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King Crimson - In the Court of the Crimson King CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

4.64 | 4760 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

5 stars Throughout prog's history, KC has always stood at the vanguard; pushing music into unexplored territory. Nowhere is this more true than with their debut which exploded onto the scene in 1969. Even at a time when innovation in music was commonplace, this album holds a unique place in rock's canon. Court is one of the few pivitol albums that changed the face of popular music forever and it's impact and influence have not been dimmed with age.

Lead by the incendiary genius of Robert Fripp, KC have concocted an album which incorporates equal parts jazz rock with breath-taking symphonic bombast a la mellotron. Adopting the 'shock and awe' formula: Court careens from the incredable maelstrom of Schizoid Man, through the mornful jazz of I Talk to the Wind & Moonchild and then into the epic aureas Epitaph and the title track. The instrumentation varys wildly with jazzy flute and sax mixing with electric and acoustic guitar along with the ever present mellotron. Special mention goes to the subtle drumming of Michael Giles who is undoubtably the best procussionist KC ever possessed. The lyrics, which expess the disillusion and dislocation of the individual from society, are much more serious than you'll find with most prog bands; although Pete Sinfield mixes in healthy doses of fantasy as well. The overall mood is perfectly expessed by the spectacularly frightening cover art.

The real stength of Court lies in the album's internal tension which at times (on Schiziod Man) threatens to tear the music apart and at times becomes almost unbearable. Sometimes this beast of sound rampages freely and sometimes it is restrained but KC controls it so that it always treatens to break loose. What would the title track be without Moonchild's long outtro? Part silence, part roaring fury; it makes for a truly engaging experience. Dispite what you may think about the quality of the music (and judging by the amount of glowing reviews, there are few who doubt it), Court epitomizes the genre we all love. It IS brilliant, it IS daring, it IS a masterpiece. This is the album that puts 'progressive' in progressive rock.

cohen34 | 5/5 |


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