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King Crimson - The Power To Believe CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

3.95 | 1087 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars Though many have tried (Djam Karet, Anekdoten, The Flower Kings, Bruford-Levin, Shinsekai all spring to mind; even Fripp himself had a go on EXPOSURE), no one does King Crimson pastiche as convincingly as King Crimson themselves.

I could take this one step further and argue (as one of DISCIPLINE's original reviewers did) that the musicians appearing on THE POWER TO BELIEVE don't even have the right to call themselves 'King Crimson'. Aping certain aspects of a classic band's style does not turn you into that band.

If I really wanted to sound negative about THE POWER, I could point out Crimso have now stopped playing 'progressive' music. What on earth got into Messrs. Fripp and Belew, and their present associates? Why do they regurgitate so many styles from the past? There are pieces here which recycle bits from 'Fracture' and 'Schizoid Man'. Others are strongly reminiscent of 'Discipline' (the album track), 'Mars', 'Satori in Tangiers' and even the Bruford-Levin track 'A Palace of Pearls'. The dominant mood is sombre, of course, as it has always been with KC, and it makes little difference that those threatening bits of icy mellotron with which the band once interlaced their compositions, have long been replaced with (equally threatening) guitar loops. Adrian Belew includes one beautifully melancholic ballad on which he tries to sound like John Lennon (as he also did on THRAK), and the accompaniment sounds more or less like the Australian band the Church; otherwise, Belew only uses his vocals on two typically angst-laden heavy rockers.

The wonder is King Crimson perform all this derivative material with such gusto! Tony Levin isn't missed; Pat Mastelotti executes Bruford-style drum rolls as masterly as Bruford ever did; and on 'Facts of Life' Fripp introduces one of those gorgeously hysterical solos, SCARY MONSTERS-style, which no-one else has ever managed to replicate. I must admit it: parts of THE POWER are exhilerating. You could never call this an original masterpiece, but if you're a Crimso fan, there'll probably be a few moments where you find yourself happily foot-tapping along.

fuxi | 3/5 |


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