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King Crimson - In The Court Of The Crimson King CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

4.63 | 4184 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Back to those glory days of the late sixties, very few bands will produce a great album such as this one. I refer to most of the giants on this site.

Is this the first prog album ? I do not know. What I know, is that it is my preferred KC one (by far as you will read in further reviews).

In The Court was my entry album to KC (in 1974). At first sight, I really loved three songs, and half appreciated one. KC has never been a favorite of mine, but I have to humbly admit that this album set the pace for a whole lot of things to come in our beloved progressive music history.

"21st Century Schizoid Man" is a typical Crimson song but I never liked the vocal part of it. The instrumental portion will definitely inspire bands like VDGG. This frenetic jazz improv features a wild bass playing by Gregg (this guy is really incredible, but we all know this, right) ? It's quite a difficult song to approach. I do not listen to it frequently, but I reckon that it is an influent track. The end sounds completely disjointed.

When you listen to "I Talk to the Wind", it is rather difficult to imagine that it is the same band that is playing this wonderful, subtle, melodious, marvelous track. It features beautiful and deeply inspired vocals from Greg and superb flute. My first KC love. It's obvious to me, that "Trespass" will be very much inspired by the mood of this track. Some might find it mellowish and naive, but this is KC as like. But such effort won't be repeated too much in their repertoire, alas. It is the most emotional KC song to my ears. A great, great moment.

"Epitaph". Almost nine minutes of pure glory. A mellotron orgy combined to a fantastic melodic tune. Again, IMO, some early Genesis inspiration came from here (Salmacis, here am I). Confusion, will be my epitaph (maybe, I will like to have this written on mine...). It is a fantastic number and probably one of my KC all time fave. The grandeur of the intro makes this song one of the best symphonic I know. Gregg is again very convincing in his lead vocal role.

Next comes the lenghty "Moonchild". Twelve minutes thirteen seconds that should have been reduced to three minutes to make it a good track. Instead, we get a good and veeeeeery quiet intro and then a loooooong and boooooooooring improv which is really a P.I.T.A. It lasts unfortunately for about nine minutes. Pure "avant-garde" and experimental "music".

The title track closes the album in a brilliant manner : Greg at his best, great melody again, fantastic mellotron, some flute work of the best vein. This is a marvelous voyage to the court of KC or CK. Once one believes the tracks ends, we get an incredible good news : another two minutes of the best KC music. This is the third masterpiece of this great album.

It is remarkable to know that two of the best songs of this album "I Talk To The Wind" and "The Court ..." are co-written by Mc Donald and Sinfield (who will be credited on the liner notes for "words and illuminatons"). I bet you ! He was damned well illuminated !

I will rate this one four stars (only). This is due of course to the rather poor "Moonchild".

ZowieZiggy | 4/5 |


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