Not a Lemony Snicket title, but it should be.
Every once in a while, I get a press release that thoroughly rubs me the wrong way. Case in point: today’s invitation to an invite-only listening party for the new Marillion album. Yeah, don’t everybody ooh and ah at once. First off, it’s in New York. Second, the album’s not out till late April. “Somewhere Else is the latest twist in a 23-year-long history of a group who has held on to the conviction that what they’re doing MEANS something real.” Yes, well, the Unabomber thought so too, but that doesn’t mean I want to endure a security patdown and wait at a velvet rope to hear his latest manifesto.
“The privileged few who’ve heard it think it’s the best Marillion album yet AND it’s their 14th–that’s three more albums than U2, two more than the Beatles, and the same number as the Ramones, a feat rare in the annals of rock.”
But it’s one fewer than Also the same number as Whitesnake. (My point stands.)
It gets worse from there. “In the face of ignorance and apathy, Marillion continue to defy preconceptions and labeling.” Is Marillion a hardcore band of angry 19-year-olds who just discovered tempo changes? I know you’re better than this, Marillion, but your PR is making me doubt it. If you really were misunderstood geniuses, you’d be too eccentric to even think of hiring people to try to convince me that you are.
Let this stand as a warning. We critics like to draw our own conclusions. So be careful, or we will.