Michael Holmes is a founding member of IQ, the only person to have played at every IQ gig for the last 40 years. His musical career began in 1975 when he met Niall Hayden and Kev Sharpe at a sixth form college in Southampton and together they formed the nucleus of The Lens, a fairly fluid band in both musical direction and personnel, although the final line-up of Mike, Martin Orford (keyboards), Brian Marshall (drums) and ‘Ledge’ Marshall (Bass) were together long enough to play a few gigs on the south coast and release a cassette album ‘No TV Tonite’.
In 1981 Mike and Martin disbanded The Lens to start a new musical venture – ‘IQ’. Originally intending to play a wide variety of musical styles, it quickly became clear that IQ really excelled in progressive rock, something that eventually became the mainstay of the live set. The history and discography of IQ is available elsewhere on the site, suffice to say that now, 40 years later, Mike remains a major writer in the band and has been responsible for the production of every IQ release, both CD and DVD/Blu-ray, since ‘Ever’ in 1991.
Besides IQ Mike has been involved in other musical ventures. He was a hard house and trance DJ in the late 90’s, and in 2009 he got together with Geoff Downes, Tony Levin and Nick D’Virgilio to work on the ‘Pulse’ project which, although an album’s worth of material was written, never actually saw any music released. In 2010 he resurrected the idea of The Lens when he wrote and recorded ‘Regeneration’, fusing progressive rock together with trance, ambient and laid back ‘Floydian’ grooves.