Monday, February 27, 2012

The beauty that is Marillion

By now it's no secret that I'm in love with the guys in Marillion. They have completely bewitched me, and my creative journey has escalated as a result. Being a part of something so grand is a frightful delight.

I have listened to them for a few years. And having said that, I also need to say that I have actually known about them for at least fifteen years. I was once married, and my ex had a thing for Marillion, old school. Though, he hadn't many superlatives about their new lead singer (and I can't for the life of me figure out why...because he liked it now, or so he said, when I let him listen to a few of the tracks), so I didn't bother to check it out...then.
I'm actually glad about the fact, because the emotional vastness of the journey I took when I really listened, is an experience I wouldn't have missed for the world. And I don't think I was ready for it then. I had to wake up!
Like I said I had listened to them for a few years, fallen asleep with them on my ears, probably making sure they reached the centers of my brain that needed to be reached. All though at this time I was just enjoying the ambience. And, yeah, I liked them, but I wasn't head over heels.

But then, one day, I was listening to Essence (a brilliant song from the "Happiness Is The Road - Album). I don't quite know what happened, but I started listening to the music as if it was coming from within.
Now there was no turning back, ever.

A little background, and to the family I'm about to "out", I do beg your pardon. I love you to bits...
I have a brother who is, according to himself, the musical expert in our family. Now, my mother is a singing teacher (one of the good ones), my father is a teacher of music at a higher level, I myself am a singer, and my brother is a talented guitarist and singer and songwriter. So, he would have some competition claiming something like this within the family, as we all are equipped with strong feelings on the subject.

But I fear he's right. And coming from a stubborn woman, that is saying something.
My father only ever listens to classical music (but believe it or not, he actually liked one of the songs I'm describing'll know the one.)
My mother sings along with whatever is on the radio, though she prefers opera. She has a song for everything, and is open-minded and generous. But I think her favorite is something French or Mozart, maybe Verdi.
Leaving me? What about my musical taste? I'm a product of all of this. I'm trying to steer clear of any obstacles and find what makes me happy. Not easy.
I have been through my Michael Jackson phase, my Abba phase, my U2 phase...several smaller phases, I have had my classical phase, I even had a musical theatre phase...not proud of that one. And every phase made me believe I had seen the light. So imagine my surprise when I really did see the light. I had no doubt that I had found my true match... I have no doubt that I have found my true match.

Being divorced and lonely I looked for comfort in music and films. So I asked the only one I could think of, the only one I truly trusted to help me find a path. I asked my little brother.
He has claimed, for a long time, that the best music he knows is the one he hasn't heard yet (paradox?). He's trying his hardest to make me be a part of this notion. But when I find something I like, I stick to it, and I remain loyal, so I'm quite hard to convince (maybe this is why my father can't enjoy anything written later than the Forties, I have this from him).
So, again, I think my brother may be right in claiming he's the musical expert of the family. He goes through a lot, a lot of music, and he is always open for new things. I think this is what makes a great musician, and also a great listener.
He showed me the music closest to my heart...or actually the music powering my heart.
Now, I liked songs like Afraid of Sunlight and You're Gone. But, as the oracle (my brother) informed me, those were the hits. I'm not, to this day, quite sure what he implied. Should I not enjoy the chart-music? The songs above are brilliant, though. The light/dark metaphor in You're Gone is just so achingly beautiful that I could cry...
Back to Essence...

What is so incredible about this song? I had listened to it many times, and I liked it. Only this particular time, it was as if I heard it for the very first time, and the ground was swept away from under me. I felt I was floating on air. I got chills all over my body, and I suddenly got a feeling I could move on in life. That I was finally able to reach whatever goal I may have had, or were to get.

So, Silje entering iTunes, buying all the albums she didn't have yet... Boy was I in for many treats.
I listened, I wrote (you who read this blog know that I meddle in the art of writing...), and I loved every second of every song...
Only I had another high to come...

I had to buy an album called Anoraknophobia because Marillion had a vote on their facebook page on the best song from this album (go sing in). I didn't know, so I had to buy it to figure it out.
I listened in awe.
First you have Between You and Me. Like.
Then you have Quartz. Like that too...ish.
Then Map of the World. Sweet tune, like as well.
When I Meet God. This is a diamond. The lyrics are so deep, and so beautiful, and so spot on "What kind of mother leaves a child in the traffic...". The song is melancholic and uplifting at the same time. I might now add that I also had the idea of a female God in one of my novels, but claiming such a thing might be a difficult one to prove...
And all the time Steve's voice is like velvet around my soul.
I thought it couldn't get better, I mean getting better means they are true musical magicians. So I voted...
When I Meet God is my favorite song from this particular album

But the fact is, they are true musical magicians. They are "Out of this world..." Because now comes this blues-tune, and I'm nodding along as anyone would, really. Not at all aware of what's about to hit me. The verse, the refrain, the verse... refrain...They play beautifully... He sings, beautifully.... "As England faces the winter..."
I lost my breath.
I stood there gasping for air, feeling someone had gone into my soul and written the music from which I came. The music making my mind able to create...
The song was beating with the rhythm from my heart, and I could feel something warm at the back of my eyes. I started to cry.
I wasn't sad, I was laughing and crying at the same time.
So I had to, sorry guys, I HAD TO vote again.
My favorite song from this album is The Fruit Of The Wild Rose.

I also, almost equally enjoyed This Is The 21st Century, and I do (trust me on this) have an intriguing tale on how I reacted when I heard that song the very first time, but I think it's a bit inappropriate... anyway, by then I didn't dare to vote a third time. But there you go! They told us to vote only once, and I seemed to be unable to, as almost every single song was and is significant. This counts for all of the albums, I might add... but I get a feeling they are improving like a fine wine. I can't wait for their new album...

I'll leave you with the sweetest of tunes called Go! It first appeared on, and the version there is just as magical as the one from Cadogan Hall. But the one from Cadogan Hall was the second song to change my life... And it is a powerful display of musical abilities beyond divine. This is the song that calms me down. "It only takes a fraction of a second to turn your life upside down". Well, you said it, Marillion!

You could do far worse than giving them a listen or five (and if you go on their official web site, you can order a CD called Crash will give you a peek into their world with some of the highlights. And believe me when I say there are many highlights). You'll enter, if you are perceptive to this, a world where magic still exists in each single chord, where the music is designed to make you reach a higher level of serenity and musicality than any of the so-called popstars ever could convey, and where bliss and courage is floating on top of every note.
But what is the most special thing about Marillion is their incredible contact with their fans, and also their fan's incredible contact with each other. It is like having a family from all over the world.
Go to their homepage for more information, it really is a better way of life. The link is listed at the top.
I believe there are people placed on this planet to inspire humanity.
The guys in Marillion are the leaders of this precious company.


  1. I've been listening to Marillion since 1985, but more seriously from 1990/1. They're still such an inspirational band. It's good to see the way they have kept that wandering spirit and not been afraid to try new things.

    1. I know. And that fearlessness is so inspiring. I'm really looking forward to their new album. Have a great summer.