1. Those About to Die
While Chris Farlowe sang the blues at Dave Greenslade’s 50th, the remaining original members of Colosseum pushed me into a dark corner to “persuade” me to reform the band. It was 22 years since we had played together but we were still all alive and very much kicking on the music scene. The time might be right. I made enquiries of my agents in Europe – if I put the original line up from the famous live album of 1971 together, would anybody be interested in half a dozen dates? Four days later my German agent called with 30 dates and in 1994-5 we were to play more than 100 fantastic concerts.
We had only been together as a band between September 1968 and November 1971. With only a few days off from continuous live appearances we split up amicably after 3 years and went our several ways. When I look back it seems incredible that the first two Colosseum albums were recorded in the daytime in London studios and around 5 o’clock we packed the gear and went and did gigs!
Try that on the stars of today! We decided to put a program of our ‘hits’ together for the tour and I sent CD’s of the old song to all the boys. We met in my studio and I counted in “Those about to die.” It was as though we had been on a short vacation except that somehow we were playing better than ever. Obviously the years between had not been wasted!
The second concert of our reunion tour at the E-Werk in Cologne in 1994 was filmed for TV and subsequent release on video and now DVD (Angel Air Waves-NJPDVD605) The sound was recorded on digital multitrack and mixed in my studio. This CD, the second to be released from this concert contains the tracks not issued previously.
So six very individual characters came together in the late 60’s and survive through to the new millennium as friends and as a music making entity. As I write we are mixing another new studio album and have another 40 or so dates fixed for the Autumn of 2003. We must know something! Jon Hiseman- June 2003
MUSICIANS JON HISEMAN, CHRIS FARLOWE, DICK HECKSTALL-SMITH, DAVE GREENSLADE, CLEM CLEMPSON, MARK CLARKE
Colosseum belong in the category of the short-lived but quite influential bands.The band was formed on September 1968 and decided to call it a day for the first time on November 1971. During that period they created their first two albums and toured continuously.
Several years after the dissolution of the band Jon Hiseman (founding member) recruited Gary Moore and Don Airey and created Colosseum II. But ironically, Colosseum II line up lasted for 3 years!!! The bands music style is Progressive Rock with plenty of Jazz and Blues influences.
Back to history: 23 years after their first split up the original members of the band persuaded Jon Hiseman (founding member) to reform the band for a couple of gigs. Jon contacted his agents in Europe and after a couple of days his German agent offered him a 30 gig tour.
This CD is the second to be released as additional part of the Concert that the band played in Cologne-Germany in 1994 and contains six really classic Colosseum songs with "Those about to die"as my personal favourite.
The quality of the recording is not questionable to all of you acquainted to the band. For all of you who do not know them , the only thing that I can say is that their live performances can put many bands to shame. The audience's participation is present throughout the show. There is also a good balance between the elements of improvisation and the technical ability of the members of the band - really impressive. But most importantly this gig was part of the reunion tour of the band, which is at the studio as we speak mixing their new album.
I really enjoyed listening to this CD and hope i'll be able to catch them on their 40 day tour fixed for the Autumn of this year.
John Stefanis, get ready to ROCK! (September 2003)
...all of Colosseum are more than capable of taking the lead with their own department and strength. A storming performance by one of the UK's finest exports...
Martin Hudson, Classic Rock Society (Nov/Dec2003)
Yes, there are loads of solos and long instrumental passages, but the music just sounds right - created by people with tremendous skill and mastery of their craft but at the same time not being over-indulgent...A tremendous gig by a band on top form...
Feedback (Nov 2003)
...Farlowe is in especially excellent voice, while his bandmates seethe with an energy that absolutely belies the two decades or so that hung between this show and the one recorded for the Live double in 1971...
Jo-Ann Greene, Goldmine, (December 12, 2003)
This stylish live package captures their jazzy brand of rock at its most potent...
Kevin Bryan, (January 2004)