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King Crimson - Larks' Tongues in Aspic CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

4.42 | 3262 ratings

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el böthy
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Talk about a flawed masterpiece.

This is, at least for me, King Crimson's second best album, and probably also their second most important one, for it was the beginning of another era, arguably the best of their career. And the songs are all astonishing, and I mean all, specially the instrumental ones.

Lark's tongue in aspic part I is probably Crimson's best instrumental ever, and one of the whole Progressive genre for that matter. The percussion intro, the violin build up, the heavy (really heavy) riffs, the perfect rhythm section (man, where ever Bruford goes the rhythm section is great), the spooky hidden voices in the back, the dramatic final. what a masterwork of a song, absolutely brilliant!

Book of Saturday is a shorter number were Wetton makes his debut as singer, while Fripp plays some jazzy chords. It's the simplest song of the album, but it´s just as effective and it follows perfectly the madness of the previous song and brings it down a notch, so we can relax.

The third song is one of my personal favorites. Exile, with it´s beautiful melodies, thanks to Fripp and Cross´s solos is a piece of heaven. A delicate yet powerful use of the mellotron wraps it up and makes it a highlight of the album.

Easy Money is, objectively speaking the weakest song. but, hey! There are no weak songs in this album! And so it's the case with this one, although it's probably not up there with the rest, that doesn't mean it's bad. It's just very good, while the rest is brilliant. I don't know about you, but I can live with that.

The talking drum is a build up. Yes, the whole song, the whole 7 minutes is a build up. and you know what? It kicks ass! It's the best build up you can ask for. Wetton´s simple but effective bass, that fly flying around (yes. I know, it´s pretty strange), Cross hypnotizing solo and Fripp´s angular fills make this the mother of all build ups. and just when it seems to get to the climax. Lark's tongues in aspic part II starts. More rhythmic, less diverse, but just as powerful this second part proves how tight this line up was playing 7/8, 5/8 and more like it's a walk on the park. This would become a classic in their live settings, and rightfully so!

But, and this quite a "but". it´s not perfect. No, no, no, no. sadly this is not the case, for you see there are two flaws. One is Wetton´s singing, which is not quite developed. it would however get better, achieving some excellent work in Red. so really, it´s not such a big problem. What is a big problem, at least for me. is the production. This alum sounds. well. bad! Very bad if you ask me. By far their worst produced album in the seventies. what a shame. But is that enough to deny them 5 stars? .mmm, oh Lord, why do you put this weight upon my shoulders (man, am I melodramatic)? Well, it's really a 4.5. and I'm feeling generous.

el böthy | 5/5 |


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