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K2 - Book Of The Dead CD (album) cover





3.51 | 96 ratings

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4 stars This album has been called a reunion of UK, the late-70s prog supergroup. This seems a bit odd considering that only one ex-member of UK - Alan Holdsworth - is present, and Holdsworth appeared on only one UK album.

However, the comparison is perfect. Imagine UK with Peter Gabriel handling vocals, and Tony Banks of Genesis sharing the keyboard duties with UK's Eddie Jobson, and you have a pretty good idea of what this band sounds like. Add in Jobson-like violins, Holdsworth on guitar and a very good rhythm section, and you've got the great lost UK album.

The results are very good, certainly better than UK's debut album. The highlight is the opening "Infinite Voyage," an epic that clocks in at over 23 minutes. This mysterious, atmospheric track features lots of tasty Hammond organ and synths, ethereal guitars, and smoky Gabriel-style vocals. "Mirror to the Spirits" is an upbeat, marching track that sounds straight up like Gabriel-era Genesis, only much better engineered and recorded. Finally, the album's lyrical concept - the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead - adds a further aura of mystery and intrigue.

The one downside is that the compositions seem to run out of steam toward the end of the album. The entire album was written by group leader and bassist Ken Jaquess; he would be wise to avoid the error made by the dictatorial Trevor Rabin during his Yes days. All truly great prog bands have been collaborative efforts, with input from all talents involved. K2's next effort should be more of a group basis.

However, this is excellent 70s-style symphonic prog, and if you like 70s Genesis or UK, it's highly recommended.

| 4/5 |


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