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Colosseum II - War Dance CD (album) cover


Colosseum II


Jazz Rock/Fusion

3.68 | 85 ratings

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4 stars Third and final release from Jon Hiseman's fusion powerhouse of Moore (guitar), Mole (bass) and Airey (keys), and a consistently good follow up to the white-hot second album 'Electric Savage'. The title warms things up with plenty of bravado and anticipation, the heavy jazz themes exercised on 'Savage' further explored, and melodic 'Put it That Way' - the sister track to 'Put it This Way' from the second record - has just the sort of death-defying acrobatics one expects from a 70s fusion monster. 'Castles' is unfortunate love drool but 'Fighting Talk' hits back with some bump and grind, good riffing from Gary Moore and Don Airey's rocketship keyboard harmonies. Compositional centerpiece 'Inquisition' exudes a taste for metal, dungeon doom and Arabian Nights when Yngwie was still a guitar nerd practicing in his room. Moore really shines here, leading hand-in-hand with Hiseman and showing the utmost confidence, never again to sound quite as raw, powerful and graceful. Great jam 'Star Maiden' is followed by the slightly commercial 'Last Exit' and is good heavy progressive fusion. Colosseum ll, with much flair but a casual hard-rock demeanor, made Brand X and Return To Forever seem a bit precious and overblown. After the dazzling second album, this one comes close to that smoldering firepit of jazz-rock and sent this great band out on a high note.

Atavachron | 4/5 |


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