IQ (band)

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IQ
IQ Night of the Prog.jpg
IQ at the Night of the Prog Festival, July 9th 2011. L-R: Mike Holmes, Paul Cook (hidden), Peter Nicholls, Neil Durant, and Tim Esau.
Background information
Origin England
Genres Neo-progressive rock, progressive metal
Years active 1980–present
Labels The Major Record Company, The Classic One Shoe Record Label, MSI, Sahara, Samurai, Squawk, Vertigo, Mercury, Giant Electric Pea, SPV, InsideOut
Associated acts Arena, Frost*, Ian Parker Band, Jadis, The Lens, Priory of Brion, Sphere3
Website http://www.iq-hq.co.uk/
Members Mike Holmes
Tim Esau
Peter Nicholls
Paul Cook
Neil Durant
Past members Martin Orford
Mark Ridout
Paul Menel
Les 'Ledge' Marshall
John Jowitt
Andy Edwards
Mark Westworth

IQ are a British neo-progressive rock band founded by Mike Holmes and Martin Orford in 1981[1] following the dissolution of their original band The Lens. Although the band have never enjoyed major commercial success and had several line up changes, IQ have built up a loyal following over the years and are still active as of 2014. In 2011, IQ performed a series of concerts in the UK and Europe celebrating their 30th anniversary.

The Neo-Progressive movement[edit]

IQ were one of a small number of British bands formed during the early 1980s, including Marillion, Pendragon, Twelfth Night, Pallas, Quasar, LaHost and Solstice that continued with the progressive rock style forsaken by 1970s bands such as Genesis and Yes.[2] The music press coined the phrase neo-progressive to describe these bands, often accusing them of simply copying the styles of other bands. This accusation has been strenuously denied by IQ, which are against the use of the term "neo progressive"[3] and claim to have a wide-ranging and eclectic selection of musical influences.[4]

The line-up[edit]

From 1982, the line-up consisted of Peter Nicholls (vocals), Mike Holmes (guitar), Martin Orford (keyboards), Paul Cook (drums), and Tim Esau (bass). Nicholls left in July 1985 to form a new band, Niadem's Ghost, and was replaced by Paul (P. L.) Menel, but subsequently returned in 1990. Nicholls also created the cover art for most of the albums on which he appears. In early 2005, member Paul Cook left the band and was replaced on drums by Andy Edwards. On 20 July 2007 Martin Orford announced that he was leaving IQ and he was replaced by Mark Westworth from prog-rock band Darwin's Radio. As of late 2009, Paul Cook has returned to replace Andy Edwards on drums. On 7 October 2010, Mark Westworth announced on the band's official web site that he would be leaving the band and his final appearance with IQ was on 11 December 2010. On 1 January 2011, the band announced that Mark's replacement on keyboards would be Neil Durant, from instrumental prog-fusion band Sphere3. On 7 January 2011, bassist of 19 years John Jowitt announced on the band's website that he had left the band and that his last appearance with the band had also been the concert on 11 December 2010.[5] He was replaced by original bassist Tim Esau in January 2011.

Musical style[edit]

At The Classic Rock Society Awards Night, January 16th 2010. The band had won Band of the Year and Best Album for "Frequency". L-R: Holmes, Nicholls, Cook, Westworth, Jowitt

The band's musical style, especially earlier in their career, was reminiscent of Peter Gabriel and Steve Hackett era Genesis because of singer Peter Nicholls' vocal and stage-presence similarities to Gabriel and keyboardist Martin Orford's grandiose keyboarding. However, guitarist Mike Holmes' role was far more assertive in the band, giving them a harder edge musically. After Nicholls' departure, the band's style became increasingly commercial and radio-friendly — albeit without much success — on Nomzamo (1987) and Are You Sitting Comfortably? (1989), although each album still featured some progressive rock-style tracks. Beginning with Nicholls's return on 1993's Ever, the band returned to its prog rock roots, with longer tracks featuring intricate arrangements and complex musicianship.

Personnel[edit]

Members[edit]

Current members
Former members
  • Martin Orford – keyboards, backing vocals (1981–2007)
  • Mark Ridout – drums (1981–1982)
  • Paul (P.L.) Menel – vocals (1985–1990)
  • Les 'Ledge' Marshall – bass guitar (1989-1991)
  • John Jowitt – bass guitar, backing vocals (1991–2011)
  • Andy Edwards – drums (2005–2009)
  • Mark Westworth – keyboards (2007–2010)

Lineups[edit]

1981-1982 1982-1985 1985-1989 1989-1990
  • Tim Esau – bass
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • Martin Orford – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Mark Ridout – drums
  • Tim Esau – bass
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • Martin Orford – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Paul Cook – drums
  • Tim Esau – bass
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Martin Orford – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Paul Cook – drums
  • Paul Menel – vocals
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Martin Orford – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Paul Cook – drums
  • Paul Menel – vocals
  • Les Marshall – bass
1990-1991 1991-2005 2005-2007 2007-2009
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Martin Orford – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Paul Cook – drums
  • Les Marshall – bass
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Martin Orford – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Paul Cook – drums
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • John Jowitt – bass, backing vocals
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Martin Orford – keyboards, backing vocals
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • John Jowitt – bass, backing vocals
  • Andy Edwards – drums
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • John Jowitt – bass, backing vocals
  • Andy Edwards – drums
  • Mark Westworth – keyboards
2009-2010 2010-2011 2011-present
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • John Jowitt – bass, backing vocals
  • Mark Westworth – keyboards
  • Paul Cook – drums
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • John Jowitt – bass, backing vocals
  • Paul Cook – drums
  • Neil Durant - keyboards
  • Mike Holmes – guitars
  • Peter Nicholls – vocals
  • Paul Cook – drums
  • Neil Durant - keyboards
  • Tim Esau – bass

Timeline[edit]

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Live albums[edit]

Compilations[edit]

1. Capital Letters (In Surgical Spirit Land) 2. About Lake Five 3. Intelligence Quotient 4. For Christ's Sake 5. Barbell Is In 6. Fascination 7. For The Taking 8. It All Stops Here 9. Eloko Bella Neechi

Videos[edit]

  • Forever Live (VHS/CD set 1996, DVD set 2007)
  • Subterranea: The Concert (DVD, 2000)
  • IQ20 - The Twentieth Anniversary Show (VHS 2000, DVD 2004)
  • Live from London (DVD, recorded 13 May 1985 in London, 2005)
  • IQ Stage (DVD, 2006)
  • Forever Live (DVD, 2007)
  • The Wake in Concert (DVD, 2010)

References[edit]

  1. ^ Official IQ site. Band formed in 1981.
  2. ^ "Neo Progressive". ProgArchives.com. Retrieved 7 March 2008. 
  3. ^ Orford, Martin (2000). "Out With The Neo!". DPRP. Retrieved 7 March 2008. 
  4. ^ Prete, Mike (April 2002). "Interview with Martin Orford". ProgWeed.net. Retrieved 7 March 2008. 
  5. ^ "IQ-HQ: The Official Website". iq-hq.co.uk. October 2010. Retrieved 26 October 2010. 

External links[edit]