Marillion Newcastle Mayfair 1983 & Newcastle City Hall 1984

Marillion Newcastle Mayfair 1983 & Newcastle City Hall 1984
mar83Marillion came along when we least expected it. They sneaked up on us in the early 80s, playing very unfashionable prog rock, which really shouldn’t have been successful given the mood of the time. But Marillion were true to the cause, and the beauty and depth of their music shone through. This ensured their success and popularity, which continues to this day, despite the departure of their charismatic front man Fish. The first time I heard Marillion, at the time of their first album “Script for a Jester’s Tear”, I was struck by the similarity to early Gabriel era Genesis. I heard shades of “Musical Box” and “The Knife” in their music, and of Van Der Graaf (perhaps “Refugees”); and yet they also had their own distinctive sound. Being a devotee of early 70s prog and Genesis, I made sure I saw Marillion when the “Script” tour called at Newcastle. If I remember right Marillion played the Mayfair on that tour, on the same night as my mate Dave and I were due to see Culture Club at the City Hall. marillion83 No problem, the timings were such that we managed to catch both gigs, calling at the City Hall first to see Boy George and co (which was good fun), and then racing round to the Mayfair Ballroom for Marillion’s set. This meant we sadly missed ex Van Der Graaf front man Peter Hamill, who was the support act for Marillion. But hey you can’t have everything. We arrived just as Marillion took to the stage. Marillion were great that night; the Mayfair was packed and their intricate prog sound filled the ballroom. The set consisted of the Script album, and of course their single “Market Square Heroes”. Fish was amazing at the time, the Gabriel and Hammill influences clearly showing; but he had his own stage presence.
mar84Marillion were back in Newcastle a year or so later to promote the “Fugazi” album, and played another great gig at the City Hall. The last time I saw the band was in 1985 at the Donington Monsters of Rock Festivl, where they were second on the bill to Z Z Top. By then the classic “Kayleigh” had been released, and it called for a major sing a long by the crowd. I haven’t seen Marillion or Fish since the 80s; both continue to gig regularly and retain a strong fan base.
mariliion84Setlist for 1983 Script tour: Script for a Jester’s Tear; Garden Party; Three Boats Down From the Candy; The Web; Charting the Single; Chelsea Monday; He Knows You Know; Forgotten Sons; Market Square Heroes; Margaret. Setlist for 1984 Fugazi tour: Assassing; Punch and Judy; Jigsaw; Script for a Jester’s Tear; Emerald Lies; Chelsea Monday; Incubus; He Knows You Know; Fugazi; Forgotten Sons; Garden Party; Market Square Heroes
“Do you remember, chalk hearts melting on a playground wall? Do you remember, dawn escaped from moonwashed college halls? Do you remember, the cherry blossom in the market square? Do you remember, I thought it was confetti in our hair?” (Kayleigh, Marillion, 1985).

2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by dawn on December 6, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    I saw this band at milton keynes bowl i think it was 1986? i had gone to watch jethro tull and gary moore however marillion was very good remember their purple and blue light show during kayleigh was impressive.


  2. Posted by dawn on December 6, 2013 at 9:18 pm

    whoops i think light show was to lavender


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