Fish – Queens Hall, Edinburgh. September 22nd 2018
It is sadly the start of the long goodbye from Fish. 2019 will see him release his 11th and final solo album, Weltschmerz, before setting out to end 4 decades of music with one final tour. Tonight though was a chance to celebrate Fish in a rare hometown show at a sold out Queens Hall. A night to savour and one of those shows where you left the venue with an enormous smile on your face after singing yourself hoarse.
The setlist was a blend of the old and the new with most of the set culled from the 1987 Marillion album Clutching at Straws. There were also four new songs making their live debut including Man with a Stick, Little Man What Now, C Song and the epic Waverley Steps which clocked in at over 10 mins. Proof that even after all these years Fish can still write a great song or two.
However, it was the older songs that got the crowd singing with opener Slàinte Mhath, Warm Wet Circles, Sugar Mice and The Last Straw getting the choir in full voice with the final song Incommunicado raising the noise levels even higher. Although to be honest the majority of the crowd knew every lyric by heart and sang along accordingly. Probably my favourite song of the whole night was the first song in the encore, a brilliant version of Tux On which was actually a B-side to the Sugar Mice single back in 87. You just don’t get those kinds of hidden gems any more.
There were moments of humour along the way. An unscripted version of Geezabun that was a throwback to Marillion days and the sight of Fish trying to leave the stage after saying his goodbyes before realising he’d forgotten to play Incommunicado. First night of tour gremlins but perfectly fitted in with the fun and relaxed vibe of the evening.
I’ve spent over 30 years following Fish and Marillion and seen nearly 50 shows so it will be a genuinely sad moment when he steps off the stage for the last time but nights like these don’t come along very often and it looks like he’s going out in style.
Slàinte Mhath/Man With A Stick/Hotel Hobbies/Warm Wet Circles/That Time of the Night (The Short Straw)/Little Man What Now/Torch Song/White Russian/Just for the Record/C Song/Geezabun/Going Under/Sugar Mice/Waverley Steps/The Last Straw/ Encore: Tux On/Incommunicado
Man With A Stick
Images courtesy of Mark Snodgrass from the Fish Official Group on Facebook.