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Articles Home » 1994 Articles » Ultravox - 1994 Ingenuity
Ultravox - 1994 Ingenuity

ARTIST: Ultravox
ALBUM: Ingenuity
LABEL: Intercord
SERIAL: INT 845.232
YEAR: 1994
CD REISSUE: 2001, Resurgence , RES 109CD


LINEUP: Billy Currie - keyboards, viola * Gary Williams - bass * Sam Blue - lead vocals * Tony Holmes - drums * Vinny Burns - guitar

TRACK LISTING: 01 Ingenuity * 02 There Goes A Beautiful World * 03 Give It All Back * 04 Future Picture Forever * 05 The Silent Cries * 06 Distance * 07 Ideals * 08 Who'll Save You * 09 A Way Out A Way Through * 10 Majestic


After 1986's 'U-vox' debacle and the departure of Midge Ure; I don't think anyone believed founding member Billy Currie could single handedly return Ultravox to its former commercial success or the dizzying heights of creativity found on stone-cold classics like 'Vienna' and 'Quartet' but damn if he didn't give it a good shot. First out of the box was 1993's 'Revolution' which found Currie's version of Ultravox moving deeper into hi-tech pop territory and although far removed from the groundbreaking new wave romanticism of old, it was a beauty of a disc only to be out done a year later with 'Ingenuity' which many will argue is the best of the pair.

The Songs
With a re-tooled line-up that included former Dare guitarist Vinny Burns fresh from his stint with Asia and ex-Emerson, YaYa and Paul Samson's Empire vocalist Sam Blue; Ultravox on 'Ingenuity' were truly an awe-inspiring pop rock ensemble. The upbeat yet wonderfully melancholic title track with its percolating synth beat harkens back to the sound of the peak Ultravox years as does the follow-up 'There Goes A Beautiful World' with cascading electronics in overdrive balanced out with insanely catchy hooks. From here, the album takes a turn down the melodic rock road with the mesmerizing 'Give It All Back' and 'Future Picture Perfect' highlighted by both Currie's haunting violin and a tasty guitar solo from Burns which give the disc an arena-rock vibe never before heard on an Ultravox release. The lush 'Distance' shows off more of Vinny's considerable chops while 'A Way Out A Way Through' could almost pass for prime-time Duran Duran and although the closing instrumental 'Majestic' is rather average, to my ears at least, it nicely caps-off an excellent album that never stood a chance in the not-missed greasy flannel, down-tuned decade.

In Summary
While many hardcore aficionados tend to blow-off 'Ingenuity' and its predecessor as 'not really Ultravox', I think they dovetail perfectly in the Glory Daze canon and get a big thumbs up from yours truly. Lastly, I've seen at least three, maybe four different cover graphics for 'Ingenuity'; the above Resurgence version is the best of the lot.

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#1 | swazi on June 10 2012 22:46:54
Ultravox always remind me of my army days. I spent many hours driving back to camp on weekends and their "Quartet" tape would always be in the car. Great music!
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