Internal Exile: Second album by Fish
Date of release: 28 October 1991
Digitally remastered, with two bonus tracks, released 26 October 1998

Unlike his first solo album, which was still heavily influenced by the last writing sessions with Marillion before leaving that band, this album was a real solo effort. These were very turbulent years for Fish - leaving Marillion, an alcohol problem, legal battles with record companies, financial trouble, having a daughter born, and getting to grips with being a solo artist.

The result is a somewhat uneven album with several great songs, but no single theme. Almost all of these songs grew in live shows in the years after, however. They're all considered classics now.

Maybe it's still not a real solo effort - keyboard wizard Mickey Simmonds co-authored a lot of the songs, and other musicians also helped. Looking back, I think the albums with Simmonds are Fish' best.

Track list:

  1. Shadowplay
  2. Credo
  3. Just Good Friends
  4. Favourite Stranger
  5. Lucky
  6. Dear Friend
  7. Tongues
  8. Internal Exile
  9. Poet's Moon *
  10. Something In The Air
  11. Carnival Man *
* : Bonus track

Also title track of the album.

Internal Exile was written as a response to a dare by a friend who had claimed Fish couldn't write a real good drinking song. So he did. The song itself is about Scotland, which is being repressed by the English, and doesn't do anything about it.

Internal Exile

I saw a blue umbrella in Princess Street Garden
Heading out west for the Lothian Road
An Evening News stuck deep in his pocket
Wrapped up in his problems to keep away the cold

Grierson's spirit haunts the dockyards
Where the only men working are on
documentary crews
Shooting film as the lines get longer
As the seams run out, as the oil runs dry

Hey there laddie, Internal Exile
When will you realise we've got to let go?
Hey there lassie, Internal Exile
When will you realise we've got to let go?

Starlings wheeling round Georgian spires
And the fires of Grangemouth burn the skies
A lion sleeps in a tenement close
In a country that's tired and deaf to his roar


They bury a wasteland deep in the wilderness
Poison the soil and reap the harvest
Of blind indifference, greed and apathy
Sowed way back in our history

The fish are few the harbours empty
The keels now rot on our oil-slicked shores
The sheep are gone, the farms deserted
We're out of sight and we're out of mind


Like our fathers before us
We've eyes for America
Dream of a new life on foreign shores
But wherever we go, we'll always know
That the land that we stand on is never our own