Uriah Heep

Blood on Stone: Anthology, Vol. 2

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Blood On Stone picks up where Travellers In Time left off, spilling liberal draughts of Firefly, Abominog, Head First, Raging Silence, Different World and the albums in between across two discs. Maybe they should have called it Blood From A Stone. Not that the post-High And Mighty Heep didn't have some high points of their own, but two discs' worth? Part of the problem stems from licensing issues: Equator, Sea of Light and Sonic Origami were apparently off limits to Castle, so the label was forced to spread the remains thin. The Best of... Part 2, which covered the same terrain over a single disc, had the luxury of leaving tracks like "When The War Is Over" and "Firefly" off the guest list. That disc managed to hide the cracks, which Blood On Stone exposes anew. So while this compilation does a fine job of following the band's footsteps after David Byron's departure, few are likely to appreciate the effort. Anyone willing to wade this deep into Uriah Heep's discography already has some of these albums in their collection (e.g., Abominog, Firefly, Innocent Victim) and isn't likely to rush out and buy Different World based on hearing "All God's Children" or "Which Way Will The Wind Blow." Including the non-album single "Love Stealer" isn't much of an enticement either, since it can be had on the expanded reissue of Conquest. In a perfect world, Castle (or someone) would find a way to reconcile Uriah Heep's recent releases with their Bronze recordings; then you'd have a nice double disc in the offing. Blood On Stone instead draws too much music from anemic albums, weakening the case that the band's second phase was as vital as its first.

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