Friday 22 September 2023

Colosseum - The Valentyne Suite

Colosseum - The Valentyne Suite (1969)
When I first heard this over twenty years ago I thought it was the proggiest of the prog and only progging for the sake of progging. Me and my mate nearly lost our minds late one evening/early morning when we thought it was just never going to end. Sure we'd taken part in some party-time activities and listened to a whole bunch of prog and this was the final track at the end of a three cd prog compilation binge. Listening to it just now though, I thought, it flew past rather quickly. 

Colosseum remain fairly mysterious compared to the big prog acts that have their stories told over and over. In Mike Barnes' book on prog from a few years back they only got a couple of pages. I kinda like that little bit of low key underexposed reputation. The fact they only did a few albums also helps of course. Perhaps they lean a bit too much towards the jazz to be truly orthodox British prog. Is there even such a thing?, I dunno. The Valentyne Suite sounds pretty unique actually and relatively fresh. 

In a way I like not being a full expert or patron of prog rock because I just can't help preferring things that lean more towards the space rock, the krautrock, the prog psych-folk, the zhuel, the Cantebury scene, the Swedish prog, the heavy psych etc. end of the spectrum. You see I just fucking hate the Genesis and I fucking can't stand the ELP. I've only just come around to Jethro Tull in the last ten years, Pink Floyd in the last twelve months and I have never once tried to investigate any further, than what I recall from The Kenny Everett Show, The Moody Blues

The Moody Blues await but don't hold your breath for my conversion to the insufferable Genesis or ELP. The only other artist I'm less likely to get into is probably the fucking utmost intolerable Elvis Costello. I'm more likely to listen to The Clash than any of these and that is never going to happen while I still have control of my faculties. Haha..ha.... 

Turns out Colosseum's second LP The Valentyne Suite was the first record ever released on the legendary Vertigo label. There you go trivia buffs. They split up in 1971 way ahead of the curve and before the rot had any time to set in.

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