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Fish: Return to Childhood (DVD)

Shortly before Roger Waters had the idea of touring the Pink Floyd masterpiece Dark Side of the Moon, Fish similarly decided to revisit Marillion's most renowned album Misplaced Childhood albeit on a far smaller scale. Filmed-very nicely I must add-over two nights in front of an enthusiastic crowd at the legendary Paradiso in Amsterdam, Fish gives the audience 2 hours and 15 minutes worth of primo material.

The first set focuses exclusively on Fish's solo career and we are treated to excellent versions of "Brother 52", "Goldfish and Clowns" and a very moving "Raingods Dancing" among others. "Credo" sounds especially energetic and the band exits the stage one at a time before a short break in anticipation of the evening's main event.

A brief snippet of "La Gazza Ladra" introduces Misplaced Childhood and the band gives a tight rendition of the entire album. The crowd is absolutely bonkers at this point and needless to say is ready for more Marillion material after Fish and his band take their bows. For the encores, the Paradiso is treated to "Incommunicado", "Market Square Heroes" and a supposedly unrehearsed "Fugazi" all performed with perfection. Guitarist Frank Usher is the unsung hero, but the entire band is simply on fire. Fish is still a charismatic performer as he has been for over twenty years even if his voice isn't what it once was. All in all, it's a very fast two hours and fifteen minutes of music!

The bonus feature is an excellent 1-hour interview with Fish who talks about the inspiration for the album (LSD!) and his thoughts on the history of Marillion. There isn't much here that isn't talked about in the thorough liner notes of the Misplaced Childhood remaster, but it's still nice to hear it from the Fish's mouth.

Now for the bad news: the audio portion of the DVD is a huge disappointment. For starters, there isn't a surround mix, just ordinary stereo. The music is mastered very quietly and one must crank the volume up high to hear it. Even at a desirable volume level, there isn't much soundstage separation and in Dolby Pro Logic II, most of the information defaults to the center channel. The interview segment is equally haunted by sound problems. It's almost impossible to hear the questions the interviewer is putting to Fish. One may want to fork over for the CD version for a better sounding document of this performance.

Be that as it may, Return to Childhood is a lot of fun and will be an automatic purchase for fans of the big guy. It's great to see how much love is reciprocated between Fish and his loyal audience. Maybe next year will see a 20th anniversary tour for the Clutching at Straws album?

Track Listing

  1. Big Wedge
  2. Moving Targets
  3. Brother 52
  4. Goldfish and Clowns
  5. Raingods Dancing
  6. Wake Up Call (Make it Happen)
  7. Innocent Party
  8. Long Cold Day
  9. Credo
  10. Pseudo Silk Kimono
  11. Kayleigh
  12. Lavender
  13. Bitter Suite
  14. Heart of Lothian
  15. Waterhole (Expresso Bongo)
  16. Lords of the Backstage
  17. Blind Curve
  18. Childhood's End?
  19. White Feather
  20. Incommunicado
  21. Market Square Heroes
  22. Fugazi

Interview with Fish

Added: September 27th 2006
Reviewer: Steve Pettengill
Score:
Related Link: Official Fish Home Page
Hits: 2561
Language: english

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