After what seems like an age Prog rockers Marillion have returned to the fold brimming with new ideas. From the opening eastern orchestration of Gaza it is clear that they aren't scared of musical or lyrical challenges. The song rises and falls taking the listener on a rollercoaster ride of light and shade with Steve Hogarth's trademark vocals reaching new levels of pure passion. The infectious title track follows, very much in an 80s pop rock mould with Steve Rothery's guitar and Mark Kelly's keys taking things to a completely different level. Montreal is a concise journey of interlocking pieces and is where the band get to fire on all cylinders. However, the album's melancholic highpoint is the stirring The Sky Above The Rain with Mr. Rothery's stunning lead work making it so much more than a simple ballad. Marillion back at the top of their game!
14th September, 2012