Colosseum were one of the bands that passed me by in the late sixties & early seventies. I was probably a little to young to appreciate their music and with an overload of choice some bands just stayed off the radar screen.
Colosseum were formed originally in 1968 by drummer Jon Hiseman, saxophonist Dick Heckstall-Smith and bassist Tony Reeves, all of whom had previously been in John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, and played on his acclaimed "Bare Wires" album. The group was completed by keyboard wizard Dave Greenslade and guitarist/vocalist James Litherland. Colosseum were immediately signed to the Fontana label who released the bands debut "Those Who Are About To Die Salute You" which became the first of four album chart successes for the band. A change to the newly formed Vertigo label in 1969 accompanied the bands second album "Valentyne Suite". The title track was a twenty minute rock classic written by Greenslade/Hiseman/Heckstall-Smith which showcased the individual talents of the musicians within a heart-stopping elegiac and beautiful tapestry of sound.
This is the band live on the 22nd February 1969 at The Boston Tea Party, in Boston, USA.
Sound Quality: Very good stereo mp3@320kbps
Genre: Prog Rock, Jazz & Blues Influenced Rock.
Set: Full set.
01. Butty's Blues
02. The Machine Demands A Sacrifice
03. Valentyne Suite 1
04. Valentyne Suite 2
05. Valentyne Suite 3
Band Line Up:
Dick Heckstall Smith: saxophones
John Hiseman: drums
James Litherland : guitar, vocals
Dave Greenslade. keyboards
Tony Reeves : bass
Links: Wikipedia entry HERE.
I did get to see one of the bands that formed in the aftermath of Colosseum that of Greenslade, and I having now listened to this concert I can hear Dave Greenslade's influence in the bands performance. I guess lengthy drum solos are pretty dated these days, however the band take us back to a time when for many musicians experimentation and crafted musicianship were considered as or more important than image and marketing. Colosseum were probably upstaged in terms of media publicity by the likes of The Nice and King Crimson, they are however a very good reference point for that era.
Download links (two) in comments below.
Buy: Mp3's at Amazon.co.uk: Colosseum