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IQ - Frequency CD (album) cover

FREQUENCY

IQ

 

Neo-Prog

4.12 | 641 ratings

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Warthur
Prog Reviewer
5 stars The departure of Paul Cook and Martin Orford from IQ brought to an end one of the longest- lasting lineups in the band's history - a lineup responsible for the band's incredible streak of superior neo-prog albums from Ever to Dark Matter. Luckily, any doubts about Mark Westworth's ability to step into Martin Orford's stool or Andy Edwards' credentials on the drumstools are shattered by this incredible album, which finds the band as a whole on top form.

The compositions give plenty of chances for the new boys to show what they can do (Ryker Skies must count as a real triumph, with Peter Nicholls intoning his megalomaniac lyrics over Westworth and Edwards' interplay), whilst of course the old hands turn in excellent performances in their own right. IQ's lineup changes usually result in a shaking-up of the band's sound, and this time is no different - but this time it's for the better, the band finding a beneficial balance between freshening their sound on the one hand and keeping things proggy on the other. In fact, this album is at once one of the band's more accessible releases and yet, at the same time, is also one of their most original works, with all sorts of hidden complexities.

Looking back, I see I haven't given an IQ studio album less than five stars since Ever (unless you count Seven Stories Into 98, which was a quickie recording of an old demo, or the odds and sods collection The Lost Attic). That might be a little fannish, though I would argue it speaks more to the incredible consistency of the band than anything else. Frequency is a particularly important achievement for the band because it shows that they can survive even as radical a change in lineup as the loss of their co-founder, and still produce prog gems of the quality we've come to expect from them.

Warthur | 5/5 |

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