Monday 17 March 2014

The Last Human Gateway (IQ, 1983)

This 20 minutes epic track, taken from IQ's first official album "Tales from The Lush Attic", was born as a proud embankment against the rising tide of prog detractors of the '80s, pretending that prog was dead and buried forever. A few bands - and IQ were among the most active ones - succeeded in crossing such a difficult ford and if prog's still alive we should thank them too (well, them and us, the progfans). This suite isn't necessarily a five star masterpiece, but it's a precious testimony of those dark and heroic era for progressive rock. "The Last Human Gateway" was like a lantern in a gloomy passage and its tempo changes, its floydian keyboards, its gabriel-esque vocals, all in it sounds like a statement of faith.

Released in 1983, "Tales" was finally remixed in 2013.

That said, the historical value of this song doesn't exclude a musical interest: some of its sections are excellent, like the arcane intro, or the "Ocean" part, introduced by sweet guitars and built on a solid and beautiful melody, or the passionate istrumental section launching the  final reprise of the main theme. Sure, IQ were young and artless then, maybe they forged better songs later in their career, but in this suite there's a boldness and a fondness I still miss in many modern proggers' intricate and intellectual compositions. So, long live IQ and their Human Gateway!

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