Onstage in 2015, Steve Rothery digs into his Blade RH4 Classic, at left, as singer Steve Hogarth takes flight and bassist Pete Trewavas holds steady. “We enjoy each other’s company,” says the guitarist. “If there’s any friction it’s soon forgotten.” Photo by Alison Toon

Armed with uncommon axes and amps, a raft of stompboxes, and mojo borrowed from his 6-string heroes, the veteran prog-rocker creates a world of vivid soundscapes on the band’s new crowd-funded album.

Very few bands make exciting music by the time they get to their 18th album. What generally separates nostalgia acts from innovators is the virility of their creative output. Prog-rockers Marillion still fall into the latter category, as their latest album, F.E.A.R., attests. They’ve long been recognized as pioneers both musically and entrepreneurially, but the secret to inspired longevity, according to guitarist Steve Rothery, is not necessarily Marillion’s individuality, but rather their chemistry.

“We are quite unique,” he humbly states. “Not only in the way that we write and fund our music, but also in the fact that there’s still this amazing creative spark between us. It’s something most bands have long since lost by this time.”

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How jangle, glam, punk, shoegaze, and more blended to create a worldwide phenomenon. Just don’t forget your tambourine.



  • Learn genre-defining elements of Britpop guitar.
  • Use the various elements to create your own Britpop songs.
  • Discover how “borrowing” from the best can enrich your own playing.
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When considering the many bands that fall under the term “Britpop”–Oasis, Blur, Suede, Elastica, Radiohead’s early work, and more–it’s clear that the genre is more an attitude than a specific musical style. Still, there are a few guitar techniques and approaches that abound in the genre, many of which have been “borrowed” (the British music press’ friendly way of saying “appropriated”) from earlier British bands of the 1960s, ’70s, and ’80s.

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John 5 on How He Gets Old-School Tones from His Metal-Friendly Tele | The Big 5

Plus, find out which guitar hero the Rob Zombie sideman “begs and pleads” with you to listen to.

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