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Music To Paddle With. Marillion – Afraid Of Sunlight

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Marillion - Afraid Of Sunlight

To many the name Marillion is synonym of the Peter Gabriel era Genesis clones. This is far from the truth though. Of course the first releases from the British Rock Band could easily be labeled as derivative  of Genesis but Marillion sound has vastly changed since then. Not surprisingly, these days Marillion’s sound is compared to that of bands like Talk Talk, Radiohead, Keane and Corwded House. This process became apparent as the lead singer lyricist of the band, the Peter Gabriel alter-ego Fish, left for a solo career and was replaced by Steve Hogarth in 1989. He joined the other core members of the band: Steve Rothery (Lead Guitar), Pete Trewavas (Bass), Mark Kelly (Keyboards) and Ian Mosley (Drums). With the contribution of “H” (Steve’s Nickname) Marillion’s songs veered into the pop-rock territory but never left completely the prog-rock flavor. Afraid Of Sunlight, released back in 1995, was the fourth studio album released by the band after the split.

Marillion - Afraid Of Sunlight

Despite a disappointing commercial performance, the album was critically acclaimed as one of the band’s best ever. From the opening track “GAzpacho”, to the closing “King” the album is an authentic musical journey, a perfect blend of different musical approaches such as prog-rock (not surprisingly), Pop and New Wave. Scarcely a duff track here! Anyway, stand out songs include the gorgeous “Afraid Of Sunrise”, the eerie “Out Of This World” (dedicated to Donald Campbell, who died while trying to set a speed record on water in 1967 *), and the evocative yet struggling “Beyond You” that closes a work close to perfection. Not to mention, the lyrics are top notch with a haunting melancholy that pervades most of them. In the end, one word can easily qualify this album. You can choose that word, but "flawless" will be a synonym.
If you like this album, you should definitely check out other “H” era Marillion releases, “Marillion.com”, “This Strange Engine” and “Marbles”.
(*) As a matter of fact the haunting song led to an effort to recover both Campbell's body and the "Bluebird K7," the boat which Campbell crashed in, from the water. The recovery was finally undertaken in 2001, and both Steve Hogarth and Steve Rothery were invited. 

Tracks Listing

   1. Gazpacho
   2. Cannibal Surf Babe
   3. Beautiful
   4. Afraid Of Sunrise
   5. Out Of This World
   6. Afraid Of Sunlight
   7. Beyond You

Genre: Prog Rock, New Wave, Pop

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