Exposé Online banner

IQ — Forever Live
(Giant Electric Pea GEPCD 1016, 1996, 2CD+DVD)

by Mike Grimes, Published 1997-02-01

Forever Live Cover art

What, no "Material Girl?" I remember hearing of this supposed IQ live CD+Video compilation about two and a half years ago when IQ played in San Jose. Three years after the actual performance, the fabled box-set has become a reality. IQ has done what every band that releases a live album should do — take a single complete show and release the whole thing. No partial show cut up to fit on one CD, no mixing tracks from several different concerts, no trying to represent miscellaneous periods of the group. Just an accurate representation of the band from a particular moment in their career. Congratulations to IQ for realizing this was the way to go.

The set list is very comprehensive, with every studio album represented by at least one track. While the band was touring in support of Ever around the time of this recording, there are healthy chunks from the other albums to balance out the new material with the old. The sound quality on Forever Live is really good. It's almost too clean. Except for between songs when the crowd noise is audible, you'd be hard pressed to guess it was a live album if you weren't really familiar with their material. As for the caliber of the performance, like the sound quality, it's remarkably tight. The vocals sound better than on any of the several other live IQ shows I've ever heard, and you'd be hard-pressed to pick out an instrumental mistake anywhere. Either this was one of the band's best live performances or the cryptic "jiggery-pokery," as they call it, done after the fact was incredibly meticulous.

Conspicuously absent is much of the typical IQ stage banter. No humorous chats, no cover tunes, no heckles, no recurring "theme" pieces provide that traditional IQ spice. Olé! I guess they wanted the box-set to be a serious thing. It is nice to see guitarist Mike Holmes bow facing the wrong way at the end of the show though. They're having fun, even if it is presented in a slightly restrained way. From all the mention in the liner notes, the band was quite worried about playing "Further Away," then relieved when it was dropped from the set list the day of the show. This is interesting because it was the first of the Ever tracks to be performed live, well before that album was even released. Whatever the reasons for its departure, this heave-ho apparently provided the band with the spark needed to make a thorough, representative, enjoyable live album and video. The video parallels the accompanying double-CD with the exception that the video is missing the final encore track "No Love Lost." Maybe the cameras ran out of film? All IQ fans are aware of Peter Nicholls' legendary dramatizations in "The Enemy Smacks." This is really one example where the video aspect is really necessary to appreciate the complete impact of the song. Fans of IQ will certainly eat up this box-set. It would be a good, albeit pricey for a newcomer, introduction to the band as well. They went all-out.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 11, 1996 releases

Related artist(s): IQ

Latest news

2018-06-05
Koenjihyakkei Seeks Funding for New Album – It's been quite a few years since the last new studio album by the amazing Koenjihyakkei. Now they are preparing Dhormimviskha for worldwide release, and they're asking fans to pre-order via a Kickstarter campaign to help it happen. » Read more

2018-05-14
Glenn Branca RIP – Experimental guitarist and composer Glenn Branca has died at the age of 69. He was known for compositions featuring large ensembles of guitars, and for the use of feedback. He founded his band Theoretical Girls in the mid-70s as an art-punk answer to what he saw as the increasing commercialization of punk music. His compositions were highly influential, with such figures as David Bowie, Thurston Moore, and John Lurie among his fans. » Read more

2018-04-05
OBEY Convention XI Set for May 24-28 in Halifax – As the 2018 festival season rapidly approaches, we’d like you to be aware of a real treasure of diverse and creative music that’s going to take place in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next month. The OBEY Convention is on its 11th outing, and features a wide range of artists from around the world. From avant-industrial noise to experimental takes on Classical Chinese music, from chamber jazz to doom metal, from ambient soundscapes to Canadian First Nations drumming, you’d be hard pressed to find a festival with more variety in sound anywhere in the world. » Read more

2018-04-04
Close to the Rain Festival in Bergen Announces Lineup – Now in its second year, the Close to the Rain Festival of progressive music is scheduled to take place in Bergen, Norway, on June 7 - 9. They've got an amazing slate of bands lined up, including such powerhouses as Anekdoten, Major Parkinson, Arabs in Aspic, Tusmørke, and many more. » Read more

2018-03-01
Seaprog 2018 Artist Announcements Raise Festival's Profile – Seattle's Seaprog festival has been going since 2013, and the 2018 edition features a slate of artists that's sure to bring more attention to the event. Cheer-Accident, Bubblemath, and Free Salamander Exhibit are in the first round announcement of performers. In keeping with their tradition of focusing on regional artists, they will also present a number of artists from Washington and Oregon. [Edit: Just added: Inner Ear Brigade] » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Gods of Electricity - Sundiving – Introducing a world where standard sci-fi is just too darn human to be plausible. If there are any advanced life forms out there taking joy rides through post-supernoval remnants or losing the space...  (2007) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues