“You'll never hear them from anywhere you could call anywhere..”Sounds That Can't Be Made
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Marillion's 7th Studio Album, Brave is a single album & was released in February 1994. This album was remastered in 1998.
2CD Remastered Version: Includes the original album plus bonus disc. Standard Jewel case with CD booklet featuring Lyrics & original album art.
Download Version: Audio download not available.
Double Vinyl Version: 180g heavyweight Vinyl version with gatefold sleeve & original album artwork

ON THIS PAGE: Versions of this Album / Related Releases / Extra Information and Interviews
See below for a complete track listing/ audio preview & lyrics for the main version of this album.

Hover over album covers listed to the right of this panel to view a full track listing for each version


CD 1:


CD 2: Bonus Disc

2CD Remastered Version
Brave 2CD Remastered Version
Our Price: £9.99
£8.33 Outside Europe
Vinyl Edition
Brave Vinyl Edition
Our Price: £21.99
£18.33 Outside Europe

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Brave : June 1998
Brave started out like any of our albums, with jam sessions, a handful of finished lyrics from John Helmer, and disparate streams of thought from yours truly. John had sent us a lyric called 'Runaway' and I was trying to articulate a statement about man's innate ability to get used to ANYTHING, and the consequences of that, which gradually became 'Living With The Big Lie'. The third song to take shape was 'The Great Escape' which I was singing against some of Mark's piano chords. Steve Rothery didn't like it so I went away and used the same chords to write 'The Hollow Man' instead. It was round about this stage that the song ideas took me back to a memory of an intriguing radio broadcast from the Bristol Police some years ago on GWR radio. The police had picked up a young woman wandering on the Severn Bridge who refused or was unable to speak to them. In desperation the appeal was broadcast to the general public in an attempt to discover her identity. I heard this on the radio and thought it was a great first page to a mystery story. I was also concerned for her and wrote a few words of support which, of course she would never see or hear. I suppose it's as near as I come to saying a prayer. I believe that good thoughts eventually lead to good things. 'Runaway' took me back to her - wondering what became of her - and I thought we might dream up a story which would become a piece of music like a fictional documentary of her life and the circumstances which led her to the bridge. We now had a concept album on our hands at a time when the whole genre was and probably still is terribly unfashionable. Suits us just fine!
Now the band had a spectrum of imagery to get its teeth into and the songs progressed quite quickly throughout the winter of 92/93. Someone in A&R at EMI introduced us to the great Dave Meegan in January of '93 and we set about pulling his visions and ideas into the project. In February we moved into Miles Copeland's Chateau Marouatte in the Dordogne region of France - a 15th century castle perched on top of a high hill silhouetted against the moon at night like a vampire movie. We went there with a truck full of technology and turned the place into a recording studio. I lived in a round castle tower separated from the building, standing alone across the garden. On my first night there I climbed the stone spiral stairs to my room and looked out of the window across the sweeping woodland in the valley below. It was quite a feeling! I sat down on the big bed and wrote a few words. They were 'Brave'. I spent the next few days locked away with a keyboard full of drone sounds and eventually the chord progression emerged. Occasionally, one of the boys would look in to see what I was up to as the drones moaned and hummed for hours on end. "He's still in there!" they would murmur to each other.
The band was set up in the largest room in the Chateau whilst their amplifiers were in distant rooms connected by multicores which hung between the arrow-slits of the castle towers like washing lines. Dave had microphones everywhere: on the long spiral stone stairways and distant landings - he even had a couple of mics in the fireplace to pick up the crackle of the fire. The theory was that if we fed all the mics onto tape then we'd pick up any passing ghosts as well. You can't hear them but I can feel them here and there. 'Brave' is all about the spiritual aspect of life dominated by the non-spiritual, so we filled the songs with as many sounds and pictures as we could dream up - I sent our sound engineer out at dawn one morning to record silence for the beginning of the album! He found an underground cave full of water and we made a raft for the microphones so that we could make sounds on the shore and record the echoes on the water deep in the cave. This was where we recorded the big splash at the end of 'Paper Lies' which represents a certain newspaper millionaire falling off a yacht. When we later returned to England, Dave was dispatched to Lambeth North station to record tube trains whilst, up in Liverpool, Mark and I threw loose change at the pavement, actresses were hired in for the mother/daughter argument, the river Mersey was recorded lapping against the shore, and I discovered Tony Halligan busking Uillean pipes in a shop doorway (but not for long) and Cathy, the Japanese receptionist at Parr Street Studios, whispered for us. I think of 'Brave' like a Christmas cake - full of hidden ingredients which only reveal themselves gradually. I can still listen to it and discover moments I don't remember being there before. It is best listening to in one sitting, in private and, as I said on the sleeve, loud with the lights off. This remastered version of the CD should improve your chances of hearing the ghosts.
Brave : June 1998
In November 1992 we embarked upon the writing sessions for what was to become the Brave album in our new studio The Racket Club. My daughter Jennifer had just been born and I was having my first experience of what's known to parents of young children as Kiddie Lag. Worse than jet lag by a factor of ten. I remember many times turning up bleary eyed at the Racket Club. It can sometimes be hard to feel creative after getting only a couple of hours sleep!
We had been writing for a few weeks when Steve H had the idea of using the news broadcast of the girl on the bridge as a starting point for the theme of the album. It seemed to lend a meaning to the half finished ideas we had and made planning the album in some ways easier. We met with Dave Meegan, the producer, who the band had first worked with on the Fugazi album when he was just an assistant engineer. We loved the vitality in a lot of Dave's work and felt he could really bring a different dimension to the band. Dave had been suggested by our A&R man Nick (I'm not paying for that bloody coffee machine) Mander, with the idea of making an album quickly with a minimum amount of overdubs (little did he know). With this in mind we had arranged to record the album at Miles Copeland's Chateau in the Dordogne region of France and to mix a couple of months later at Parr Street Studios in Liverpool.
The Chateau was an amazing place. I remember Mark and I turning up in my car in the early hours after driving through the night to see this incredibly imposing castle on the top of a hill, just like something from a Hammer horror film. You almost expected to hear the howling of wolves! Miles (Copeland) had collected gothic statues, pillars and other artifacts from around Europe. These were scattered haphazardly around the Chateau adding to the intense vibe the place had. Although the Chateau had a great atmosphere it was very isolated, about 30 minutes from the nearest town. For the first month this wasn't a problem, but by the end of the second month I started to feel like I was in a Steven King novel! It became obvious to all of us pretty early on in the recording of Brave that we stood absolutely no chance of finishing all the overdubs before leaving the Chateau. In fact we were only about a third of the way through the making of the album before we had to relocate to Parr Street Studios in Liverpool to continue the overdubs. A greater contrast would be hard to imagine - we went from total isolation to being in the centre of one of the liveliest cities around. It was also good to see our old friend and former tour manager Paul Lewis (by now manager of Parr Street Studios).
I remember being constantly amazed at the dedication and focus Dave Meegan managed to maintain throughout the album, his only vice seeming to be his constant consumption of Lockets (medicinal cough sweets). By the time we'd been at Parr Street for a couple of months and with no end yet in sight Nick Mander was starting to have a fit. The band and Dave had decided however that we were in the middle of making a very special album and that it would be ready when it was ready. Fortunately Nick had little choice but to let events run their course.
Brave : June 1998
This was the first project to be written in our own studio (Racket 1) which was just a rehearsal studio with enough room to store our equipment. Although this was not a glamorous affair by any standard, the freedom we had to go in at any time and work on ideas helped to make it a good environment.
Once again we found ourselves jamming for weeks on end, recording the days' ideas onto DAT and compiling the results every week or so. At first it wasn't apparent which direction the music would take, but I think there was a unanimous feeling amongst us that it should not be as commercially sounding as 'Holidays'.
At this stage we already had a handful of ideas under construction. Steve R had the main guitar riff for 'Hard As Love' for ages and after the advent of 'Hooks' and 'This Town' we felt we could do it some real justice. I feel we had learnt a few lessons on the way. As the original version of 'This Town' on the Stoke Row video reminds me of The Who, 'Hard As Love' reminds me of Led Zeppelin! 'The Slide' was a complete jam that I started with the bass riff. Ian joined in, then H, Mark and Steve. H was playing the keyboards at the time as well as Mark playing his rig. We decided it was such a happy accident that it ended up on tape, that we should learn it for the record.
We arrived at the Chateau which was absolutely fantastic and started to turn it into a recording studio. When I say we, it was Dave Meegan and Privet our front of house engineer for years who had decided what we needed, how many mics to bring, all the wiring and how to power it all to make a safe environment. I think it took two days with the assistance of Tony, Ian's drum tech at the time. The Chateau had four towers and a huge banqueting room where we did the live playing. Ian was in the fireplace and me in the corner next to him (when it got really cold we even lit the fire!), and the recording machines and desk were up in the master bedroom. Quite bizarre really.
Our day started at 10.00am (ish) and we would have a spot of breakfast and then start running through the songs all playing together for atmosphere and feel. We would do half a dozen or so takes until Dave felt we had drums on tape and then maybe do a few different choruses or verses. Dave would record everything including our conversations. Because we had demoed the whole thing as it was in England, we had an idea of how to proceed from one song or section to the next. We would stop for lunch mid afternoon, which meant a stroll out of the Chateau to the outbuildings by the moat. We would then resume for five or six hours until dinner, always a gastronomic delight (thank god for tennis courts). Sometimes we would go back for a couple of more relaxed hours later or sometimes one or two of us would go back to work on bits and pieces left from the day. H could be found working on 'Brave' these times of the evening.
I was often woken up to the sound of Mark running up and down one of the main towers where my bedroom was, wearing weights around his ankles looking slightly flushed. When the day's work was done, Dave would retire to his room and listen to what he had recorded and check things against our comp tapes made back home. He had a complete notebook of everything on tape from the very start of the project. This by now amounted to months of work, literally weeks of listening time.
We would be in the middle of recording a song and he would suddenly play us a version we had done months earlier which we had all forgotten about and suggest a slight change somewhere. It became apparent that Dave was helping us to create the masterpiece that we all felt had been written and should be recorded.
This was a special album to be involved with from start to finish and will always be a proud moment in our lives.
Brave : June 1998
It was about one week before Christmas 1992 when I received a phone call out of the blue from Nick Mander at EMI Records. He wanted to know if I would be interested in producing Marillion's next album. At first I thought I was an "odd" choice for this task as up to now my productions were almost exclusively "indie" style. But then Nick explained that he wanted an album somewhere between "progressive" and "indie".
Shortly after Christmas I went with Nick to meet the band out at the Racket Club. It was nice to meet them all again even if it had been nine years since we last met, when I tape-oped on the Fugazi album. Obviously I hadn't met Steve H before, but it didn't take long to realise that he and the band were buzzing with ideas for this album.
Some pieces of music were already written, and there were lots of musical ideas which had been collected and recorded on 2 track during the previous months writing sessions. Even some sections of the album had been sketched out into a primitive running order. But everyone knew there were still a lot of holes to be filled on the way to an album.
The band explained to me how Miles Copeland had offered them the use of his Chateau in France to record in. This was perfect as I knew recording on location like this would add so much to the general atmosphere of the album, it would also allow us a greater freedom to put together our own studio that would fit the band's style perfectly. All we needed to do was pick up the whole Racket Club set-up and move it to the Chateau with the addition of a desk or two and a tape machine.
The most difficult challenge in making this album would be the actual fitting together of all the songs and link sections in a naturally flowing order. Sometimes this would mean changing the key or tempo of one or more of the sections. And if the joins couldn't be made to work then a new piece would have to be written. It was a bit like a game of chess you would always have to have the complete album in your head no matter which section we were working on.
The weeks before the move to France were spent either working on and developing existing pieces or else just letting the band jam away. They would churn out hours of new material this way, all these rehearsals and jam sessions were taped and I must have spent at least two hours every night just listening through and logging these tapes.
The first two weeks at the Chateau were spent continuing where we had left off in England. These sessions were always recorded just in case some thing special happened. "Now Wash Your Hands" and some of "The Great Escape" were recorded at this stage. The Chateau's atmosphere gradually started to wash it's way into the band's work, a good example of this was the title track "Brave", it just seemed to fall into place so easily. The Chateau at times would even make its own musical contribution, If you listen closely to "Brave" you can hear the Chateau's wildlife chirping away in the background, and in the right key!
Also at this stage the band would have regular night time jamming sessions usually occurring shortly after one of those wonderfully cooked Chateau evening meals and some healthy consumption of an exceptionally good local red. I can't remember how much made it onto the album from these sessions, but it was such a pleasure to just sit back and listen to the band create something from nothing and keep it going and developing purely by using that special gift they had of "inter-band telepathy". The "Opium Den" was born this way. Other evenings they would have a couple of shots at trying to capture "Hollow Man" or "Brave".
I usually spent weekends at Marouatte locked away in my control room editing up the various different takes of the week's work into final masters or else refining the album running order, trying new cross-fades or arrangements. Mark would make up a full demo of the album to date using what ever versions of the songs he could lay his hands on. We found these very enlightening as any problem in the overall plan would usually show here. Occasionally either Steve H or Mark would be out on the road with Privet armed only with a portable DAT recorder putting together a "unique" collection of sound effects. The "Mark in the bottomless Cave" collection comes to mind. Some of these make an appearance in "Mad" (surprise, surprise!). Also the Buddhist prayer bowl noise in the "Opium Den" came from one of these trips.
One week off, bar a little bit of sound effects recording with Privet at Lambeth North tube station. Then it was off to Liverpool Parr Street for all the overdubs. It was going to be a very strange transition from the Gothic isolation we had in France to the noise and buzz of the city of Liverpool. Only one song got actually recorded completely in Liverpool that was "Made Again", which like it's title says we had to make again as the version from France was lacking something. We spent I think about four months in Parr Street overdubbing and mixing some of the album. We returned to Sarm West Studios (my old home) in London early in August, to finish the last remaining mixes. The album was finally assembled at Abbey Road in early September.
The album had spanned four seasons and had been both the bands and my whole life for that time, and now it was over........Reality!
Nowadays whenever I listen back to the album my thoughts always drift back to those months in Marouatte. It was a most special time for all involved a time I will never want to forget.
This album was originally released on CD, Cassette, and 2-disc LP.
The 2-LP vinyl release of Brave features a double groove on the second side of disc 2. The first groove plays 'The Great Escape' as heard on the CD, followed by 'Made Again'; the second groove plays 'The Great Escape (Spiral Remake)' and 20 minutes of water noise. This provides 2 different endings to the album story, depending on where you drop the needle.
Released shortly after the album was cult film director Richard Stanley's film version of the album.