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Market Square Heroes - Intro

Introduction: Market Square Heroes was the first official release from Marillion. With the monster-length (ha ha..!) Grendel on its b-side, the 12" was certainly an EP rather than a normal 12" single. The single suffers from a rather murky production; Market Square Heroes sounds muddy and hopelessly dated. Rothery's guitar is buried in the mix rather than cutting as it would become on the remix on the Punch and Judy B-sides. 3 Boats and Grendel also have sub-par productions which mar the whole effect but nevertheless, the single served as a harbinger of what was to follow.

Market Square Heroes

Introduction: Fish wrote: "Originally titled UB 2,000,001 as reference to the unemployment statistics at the time. The lyric was about a would-be revolutionary with all the necessary charisma and presence of a leader without direction or goals, just a sense of frustration and anger. It was heavily influenced by the riots taking place all over England in the summer of '81.The lyric was written in St Mary's graveyard in Aylesbury on the comedown from an acid trip and was completed as dawn came up and a ring of policemen moved in on my girlfriend and I who were acting 'suspiciously'. Weirdness incarnate."

Three Boats Down From The Candy

'Crying Wolf'
Brewer's: "To give a false alarm. The allusion is to the fable of the shepherd lad, who so often called 'Wolf!' merely to make fun of the neighbours, that when at last the wolf came, no one would believe him. This fable occurs in nearly every nation the world over."

Grendel

Introduction: Fish wrote: "At the time of joining the band I was asked to provide lyrics for a long track the band had written with bits that had originally been in a song called The Tower etc. I was obsessed with a book called Grendel by John Gardner and the way that it points out that anything ugly is instantly scorned upon and seen as wrong.

"Hence a classic was born! The lovely thing about the piece is the way the music conjures up exactly the right mood; 'ocean fogs' with its echoey vocals and yawning guitars, and forest quagmires with its bubbling keyboards (especially when it was done live)."

In an interview for Marko's Marillion Museum, Diz Minnit revealed more about how the lyric was inspired. "
When Fish and I were playing in the Stone Dome Band the guitarist, Chris Smith, was an English Literature enthusiast. The original plan was that Chris would join us in Cambridge once we got settled but this never happened. He subsequently went back to university and studied English Literature in Wales and, when I was last in touch (probably around 1982) he was living in the Gower area in Wales. Why is this relevant? Well, as part of his passion he studied the Anglo Saxon stories... including Beowulf and so he came across the book by John Gardner, telling the story from the perspective of the antagonist, Grendel. Chris told me about the book and, when he had finished reading it, he lent it to me just before Fish and I set off on our journey to Cambridge, planning to get it back when he joined us there."