Marillion: Anoraknophobia (CD, 63:37); Sanctuary Records, 06076 84506-2, 2001 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Cyberhome: http://www.marillion.com 10 words or less: Latest album from long-lived NeoProg band Elaboration: I was first introduced to Marillion in 1990. I had been collecting Fusion for a decade and was now embarking on my quest for the greatest ProgRock recordings of all time. Living in LA at the time, I used to frequent a progressive music store called Round Sounds. The owner Ed used to play hours upon hours of music for me and proved to be my main source of ProgRock edification in the early 90s. He was also a big Genesis fan (a band I still find difficult to like today) and informed me of this "Genesis clone band" called Marillion of which he proceeded to play some music (I don't think they had very many albums at the time). Well, not liking Genesis, you can imagine my response to the clone band. Fortunately, Marillion has come a long way from their beginnings and has found their own voice. Anoraknophobia starts off with an overwhelming 'wall of sound' approach on the album's opener. It's no secret that your average music fan would not accept most ProgRock but this track sounds like U2 with a not so great vocalist; quite mainstream sounding. Track 2 follows in the same vein though more subdued. One could also draw a comparison to some of Mike Oldfield’s Pop leanings. Track 3 is just downright pedestrian in it’s sugary PopRock power ballad approach. Indeed there is little left to connect them to their humble beginnings as a Genesis clone ProgRock band; no, this is very straightforward Rock music for the masses. Though track 6, ‘Separated Out’ kept my attention, it still wasn’t what has come to be known as progressive Rock by any stretch of the imagination. It really does seem to me that they are trying to be U2, not that U2 is bad but the world doesn't need another U2. Unfortunately I have to report that there is nothing on this album that would appeal to the eclectic ear. ~ L Perez
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