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IQ - Are You Sitting Comfortably ? CD (album) cover





2.78 | 319 ratings

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1 stars To paraphrase: "No, I am not sitting comfortably". IQ's fourth album saw the band continuing to furrow the ill-judged commercial rock route they had taken after the departure of lead singer Pete Nicholls in 1985. Their first two albums, the superb 'Tales From The Lush Attic' and it's seminal follow-up 'The Wake', were two of the finest prog albums made in any decade but, like fellow neo-proggers Twelfth Night, the band decided to eschew their Genesis-inspired past in favour of producing more concise, commercially-orientated material with new lead singer Paul Menel leading the way. Fortunately for fans of both the band and progressive rock, IQ's label Phonogram quickly saw the errors of their ways and un-ceremoniously dumped the band following poor record sales of both this insipid pop-rock affair and it's similarly-inclined predecessor, the rather silly-sounding 1987 release 'Nomzano'. Following the split with Phonogram Paul Menel and bassist/co-producer Tim Esua both quit the band and IQ made a triumphant return, complete with a returning Nicholls, with the un-ashamedly full-on prog-rock of 1993's 'Ever', which harked back to their early-eighties heydey. Since '93 the band have gone from strength-to-strength, and pretty much 99.9% of IQ fans will tell you that the erroneous two-year blip the band suffered between the years 1987 and 1989 has long been erased from the memory banks of history. Yes, they made a mistake chasing the radio-friendly dollar, but, as we all know, this world of ours works in mysterious ways and luckily IQ had the foresight and ambition to realise where their strengths lay, thus rejecting mainstream accesibility in favour of cult status. IQ have produced some excellent albums over the years, both in the studio and in the live arena. However, 'Are You Sitting Comfortably?' is very definitely not one of the them and my advice to you is to just act like it doesn't exist. This is what many hardcore fans of the band do and it is nothing but utterly correct. IQ have paid their dues and moved on from this bad career move skillfully and swiftly. Others in their field, such as the excellent Twelfth Night, did the same and it killed the band outright, showing just how damaging a major-label move can do to a prog-orientated band. Thats because ss the music gets simpler the original fans leave. And if the new music is not good enough then no new fans replace the old ones and it's oh dear...what have we done? STEFAN TURNER, LONDON, 2010
stefro | 1/5 |


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