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The Lens - A Word In Your Eye

(GEPCD 1031)

The Lens - A Word In Your EyeFor those of you who aren’t familiar with this band, The Lens were around in the late 70`s and early 80`s, and from the ashes became IQ. What we have here is a collection of re-recordings from the days of pre-IQ. A nicely packaged booklet complements the CD with the history of the band members from that period.

Ok, so what’s the music like then? Well, it’s a nice mixture of Jazz (Great!) (Nice! – Ed) and prog (Challenging! – Ed, still in Fast Show mode), and from some tracks you can feel the IQ influence from albums like `Tales From The Lush Attic` and `The Wake`.

The musicians Martin Orford and Mike Holmes have done a great job on this, and with guest players Paul Cook and Tony Wright make this a nice album to sit back and listen to. Clocking in at just a shade over 55 minutes, it is well worth adding it to your collection of IQ CDs, and for those of you new to IQ, it is a great CD to get into, and see where the roots came from. For your money you get 9 tracks that demonstrate a slightly different sound to IQ, but the image that materialises, is a nice Camel and Genesis sort of sound. Titles like `Choosing A Farmer part 1 and part 3’ (no part 2 here folks!) and `From The Sublime` are a bit strange, but don’t let that put you off, it is worth getting.

All the tracks are instrumental, apart from the old vocals on `Childhood’s End` from Martin Orford, and the same fellow plays flute too. You can feel The Snow Goose influence on most of the tracks, yet the IQ power shines on the last track `Choosing A Farmer` part 3, and you expect Peter Nicholls to start to sing `Widow’s Peak`, but that’s another story.

Will we see a gig or two? Whitchurch? Who knows, maybe the performance at the IQ 20th Anniversary show, was a one-off.

It is true to say IQ are active in a big way now, so are there any more sessions missing from long ago? We will have wait and see.

So to end this review, it is a good album and it should sell by the bucket load!

Danny Mayo


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