Wardance shows many of the attributes associated to symphonic rock, from a surrealistic record cover and detailed information about what amplifiers and cymbals the band uses, to song titles like "Star Maiden/Mysterioso/Quasar." But even though Colosseum II had much in common with symphonic rock, they were more of a jazz-rock or fusion band. While none of the musicians are anything even close to restrictive in their playing, Moore's solo guitar is what many of the songs are built up around. His distinctive way of playing, while still in development, is clearly heard, as are similarities to his first solo album Grinding Stone, especially in the album's only vocal song, "Castles." This was the second album released by Colosseum II in 1977, and their third in two years.
Colosseum II was a British band formed in 1975 by the former Colosseum drummer and leader, Jon Hiseman, following the 1974 demise of his band Tempest. Hiseman announced his plan to form the band eventually named Colosseum II in November 1974, but only Gary Moore was named as a member. Rehearsals were due to begin on January 1, 1975, but a permanent unit was not finalised until May 1975. Among musicians who almost made the group were Graham Bell, Duncan Mackay and Mark Clarke. The final line-up was completed by Don Airey, Neil Murray and Mike Starrs. The band was oriented toward jazz fusion, much of which was driven by the guitar work of Moore, leading to a much heavier sound than the original Colosseum band.
Several years after the original art rock supergroup Colosseum disbanded, drummer Jon Hiseman formed Colosseum II, a more jazz fusion-oriented outfit featuring guitarist Gary Moore (Thin Lizzy) and keyboardist Don Airey. Their eclectic debut, Strange New Flesh, shows some impressive chops from all involved, with an emphasis on Moore's soulful guitar leads. Vocalist Mike Starr, while not an immensely engaging singer, does a nice job keeping up with Hiseman and bass player Neil Murray. Highlights include the technically showy but blissfully irreverent ode to Pink Floyd, "Dark Side of the Moog," a nice version of Joni Mitchell's "Down to You," and the funky "Gemini and Leo."