It’s particularly interesting and amusing to note that, despite punk’s efforts to cleanse the world of all things prog, Marillion embody the punk spirit more so than a group of spiky-tops in bondage kecks. Last time out, the veterans upset the mainstream’s order of things by mobilising their vast internet following into pushing the band back into the Top 10 singles chart for the first time in seventeen years. Now, on their fourteenth album, Marillion have once again stuck a collective two fingers up to the scene whores on ‘Most Toys’. Subtly, mind, as only a band as articulate as Marillion would know how.

Almost thirty years into their career (eighteen of which, unbelievably, fronted by Fish’s replacement, Steve Hogarth) and Marillion wisely keep one eye on their reputation and the other on the contemporary. Whilst there’s plenty here to keep the ‘Web’ Massive happy, the millions who rush out and buy Coldplay and Keane records will also find ‘Somewhere Else’ a satisfying listen.

There’s no big stadium rock anthem in the vein of ‘Kayleigh’ or ‘Lavender’. Much of the album is sombre and world-weary in tone, the funereal ‘A Voice From The Past’ a particular standout combining Hogarth’s passionate vocals with Mark Kelly’s desolate piano chords. But the airy soundscapes of ‘See It Like A Baby’, as good as mid-80s U2, lifts the mood somewhat.

Overall, ‘Somewhere Else’ is a treat for the thinking rocker.

Ross Halewood