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IQ - Dark Matter

IQ - Dark MatterIQís latest album is again different to the previous one The Seventh House. IQ has gone for the traditional 70ís sounds mixed with the classic Tales From The Lush Attic feel.

Five tracks nudging just over the fifty minute mark are very well produced sound and quality wise, and itís handy to point out it is well balanced.  The vocals of Peter Nicholls guide you along and his lyrics are well written and quite meaningful in every way.

Sacred Sound opens the album, and has a slight middle period King Crimson sound to it, and closes with a haunting organ sound, perhaps similar to The Enemy Smacks in many ways, but a fine way to start the album.

Red Dust Shadow is a slower gentler track, and tells the story of the red dust you see when you fall asleep.  There is a nice feel with acoustic guitar that flows through the song and the keys remind me of a Dark Side Of The Moon style.  The organ sound played by Martin Orford is in my opinion one of the best sounds I have heard on any IQ album, and it swirls and grunts just like a Hammond.

You Never Will starts off with a Hackett clocks sound, then the pounding bass played by John Jowitt sets the scene, a nice moog solo in the middle gives it a different direction classic 80ís IQ style.  It has a nice little chant in the chorus, which could be a live favourite.

Next Born Brilliant has a thumping bass and guitar with nice Mellotron sound and radio voices appearing at the end.  Again this could be performed live in future times.

Closing the album, the longest track Harvest Of Souls is my favourite track, clocking in at less than twenty-five minutes. For me it is the third piece in the war and peace style trilogy.  Along with Common Ground and The Seventh House, Harvest will be remembered for this fact, and I look forward to hearing it played live again.  I would say that Peterís singing on this track is his finest work to date; his vocals rise and set the gentle moods and feelings of the song.  Mike Holmesís guitars both electric and acoustic worm away, and with the classical piano around the middle, bring the whole epic to the classic IQ beat. The Supperís Ready style climax with the Hammond, Mellotron and synth bring the whole thing to a slow moving gentle end with a pleasing guitar solo, which takes me back to Came Down from Ever.

This is in my opinion a good album.  All IQ fans will learn to love it in their own ways, and it is another landmark in the IQ catalogue. 

Danny Mayo


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