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King Crimson - Happy With What You Have To Be Happy With CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

3.37 | 85 ratings

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Honorary Collaborator
4 stars For those who have not been with King Crimson since 1969 seminal debut album "In The Court of The Crimson King" that has been widely considered as the birth of progressive rock genre, might think that King Crimson is more on heavy prog kind of music. Especially, when they start the band with this EP and listening to the title track. Nothing wrong because the song bears what heavy prog elements quite significantly in terms of style, groove, drive through the use of heavy guitar riffs. But for those who knew the band since 1969, they might surprise significant that the band has made its leap into another style of prog music.

Teaser that kills.

Well, yeah .. this EP was intended as teaser just before the full-fledge album "The Power To Believe" was released in 2003. I rate The Power To Believe album highly due to the fact that the band was quite successful in managing their new music direction starting with its Discipline album. The Power To Believe pushed the envelope harder by inserting much more heavy music with thick music riffs while maintaining the solid line King Crimson's music. When this EP was released, I was not interested to buy as I thought that the music presented would be centered around the track(s) that were planned to be as the band's hit(s) - in this case is "Happy With What You Have To Be Happy With". But I was wrong as I found many great things about this EP, including wonderfully composed "Shoganai".

The mini album opens energetically with its title "Happy With What You Have to Be Happy With" in edited version. I think this is an attractive track with stunning riffs and unique singing style. I always like this track whenever I play it, including this version. Adrian Belew sings at his best with great accentuation when he says "Happy with What You Have To Be Happy With". The next is a great ambient instrument work with no drumming "Mie Gakure" (2:00) which continues brilliantly with "She Shudders" (0:35) - a very short but nice bridge.

"Eyes Wide Open" (4:08) is an acoustic exploration of the band using acoustic guitar as the main rhythm section. The most interesting components are the catchy melody line and natural music flow with excellent Belew vocal work. "Shoganai" (2:53) is my favorite unique track exploring percussion work with great arrangements. I truly enjoy this track. "I Ran" (0:40) is a nice acapella with effects. It flows wonderfully to "Potato Pie" (5:03) with blues tinge while maintaining key characteristics of Crimson sounds and stye. It's really a masterpiece musical arrangement. Bravo!

"Larks' Tongues in Aspic" (10:26) is my top list favorite of King Crimson songs. It started with their album with same title. The reason I like the song was the combination of dark mellow and heavy prog style from their part one during 70s. This version takes mostly the heavier part and it flows brilliantly into my ears. The guitar riffs that characterize this song are also great. The EP closes nicely with another acapella: "Clouds" (4:10)

Overall, this is really an excellent addition to any prog music collection. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW (i-Rock! Music Community)

Gatot | 4/5 |


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