J'Ai Pollette D'Arnu (the title is simply French-sounding gibberish) is a collection of rarities released to fill the gap as IQ was getting ready to start the third phase of its career. (Singer Paul Menel and bassist Tim Esau had left, replacement bassist Les "Ledge" Marshall had died suddenly, and original singer Peter Nicholls was ready to come back.) The CD was the first to come out on Giant Electric Pea, a label formed by members of the band. The oldest track is "Dans le Parc du Chateau Noir," the B-side of the 12" single "Barbell Is In." (The song is also available as an extra track on some reissues of The Wake.) This is the only song featuring Nicholls. "Sera Sera" is an unreleased track from the Are You Sitting Comfortably? sessions. "It All Stops Here" and "Intelligence Quotient" were two songs on IQ's first album Seven Stories Into Eight. These are re-recorded versions (from 1986) that were issued as a picture disc. All other tracks are live recordings from the Are You Sitting Comfortably? tour (June 1989). The best feature of this CD is the 15-minute medley of "oldies" -- "The Last Human Gateway," "Outer Limits," "It All Stops Here," and "The Enemy Smacks" -- even though Menel experiences difficulties with the higher vocal range of these songs. A mixed bag, J'Ai Pollette D'Arnu is a fan-only item, and as far as this kind of collection goes, The Lost Attic has more to offer.
AllMusic Review by François Couture