less progressive. It's got those horrendous 80s drumsounds they still used in the early 90s. and the rythm is pretty pop. Especially the chorus. Fish has obviously no intention on keeping the music prog. The whole song is pretty happy, which is very strange for Fish. A nice pop song with horns, but nothing special really.

State of Mind has a pretty groovy intro which leads to a nice, slow song again. These slow rock songs are Fish's most usual way to go. The lyrics are against corrupt politics, so there's something for people who are into that. Well, the groovy bassline carries through the song, but other than that and the story-lyrics, the song is a bit boring.

The Company on the other hand is a brilliant song. It starts with a touch of a folk drinking tune, and the verse is really something similar. This would suit perfectly to a bar night at an Irish pub. Personally I like to drink to it. On the second chorus the song really gets on and it turns really beautiful. Beautiful is really the ultimate work I'd give to this one. Cheers mates, bottoms up!

A Gentleman's Excuse Me is a slow and nice song, with a piano and strings. It's a nice ballad, but that's as far as it gets. Not really a song I'd listen to after The Company, unless of course it's right next to it on the cd. Something that makes you sentimental, yes, but nothing more.

The Voyeur (I Like To watch) is again a pop song, very close to Big Wedge though without the bigband feeling of horns. Not my personal favourite.

I don't really know what to say fo Family Business. It's a nice and atmospheric song, close to old Marillion too, but again, not prog, just a nice rock song.

View from the Hill is about again corrupt policies, though not as direct. The verse is a slow and atmospheric again, and the chorus gets on, guitar driven like a common rock song.

Cliché is the second of the prog songs, along with Vigil, and it's also one of the best songs on the album. It's still a love song, which has always been his cup of tea. The best way, is with an old cliché. I love you. A nice story and a good ending. Again, when Fish does something more progressive, it tends to sound like old Marillion. There's a nice guitar in the beginning, and the song is really slow and quiet. then it goes up on a climatic burst. The most catchy part on this song is the guitar melody, though simple, still very good.

The problem about reviewing an artist like this is, that it's almost impossible not to compare them to their old bands. Of course, we must acknowledge, that it wasn't Fish who composed most, but he did write the songs and the lyrics. However, those, who have listened to Marillion will be both pleased and disappointed. There are some great songs that I would add to the grand cathegory, and then there are some, that separate him from his band. the album in itself is not the best possible, but still recommended to anyone, who listens to Marillion. It's like Steve Hackett's solo to those who like old Genesis. But to people unfamiliar to Fish's old merits, this album is most probably just an album like any other. 3 stars.

Passionist | 3/5 |


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