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IQ - Ever CD (album) cover





4.05 | 679 ratings

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Special Collaborator
Symphonic Team
4 stars Leap of faith

Unlike other subgenres here on Prog Archives, the Neo-Prog genre seemed to have taken a long time to get off the ground. Most of the usual suspects like Pallas, Pendragon, and IQ all started out already in the late 70's/early 80's but it wasn't until the 90's and 00's that they made their best works. (The majority of the albums in the Neo-Prog top 20 are from the new millennium which stands in sharp contrast to all other subgenres where most or even all of the top albums are from the genre in question's first few years of existence). After four albums in the 80's, IQ entered the 90's with Ever, which was their strongest release at the time and remains a classic of (Neo)progressive Rock.

The band's first two albums suffered from bad production and after that original vocalist Peter Nicholls left the band. Then they made two further albums with a different vocalist which received a somewhat lukewarm reception from the fans. In my opinion, all of the first four albums had at least some good moments, but it was on Ever that all the pieces finally fell into place. Nicholls returned for the present album which, in my opinion, was the album on which IQ finally found the direction that they would follow on subsequent albums. Ever is thus, as I see it, the first album by IQ as we know them from later releases. (This is not to say that the two albums with Paul Menel on lead vocals are bad (I actually enjoy Are You Sitting Comfortably?), but they are so different from later IQ releases that they could have been by a different band.)

I have to admit that I haven't always liked this album (or the band) as much as I do now. Looking back, I cannot quite see why, as this is excellent music! This album has grown on me over the years since I first heard it and I have now added a fourth star to my initially lower (too low!) rating. Ever is a great album and certainly one of IQ's best ever (together with the more recent Dark Matter).

Highly recommended!

SouthSideoftheSky | 4/5 |


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