MARILLION

(UNITED KINGDOM)

CLUTCHING AT STRAWS

(1987)
LABEL:

EMI

GENRE:

PROGRESSIVE ROCK

TAGS:
Neo
""Clutching At Straws" is an essential album in Marillion's discography and it benefits from an exceptional remastered version."
NOISE (29.08.2003)  
5/5
(0) opinions (0) comment(s)
Marillion's 4th album, "Clutching At Straws" comes out after an intense tour to promote "Misplaced Chilhood". The tour was exhausting, and the atmosphere within the band had become very weighing. However, the musicians did not allow themselves much rest, and went back into the studio at the beginning of 1987 with Chris Kimsey at the controls. The new album, released in June 1987, was another success, particularly in the UK, where it reached number 2 in the sales charts.

"Clutching At Straws" is the darkest of Marillion's discography. The tensions within the band are palpable, but this does not detract from the quality of the album, which is a real black gem. The previous album dealt with childhood and the passage to adulthood; this one, without being purely conceptual, discuss the setbacks of this same age, notably alcoholism.

The album opens with 'Hotel Hobbies', a dark introduction that sets the tone, one of Marillion's most beautiful, followed by 'Warm Wet Circles', a beautiful melancholy ballad, and 'That Time Of The Night', equally superb and enhanced by a beautiful female vocal.

"Clutching At Straws" marks a slight evolution for the band, with mostly shorter, more pop/rock, high-energy tracks, of which 'Just For The Record' and 'The Last Straw' are perfect examples. Other magnificent tracks include the singles 'Incommunicado', a simple, upbeat song, and 'Sugar Mice', a beautiful, rather sad ballad. Another Marillion gem is the progressive 'White Russians', which stands in stark contrast to the rest of the album's tracks, which are heavy and full of subtleties.

This is another splendid album, perhaps the most accessible of the Fish era, which ends his Marillion career on a very positive note. Indeed, he left in September 1988, a few months after the 9-month tour. But before he left, he recorded the rough draft of a 5th album. These sessions remained hidden for over 10 years, the band only revealing them in 1999 in the remastered edition of the record. Marillion and Fish would use these rough drafts for their respective albums, "Season's End" and "Vigil In The Wilderness Of Mirrors".
- Official website

TRACK LISTING:
01. Hotel Hobbies - 3:35
02. Warm Wet Circles - 4:25
03. That Time Of The Night - 6:00
04. Going Under - 2:47
05. Just For The Record - 3:09
06. White Russian - 6:27
07. Incommunicado - 5:16
08. Torch Song - 4:04
09. Slainte Mhath - 4:45
10. Sugar Mice - 5:46
11. The Last Straw - 5:58

LINEUP:
Fish: Chant
Ian Mosley: Batterie
Mark Kelly: Claviers
Pete Trewavas: Basse
Steve Rothery: Guitares
   
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