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King Crimson - USA CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

4.04 | 509 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars USA was released following the demise of KC. As such, having been burned by Earthbound, I avoided this at the time, assuming it was probably a live album of the "fulfill contractual obligations" sort. However, with the release of the 30th Anniversary edition, I decided it was time to finally hear this.

While a step or two above Earthbound in terms of the quality of the recording, this is still not great in terms of sound and is disappointing in that respect.

The songs themselves are performed well enough, but I don't hear anything that extends what's already available on the studio cuts. Maybe I expect too much from live albums. I expect to hear (in this case, given the track listings) familiar songs in new settings, with the best of them providing moments that transcend the studio versions. I would especially expect this particular band to catch fire during some of the great songs, and I just don't hear on USA. Perhaps the letdown is simply due to the fact that the trio of studio albums from this incarnation of KC were, in my estimation, amongst the best recorded by any band, at any time. To put it another way, I recall Bruford saying something to the effect that he left Yes because he wanted to play some "wrong" notes and KC would give him an opportunity to do that. Unfortunately, there aren't too many "wrong" notes on USA. The band sticks to the script, and the results are merely average, though still a good listen for any KC fan.

jammun | 3/5 |


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