Fish: Return to Childhood
“Misplaced Childhood” is one of my favorite albums, and I very much enjoy the solo albums I have by Fish. So, you would think I would have been very excited about this album. The truth is I am always wary of an artist trying to recapture past glories. I had also not heard anything live by Fish since the Marillion days. Well, my fears were laid to rest. This is a wonderful album. Even if he doesn’t have the same range, Fish still infuses a lot of emotion into the music. The band is very tight, and emotes a sense of enjoyment with the material.
The first part is from his solo career, and is much more rock oriented than full out prog. Don’t let that scare you away. He is still doing quality stuff, and has picked out some choice numbers. “Moving Targets” is especially good. It infuses some great elements (violin, soulful back up singing), while rocking all of the time.
The second part is Marillion. It has all of “Misplaced Childhood,” followed by “Incommunicado,” “Market Square Heroes,” and “Fugazi.” The tunes are played skillfully, and with respect, but are rocked up a bit. Not really a problem, but I have just listened to the originals so many times that it puts me off a bit. There is joy in the performance, but it seems to lack a certain spark. The band just doesn’t have the same touch as the Marillion guys. Although, this isn’t Marillion, is it? Taken on that level, they do a fantastic job.
If you are a purist, and don’t think you can handle the tunes without Rothery, Trewavas, Kelly, and Mosley, this might not be for you. If you like Fish’s solo work, you will definitely enjoy the first half. Take it for what it is, and there is much to appreciate. You can’t go wrong with this play list. Therefore, I say it would be an excellent addition to any prog collection.
Fish – lead vocals
Frank Usher – lead guitar
Andy Trill – guitar
Tony Turrell – keyboards
Steve Vantsis – bass
John Tonks – drums
Deborah French – backing vocals