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Marillion - Misplaced Childhood

Review No: 233
Added 8th July 2005


Fish - Vocals

Mark Kelly - Keyboards

Ian Mosley - Drums

Peter Trewavas - Bass Guitar

Steve Rothery - Guitar

To think that back in 1985, when Marillion released their third album 'Misplaced Childhood', the unsuspecting and gullible public had still not cottoned onto the fact that they really were a mere imitation Genesis band. Why they did not just get up on stage and play 'Supper’s Ready' or the whole of 'Lamb Lies Down On Broadway', is a mystery to me. At least proper tribute bands try and mimic their heroes honestly. However, not Marillion. Oh no, they claimed that they were writing new stuff that just happened to sound a bit like another progressive rock band. (They even got themselves signed to the same record label, Charisma. It must have been like Deja Vu.)

Every song on this album sounds like a reject from one of Genesis’ Peter Gabriel era albums. Now when Genesis came out with albums such as 'Nursery Crime' or 'Foxtrot' in the early seventies, they were indeed original. Although the band went on to reach even further heights in their career later, the classic lineup of Genesis most people considered then was with Peter Gabriel on vocals (he also wrote most of the lyrics and used to add a bit of flute in between, wearing all sorts of different costumes on stage to emphasize the songs stories); a young Phil Collins on drums (he previously had been a child actor before stepping into the spotlight at the front of the band and building his own separate solo career as one of the world’s top drummers); Steve Hackett, a slightly eccentric lead guitarist; Tony Banks with his banks of keyboards and the studious one of the group; and then on bass and filling in the gaps was Mark Rutherford (he added the Ringo element before forming Mike and the Mechanics in his spare time and being in two of the world’s most successful bands simultaneously).

Now, if you take these five very talented musicians and get five cheap doppelgangers you get Marillion. But everybody fell for it (for a while anyway). The album roared up the European charts. Three tracks from ‘Misplaced Childhood’ were released as singles and all reached the higher reaches of the Top Twenty (the Americans never fell for the Marillion ruse). They even had a singer with a funny name "Fish". I would of thought his real name of Derek Dick was funny enough.

Of course, within a year the game was up. You can only fool some of the people some of the time, never all the people all the time. "Fish" managed to bail out before the ship went down, retaining some dignity.

Track Listing:
Disc One - The Original Misplaced Childhood
Pseudo Silk Kimono
Bitter Suite
Heart Of Lothian
Waterhole (Expresso Bongo)
Lords Of The Backstage
Blind Curve
Childhoods End
White Feather

Disc Two - the Bonus Disc
Out Takes etc.
Lady Nina
Kayleigh (alternative mix)
Lavender Blue
Heart Of Lothian (extended mix)
Album Demo's
Pseudo Silk Kimono
Bitter suite
Lords Of The Backstage
Blue Angel
Misplaced Rendezvous
Heart Of Lothian
Waterhole ( Expresso Bongo)
Passing Strangers
Childhoods End?
White Feather

He was replaced by a person simply called "H". With "H'' on board the others have soldiered on to this very day, each album selling less and less to their diminishing crowd of anoraked fans.

Misplaced Childhood' has been re-released with all the necessary trimmings like digitally re-mastered etc, but, cruelly, they have added on yet another disc which runs at over an hour. It contains demo versions of the original songs, plus a clutch of songs deemed not good enough for the album in the first place. So why unleash them on the listening public now? This means we have to put up with 'Kayleigh' three times and all of the other songs again, only in a slightly different running order, and mixed in are the songs not good enough to be recorded for an album.

The only way that Marillion would sound half way decent is if you had never heard anything by Genesis. But if you want to hear the real music, better get one of the brilliant original Genesis albums, and give this bunch of wannabes a miss.

Mott the Dog resides at Jameson's the Irish Pub