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Somewhere Else

Review by Greg Olma

I don’t know why I always look at Somewhere Else as a companion disc to Marble,  because they are very different releases.  Marbles flowed from one song to the next whereas Somewhere Else has a more eclectic vibe.  Many of the pieces contain different elements that, when strung together for a whole record, don’t seem to quite gel, but it all somehow works.  I remember being a little let down when I purchased it upon release, but as the years have gone by, I find myself enjoying it a lot.  The band continue to experiment with different soundscapes with varying degrees of success, with some taking some time to fully mature.  I feel this is one of those releases where after some time and multiple spins, you “get” what the band is trying say.  The fact that each song seems to have a life of its own is what makes this Marillion release noteworthy and worth checking out. 

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Track by Track Review
The Other Half
The beginning of this track sounds a lot like The Doors to me, and that element comes up in multiple spots during the track.  There is some great Steve Rothery guitar soloing in the middle and also towards the end before it leaves on a little jazzy note.
See It Like A Baby
We are given a number that has a very unique vibe where the band has a very 90s vibe while still containing some of that Marillion sound; mainly in the guitars and vocals.  The drumming, courtesy of Ian Mosley, is really what stands out as it starts off with this strange beat and then morphs into a solid rock track.
Thank You Whoever You Are
Here is where I feel the comparison to Marbles applies.  This tune has very orchestral sound and showcases Steve Hogarth’s vocals.  Rothery also makes his presence felt with a very nice, emotional guitar solo towards the end.
Most Toys
I really enjoy the rocking nature of this quick track.  Clocking in at under three-minutes is odd for a Mariliion song, but they manage to create something that fits this eclectic record.  My only complaint, which is minor, is that it is a little repetitive lyrically.
Somewhere Else
This piece is where I feel that the guys hit all the right notes, and their performance on this track is stellar.  At the beginning, it reminds me a little of the band Talk Talk (especially the vocals) but it moves back into Marbles territory after a while.  It is the longest tune on the record but it has multiple parts that flow into one another so that you don’t realize that almost eight minutes have gone by.  Hogarth also shines during this song making it the standout by quite a bit.
A Voice From The Past
Piano starts off this orchestral sounding tune.  This one also reminds me of material on Marbles.  It has a slow build up but about halfway through, it get bombastic before it returns back to the piano beginning.
No Such Thing
This has a psychedelic, dreamy sound to it especially the vocal effects.  Musically it has a very uplifting bounce that would make the perfect background music while walking on the beach but lyrically, it is very repetitive and doesn’t really go anywhere.  I still like the song but wish they would have put more thought into the words.
The Wound
We return to the Marbles vibe with a rocker that has a little bit of U2 thrown in for good measure but that only lasts for the first third of the track.  Afterwards, it goes full-on prog with something that is a mix of old and new Marillion.  This is the second longest song and, like the title track, it flies by before you know it.
The Last Century For Man
Things start off with a psychedelic sound that reminds me of latter-day Beatles.  It continues that vibe for most of the track but towards the end we get a bit of an orchestral moment that still adds in the Beatles elements.  It ends with the sound of wind going by and almost has a very foreboding feeling about it.
The record ends with an acoustic guitar track that adds other instruments in the middle but is still mainly a guitar tune.  It’s a good song, but I feel that the previous cut would have made a better ending.  I also feel that this one would have benefitted from being sequenced earlier in the disc.
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