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IQ

Neo-Prog • United Kingdom


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IQ biography
One of the Pioneers on the British Neo Prog scene (apologies to Martin ORFORD - I know you hate the Neo Prog concept), IQ is one of the few bands from the 80's and 90's scene that superbly delivers a full symphonic, rich in emotion music. The outstanding vocals of Peter NICHOLLS give the band its trademark, but the keyboard arrangements from the multiband man Martin ORFORD (JADIS) really add to the atmosphere here. Not enough, the guitar work from Mike HOLMES completes the last essential ingredient of the band's musicianship.

The band is strongly influenced by (GABRIEL era) GENESIS, with a hard-edged and powerfull sound. Very extensive discography, in which you easely notice the band's evolution. I would say IQ is one of the few bands that has been able to maintain a growing curve in terms of musicianship and identity over the years. The music became heavier on the 90's, but with no doubt, it improved a lot.

They truly carried the torch of progressive music into the 80s. Their first two prosper albums, "Tales From The Lush Attic" and "The Wake" are among the very finest progressive rock albums released in that decade. However, IQ's most recent recordings "Ever" and the double-album, "Subterranea", are considered by many of their fans to be even better than their seminal early 80s work. ESSENTIAL PROG!!!

IQ official website

Buy IQ Music


SubterraneaSubterranea
Inside Out U.S. 2005
Audio CD$11.00
$9.20 (used)
FrequencyFrequency
Inside Out U.S. 2009
Audio CD$8.56
$14.12 (used)
Dark MatterDark Matter
Inside Out U.S. 2004
Audio CD$10.83
$9.06 (used)
EverEver
Inside Out U.S. 2005
Audio CD$10.98
$9.43 (used)
Forever LiveForever Live
Inside Out U.S. 2005
Audio CD$11.86
$10.86 (used)
Tales From the Lush Attic 2013 Re-MixTales From the Lush Attic 2013 Re-Mix
Import
Ais 2013
Audio CD$12.75
$24.75 (used)
The Wake 25th Anniversary Box SetThe Wake 25th Anniversary Box Set
Import
Indie Europe/Zoom 2010
Audio CD$30.20
$29.68 (used)
SubterraneaSubterranea
Import
Imports 2012
Vinyl$29.99
$44.95 (used)
Tales From the Lush AtticTales From the Lush Attic
Inside Out U.S. 2006
Audio CD$11.85
$8.99 (used)
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IQ shows & tickets


  • IQ at Melkweg, Amsterdam on 24 Apr 2014
  • IQ at Colos-Saal, Aschaffenburg on 25 Apr 2014
  • IQ at Spirit of 66, Verviers on 26 Apr 2014
  • IQ at Islington Assembly Hall, London on 3 May 2014
  • 9. Night of the Prog on 18 Jul 2014
  • Ino-Rock Festival 2014 on 30 Aug 2014
  • IQ at The Met, Bury on 11 Oct 2014

IQ discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

IQ top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.83 | 285 ratings
Tales From The Lush Attic
1983
3.77 | 366 ratings
The Wake
1985
2.76 | 193 ratings
Nomzamo
1987
2.73 | 177 ratings
Are You Sitting Comfortably?
1989
4.03 | 382 ratings
Ever
1993
3.90 | 409 ratings
Subterranea
1997
3.46 | 58 ratings
Seven Stories Into 98
1998
4.03 | 389 ratings
The Seventh House
2000
4.01 | 603 ratings
Dark Matter
2004
4.12 | 559 ratings
Frequency
2009
4.82 | 14 ratings
The Road Of Bones
2014

IQ Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.94 | 49 ratings
Living Proof
1986
3.71 | 7 ratings
Headlong
1991
3.79 | 59 ratings
Forever Live
1996
4.27 | 11 ratings
Subterranea Tour Live Germany
1999
4.15 | 7 ratings
Head Long to Argentina
1999
4.50 | 8 ratings
La Maroquinerie, Paris 18 Nov. 2000
2000
4.21 | 49 ratings
Subterranea: The Concert
2000
4.49 | 27 ratings
The Wake - Live At De Boerderij, Zoetermeer
2010

IQ Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

4.68 | 22 ratings
Forever Live (VHS + 2CD)
1996
4.33 | 41 ratings
Subterranea - The Concert
2002
4.39 | 42 ratings
IQ20 - The Twentieth Anniversary Show
2004
3.74 | 19 ratings
Live From London
2005
4.42 | 80 ratings
Stage (DVD)
2006
3.65 | 15 ratings
Forever Live
2007

IQ Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.53 | 40 ratings
J'ai Pollette d'Arnu
1991
3.46 | 47 ratings
The Lost Attic - A Collection Of Rarities (1983-1999)
1999
4.55 | 19 ratings
The Archive Collection - IQ20
2003
4.57 | 7 ratings
The Wake 2010 Remaster
2010
2.00 | 2 ratings
Re:Mixed
2011
4.58 | 38 ratings
Tales from the Lush Attic 2013 Remix
2013

IQ Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

5.00 | 2 ratings
The Legendary IQ Free Record
1984
2.65 | 25 ratings
Nine in a Pond is Here
1985
5.00 | 1 ratings
Here There And Everywhere
1987
5.00 | 1 ratings
Passing Strangers (12'')
1987
3.60 | 5 ratings
Sold On You (EP)
1989
4.00 | 2 ratings
The Darkest Hour (Promo-EP)
1993
3.63 | 24 ratings
Frequency Tour
2008

IQ Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Road Of Bones by IQ album cover Studio Album, 2014
4.82 | 14 ratings

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The Road Of Bones
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Although its street date is May 5th, pre-orders of the sumptuous collector's edition of IQ's latest album have begun shipping already in order to get the sets to purchasers in time for the album launch show (tickets to which are included in the collector's edition), so I have been lucky enough to hear this latest release already.

The Road of Bones is the second album in a row from IQ to feature a lineup reconfiguration, following the incredible streak from Ever to Dark Matter where the band lineup had remained extremely solid and stable. In fact, the lineup shake from Frequency to this is the largest between any two consecutive IQ albums, with three of the five band members not appearing on Frequency. Paul Cook and Tim Esau are, of course, old hands in IQ, being the group's original rhythm section (indeed, Frequency was the only IQ album not to feature Cookie on drums), whilst Sphere3 keyboardist Neil Durant makes his first appearance on an IQ album here.

The obvious question, then, is how this shakeup affects the band's sound. Frequency was a refreshing update to the IQ sound; would the return of Paul Cook and Tim Esau reverse that musical progression, or would Neil Durant's inclusion allow the group to continue it? As it transpires, Durant is the surprise star player here, proving equally adept at a bang-up-to-date keyboard style and performances living up to the heritage of IQ's earlier material. (Constellations, one of several tracks on the bonus disc in the special edition of the album, showcases this distinction particularly nicely.)

Tonally, the album finds IQ in a melancholic and reflective mood - one which often serves them well, as it did on albums such as The Wake or Ever - whilst the special edition of the album provides a bonus disc with a brace of songs which to my ears are just as strong as the compositions that made the cut, but which didn't fit the particular vibe they are going for here, and as a result the special edition presents a more diverse sound. Whether you plump for the 1CD or 2CD editions, right here you have IQ incredibly managing to continue their streak of top- quality albums which began with the classic Ever and still shows no signs of slowing down.

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 Ever by IQ album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.03 | 382 ratings

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Ever
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by lazland
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Ever marked the (glorious) return to IQ of original vocalist, the exceptional Peter Nicholls, and also the debut album with classy bassist John Jowitt (who has, sadly, recently departed).

If is, therefore, something of a fresh beginning for the band, almost a sort of second debut, if you will. And what a fresh start it is. Right from the opening pomp bars, and the moment Nicholls enters the fray on the incredible The Darkest Hour, there is an energy and a frisson on this album which makes one sit up and take notice immediately. Of course, back in 1993, we old fans lapped it up following the relative disappointments of the preceding two albums without our hero. Perhaps more than on any other album, you get the absolute full range of his vocal talents, from the deliciously fragile, to the out and out rock star.

Ever also marked the album where the band abandoned any pretence of seeking grand commercial success. Ever is a Progressive Rock album pure and simple, with no hostage to commercial fortune whatsoever. Having said this, it is the case that only a band which grew up and learnt its craft in those heady days in the 1980's could possibly come up with something as markedly contrasting as Fading Senses. Only six and a half minutes long, it has two distinct sections. The first, After All is gentle and almost floating, whilst the eponymous second section is an altogether darker affair, marked out by a thumping rhythm section backing swirling, dark, Orford synths and Holmes riffs. The temptation on this must have been to turn it into one of those lengthy epics, but I am glad they didn't, because there is more packed into this than in many twenty minutes epics. You could also, of course, make a reasonably intelligent argument that the old style rocker Out Of Nowhere, in a different era, would have been a contender for the singles chart. Not in 1993, though.

The highlight of the album is the longest track, Further Away, at some fourteen and a half minutes. It represents all that is good about IQ, namely some incredible changes in tempo and mood. Some of Orford's passages, especially, are as dark and gothic as the great man ever put to record, whereas other passages put you more in mind of clear summer days, with Nicholls at his fragile best. Perhaps, though, the last comment on this byword for quality should be the staggering guitar performance of Mike Holmes, who reflects these moods perfectly, from gentle acoustic, to sharp, harsh, riffs, to gloriously uplifting sequences that sing above all else to lead us into the denouement.

Following this treat for ears and brain, the boys take us into altogether more gentle, and straightforward, territory with the shorter closing tracks, Leap of Faith and Came Down, both of which are hugely enjoyable, more "traditional" tracks. I love the manner in which the former gently segues into the latter with a gorgeous, lilting Holmes guitar passage.

Ever marked the commencement of an incredibly high quality run of albums by IQ. I do not think it is their best - they, in my opinion, are Subterranea and Dark Matter, but this is very close to those ridiculously high standards.

This is the sound of a united and determined band, and one that would continue to produce some of the highest quality prog rock. Four stars for this. Quite excellent, and worth buying for the sound of Mike Holmes at his very best alone, whose beauty takes us fading out of the album.

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 Subterranea by IQ album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.90 | 409 ratings

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Subterranea
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by lazland
Prog Reviewer

5 stars There is a reason sometimes when a wallow in sheer nostalgia is something more than wallowing in glory days of yore. There are certain times when you listen to a certain slab of music, and remember just how damned good it was. No, change that. Just how damned good it IS!

I had not listened to this wonderful concept album in a fair while until this evening, when, looking forward to the latest IQ opus I have pre-ordered, I thought, let's go back. Let's remind myself of just why I am taking a punt on music I have not even heard yet, and won't receive until at least two months after shelling out hard earned money.

This album, perhaps more than most, is why. I loved IQ from the very beginning, and followed them alongside the other exponents of the new wave of British prog. This one, released in 1997, demonstrated to me that IQ, perhaps better than any other "neo" act, were capable of staying true to their roots and influences, but also taking them forward with the lush, almost orchestral, modern digital era sound. For this is an album not rooted in 1974, but the late nineties.

It is a "deep" concept, for sure, and certainly one that many classic original prog bands would have been proud of. The story revolves around a man tortured and imprisoned in solitary confinement experimentation, who is released into the wider world with unpleasant consequences and, tortured internally, returns to his lone self and world.

Just how, then, such a tome can give rise to such a brilliantly uplifting track such as Speak My Name is a bit of a mystery, and, in reality, speaks genius. The title track, following a Who-esque Overture, sets the scene perfectly for what follows, a perfect blend of symphonic musical story telling and precise, clinical, but also heartwarming in places, and never anything less than captivating vocally and musically. It also contains a marvellous guest sax piece - note to naysayers.....Genesis never had this!

Peter Nicholls is absolutely at the top of his game, more so than on Ever in my opinion, his voice gorgeously fragile in its strength (yes, much like Gabriel in that manner), but the real star and driving force behind all that is so Progressive on this album is Martin Orford, whose soundscapes dominate and provide such a lush musical storyline in themselves. Just listen to his burst on State of Mine especially, which lead a gloriously heavy symphonic passage of music, which, itself, leads to a beautiful , expansive, duo on piano and electric guitar with Mike Holmes on Laid Low. When these segue into the dark and hard Breathtaker, you realise that this album is rather more than a carbon copy of days gone by, but something utterly unique and new.

The end epic, The Narrow Margin, clocking in at 20 minutes brings proceedings to a suitably grandiose end. In fact, it would not be until the ridiculously brilliant Harvest of Souls that the band would outdo themselves in how to bring expansive, epic, loud, and proud prog rock to life in such a warm way. This is a track of a band at the top of their game, a collective bringing complex fantasy to expansive life.

In a couple of months time, I, and other collaborators on this site who have followed IQ for over 30 years now, will, no doubt, wax lyrical about the maturity of the new album. There will be more than a few reading those reviews who were either babes in arms, or, God forbid, not even born, when Subterranea was released. You will, no doubt, wonder just what all the fuss is about in the 21st century.

This album is what the fuss is all about. This album is more than just a paeon to 1970's glory, it is the sound of a band who produced a work of such beauty and wondrous sounds in 1997 that made many of us just know that, seventeen years later, we would still be listening to classy progressive rock, because such gorgeous sounds and thoughts simply could never die. To summarise, you are still listening to prog because of albums such as this.

Five stars. Essential. Wondrous. Beautiful. Grandiose. Nicholls, Orford, Holmes, Jowitt, and Cook. IQ. No further explanation is necessary.

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 Frequency by IQ album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.12 | 559 ratings

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Frequency
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by voliveira

5 stars 10/10

My definition of "masterpiece" often refer to a mere personal taste, not necessarily following the rules and definitions of the website. I am saying this because even I am surprised at the amount of "5 stars" I've given over the years here.

However, Frequency is not a simple case of personal definition. Judging by your score here on the site (4.11, making it the best-rated album from IQ and one of the most well-evaluated the genre of neo-prog) we face a great work. And considering I'm far from the only one who thinks so, and I heard this album more than any other to do their review, I can say frankly: this is a masterpiece.

My previous experience was with IQ, say ... frustrating. I do not know if it was the headache he felt that day or what, but either way I was not impressed with Dark Matter. It seemed a pale shadow of Genesis (which incidentally is a common defect of many albums and bands of this genre) without inspiration or creativity, just "more of the same." The only exception was the epic Dark Matter, but even this seemed to me (try to) be a modern version of the classic Supper's Ready.

My experience with Frequency was totally different. I mean, the influences of Genesis are still there, purposefully explicit, so noticeable that you can recognize music which that passage refers. But it seems that this space of 5 years between the two albums the band reinvented itself. The sound is more organic, dynamic and fluid. It is a neo-prog that, in addition to the usual common derivations in the genre, can get involved and surprising, not even fail.

The band had some changes in their line-up this time. Paul Cook (drums ) was replaced by Andy Edwards and Martin Orford ( keyboards ) Mark Westworth . The other members are veterans of the group . Starting with Peter Nicholls , I have felt somewhat " boring " Dark Matter in a voice . Wow , how wrong I was . How not heard the older albums the band did not know how to say his voice has changed over the years , but for a fifties Peter still sings very well , leading the album perfectly . He does not try to sound like a forced imitation of Peter Gabriel , which is already a plus point . But his voice sounds so fresh, positive and resounding that it is impossible not to be swayed by it . Mike Holmes is a phenomenal guitar, a rare melodic sense . There are times when he sounds like Steve Hackett , which is good ( as Hackett is one of my favorite guitarists ) , but in most times it is contributing to the music be with lofty soils ( such as The Province of the King ) or tune in general. And still runs the 12-string guitar ! (more Hackett -esque it impossible ). John Jowitt is a bass accompaniment over even without moments that stands alone, but there are times when it is perceived its great driving melody (like the pulsating bass that employs Ryker Skyes or opening Stronger Than Friction). So essential to the group as others.

But for me the highlights are precisely the two new members . I have seldom seen a drummer with an energy and dynamism as Edwards . Its complex but organic style enriches the whole album , and without sounding pompous or anything he knows the right at all times to play the songs. Her face is great ! See what he does between 6-7 minutes or Stronger Than Friction between 2-5 minutes of the Province of the King , and compare their way of very simple and basic implementation in Closer . Adapting to each environment of the album, it really won me over . And Westworth ... what to say ? Martin Orford is one of the greatest keyboardists of neo -prog , its mass replacement owes you nothing . Using lots of organs , mellotrons ( time did not hear as well atranete mellotron ) and synths ( moog much as those of the 80s ) , it presents a dynamic comparable to Edwards , and is easy to refer your style of the legendary Tony Banks . In just one album earned my respect the point where I say that is one of the best keyboard players of today.

Opening with the title track, the album ever gets down. This is a song that sums it up here: starting with tunings and radio voices, she evolves into a heavy a la Kashmir issue, with a strong presence of bass and guitar, first accompanied by a mellotron and then by a keyboard solo that hear later. I love it when the music fades to a beautiful piano and Nicholls begins to sing: "Before I was undiscovered, When I was invincible, nobody Could Kill the silence, and probably no one will again." I really do not know very well what it is the story of the album, although many hearings have made me get a good amount of letters. The song actually has an incredible dynamism, especially from the four minutes - watch out if the riffs of Holmes' guitars and Edwards' drums in this moment.

Life Support, the next track opens with some quiet atmospheric piano followed by soft and cozy Nicholls voice. It seems that it will last well until the 2 minuots change occurs with atmospheric sounds introducing an instrumental section to jaw dropping, where Holmes delivers his best and darker soil - reminds me very Hackett on his solo career. Again, please note that Edwards is on drums, this time with the cymbal. There is room for Westworth reward us with a great solo keyboards, guitar antesdo theme song return and finish with some dark sound effects.

Stronger Than Friction is the first epic of the album, and while at first I was resistant to it just wowing me after several listens . Why was I tough ? Well , it begins with a session with all the archetypes of neo -prog . It's such a happy beginning that it's annoying (though I like him today ) . But IQ is wise not to stay in it , and can say that this song has four different sessions . The first , as mentioned above , follows a verse -chorus - verse -chorus basics, and gives us the illusion that the next seven minutes of music will be well . Certain mistake . After this introduction "cliche" ( but still legal) music fades in a beautiful passage dominated by acoustic twelve-string guitar Holmes , Nicholls' vocals and layers of Westworth's keyboards . New changes at six minutes for a brief and complex interlude, that is certainly one of the heaviest moments on the album (I love the work of Edwards in this part ). And then the song reaches its climax simply epic, with vocal singing: "Who'll defy me now, and chase the lightning all to soon, what kind of mercy will you gain, under the shadow of the moon". The way the vocals sing "the shadow of the moon above" is sublime. the final part is a great interaction between the musicians, which would be nice in some part of "a Trick of the Tail". So in the last 30 seconds the music suddenly changes to a section that becomes more quiet ...

... And opens into beautiful ballad A Simple Mistake, the shortest song on the album. Some reviewers were found resistant to this song, but I found a nice simple piece that serves to calm the listener after all epicidade of previous songs. I would not say as interlude, however. I love the twist that gives Edwards the second time the chorus is sung - is something that Phil Collins would surely do, either in Genesis or solo career. And at the end of the song she fades into new sound effects, which are crowned by a mellotron exuberate ...

... Which brings us to Ryker Skyes , the music is definitely the magnum opus of the album according to many reviewers, and rightly so. A review pointed out how their introduction (with sound effects coming from One Fatal Mistake decrease in favor of increasing acoustic guitar ) remind Fly on a Windshield of Genesis , even with different apertures , and it really makes sense . I love the vocals accompanied this acoustic guitar , which leads to the two minutes when the guitar explodes into a great solo accompanied by a pulsating bass . The way the vocals return , singing "Welcome to Ryker Skyes hero " in a distorted manner, including some electronic effects is making me shiver . This is a most unusual section , verse -chorus - verse -chorus , but the song gives an impressive turn in about 5 minutes with Westworth giving us the best solo mellotron of recent times . The vocals return after 6 minutes , followed by more acoustic guitar (repeating the initial theme ) and what I imagine to be a xylophone or a vibraphone . Westworth returns with another solo keyboard , one of those you might hear on " Selling England By the Pound " and finally the chorus is repeated again until the song to end on a fade out.

The Province of the King is the greatest song on the album , clocking in at about 14 minutes. Its first half is started by a beautiful acoustic work and voice Nicholls , but after 2 minutes the song explodes into a fast section, but simply brilliant . I 've said it before , but seriously: look what Edwards is doing here! It's otherworldly . Music returns to initial theme quickly one last time before returning energetic instrumental theme even more epic , this time accompanied by a mellotron that I can only describe as " divine" . Then a new theme is introduced , with Edwards making some double pedals while Westworth bring it on the organ . So the theme of the guitar solo is taken from Life Support and Nicholls sings:

"The province of the king The wilderness of stolen things The untold legacy  Ineria keeps it out of reach Till I bring bad tidings The phone rings There's no one there"

This section leads to the second half of the song, with the vocals becoming increasingly intense and dramatic as the song heads to its climax, preceded by another great solo Westworth keyboard (that would fit perfectly into The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway ). The climax itself is a majestic and epic guitar solo from Holmes, divided into three sections. The song calms down for a post-climax in his 11 minutes, ending with just piano and vocals.

But wait! This is not the end of the album! Closer still there, and if there is a track that got me was this. I had already said in my review for The Mountain as I love it when an album ends on a more intimate and positive note, after a big climax, and this is the case. While some may find it drags too beyond measure, I think this is a song that has the size you should. In fact I swear I could spend five minutes listening to the close of it, which is one of the most beautiful and graceful things I've ever heard.

5 stars well-applied. No doubt, this is one of the best neo-prog albums I've ever heard, and I will not forget it anytime soon.

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 The Wake - Live At De Boerderij, Zoetermeer by IQ album cover Live, 2010
4.49 | 27 ratings

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The Wake - Live At De Boerderij, Zoetermeer
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by Gatot
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars The Wake represents my first introduction to IQ and it was phenomenal to me personally. I remember vividly how the cassette that I purchased was one of the cassettes I regularly played in addition to Marillion who also released the third seminal album "Misplaced Childhood". But one memorable experience with The Wake was when I worked offshore to install and hook-up the oil and gas platformed owned by Hudbay Oil at Malacca Strait in early 1987. My first son, Endro, was not yet born and I was sent by the company I worked for, McDermott, to be the hook-up engineer for the two platforms named as MWD and MWE. I was stationed at DB 17 (Derrick Barge 17) owned by McDermott for approximately two months period. During that period I brought with me saome prog cassettes (hey, by that time there was no iPod, no MP3 and CD was just born but I did not own most prog music on CD format - so I had a stack of Marillion, Pendragon, Pallas, IQ and Peter Gabriel in the media of cassettes. What a life!).

I worked twelve hours a day and in shift system. So whae I worked daylight I used the evening to play the cassettes outloud in the guest room of this wonderfully furnished Derrick Barge where it had also great tape compo as well. WoW! I was astonished with the music of IQ especially "The Wake" (the second track) where I kept rewinding two to three times before moving forward to next track. In fact I started loving IQ right then in the DB 17 of McDermott!!! What a memorable event, really! And since then I love the band until now.

This live set is really excellent despite only two original members played here: Peter Nicholls (vox) and Mike Holmes (guitar). The rest of the band: Tim Essau (bass) was replaced by John Jowitt, Paul Cook (drums) replaced by Andy Edwards, and Martin Orford (keys) was replaced by Mark Westworth. But ...don't worry ... I still get the same or at least "similar" nuances as the album was originally recorded in 1985. The setlist has been made exactly the same as the studio album only that it had now the "intro" live version. One intersting point is that the sonic quality has been made closer to the original studio recording as this one is raw in sound. I compare this with ForEVER Live sound quality which has modern quality of sound. I am sure the band decided to make this record as close as possible with the original recording.

Performance-wise, I think this is really excellent! For those who love IQ, you should not miss this one! Keep on proggin' ....!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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 Tales from the Lush Attic 2013 Remix by IQ album cover Boxset/Compilation, 2013
4.58 | 38 ratings

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Tales from the Lush Attic 2013 Remix
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by sinslice

5 stars I think, as in my case, rating assigned to original of 1983 is mainly due to the low quality and poor sound recording. This remastering enhances the work to another level, similar to what happens with The Wake remastered.

About music has already been told enough. Tales from the Lush Attic is a qualified and mature, despite the youth of band here. Highlight the role of Orford, and the great participation of Paul Cook (nothing to do with Sex Pistols drummer) on drums. The rest of the musicians also perform their function perfectly, as always.

Actually, not much to add in terms of bonuses, contributions are good, some better than others. The DVD is very good, highly enjoyable and high quality. Classics like The Last Human Gateway and The Enemy Smacks, can not miss in a respectable collection, at least talking about Neo-Prog.

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 Are You Sitting Comfortably? by IQ album cover Studio Album, 1989
2.73 | 177 ratings

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Are You Sitting Comfortably?
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by Ozymandias

2 stars The last Paul Menel/IQ album. Judging from the previous release, this album could only be better, or could it be worse? The opening "War Heroes" starts the mood nicely, but is soon followed by another "mainstream" sounding "poppy" song. Falling Apart at the Seams wants to restore the PROG label to this album, but, to no avail. Wurensh is an equally weak attempt.

Not all together certain how to rate this album as I find it weaker than its predecessor. Was sure it will deliver the goods after an interesting opening track. Sometimes I will an album to be good, sadly, I failed on this occasion. 2 Stars.

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 Nomzamo by IQ album cover Studio Album, 1987
2.76 | 193 ratings

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Nomzamo
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by Ozymandias

2 stars So, Peter Nicholls, leaves IQ and in comes Paul Menel. From the opening track, "No Love Lost", not too much difference vocally, but you soon tell a bigger difference with the much more mainstream second track "Promises". Another mainstream, "poppy" sounding, "Passing Strangers" and by this time you realize that this is not IQ from past releases.

Must say they lost their 'PROG' touch with this release and if it wasn't for the lengthy "Human Nature" and the tribal sounding title track, then this album could've rather been seen as a mainstream rock album. Rating wise, this is below their previous efforts and a 2 star rating seems fitting here.

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 The Wake by IQ album cover Studio Album, 1985
3.77 | 366 ratings

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The Wake
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by Ozymandias

3 stars The second IQ release is "The Wake". In similar vein as the bands' debut, musically sounding, no big shifts in style, except, there are none of the lengthy compositions as was the case with "Tales from the Lush Attic".

The title track is a definite stand out here as is the brilliant Widow's Peak. The Thousand Days, albeit a bit "poppy", is quite catchy. The normal album ends with Headlong, which is good in its own right and continues the overall sound of the album. The CD version contains 3 bonus tracks of which "Dans Le Parc Du Chateau Noir" is a rather enjoyable addition.

Overall I think this album compares very much the same as the bands' debut. 3 Stars.

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 Tales From The Lush Attic by IQ album cover Studio Album, 1983
3.83 | 285 ratings

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Tales From The Lush Attic
IQ Neo-Prog

Review by Ozymandias

3 stars I love IQ, especially after seeing the 'Stage' DVD concerts, which clearly show a well-oiled machine going through its motions. The debut IQ release, 'Tales from the Lush Attic', was released during a period when I thought PROG music was no more and I only much later, around 1995, listened to this album for the first time.

The opener is the lengthy 'The Last Human Gateway', which shows a few good moments, but nothing too spectacular. Track 2, 'Through the Corridors' is a short energetic piece while 'Awake and Nervous' is a nicely structured and fine song. There's a short filler before we get to 'The Enemy Smacks', which by far, is the better track on offer here. The CD version has a bonus track 'Just Changing Hands'.

As far as debuts go I guess it's a good effort. 3 Stars.

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