Thursday, September 25, 2003

Vibe on Living Colour's CollideØscope

Most comeback albums explain, one way or another, why the artist left in the first place. That's especially true of rockers Living Colour, whose new album Collideoscope, reveals them to be a group that was-and still is-just too damn progressive for its own good. For example, the dub-influenced "Nightmare City" and the junglist romp "In Your Name" remind us that these cats were melding rock and electronic sounds a decade before it became martini-and-cigar-bar discussion fodder. The players' far-flung experiences-guitarist Vernon Reid's work with experimentalists like DJ Logic, front man Corey Glover's solo funk-soul projects, Doug Wimbish's and Will Calhoun's abstract bands (Jungle Funk and Little Axe) lend distinctiveness to their art. For a less skilled group, such ecletic awareness might equal incoherence. Instead, Collideoscope embraces all those elements. It's the hard-core thrash of "Song Without Sin" and a crushing take on AC/DC's "Back in Black" that pleasantly reminds us that Living Colour remains, foremost, a rock group in the classic non-negotiable sense.
by Tony Green

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