One of the perks of being in a band is the occasional preview of other bands' music before it gets released. Last night, we got to hear four songs from the forthcoming IQ album.
I've been a fan of IQ since the release of the Seven Stories Into Eight demo tape (my copy had its own hand-made cover, with pieces of felt stuck on brown card) and saw the band at their first Marquee performance (a support slot to Twelfth Night). Andy's interest in IQ goes back even further; he used to roadie for the proto-IQ band, The Lens. So a chance for us to hear some of the new album was very interesting.
I don't want to say too much as it's not my place to do so, but I would just make two observations:
- to my ears, Mike and company have produced an album which harks back to the roots of the IQ sound. It's not that it's backward-looking, there are plenty of new ingredients in the formula, but it reminded me more of their earlier music than recent releases.
- it sounded absolutely brilliant. The songs were very strong, packed full of those all-important spine-tingling moments.
On the basis of the four tracks I heard, this could be IQ's best album so far.