(All Album Reviews by Chuck AzEee!)
The mythical band known as IQ, had just released the opus Ever, and the band had in works of creating a concept album with a visual spectacle to go with it, the proceedings from it would become an album of incalculable influence, and forever no longer put them as followers, but as the greatest of their era.
The double disc, Subterrenea released in late 1997, is two albums worth in dedication to a lost soul whom finds out that he was genetically engineered by the Failsafe Co. and alongst his journey to right the wrong doing, finds out that there are more genetic engineered beings like him, whom also share his vision as well.
Like the benchmark double concept albums, The Who's Tommy and Genesis's The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway, the story builds it self out song for song, but like the previously mentioned classics, Subterrenea despite some absolutely magnificent songs (Subterrenea, "Fail Safe", "Speak My Name", "Tunnel Vision") on disc one, and the second disc ("Breath Taker", "Capricorn", "Unsolid Ground" and "Somewhere In Time") Subterrenea is best listened to in its entirety, the so-called fillers are quite pleasent, adding not only a break not only to the story line, but when performed live, it gave lead singer Peter Nicholls time to relax his vocals, also it allowed the band to get of their rocks.
As Subterrenea comes to a close, the last track is the majestic twenty minute magnum opus, "The Narrow Margin", despite its length, is just simply amazing. All the years the core members jammed together, their hard work all is summed up on not only this track, but the entire album as well.
Like all concept albums, length and misdirected story lines usually tick music fans off, but with patience, IQ's Subterranea, will have you wondering if this is not the greatest concept album of the Nineties.