ELO 2 is the second album by Electric Light Orchestra, released in 1973. In the US the album was released as Electric Light Orchestra II and is sometimes known as ELO II.
Originally to be titled The Lost Planet, but that concept was quietly dropped (see below), it was during the initial recording sessions for this album that Roy Wood left the band and formed Wizzard in early 1972. Although uncredited at the time Wood performed on two tracks, playing cello and bass on "In Old England Town" and "From the Sun to the World". Classically trained cellists Colin Walker and Mike Edwards replaced Wood, and Wilfred Gibson played on violin. Richard Tandy made his ELO studio debut on the album although he had earlier performed live with the original lineup.
The British and American sleeves differed, as did the title; in the UK it was released in a gatefold sleeve titled ELO 2 with a painting of a light bulb travelling through space with the wording ELO2 on the base of the bulb, while in the US the cover featured a more ornate light bulb against a night sky and was titled Electric Light Orchestra II. For reasons unknown "Roll Over Beethoven" was slightly edited in length compared with its US counterpart. Track 2 'Mama' was Americanised to "Momma" for the US release.
All five pieces are longer than standard rock songs, and feature multi-layered orchestral instruments that create a dense, complex sound, The album contains the band's longest running song, the anti-war song Kuiama. Along with its predecessor it is the least commercial sounding album the band released, although ironically it did reach the British Top 40 album chart, whereas its more concise follow-up, On the Third Day, did not; an edit of "Roll Over Beethoven" was a Top 10 hit in Britain and received radio airplay in America too. In 2006 the album was remastered and expanded with a slightly different running order to the UK 2003 EMI version with both versions sharing the same Hipgnosis album art for the first time.
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