Lee Speaks About Music… #192

Fugazi (Deluxe Edition) – Marillion


Marillion’s second studio album Fugazi I am pretty sure is the final of the albums in the Fish era of the band to get released in these Deluxe Edition hardback books and I must admit I have been waiting in great anticipation for it. To be honest I have no idea how many albums the band intend to release in these splendid packages but I am pretty sure it is only those they made from the time the band were signed to EMI. Although my only personal interest is in the Fish era of the band and the day he left Marillion so did I so to speak.

One of the particular reasons as to why I have been waiting for this new release of the album is for the 5.1 mix. Simply because even though both Andy Bradfield & Avril Mackintosh done a superb new stereo mix for the bands debut album Script For A Jester’s Tear they do appear to be abysmal at doing 5.1 mixes and that is exactly how I would describe the 5.1 mixes they done for the Deluxe Editions of the bands debut album and their fourth studio album Clutching At Straws.

However, according to Mike Viera’s Life In Surround Tube Channel (I always watch) he did inform me that the engineers have improved and done a very good job on the 5.1 mix for Fish’s double album Weltschmerz that got released last year and was expecting them to do a lot better with this latest Deluxe Edition of Marillion’s. He was also surprised that I never brought the Weltschmerz Deluxe Edition especially as I have all of Fish’s albums.

Though I do draw the line when artists charge extortionate prices for their product and I see it as GREED! Everything about the way Fish put out that release was a complete rip-off in my book and although the Scotts can be known for being “Tight” quite frankly I think he was taking the PISS! 😊😊😊.The Deluxe Edition of Weltschmerz (as seen above) is very much packaged in the same way Marillion’s Deluxe Editions have been put out. The only difference is that it comes housed in a cardboard slipcase. The other notable difference is that it also comes with less discs yet he’s charging more than twice the price for his package. Furthermore, he refused to put it on Amazon (where people like myself who are Prime members can save on the postage and packaging) and released it on his own website only which meant that this thing was near enough £60 to buy which is near enough 3 times the price of the package I am about to review here.

I was gonna get the CD instead which he did put on Amazon. Only when I saw the price of £23.99 for a double CD to which most artists only charge around £14 I simply refused to buy the album. I have heard the album on the Tube and in comparison to the last album he put out A Feast of Consequences back in 2013 I can honestly say it’s not in the same league and does not speak to me very well at all. It’s certainly not worth shelling out the ridiculous price he’s charging for it and it’s no wonder more people are buying downloads or streaming music when artists do things like this. He’s doing nothing at all to support physical media and killing it.

Thankfully the other members in the band were not Scottish 😊😊😊 and can see the importance of the physical product to support it and give you value for the buck and that is what you get with all these splendid packages both Marillion and Jethro Tull have put out over the past few years or so. Any box set should offer you value for the money and be put out at a bargain price and not seen as a way to exploit their fans by charging ridiculous prices for them.

The one thing that is noticeable about the Fugazi Deluxe Edition is that it comes with one less CD in relation to the other three Deluxe Editions I have. As far as I can tell there is also no unreleased material however just like the Deluxe Edition of Script For A Jesters Tear the blu ray certainly looks like you are getting your money’s worth and is once again rammed with some goodies. But before I go any further let’s take a look at the packaging and artwork as ever.

Packaging & Artwork…

As ever the 4 discs are stored inside a quality hardback book and because we only have 4 discs there was no need for any extra slip pockets and the discs are stored in plastic trays at the front and back of the book. The book itself comes with 62-pages and contains all the usual linear production credits along with the lyrics, photos and some very good useful informative information.

I pre-ordered my copy from Amazon UK on the 8th of July and by pre-ordering it early I managed to get it at the bargain price of £21.99. It also arrived on the day of its release. It’s still widely available at a bargain price and packages don’t come better than this and they are easy to store along with your DVD collection.


Once again the artwork was done by Mark Wilkinson and I have to say it looks STUNNING! It’s got scattered references to the songs on the album to which are placed in a highrise hotel room. It continues from the bands debut album in which the references were scattered around a bedsit and in a way of showing how the band have moved on since they first started. The pictures on the wall in the illustration were added by Julie Hazelwood and although Fish is not credited for the album artwork and sleeve design. There is no doubt he worked closely with Wilkinson and had some input with the ideas he wanted to be put into it.

Fugazi Deluxe Release Editions…

Like the Deluxe Edition of their debut album that got released last year once again, the band decided to stick to two formats for the release and no Digital Download of the release has been made available as far as I can make out. Besides the Limited 3 CD/Blu Ray Edition it was also released with a Vinyl Box Set.

The Vinyl Box Set comes with 4 X 180gram LP’s in 2 Gatefold Sleeves plus a booklet stored in a cardboard slipcase. The 4 albums contain the new 2021 remixes and live concert of the band playing at The Spectrum, Montreal, Canada that was recorded in 1984. It’s currently still available to purchase and on Amazon UK it’s priced at £60.

Fugazi (Deluxe Edition) In Review…

Marillion’s second studio album Fugazi was originally released on the 12th of March 1984. The album contained 7 tracks spread over an overall playing time of 45 minutes, 56 seconds. It was an album that was written at a difficult time and presented them with many problems due to the sacking of the bands previous drummer Mick Pointer. You could say they had a Spinal Tap moment looking for the right replacement with the many drummers they auditioned. They even used 10 studios to record and mix the album was never happy with the final production and how it was put out with them not quite being finished with it.

It was a very expensive album to make to which the band had blown most of their budget on drink and intoxicating substances, part of it even went on a stage prop for their live shows. It also never helped having a dealer close by to Mountain rehearsal and recording studios in South Wales to which they treated as a busman’s holiday and got nothing done. Basically, the band had well overspent and it cost over £120,000 to make the album and a further £70,000 was spent making a video for one of the singles that got released from the album. With a huge debt hanging around their neck it left the band no alternative but to record a live album and put it out at a budget price to pay for the debt.

Although many drummers had auditioned to play for the band it was Camel’s drummer Andy Ward who was the first to replace Pointer. All the band were into Camel and knew that Ward was a well-experienced drummer who was well capable of doing the job. However, they were not aware of his mental health issues at the time that had resurfaced which led to them having to cancel the band’s first American tour midway through it. Ward appeared in the video of the hit single “Garden Party” from their debut album and also can be seen performing “Forgotten Sons” live with the band on the BBC’s Old Grey Whistle Test.

John Marter of Mr Big was the next drummer to take the stool when the band got the opportunity to support Rush on their American tour. Though his stint with the band was short-lived down to his “you don’t wanna do it like that” attitude. Jonathan Mover was the next drummer to take the stool having auditioned for the job in London a few days before the band were off to Germany to play a gig. According to form he got the role on a Wednesday, flew to Germany on Thursday, and without rehearsals, performed on Friday with the band.

Apart from Fish, the rest of the band got on with him very well and liked his technical skills and approach to the drum kit. After the gig in Germany, they headed straight to Rockfield Studios in Wales to write and record material for their second studio album and it was here that they managed to actually get something done and completed “Punch and Judy” to which Mover was even given a writing credit. However, due to conflict with Fish, it was not long before Mover moved on and once again the band were without a drummer.

Ian Mosley was brought in as a session player to help the band with the rest of the material they were working on at Rockfield Studios, he had been previously linked with the band when they were auditioning for drummers but on that day he could not make it prior to another engagement. Mosley had previously played for Darryl Way’s Wolf, Gordon Giltrap and Steve Hackett so he came with the right credentials and it did not take long for him to get on with all the members of the band including Fish who was perhaps the hardest one to please.

Some of the other studios they used to make the album were The Manor Studio in Oxfordshire, England where Mike Oldfield’s iconic album Tubular Bells was born. Sarm East Studios, Ian Anderson’s Maison Rouge Studios and Eel Pie Studios located in The Boathouse, Twickenham, London on the banks of the River Thames.


Formerly known as Oceanic Studios, Eel Pie Recording Studios was owned by Pete Townsend and was originally a 1960s boathouse to which Townsend used to commute there by boat, having lost his driving licence. He brought the Boathouse in 1975 and used it initially for the purposes of his band The Who. It became known as Eel Pie Studios in September 1981 when they were rebuilt and run as a commercial operation. Other artists such as A-ha, Rachel Fuller, Siouxsie and the Banshees and Thin Lizzy recorded some of their albums at the studios.

Marillion managed to complete the recording of “Incubus” at the studios and it was later mixed at Abbey Road Studios. In 1989, part of the upstairs of the building was taken over by Cocteau Twins and set up as September Sound studios. Townsend sold the studios in 2008 and the building was converted into a private residence.

The Package Contents.

The Deluxe Edition of Fugazi was released on the 10th September 2021 and although this release comes with one less CD in relation to the other three Marillion packages I brought. What I do find more interesting about this new release is the 62-page book to which does give you more informative content in relation to the other Deluxe Editions. It also took me slightly longer to read and unlike the Deluxe Edition of SFAJT. I never read it in a couple of minutes whilst sitting on the toilet taking a dump 😊😊😊. It also contains some of Mark Wilkinson’s STUNNING! artwork and some GREAT! photos of the band and its members along with the lyrics and linear credit notes.

CD 1.
The first CD contains the albums 7 tracks newly remixed by Andy Bradfield & Avril Mackintosh and no other bonus tracks are included. As many will know the original mixes perhaps sound a bit outdated and the band were never happy with the final production as the album was rushed out by the record company. Just like the outstanding job Bradfield & Mackintosh did with the stereo mixes of SFAJT and CAS they have very much done the same here and breathed new life into the album.

CD’s 2 & 3.
The other couple of CD’s contains a live concert of the band playing at The Spectrum in Montreal, Canada on the 20th of June 1984. Although it does not mention on the package I am fairly sure that this concert (in the form that is in as the whole show) has never been released before. However some of the live tracks (if not all) from this concert may have surfaced over the years and I know for a fact that  “Assassing“, “Incubus“, “Cinderella Search” and “Emerald Lies” from this show were included on the live Reel To Reel album released in 1984.

Blu Ray.
The Blu Ray is what I really buy these packages for and it not only replicates all the content that is on the 3 CD’s but comes with a load of other goodies besides and this is where the real value of the package lies. My main incentive to buy albums like this all over again and the packages they come in are mostly for the Surround Mixes. However, even given that so far I have been extremely disappointed with the 5.1 mixes done by this pair of jokers in the past I was not disappointed with the other array of extras you get and my money was well spent.

The Blu Ray’s main menu is sharp and pristine as ever and has the feel of quality about it. It’s also well animated and all the key objects that relate to every track on the album in Mark Wilkinson’s artwork are floating around and fading in and out of view sort of thing. You do get the sense that the menu is “Totally Fucked Up” with how everything is segmented and evolves around the centre picture and you could say they were aiming to make it look Fugazi. I would also say they have done an excellent job of it as well, though some might not quite get it and not like it.

As you can see there are quite a few extras you get on the blu ray and you get a total of 7 features to choose from and by default, it’s set the main feature which is the album itself. As you select each of the 7 options to choose from it highlights the title in white. It’s a very fast and responsive menu as you will see in the picture below.

The navigation is straightforward and by clicking on a highlighted option a box pops up displaying all the options including the track selection and choice of audio. To be honest it’s the first time I have ever seen a menu done this way and it’s obvious that a lot of thought went into it.

The other thing (though it’s not quite a first) is like Steve Wilson did on the new mixes for Jethro Tull’s recent re-release of the 1980 album “A”. They have done away with the standard Dolby Digital format. Everything in the Audio Department is high-resolution quality all the way offering two LPCM 96/24 in Stereo and 5.1 plus a DTS-HD Master 5.1 mix again with a resolution of 96/24.

The other nice touch is that whilst listening to the album tracks it displays a different picture for each track which is also animated and they have used the key objects that represent each track that you will find on Wilkinson’s artwork. To be honest I would have liked to have seen the albums full cover used for the main menu. But you do get to see it when you play the 3rd track “Jigsaw” as seen in the picture above.

They really have done a GREAT! job with the animation and you get to see the picture being built up piece by piece and disassembled piece by piece a few times whilst listening to the song. That’s about it for the main menu so let’s take a look at the rest of the features and see what other goodies they have included.

The second feature is the live concert which they played at The Spectrum in Montreal, Canada that is also on CD’s 2 & 3 only here it comes with a high-res stereo mix of LPCM 96/24. It does sound a lot better than the CD’s and was GREAT! to see it included. Like the main feature, the pop-up box displays all the options to choose from and they really have gone to town on this menu system.

One of the things that are included on the Blu Ray unlike the CD’s are bonus tracks. Although I am pretty sure none of these are unreleased and have surfaced on various remasters of their albums before over the years. In total, you get 7 tracks of which 5 of them are the original Demos. The audio is only 48/16 CD quality and the tracklisting is as follows:

1. “Cinderella Search (Extended Single)”. 5:31. 2. “Assassing (Alternate Mix)”. 7:40. 3. “Three Boats Down From The Candy”. 3:59. 4. “Punch & Judy (Demo)”. 3:50. 5. “She Chameleon (Demo)”. 6:34. 6. “Emerald Lies (Demo)”. 5:31. 7. “Incubus (Demo)”. 8:10.

You also get two documentaries and the main one “The Story Of Fugazi” runs for 72 minutes, 36 seconds and here all 5 members of the band go back in time and talk about the many things they can remember about the making of their second studio album. Each member was captured on film individually in their own homes and it also includes some old film footage and photos of the band including the producer of the album Nick Tauber.

The second documentary “The Story Of The Songs” has a total running time of 35 minutes and once again the individual members of the band have been captured in their homes only this time they are discussing the songs lyrics and the meaning behind most of them.

They have also included the promotional video they made for “Assassing” and as you can see in the picture above it gives you a couple of audio choices to choose from. You can either watch the video footage with the original remastered audio that comes with a sample rate of 48/24. Or the 2021 mix in a high-res sample rate of 96/24.

Also included is a live concert from 1984 that was filmed and broadcast by Swiss TV. I am pretty sure this has never been released before and I could not even find it on the tube. But obviously, they must have obtained the licence to include it here and even though it’s old video footage with a 4:3 Aspect Ratio and the audio sample rate is 48/16 it’s still quite good to watch.

As you can see by the song setlist they roll out some GREAT! numbers here and you get to see the band being interviewed in the dressing room before the show. It comes with a total playing time of 49 minutes, 47 seconds and it’s another GREAT! extra.

Overall the bonus content on the Blu Ray is excellent and you certainly get an array of it for the money. The picture quality of both documentaries looks like it’s been shot in 4K and I was quite blown away by how STUNNING! the picture quality is. They are also interesting and worth watching however I did read the book first and found that the documentary was running over the same ground.

The 5.1 Mix.

Having already experienced how bad the 5.1 mixes Andy Bradfield & Avril Mackintosh did for Clutching At Straws and a Script For A Jesters Tear I honestly had no hope for this new release of seeing any improvement. Especially having seen them both being interviewed by Mike Viera not long after they did the mixes for the CAS album. Mike did throw a few pointers their way to try and help them improve the 5.1 mix for SFAJT they were about to work on at that time. However, the end result was more of a move backwards than forwards and it was dreadful.

When it comes to doing stereo mixes I would say that these pair have almost got Steve Wilson’s ears and like Wilson they can breathe new life into them without a doubt. The problem is doing a 5.1 mix presents a major problem for most engineers in this world and their 5.1 mixes are no exception considering the biggest majority of 5.1 mixes that have flooded the market are bad mixes. To be honest, even though Mike said they had improved with the 5.1 mix they did for Weltschmerz last year I never had any great expectations for this release.

However, they have surprised me and this 5.1 mix is quite a major improvement in relation to their previous mixes on the two Marillion albums. I think they may have raised Fish’s vocals a bit much in the mix especially in the centre channel, but that can be fixed easy enough by simply turning down the volume of the centre channel a couple of notches. They have paid more attention to utilising some of the other instrumentation and backing vocals in the rear channels instead of reflecting too much of the same thing into them as they did with the CAS 5.1 mix. They have also made good use of the panning in parts and paid attention to where they have placed them as well and overall I quite like this mix and I think it’s well worthy of 7.5 out of 10.

Musicians & Credits…

Produced by Nick Tauber. All music written and arranged by Fish, Steve Rothery, Pete Trewavas, Mark Kelly (Except “Punch and Judy) written by Fish, Steve Rothery, Pete Trewavas, Mark KellyIan Mosley, Jonathan Mover. “Incubus”, “Fugazi” and “Cinderella Search” written by Fish, Steve Rothery, Pete Trewavas, Mark Kelly, Ian Moseley. All lyrics written by Fish.

Recorded & Mixed by Simon Hanhart between November 1983 – February 1984 at Various Studios. Mastered by Arun. New Stereo & 5.1 2021 Mixes by Andy Bradfield & Avril Mackintosh. Illustrations & Design Layout by Mark Wilkinson. Artwork Pictures (on the wall) by Julie Hazelwood. Linear Notes by Rich Wilson. Photography by Brian Aris, Gered Mankowitz, Mark Drake, Mike Black, and Stuart James. Guitar, Photography by Steve Rothery.

Fish: Vocals.
Steve Rothery: Guitars.
Pete Trewavas: Bass.
Mark Kelly: Keyboards.
Ian Mosley: Drums.

Additional Musicians.
Chris Karen: Additional Percussion.
Linda Pyke: Backing Vocal (On “Incubus”).

The Album Tracks In Review…

Marillion’s second album Fugazi done quite well upon its release though only in Europe. The album managed to reach number 5 in the UK and spent a good 20 weeks there, in the following year was certified Gold selling over 100, 000 copies. Although the band were never happy with the production you could say that it had more of a polished production in relation to the bands debut album. It also managed to reach two places higher than their debut in the album charts though in terms of sales Script For A Jesters Tear sold 3 times as much and went Platinum and it even produced a Top 20 single release with “Garden Party“.

The material that was written for Fugazi was built on top of their debut album and in terms of how it all sounds I would say it’s the nearest thing to it especially in relation to their 3rd and 4th album they did with Fish. Although there is no mistaking Marillion’s formidable style that was injected into their first 4 albums. But when it comes to balls and grit I certainly think their first two albums had a lot more of it which is perhaps why I tend to play them the most. So let’s now delve a bit deeper into the 7 original tracks that were placed on the album.

Track 1. Assassing.

The opening track on the album is amongst some of the earlier songs the band had worked on and they had most likely started work on it whilst Andy Ward was in the band. They even further polished it with drummer Jonathan Mover though it was not completed till Ian Mosley came in though he was not given a writing credit. Fish has always had a good head on his shoulders to come up with such GREAT! lyrics and could not only speak in tongues but in metaphors and this song is full of them.

To be perfectly honest I think it is the lyrics that carry this song and they have been more cleverly constructed than the music. Though you do have to delve deep into them to really cypher them and listen to the narrator-character describing himself as an assassin sort of thing. According to the documentary on the blu ray Fish directed the lyrics at the bands first bass player Diz Minnitt and they were not in reference to some of the verbal arguments he had with former drummer Pointer as many would believe.

Assassing” was the second single to be released from the album and almost broke into the Top 20 Singles Chart here in the UK peaking at number 22. Surprisingly the band decided on a much more uptempo and brighter song they had also written for the B-Side entitled “Cinderella Search“. Personally. I think they would have had a better result if they released it as the A-Side and I was also surprised they decided to leave it off the album. Both songs were shorter edited versions for the single release. The edited version was also used for the video that was made for the song which may have helped it reach its position in the singles chart.

Looking at it now I think it’s plain to see that you never got a lot for your money back then and to even think this thing cost 70 Grand to make goes to show how expensive making records was back then. There are hardly any special effects here either and I dread to think how much it cost Peter Gabriel to make the video for his smash hit “Sledgehammer“.

Musically it does have a bit of an eastern vibe going on in the intro and it also utilises the skills of Chris Karen who plays the tablas and I have to say he does a TOP JOB! on them as well. Karen is an Australian jazz drummer and percussionist of Greek descent and has played for almost everyone you could think of including The Beatles. He toured and recorded with Dudley Moore for many years and became the drummer in the Dudley Moore Trio back in 1962.

Track 2. Punch & Judy.

The first single to be released from the album and unlike the previous song, it was released before the album on the 30th of January 1984. Also unlike the previous song, they never made a video for it and it is the only single released from the EMI years that they never either. It did not do quite as well as “Assassing” and peaked just inside the Top 30 UK Singles Charts at number 29. The first completed demo of the song was done whilst Jonathan Mover was working with the band and he was even given a writing credit.

Originally the band had planned to use “Emerald Lies” as the B-Side but they decided to use the freshly new re-recordings of “Market Square Heroes” and “Three Boats Down from the Candy” that they recorded with John Marter instead.

These two songs were the only tracks they recorded with the drummer and his name was erroneously credited as John Martyr. Both of these newer versions of the songs also appeared on the B’Sides Themselves compilation album that got released in 1988. As for “Emerald Lies” it wound up on the album instead.

Personally, I think this song has strong lyrics pertaining to the in and outs and doos and don’ts of married life accompanied by a better musical structure than the opening track on the album though both went down very well at their live shows. It’s got quite a strong chorus line and I particularly like how Pete Trewavas works his punctuating bass lines into it all.

Track 3. Jigsaw.

This is the ballad track on the album and I quite like the refined sweetness in Fish’s voice with how he delivers this song and I personally think this is a much better ballad of a song than “Kayleigh” which was the single from their next album that launched them into more commercial success. Musically the song is perhaps more keyboard orientated but nevertheless, Steve Rothery manages to squeeze in a fine guitar solo.

The lyrical content pertains to how one does not really see things properly or everything till the last piece of the jigsaw is put in place sort of thing. Besides the sweet side of Fish’s voice, you also get the fiery angst that gives it that bit more grit and edge in the chorus of the song. It’s a song that he could not sing today and found more difficult to sing as the years went by as he explains in the documentary. Just like Peter Gabriel back in the early years of Genesis the band members never really gave any thought to what key would be more comfortable for their singer to deliver the song.

Track 4. Emerald Lies.

One of the two songs on the album that the band felt needed further developing and were not happy when the album got rushed out by the record company before they had time to finish it properly. It’s very much a song about a relationship being destroyed by a lack of trust and the emerald’s green colour pertains to the jealousy side of things in the relationship. Some of the musical transitions in the song do put me in mind of early Genesis and even though you can hear how further developed the song had been done in relation to the earlier demo I do get the feeling that it needed a bit more work done on it.

Track 5. She Chameleon.

This is a song that goes back further than any of the other songs on the album though most of the lyrics for many of the songs on this album were written well before the music. It’s also the other song on the album that the band never thought was ready and wanted to further develop it. It was very much part of the bands live set before they even put out their debut album. Mark Kelly played the main backing track on a church organ which was recorded at another of the many studios they used and it was the bands producer Nick Tauber who suggested they used the Angel Studios that was situated in Islington, London.

The lyrical content does tend to come across that the song is about prostitution and many have drawn similar conclusions with their interpretations of them. They are not that far off either because the inspiration for the words “Was it just a fuck, just another fuck?” came from a drunk conversation between Fish and Julian Cope of The Teardrop Explodes backstage at the Friars, Aylesbury. Where some female groupies wanted autographs and a snog.

Some of the members of the band were disappointed with the outcome Pete Trewavas in particular was very negative about the song and stated “no remix of any sort could redeem this song” he also went on to say it was a waste of space. Personally, I think it’s much better than the previous song though I will stress that it’s not on par with anything off their debut album.

Track 6. Incubus.

The final two songs on the album are perhaps what I would call the backbone and strongest points that hold the album up. They have certainly been given the works in terms of their musical structure and when comparing this particular song to the original demo you can easily hear how much more was put into its development. Lyrically I personally could not fault any of the songs on this album and they are a fortress by themself. The words “I’ve played this scene before” might even suggest that he has done before with the classic song “Chelsea Monday” in the way it’s set for the silver screen sort of thing and the performance has once again begun. When it comes to classics this is another one for sure.

It’s a song that was put together in stages in different studios but it was perhaps the Manor in Oxfordshire where it started to develop further. It also uses some of the eastern or Islamic influence heard in “Assassingand no doubt Chris Karen is once again is being very well utilised in the percussion department. It also features Linda Pyke who contributes backing vocals to the song.

According to Fish, it’s his favourite song that he did with Marillion. I personally find it hard to choose between this song and the self-titled track on the album though both are what I consider to be the major highlights of the album. It also contains an excellent guitar solo from Steve Rothery who thought at this stage of his career he had nailed what he was intending to do.

Though I personally think “Chelsea Monday” contains his best solo work. But nevertheless, if you want to hear GREAT! guitar and keyboard solos you do have to go back to this early period of Marillion’s career. With Steve Hogarth they very much diluted things right down and never spoke the same language for my personal taste.

Track 7. Fugazi.

Another sure-fire classic song and its title was a word that Fish had come across in the book Dispatches written by Michael Herr. As for the word itself, no one is really sure of its origin but it does have an Italian ring about to me and could have been used by the Mafia many moons ago. According to form it’s a slang word that refers to something that is fake or damaged beyond repair. In other words, it’s how Fish describes it as “totally fucked up” which is another way of putting it.

Looking at the lyrics you will notice references to the Vietnam war that Herr’s novel was based on but there are a ton of other references, wordplay and metaphors throughout and these words are pretty complex and like travelling through his intoxicated mind on London’s underground. Though I do like the inspiration that Fish got out of London’s underground and I remember getting stranded in Barking with a friend on the night we went to see Jean-Michel Jarre live at the Docklands.

The following morning we managed to get on the tube to Euston and we both stood on the platform for an hour observing all the people going to work. Honestly, it was the maddest thing I have ever seen. The tube trains run every minute of the day and yet everybody was in a mad rush to get on them and quite often they were squashed like sardines in a can when they did get on them. People were literally legging it down escalators just to get on them. I thought the world had gone Fugazi looking at that lot 😊😊😊.

Once again this is a song that has GREAT! musical structure and lots of progression throughout the build and transitions. It starts off subtly on the piano to which is supposedly the same piano Freddie Mercury played “Bohemian Rhapsody” on according to Mark Kelly. “Fugazi” has it all and along with “Incubus” it jointly merits the albums TOP SPOT AWARD!

Summary & Conclusion…

To sum up and conclude my review of Marillion’s Deluxe Edition of Fugazi. Like the Deluxe Edition of a Script For A Jester’s Tear, I do feel you are getting more for your money and I would say both of these Deluxe Editions give the most for the buck in relation to the Deluxe Editions of Misplaced Childhood and Clutching At Straws. The added bonus with this edition is that it comes with a better 5.1 mix and I would even go as far as to say it’s the best 5.1 mix of the 4 Deluxe Editions I have. It’s just a shame that Andy Bradfield & Avril Mackintosh had not had more experience working with a surround mix before they did the mixes for CAS and SFAJT.

However, regardless of the surround mix even the stereo mix completely breathes new life into the album and I can honestly say that the album Fugazi sounds much better for it. I do find with a lot of albums that came out of the 80’s they do start to sound outdated after a while and as good as the songs are on their albums they can gather dust over the years. The new mixes have very much rejuvenated them and make you want to go back down this road once again and no doubt Marillion were on fire at this point in their career. My personal highlights from the album are “Incubus“, “Fugazi” and “Jigsaw“.

As an album, I don’t think that the material written for Fugazi quite capitulated their debut album though it’s quite a solid album in some respects. I also find that the material we have here is the closest to their debut album and the two studio albums that followed were more or less aimed at the more commercial side of the market especially with songs like “Kayleigh” and “Sugar Mice“. Though you cannot blame them for heading in that direction because back in the 80’s if you wanted to stay signed to a major record label you had to keep them happy. It was not like the early 70’s were record labels such as Atlantic let you do your own thing. However, I thought their 4th studio Clutching At Straws was also a very good album.

Overall, the Fugazi Deluxe Edition gives you plenty for the buck and could even be seen as a steal at its bargain price. Besides its main feature, you get an array of GREAT! extras and you would be totally Fuzazi not to take advantage of its excellent price point and let it slip by.

You’ve Played This Scene Before…

The CD tracklisting is as follows:

Disc One: Fugazi (New 2021 Re-mix)
01. Assassing. 7:02.
02. Punch & Judy. 3:22
03. Jigsaw. 6:49.
04. Emerald Lies. 5:08.
05. She Chameleon. 6:53.
06. Incubus. 8:30.
07. Fugazi. 8:04.
Disc Two: Live At The Spectrum. Montreal, Canada (20/6/1984 Pt 1)
01. Assassing. 7:46.
02. Punch & Judy. 3:25.
03. Jigsaw. 6:34.
04. Script For A Jester’s Tear. 9:08.
05. Chelsea Monday. 8:06.
06. Emerald Lies. 5:24.
07. Cinderella Search. 5:52.
08. Incubus. 9:09.
Disc Three: Live At The Spectrum. Montreal, Canada (20/6/1984 Pt 2)
01. Charting The Single. 7:20.
02. He Knows You Know. 5:56.
03. Fugazi. 9:31.
04. Forgotton Sons. 10:42.
05. Garden Party. 6:35.
06. Market Square Heroes. 10:48.

The Packaging Rating Score. 10/10.
The Price Point Rating Score. 10/10.
The Bonus Material Rating Score. 10/10.
The Stereo Re-Mix Rating Score. 10/10.
The 5.1 Mix Rating Score. 7.5/10.
The Original Album Rating Score. 8.5/10

Lee Speaks About Music… #191

Arik’s Journey – Ian Hill


Not so long back I received an email in my inbox from a fellow musician asking me if I would write a review for his debut album. I do get the odd email now and then from musicians asking me to write reviews for their albums and the biggest majority of the time I do have to turn them away simply because I generally only review the albums I buy and that takes up enough of my time. However, I always listen to the music in question they want me to review and if I hear something a bit special that genuinely appeals to my taste I generally end up buying it and giving it a review.

The guy in question who sent me the email was a chap who goes by the name of Ian Hill. I am sure many are already thinking WHO? However, one of the fascinating things about his debut album entitled Arik’s Journey is that it’s been 40 plus years in the making.

Hill was born in Manchester, England and took an interest in the guitar at the early age of 11. By the time he was 16, he formed the band Moonchild with some of his schoolmates and got to play his first gig playing cover songs of well-known rock bands such as Free, Deep Purple and Status Quo.

The latter of those bands perhaps had the biggest influence on him as you can see by this video of him playing live at the Manchester Academy with the tribute band he put together called Status Of Quo. Hill is the baldy fellow playing the part of Francis Rossi who was the original bands main leader and frontman.

As you can see by the video they put on quite a show. Though I will say there is more to Hill’s taste in music with the many other artists and bands that have influenced him over the years. There is also more to his talent as a songwriter and musician.

However, there is also no way I would buy an album by Status Quo either and there is much more to his debut album Arik’s Journey that is suited to my personal taste and it sits in very well with my favourite genre of music progressive rock. But before I go any further let’s take a look at the packaging and artwork.

Packaging & Artwork…

The CD comes in a standard plastic Jewel Case and although it might seem a little outdated these days in relation to cardboard Digipaks (which I personally think gives an album a better presentation) it’s still a packaging that is widely used and offers good protection for the disc. It comes with a gatefold (4-page) booklet that contains a gatefold picture of the album cover on the inside and some very good informative information printed on the back.

The album is priced at £9.99 and I ordered my copy from Bandcamp and it arrived super fast within a couple of days. It never even cost me any postage and packaging or any tax on top and it may have been one of those weekends where Bandcamp waved their fees. I shall provide the link at the end of my review.


The artwork was done by Hill himself and he did the paintings whilst he was still at school many moons ago. The spires of rock were the key element to the original story he wrote back in 1980 to which he originally intended to accompany the music. The artwork production was done by his brother David Hill who’s line of work for many years has been in graphics and printing which no doubt came in handy.

Basically, he formatted Ian’s artwork so it matched the specifications required by the CD Replication company. It sort of reminds me of something out of J. R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings and no doubt Azrik’s Journey looks like a very challenging one as you can see from the picture that is printed on the inside of the booklet.

The Album In Review…

Arik’s Journey by Ian Hill was released on the 5th of September 2021. The album itself contains 3 instrumental tracks spread over an overall playing time of 48 minutes, 55 seconds. Unlike what Hill does in rock tribute bands it’s very much a PROGMATIC! affair and journey influenced by the likes of Mike Oldfield, Genesis, Yes, Steve Hackett and Vangelis. I would even throw Gordon Giltrap into the pot of influences we have here and it is quite a magical journey over its three parts.

Besides playing in his Status Quo tribute band he also helps out occasionally another tribute band that goes by the name of MotorHeadache who are obviously a Motorhead tribute band. To be honest, when I mentioned I would not buy a Quo album that is not to be in any way disrespectful to the band and they are a very good band and a GREAT! live act as I remember from the time I saw them headline the party in the park back in the late 80’s or early 90’s at Sutton Coldfield in my own town of Birmingham. It was a free concert put on by BRMB Radio if I remember rightly and I quite enjoyed their performance that evening.

Many moons before that I even had a Cassette of their 1973 album Piledriver given me to which I quite liked and I can even remember doing a cover of “Roadhouse Blues” with my own band in the late 90’s to which we fused Quo’s version with The Doors. I think we may have even thrown in a bit of Jeff Healey into it as well. I did also buy the single release of “What You’re Proposing” for my Mrs back in 1980. But one of the reasons I have never brought any of their albums or even ACDC’s albums for that matter, is that they can be very repetitive with the 12 bar blues and sound too much of the same thing for my personal taste.

Arik’s Journey is a million miles away from the 3 chord-trick and 12 bar blues, like most progressive rock music, can take you somewhere else and that is what I personally love about progressive rock and why it appeals to my taste more than any other music genre. This has been very much one hell of a long journey for Hill to complete and I have to say it’s all fascinating how it came about and how he’s even documented it over the past 40 years or so.

Most of the music for the album he composed way back between 1977 – 1980 though most of his ideas were only recorded on a basic cassette deck. Although in 1980 he had access to a “Sound on Sound” Tape Recorder which allowed him to overdub a few parts and allowed him to develop a few more ideas. It’s a project that has very much been shelved many times over its development and could be seen as a labour of love with how it’s stuck with him over all these years.

In February 1983 he received an Arts Grant courtesy of the Princes Trust which allowed him to book 3 days at Waterloo Studios, in Stockport. The studio had 8-Track recording facilities that allowed him for the first time to record his ideas onto multitrack tape. 

The picture above (though not very clear) was taken at the studios and as you can see he even had hair back then. It reminds me a bit of how Mike Oldfield laid out his instruments and posed for the camera shoot back in the good old days and I think the inspiration may very well of come from that.

Up until 1996, Arik’s Journey remained as a studio demo and a short story and it was at this time Hill had further developed his own studio at home with 16-track recording facilities. Having just split from a rock band he formed earlier he decided to get back to work on the album and after several months completed a new extended demo that was more cohesive. Although it was much better than the 1983 demo once again it got pushed aside as other music projects took precedence.

Hill has spent most of his life thrashing out chords on numerous guitars and although he is a multi-instrumentalist he is perhaps predominantly a guitarist as you can see by his array of guitars in the picture below.

Over the years Hill also incorporated the keyboards into his studio setup and originally played most of the keyboards parts on his guitar with the use of a Roland GR55 Guitar Synth. But since learning to play the keyboard he very much replaced some of the parts with a real keyboard for the final result of the album’s completion.

Speaking of the album’s completion I guess that it’s one of the better things that have come out of this dreaded pandemic of Covid 19 to which has even been a nightmare for most musicians preventing them from going out and playing live. However, it did give Hill the time to finally finish his album after some 44 years and now it’s available for us all to hear and he can finally sit back and hopefully reap the benefit of all the hard work that has been put into it.

RedSky Studio

Like many musicians who make their own music at home, they like to give their own little studios a name and Hill is no exception. The name he gave to his home studio is named after one of the many bands he has either formed himself or has been involved in over the years and that name is RedSky.

Musicians & Credits…

All music Composed, Produced & Arranged by Ian Hill. Recorded at RedSky Studios. Recorded, Mixed & Mastered by Ian Hill. Cover Art by Ian Hill. Artwork Production by David Hill.

Ian Hill: Acoustic & Electric Guitars – Bass Guitar – Keyboards – Drum Programming.
Alison Hill: Additional Vocal Phrases.

The Album Tracks In Review…

Most of the inspiration for Arik’s Journey was brought on by Mike Oldfield’s 1973 debut album Tubular Bells and it was really the idea of making an album by playing all the instruments yourself that inspired him the most. Although the actual title of his album came from another inspiration because around the time he decided to work on the album and write his own story for it, he happened to be reading Michael Moorcock’s fantasy SciFi novel Stormbringer.

Having done a bit of research on the novel myself, I see its main character goes by the name of Elric and his journey is to call Stormbringer back to him and rescue Moonglum. It could be that Hill decided to change Elric to Arik for the short story he wrote to put to his music and I did confront Hill himself to which he did confirm that the inspiration for the title did come from Moorcock’s novel.

To be perfectly honest when I first clapped my eyes on the album I did not read the title correctly and thought it was entitled Ark’s Journey and hearing the storm on the intro led me to believe that was the album’s title till I looked at it properly. However, whoever’s journey it is, it’s quite a musical one so let’s now dive deeper into the album’s tracks.

Track 1. Arik’s Journey Part 1.

The opening track is the longest part of the 3 though only marginally by seconds. It opens up quite pleasantly with the sound of birds chirping cheerfully away, the buzzing of a fly and the church bell ringing giving you the impression of being in a nice peaceful village sort of thing. It also puts me in mind of the intro to Roger WatersGranchester Meadows” that found its way onto Pink Floyd’s 1969 double album Ummagumma. Although things soon change as a storm breaks loose and around the one-minute twenty eight-second mark the instrumentation comes into play to set us off nicely on the journey.

Speaking of the journey as you may have noticed by Hill’s artwork (and the name he gave to the chap whose journey we are going on) he had in mind more of a Gothic adventure perhaps like the SciFi fantasy that Michael Moorcock portrayed in his novel. Personally, I don’t get that impression from the music however it does plant a vision in my mind that one is going on a journey of endurance and has a quest in mind. But the good thing about music is just like lyrics you can make your own interpretation and even put yourself in the picture so to speak.

There is no doubt that Hill is painting a musical landscape with the music he is presenting here and he’s very skillfully combined and blended in the electric and acoustic guitars with the keyboards to paint the picture. The main theme that runs along this opening terrain puts me in mind of Gordon Giltrap’s 1977 album Perilous Journey. However, around the 5:50 mark for a few seconds, it’s as if Arik stops to replenish himself and we get some refreshing glimpses of Mike Oldfield with the keys.

It’s very much a piece that goes through quite a few transitional changes and by doing so it keeps you attentive to what’s going on throughout the journey and it draws you into it all. It contains some lovely melodic structure that can be quite HACKETT ESC! in parts touching on early Genesis sort of thing. Its main theme reoccurs every now and then and the way it comes back in at the 7:38 mark once again puts me in mind of Giltrap.

The comedown section between 8:47 – 9:59 does give perhaps more of a Gothic representation and this is very much a choral section soundscape and it puts me in mind of Rick Wakeman’s 1974 album Journey To The Centre Of The Earth. This leads us into the most powerful section of the piece to which Hill gets to flesh out some very tasty punctuating bass lines on his Rickenbacker and some GREAT! lead synth and guitar lines on his Fender Strat.

The piano section that comes into play around the 12:29 mark reintroduces some of the choral side of things only this time it’s built up with some punctuating drums and some lead lines on the guitar. It then falls into a lovely acoustic section that trickles its way into play around the 13:40 mark and once again Oldfield springs to mind here. He then drives the piece home by electrifying and embellishing the same lines on his electric guitar accompanied by drums, bass and keys and it effectively puts an end to the first part very well indeed.

Track 2. Arik’s Journey Part 2.

The second part opens up quite beautifully with a fine melody played on the piano and as it progresses and builds its way along it gets nicely accompanied and layered with some fine synth and keyboard textures adding more colour to it. This opening section is quite keyboard orientated and takes up the first four minutes and seventeen seconds. It even has a touch of the orient and no doubt Arik is travelling through many countries on his enduring journey to get to his destination.

The next section that runs between 4:17 – 7:41 sort of springs into action and we get a slight touch of an eastern flavour and things start to get a bit jiggy at first a bit like a celebration dance sort of thing. The heat is turned up a notch or two as the guitar joins in the celebration with some fine lead lines from Hill. The piano simmers things down for a bit and more gothic synth choral textures soon accompany it and the next section that runs between 8:33 – 12:40 is where things really burst into action and the heat gets intensified.

Strangely enough during this intensified section reminds me a bit like Oldfield’s “Crises“. It’s also as if the lead lines on the guitar are playing Jon Anderson’s vocal lines to “The Friends of Mr. Cairo” that he did with Vangelis. This section also features Hill’s other half Alison Hill who contributes some additional vocal phrases and the whole section pounds and really flies its way along.

Then around the 12:38 mark, we get another lovely acoustic section and here Hill utilises his Alvarez electro-classical guitar to which he purchased at the end of last year to put some finishing touches to the album. As with the first part, the acoustic section gets once again embellished with the electric guitar taking on its fine melody lines only this time it falls back into another piano section to round it all nicely off.

Track 3. Arik’s Journey Part 3.

The third and final part is the shortest though you still get a good thirteen and half minutes here. It starts off with the acoustic guitar and puts me in mind of the chorus line from Mike Oldfield’s “On Horseback” from his 3rd studio album Ommadawn. As it builds along and more instruments come into play you get the feeling that it’s making a statement as a Grand Finale sort of thing with how some of the themes from the first two parts reoccur. Though they have been given a different instrument arrangement and more of an orchestral arrangement to make a bolder statement sort of thing. Even the birds chirping cheerfully away come back out of the woods so to speak.

You also get the feeling that Arik has completed his quest in a joyful way and most of the music in this final section is quite uplifting and the final section once again puts me in mind Gordon Giltrap’s Perilous Journey even though it’s Arik’s journey. Although with how everything has been very well constructed and put together you could even make your own journey and all you have to do is let your imagination run wild and paint its own picture to the music.

Parts 1 & 2, I feel are a perfect marriage and complement one another whereas this final part with how it’s been done in a way of grand finale to it all may very well be the way he decided to extend the original piece and the way it’s been done with the reoccurring themes gives it more or less the perfect ending and puts the album to bed very well leaving you wanting more.

Summary & Conclusion…

To sum up Arik’s Journey by Ian Hill. I personally think its very much a solid body of work that has finally been given a definitive version by Hill after some 44 years in the making. It’s a piece of work that is not only influenced by many other artists but has his own blood injected into it and a piece of work he should be proud of. It’s a highly captivating album that instantly grabs your immediate attention. That much so that I stuck it on a few times whilst writing my review and had to stop doing so simply because I was not getting any work done and I could not do anything but stop to listen to the album.

If you are into the likes of Mike Oldfield, Gordon Giltrap, Genesis, Camel, Sky and instrumental albums that take you on a magical journey. I cannot see why this album would not float or even rock your boat so to speak. I found many GREAT! highlighted sections throughout all 3 parts which made it very difficult for me to choose a personal favourite track. Even though all 3 parts are quite lengthy they seemed to fly by in no time at all and I can only put that down to how satisfactory the music presents itself to you and it is a very satisfying album that will have you coming back for more.

The 3-minute Preview sampler video (above) that Hill put out on the Tube gives you a good glimpse of a few of the highlights from the album. Though I found it was just as easy to listen to the opening track on Bandcamp where you can even listen to the whole album for free. Or you can do what I did and purchase the album and give the artist some support for all his hard work.

I am sure Arik’s Journey will appeal to most PROGSTERS! alike and it’s an album that I highly recommend you taking on its MAGICAL! Journey and be sure to check it out on the link I’ve provided below.


A Journey Well Worth Taking On…

The CD Tracklist is as follows:

Track 1. Arik’s Journey Part 1. 17:47.
Track 2. Arik’s Journey Part 2. 17:31.
Track 3. Arik’s Journey Part 3. 13:37.

Packaging Rating Score. 7/10.
Price Point Rating Score. 10/10.
Album Rating Score. 7.5/10.


Lee Speaks About Music… #190

Innocence & Danger (Limited Edition) – NMB


I have to admit that since purchasing Neal Morse’s last solo album Sola Gratia that was released last year I had gone off him and my disappointment with that album even put me off buying the latest Transatlantic album The Absolute Universe that was released earlier this year. Things for some time now had started to sound like too much of the same thing and even the way that Transatlantic put out the album in three different versions I personally thought was a silly idea and caused much confusion of which version to buy. Being a Surround FREAK! if it was any other band I most likely would have got the standalone Blu Ray, but knowing from past experience how this band and its engineer does not have a clue about how to do a 5.1 mix I certainly would not waste my money on it 😊😊😊.

Innocence & Danger is the 4th studio album to be released under the name of the Neal Morse Band and for this release, they abbreviated the name down to NMB and followed the suit of bands such as the Electric Light Orchestra, Bachman Turner-Overdrive, Manfred Mann’s Earth Band, ELP and so on.

I do actually have all the NMB albums and many of Morse’s solo albums along with all the ones he did with Spock’s Beard. There was a time when I considered him to be one of the finest progrock writers in that field of music still keeping PROG! alive today. But as I mentioned over the past decade or so things started to sound too much of the same thing whether he was with his band, Transatlantic or even with his solo albums. I think the last time Neal caught my proper attention would have been back in 2007 when he released Sola Scriptura and that is by far more of a PROGMATIC! album in relation to anything that came after it.

You might very well be thinking as to why I brought this latest album and to be honest Innocence & Danger is perhaps even less of a PROGMATIC! affair and some of the material we have here does also lean towards more popular music. But before I go any further let’s take a look at the packaging and artwork.

Packaging & Artwork…

Well as you can see I purchased the Limited Edition that comes with 2 CD’s and a DVD. The packaging is very much the same as all NMB albums in that the discs come in a 4-panel cardboard Digipak that has plastic trays to hold the discs firmly in place. It also comes with a 24-page well put together booklet that contains the usual linear credit notes, lyrics and high definition glossary snaps of the band. It stores neatly away in the left-hand side of the sleeve and it’s one the best quality made booklets I have seen in a while and overall it’s a very neat quality package.

I pre-ordered my copy from Amazon UK on the 18th of August and it arrived on the day of its release. It cost £19.99 which is perhaps at the highest end of its price point for a package that comes with 2 CD’s & DVD and have no real complaints here at all. You can also get the 2 CD Edition that they are calling a (DUO) box and I believe the discs come in a standard jewel case with a cardboard sleeve to store them in. It’s most likely what they call over here a Hardshell Digipak and is reasonably priced at around £13.99.

For vinyl lovers, it’s also released on 3 X 180gram LP’s accompanied by 2 CD’s in a box set. The LP’s are stored in a Gatefold and Single sleeve with the booklet included in the slipcase. I am pretty sure it was released on both Black and Grey vinyl and the black vinyl box set can be had for around £40 on Amazon UK.

The artwork for the album cover design was done by the German graphic designer Thomas Ewerhard who done the artwork for many of the early Spock’s Beard and Neal Morse albums, plus many for the likes of Klaus Schulze and Ayreon. He also did the artwork for many other prog artists and bands such as the likes of Steve Howe, The Flower Kings, Asia, Kaipa, Transatlantic and so on.

The bands photo’s were taken by John Zocco and the lyrics were proofed by Pamela George. Overall. I quite like Ewerhard’s artwork and he always does a GREAT! job for many bands and artists. It sort of gives me the impression that the Academy Awards have been left behind in the sands of time although it’s also fitting to the album’s title and reflects innocence and danger.

The Album In Review…

Innocence & Danger by The Neal Morse Band was released on the 27th of August 2021. It’s very much a double album’s worth of material spread over two discs and the first CD contains 8 tracks and comes with an overall playing time of 48 minutes, 43 seconds. The second CD contains only 2 tracks though they are very much longer like most of the epic tracks are and it comes with a playing time of 50 minutes, 52 seconds.

I quite like the way they have restrained from trying to ram even more material on each album and kept it down to what a double album was many moons ago. It does make it easier to digest and I often think the biggest majority of prog bands these days can go over the top with all the material they try and cram onto an album. Some even cram a double album’s worth of material onto one disc and don’t even give you chance to make a cup of tea in between. I am sure they think we all live in prison cells and have nothing better to do with our time 😊😊😊.

Although they did originally plan to do a single album being as the last two albums were double albums but ended up writing more material than originally planned. Looking at how the second disc only has two tracks it does put you in mind of a bonus disc as they did with their first album The Grand Experiment. However, because it’s longer than the first disc that was most likely why they decided to call it a double album.

As far as I can make out the rehearsal and recording sessions for the new album took place at the beginning of the year between January to March at Neal Morse’s home studio. As ever the tapes were then passed on to Rich Mouser to do the final mix and mastering. For this album, Morse decided to do things differently and came to the rehearsal and recording sessions with a blank canvas by not writing any demos beforehand. He wanted to make it more of a collaborative affair and let the other members of the band have more input into the writing.

I think the other reason he wanted to work this way was to make an album that was different to its predecessors and make it sound different. The other four members of the band brought in demos and most of the material evolved from their demos. However, you could also say the end result was perhaps MORSEIFIDE!

The only thing that makes this edition Limited is that it comes with a DVD with the making of the album and this is something you get with most of Neal’s releases. I do enjoy watching them work on the album which is why I opted to purchase this edition. So Let’s take a quick look at the DVD.

The DVD.

The DVD’s main menu is sharp and as pristine as Blu Ray when played on a Blu Ray player with good upscaling and Thomas Ewerhard’s artwork looks even better than a vinyl album on my 50″ UHD TV. The main feature is the making of the album and here you get a 1-hour documentary where you get to see all the band members working on certain tracks from the album and discussing it all. It is perhaps on the short side when comparing it to some of the documentaries on his previous albums to which some can go on for hours 😊😊😊.

A 4-minute trailer of the documentary was uploaded to the band’s record label Inside Out Youtube TV channel back in July and here you can see part of it for yourself. Though looking at it on the Tube it looks nowhere as pristine as the DVD played on a Blu Ray player and the band have been captured using high definition cameras.

The other special feature on the DVD shows you Bill Hubauer, Eric Gillette and Randy George individually showing you all their instruments and gear in their home studios. It’s quite an interesting watch and this section has a total running time is 14 minutes, 22 seconds. Overall, the DVD content is quite good and is also a useful source for those like myself who like to write reviews.

One of the downsides the DVD does not contain is the promotional videos they made and I have to admit they have gone to town on them. Though I guess they were done afterwards but it would have been nice to have included them here.

Musicians & Credits…

Produced by NMB. All Songs Written & Arranged by NMB (Except Disc 1-Track 6) Written by Neal Morse & Disc 1-Track 8. Written by Paul Simon). Recorded between January – March 2021 @ Morse Studios Nashville, Tennessee USA. Mixed & Mastered by Rich Mouser @ The Mousehouse Studio Los Angeles USA. Additional Engineering by Thomas Cucé. Drum Engineering by Jerry Guidroz. Additional Digital Editing by Bouchra Azizy. Artwork Design by Thomas Ewerhard. Band Photos by John Zocco. Lyrics Proofed by Pamela George.

Neal Morse: Keyboards – Guitars – Vocals.
Eric Gillette: Guitar – Vocals.
Randy George: Fretted & Fretless Bass.
Bill Hubauer: Piano – Organ – Synthesizers – Vocals.
Mike Portnoy: Drums – Percussion – Vocals.

Additional Musicians:
Gideon Klein: Viola – Cello – String Bass.
Josee Weyland: Violin.
Amy Pippin, Julie Harrison & April Zachary: Backround Vocals (Disc 1-Track 8).

The Album Tracks In Review…

The documentary of the making of the album on the DVD does give you a good insight into how the album was put together and it’s quite evident that the biggest amount of material came from Bill Hubauer’s and Randy George’s demos. However, Neal Morse was not completely out of the picture and got up early on most mornings to work on some ideas and write some music. All five members of the band very much contributed to the output of the music and felt it was one of their better collaborative projects and were well pleased with the outcome.

I think the way Mike Portnoy described the album with how the album’s title reflects the difference between the two albums that come in this package is about right. Simply because the written material on both albums is very much different and the first album reflects the innocence with its lighter approach to the popular side of things and the danger leans more towards the darker and so-called epic PROGMATIC! side. One of the other things that is distinctive about the album is that they chose not to go with a concept this time. So let’s now dive into the tracks and see how it all pans out.

CD 1.

Track 1. Do It All Again.

The opening track originally came from one of Bill Hubauer’s demos and it’s quite evident that he has borrowed some influences from Genesis in particular with “Dance on a Volcano” from their 1976 album Trick Of The Tail. I am even hearing some influences from one of their earlier songs “The Fountain Of Salmacis” in particular in the comedown sections where the mellotron is put to good use. It is one of the more PROGMATIC! songs and longest track on the first album weighing in at 8 minutes, 53 seconds and like many of the songs on the album is credited to the whole band.

I think the idea of not choosing to go with a concept and go with a collection of songs works very well and what I like in particular about the album is that Morse is no longer bashing us with the bible so to speak. The lyrics we have here pertain to the struggles, pain and strife as we journey through life itself. Both Morse and Hubauer mainly take on the lead vocals on this song and do a good job of expressing the words as you can see from the official promo video that was put out on the bands record label Tube TV.

Even though the song started out as one of Hubauer’s demos you can instantly tell it’s been MORSEIFIDE! with the familiar themes that get injected into the song. I have to admit that when I saw the promo video of this song before the release of the album it did not entice me to buy the album simply because once again I am hearing too much of the same thing.

However, having brought the album and hearing it a few more times I have got to like it and I do think it is one of the contenders for the best tracks on the album. Eric Gillette’s guitar shredding is excellently executed, he also does contribute a bit to the lead vocal here too and they all do a TOP JOB!

Track 2. Bird On A Wire.

This next song is more rock driven and both Morse and Gillette take on the lead vocals and it’s another of the longer tracks on the first album. I have to admit I am not that keen on this song and I find the lyrics too much on the repetitive side for my liking. It does, however, remind me of how Morse wrote some of the songs way back when he was in Spock’s Beard. I do however enjoy the interplay between the guitar and keyboards in the long break section towards the end of the song and they do let FLY!.

Track 3. Your Place in the Sun.

One of the shorter tracks on the album and one that is very much a pop song and is even a bit BEATLE ESC! in parts. Strangely enough, considering I don’t have one song of The Beatles in my record collection this is the song that enticed me to buy the album because it is somewhat different to the norm I generally hear with this band. It’s a very well put together constructed song and perhaps one of the more memorable songs on the album. Even the official video has been very well thought-out and cleverly put together as you can see here.

It just goes to show that you do not have to write 20 to 30 minutes songs for them to be EPIC! You don’t have to have shredding guitars and flying keyboard solos either and everything about how well this song has been put together is so precise and fits perfectly into place including the vocals and harmonies.

Speaking of the vocals all five band members have a lead role and I quite like how Mike Portnoy’s voice sat in perfectly too and the bit of humour he added to the song. The song came out of one of Randy George’s demos and this is very much my personal favourite track on the album and merits the TOP SPOT AWARD!

Track 4. Another Story to Tell.

Another of the shorter pop songs on the album and Morse gets to solely take on the lead vocals for this one. Musically it’s got a sort of a 10cc vibe going on with the vamping swing to it and no doubt was composed on the keys. It’s also a bit reminiscent of what he did with Spock’s Beard many moons ago too and not a bad little number at all. They all do a GRAND JOB! on it as well.

Track 5. The Way It Had to Be.

This song came from one of the demos that was not used from sessions of the bands 2019 album The Great Adventure and it’s very FLOYD ESC! It’s also quite reminiscent to “Breathe” from the 1973 album The Dark Side Of The Moon. The lyrics also contain the title of the album so it could be seen as the albums self-titled track to some degree. It’s another one of the longer tracks and it features Gillette on lead vocals though I am pretty sure Hubauer sings on the bridge of the song.

It’s quite slow, laid back and smooth with how it runs along and the way it opens up on the intro it sounds like the soothing sound of a whales cry. Gillette also plays a very nice GILMOUR ESC! guitar solo and it gets wound up nicely on the keys.

Track 6. Emergence.

This is an acoustic piece that Morse wrote in the way of an intro to the song that follows it. It’s played by himself and it takes me back to Spock’s Beard’s second album Beware of Darkness with an acoustic piece he entitled “Chautauqua“. It works very well as a break and it tailspins very nicely into the next track.

Track 7. Not Afraid Pt. 1.

Another acoustic song written by Morse and this a fine ballad of a song that gets lifted up towards the end. The lyrical content is touching on his Christian beliefs and pertaining to him reaching out to the Lord and not being afraid of dying. It’s a song that uses 3-part harmonies and whilst Morse takes on most of the verses Gillette and Hubauer handle the bridge section.

Track 8. Bridge Over Troubled Water.

The final song on the first album is a cover of Paul Simon’s classic song “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and just like Yes progged up one of his songs “America” many moons ago they have decided to do the same with this one. To be honest I quite like how they have done the long intro to the song but unlike Yes who completely done their own version, for some reason they decided to fall back into the original melody of the song to sing it. Personally, I don’t think it works that well by them doing it that way and it sort of spoils the original idea of how to do it different with the intro.

The arrangement was done by Morse and Hubauer and it’s those two who take on most of the vocals backed up by a trio of female vocalists namely Amy Pippin, Julie Harrison & April Zachary. With them doing it this way it all sounds a bit too lighthearted and I am sorry to say that not even all these voices can compete with Art Garfunkle and they was silly to even attempt it. To be honest it would have been better if they put this on a bonus disc like they do with many of the other well-known songs they have covered in the past.

CD 2.

Track 1. Not Afraid Pt. 2.

The second part of this song starts off acoustically like the first part only on the piano instead of the guitar and once again Morse wrote the biggest majority of the piece. Musically the song is very much different and it’s perhaps only tied to the first part with the lyrical content in the chorus. Morse also sings the biggest majority of the song and only one section of it is given to Hubauer to sing.

It’s very much one of the two longer epics to which they decided to put them both on the second album and personally, I think this is the better of the two. Though I will also say that it is typical of Morse’s style of writing and once again we are running over familiar ground. I have to admit that I had to give this at least 4 or 5 spins to even get to like it, and even after a couple more I cannot put my hand on my heart and say this is by any means a classic like some of the songs he wrote a decade or more ago.

Track 2. Beyond The Years.

The final song on the album is the bigger of the two epics weighing in at 31 minutes, 23 seconds and although the string players Gideon Klein and Josee Weyland feature on some of the other tracks on the album. It is on this song where they are utilised the most on the intro and outro in particular. The biggest majority of this final track also came from Hubauer’s demo to which was around 17 minutes long according to Portnoy (who I seen talking about each track on the album on the Tube) further sections were thrashed out by the rest of the band.

It’s a song that goes through many transitions and perhaps way too many for its own good. I also find a lack of cohesion in particular with how they have structured it into 7 parts and how they have named each part. For example, the first part sang by Hubauer titled “Far From Home” gets reprised to end off the song yet they have just titled it “Worlds Away”. To be honest I don’t think Hubauer’s voice works that well on this song either and I think it should have been left for Morse and Gillette to sing.

Although there are not many words in this song at all and the biggest majority of it is more of a musical affair with some good interplay at times and even the odd acoustic section thrown in like Morse did many moons ago with Spock’s Beard. I quite like the 3 or 4 part vocal harmony section but overall I do find a lack of cohesion with how each section comes into play and it’s far from a perfect marriage sort of thing.

Overall, I think the band had quite a ball for half an hour and I do in particular enjoy some of George’s bass work on this final song though once again this is far from the making of a memorable song and one you would want to stick on that often at all, well that’s how it speaks to me anyway though I dare say many more will enjoy it more than myself.

Summary & Conclusion…

To sum up and conclude my review of Innocence & Danger by The Neal Morse Band. Personally what I think we have here are two albums that are quite different to one another with how the material presents itself and the difference with the material that was written for them both. As a double album, I don’t think it really works and the 2nd disc might have been better included as a bonus disc or shelved for a later album.

To be honest I think the two so-called epics on the second album are too familiar with what has been done before and they are not stand out tracks nor are they memorable songs like some of the songs that were written for the first album. Personally, I think they should have stuck to their guns and gone with a single album because for my ears it is the songs on the first album that stand out and are different to what we have seen from this band in quite a while.

I honestly don’t see the two tracks on the second album as epics or classics and find them a bit too lacklustre especially in comparison to much of the material Morse has written in the past with Spock’s Beard, Transatlantic and his earlier solo albums. “The Light” and “The Doorway” from the first two Spock’s albums are what I call epics. So too are “All Of The Above” and “Stranger In Your Soul” from the first two Transatlantic albums.

Song’s don’t have to be 20 or 30 minutes long to be epics and even a short song like “We All Need Some Light” is what I would call a classic epic. These are all memorable songs that have something to say and songs that touch my heart and bring tears of joy streaming down my face. There are no songs on this album that have the ability to do that, though there are some good songs and they are on the first album.

The most memorable song on this album is the one that made me buy the album in the first place “Your Place in the Sun” and that along with “Do It All Again” and the acoustic instrumental track “Emergence” are my personal highlights from this entire double album. I have also given my overall rating of the album based on the first disc. Had I have included the second disc it would only get a 5 out of 10 I am afraid.

No doubt others might get more out of this new album than myself and I would not say I never wasted my money buying it either because I did enjoy the footage on the DVD that comes with Limited Edition and I don’t have a problem listening to the first disc. Though it’s not in league with anything Neal Morse wrote over a decade ago and it could be that his involvement with too many other projects and the way he keeps churning out material constantly all the time is affecting how the end product turns out.

A Nice Place In The Sun That Perhaps Needs More Fire…

The 2 CD Tracklisting is as follows:

CD 1.
01. Do It All Again. 8:53.
02. Bird on a Wire. 7:22.
03. Your Place in the Sun. 4:12.
04. Another Story to Tell. 4:50.
05. The Way It Had to Be. 7:14.
06. Emergence. 3:12.
07. Not Afraid Pt. 1. 4:53.
08. Bridge Over Troubled Water. 8:07.

CD 2.
01. Not Afraid Pt. 2. 19:30.
02. Beyond the Years. 31:22.

Packaging Rating Score. 10/10.
Price Point Rating Score. 8/10.
Bonus Material Rating Score 7/10
Album Rating Score. 6/10.

Lee Speaks About Music… #189

Free Hand (CD/Blu Ray Edition) – Gentle Giant


I must admit that when I heard in an interview with Steven Wilson either earlier this year or at the end of last year announce that he had done new mixes for both Gentle Giant albums Free Hand and Interview I got quite excited and waited in great anticipation for a release date. I got even more excited when I had the first of them to be released Free Hand in my hands and had given it a spin. Not just once but three times on the bounce back to back with three different surround mixes and was that blown away with the job Wilson had done on them that it simply left me no choice but to say that this reissue of the album is the most exciting release of the year.

I have no idea when the band intend to release Interview but I suspect it will either be towards the end of this year or sometime early on in the new year. But no doubt I shall be eagerly keeping my eyes peeled for a pre-order date as I do with most new releases.

This is going to be another one of my brief reviews simply because I already reviewed the album when I purchased the I Lost My Head clamshell box set back in 2018. I also briefly touched on the album again when I got my hands on both the 2012 Deluxe Editions of Free Hand & Interview that came with 4.1 mixes done by Peter Mew. You can find both of those reviews here: https://leespeaksoutaboutmusic.wordpress.com/2018/06/19/lee-speaks-about-music-86/

In this review, I shall be going into more detail about the new mixes rather than go into any great detail of the tracks on the album in the way of an annotation like I normally do. However, I think there is a lot more to discuss in this package than what meets the eye considering this is not a box set. But before I go any further let’s take a look at the packaging.

The Packaging…

The discs come in a cardboard 3-panel Digipak and this is a lot better presentation in relation to the 2012 Deluxe Editions that came in what they call a hard-shell digipak which is basically a plastic jewel case that slips into a cardboard sleeve. It also comes with an 8-page booklet that stores neatly away in a die-cut pocket and perhaps the only disappointing thing is that it does not give you any informative information or even a short essay about the time the album was made. It does however contain the lyrics and all the usual linear production credits.

I pre-ordered my copy from Amazon UK on the 6th of May and it arrived on the day of its release. I am pretty sure I paid around £17.99 for it after the discount refund Amazon refunded back into my bank account. Though even at a price of just under £20 it is now it’s worth every penny and it’s a very neat quality package.

The CD/Blu Ray Edition In Review…

This particular edition of Gentle Giant’s 1975 album Free Hand was released on the 25th of June 2021. The album comes with the original 7 tracks and has an overall playing time of 36 minutes, 43 seconds. Unlike the version that came with the, I Lost My Head clamshell box set it does not have any bonus tracks and the only real bonus is that it’s accompanied by a Blu Ray.

Surprisingly even though there are no bonus tracks that come with this release where this release really shines is with the number of different mixes you can choose from to listen to the album, and each mix literally does give you a different presentation of how the album comes across. It is, without doubt, one of the best mixes Steve Wilson has ever done and I did say he had gone to town with the job he did on the Jethro TullA” (LA Mode) 40th Anniversary Edition I not long reviewed. But here he may just have gone to several towns 😊😊😊.

There was also a rumour that Wilson had also mixed the bands 1980 album Civilian besides Interview though it seems that is not the case though the multitrack tapes have been found and it will also be getting a 5.1 mix at some point. These days Wilson seems to have turned his back on prog-rock and has been mixing other artists and bands pop albums instead. Hopefully, it’s just a phase he is going through and we will see him back at the helm mixing more PROG! albums in the near future.

The CD.

The CD contains the original seven album tracks only they have been newly remixed by Steve Wilson to which he did sometime last year and this year. To be honest with the new mixes Wilson does I very much think even most purists would appreciate especially with the attention to detail he can pull out of an original recording. The one thing he never does is go over the top so as not to take anything away from how the original recording sounded and he somehow has a way of bringing out more of the dynamic range and is able to bring out things you never heard before in the original mix.

To be honest the original mix was very good in the first place and although the mixing of the album was originally credited to the band with both Gary Martin and Paul Northfield at the helm of the recording. I am pretty sure that Ray Shulman was the guy behind most of the mixes for Gentle Giant’s albums. But don’t quote me on that and I gathered this information from many of the recent interviews I have been watching on the Tube with some of the band members.

Overall, I can enjoy the original mix and Wilson’s new mix and get satisfaction out of them both. However, to my ears what Wilson has managed to do is breathe some new life into the album (even if it’s an album that did not necessarily need anything done to it in the first place) and it does work very well. Dynamically and sonically Wilson’s mix does sound the better of the two. Although for my personal enjoyment all the excitement about this new release comes on the Blu Ray and not the CD so let’s now delve into that.

The Blu Ray.

The Blu Rays main menu is very neatly and nicely animated and it gives you 5 different choices and ways you can listen to the album to choose from. The first of the choices at the top of the menu is Steve Wilson’s Dolby Atmos mix and the good thing about it is if you do not have Atmos it will give you a Dolby True HD 7.1 surround mix with a sample rate of 24/48.

One of the good things about this type of menu is that it’s been compiled with Flash and therefore you don’t have to load to another screen to see the other options which make the navigation smooth and fast. As you can see from the “Track List” above you do only have the 7 original album tracks to choose from and like the CD there are no bonus tracks and that goes for all 5 different choices on the main menu.

Another good thing is that you get something to look at whilst playing the album and whilst playing the Dolby Atmos mix it displays a different picture for each track and it also displays the title of each track as it runs along. However, it is perhaps a bit odd that they did not choose the animated videos that was made for the Atmos mix and gave that priority to the 5.1 mix.

Steve Wilson’s 5.1 mix comes with the choice of 3 soundtracks all of which are High Resolution and by default, it’s set to 96/24 LPCM Stereo. The other 2 are surround mixes the first of which is the 96/24 DTS-HD Master and perhaps the most surprising thing is that it does not come with a standard Dolby Digital 5.1 mix and he really has gone to town by giving you a 96/24 5.1 LPCM mix. Unlike the Atmos mix, each track comes accompanied by an animated video instead of a still photo.

Taking care of the animation that runs along with every track were Noah Shulman (Tracks 1, 4 & 7). Luis Mejia & Dinamita Animation (Track 2). Sam Chegini (Track 3). Morgan James Chadwick (Track 5) and Dan Melius (Track 6). The animation is a nice touch and is very good but perhaps not quite as good as the animation that was done for The Power And The Glory CD/Blu Ray Edition that was released in 2014.

Besides the different mixes, the other bonus content you get here is “The Instrumental Mixes”. These are also of Steve Wilson’s mix and they give you a complete instrumental version of the album. Plus for purists they have even included the “Original 1975 Album Mix” and both of the bonus features come with a Hi-Res format of 96/24 LPCM Stereo.

But we are not done yet and the final bonus feature they have given you is the “Original 1975 Quad Mix” and it comes with 2 soundtracks and by default, it’s set to the DTS-HD Master Audio. The other is a Quad 4.0 LPCM soundtrack and both come with a Hi-Res format of 96/24.

Like the 5.1 mix, you do get the animated videos running along with the music. Only they have put the footage in the picture frame on the fireplace that’s on the album cover. The cover also bounces from left to right across the screen and they really have gone to town on putting the blu ray together and it adds a nice touch. Overall, a TOP JOB! has been done with the Authoring and it really is impressive.

Picture & Surround Mixes.

Regarding the picture quality with the animation that’s been done for each track on the album, it is mostly pristine. However, because they have also used old photos of the band members from years ago in parts of the video footage can look a bit grainy but only on the pictures as with watching most SDR content on modern flat-screen TV’s.

But that’s not to say a TOP JOB! as not been done on them and even on the video that was done for the opening track where the pictures and even old video footage of the band was used, you can see how it’s not so noticeable with how the other textures have been blended in. It does also look like Noah Shulman gave it a sort of matt finish which also helps as you can see by the video that the band posted on their Tube channel.

As with the surround mixes Steve Wilson did for both Octopus and The Power and The Glory once again he has done a superb job with them but the difference with this release is that you do have more options to choose from and sonically there is even a difference between listening to the album with the 96/24 DTS-HD Master and 96/24 LPCM 5.1 mixes and his idea of doing away with standard 5.1 Dolby Digital mix just goes to show how serious he is about sound quality. For my ears, these two 5.1 mixes bring out more clarity and definition over the Atmos mix though that might also be down to them being louder in volume over the Atmos mix.

That’s not to say the Atmos mix is in any way inferior. I do not have Atmos myself but I love the fact that it offers you a 7.1 mix instead and to be honest, I am not into Atmos simply because it uses metadata rather than two extra channels and that is more of a simulation effect in relation to the real deal. I have heard Atmos on my mate’s system and although it sounds quite good it does not entice me to change my AV Reciever for the sake of it.

For my ears, a 7.1 mix is better than Atmos because it is the real deal and Atmos is perhaps more like the EAX environmental processing that Creative Labs incorporated into games years ago. You do not even need any of that sort of processing to hear things above your head in a 5.1 mix so why they want to place things there in the first place is beyond me and its more of a pinpoint system to give you that effect rather than let your AV Reciever do the job it supposed to do in the first place.

But what I like about the 7.1 mix is that it does give you another different way of hearing the album and there is quite a difference between this mix and the 5.1 mixes. I think the other reason why it does not stand out quite as well in relation to the 5.1 mixes is down to its lesser sample rate of 24/48 instead of 24/96. But I will say that Wilson has done a terrific job on all the surround mixes.

The real beauty about this release is that it also includes the original Quadrophonic mix and more recently I am more into Quad mixes these days and I am amazed at how many mixing engineers had the right heads on their shoulders back then to do such a GREAT! job of them and Ray Shulman is no exception. The thing is with 5.1 mixes is that very few engineers in this world have the know-how to do them right and there are so many disappointing 5.1 mixes out there and loads more than good ones. But it’s almost as if everyone knew how to do a Quad mix all those years ago and you perhaps did not have to have Wilson’s ears to do them either.

This Quad mix is to die for and is much better than the 4.1 adaptation of the original Quadrophonic mix Peter Mews did back in 2012 and easily gets 10 out of 10 in relation to the 8 out of 10 I gave to Mews mixes. What you have here is a reference-quality recording and as good as Wilson’s mixes. Like I mentioned earlier this album already had a good mix and it’s not as if it needed a new mix in the first place.

But that’s not to say that Ray Shulman is capable of doing a 5.1 mix and that is a different ball game completely and why more than 99% of engineers in this world do not have the know-how how to do them right. You need Wilson’s ears to work in that field and he is one of the best mixing engineers in the world.

Summary & Conclusion…

To sum up and conclude my review of the CD/Blu Ray Edition of Gentle Giant’s Free Hand. To put it in a nutshell the Blu Ray that comes in this package is a SURROUND FREAKS PARADISE! and the multiple choices it gives you to listen to the album I am more than happy with and the way I see it, it is a bonus in itself and no further bonus content such as bonus material and extra tracks was needed.

Free Hand is such a GREAT! album and one that comes with a comfortable time slot of under 40 minutes that it gives me no problem playing this entire album back to back three times over in one sitting. The very fact that the Atmos, 5.1 and Quad mixes do give you a different audio presentation makes me want to do such a thing and you can hear the differences quite easily between all 3 of these mixes.

They all bring out something more than the Stereo mix and much more detail is audible via the use of its extra separation. Though I will say what Steve Wilson has also done with the Stereo Mix is also an improvement over the original mix. Though for my ears even the original 1975 Quad mix sonically sheds more light and brings out more detail than even Wilson’s stereo mix and I was glad they included it with this release and it’s shame it was not included on the CD/Blu Ray Editions of Octopus and The Power and The Glory.

I suppose because the album was originally done back in 1975 you could not very well make it the PROG! Album of the year. However, I certainly think it’s the most exciting release of the year and if they were giving out awards for the best Surround Mix of the year this would literally walk away with the prize with ease. It is by far the best edition of the album to be released and what I would call the Definitive Edition.

It’s Never The Same In Multiple Mix Surround Heaven…

Packaging Rating Score. 10/10.
Price Point Rating Score. 10/10.
Atmos Mix Rating Score. 10/10.
5.1 Mix Rating Score. 10/10.
Quad Mix Rating Score. 10/10
Stereo Mix Rating Score. 10/10.
Album Rating Score. 9/10.