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King Crimson - Islands CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

3.81 | 1690 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Man With Hat
3 stars Islands. A strange album that causes the fans of this band to be argue over whether this is a gem or rubbish, with it split about fifty-fifty. Personally, i find portions of Islands fantastic (Islands) and some of it just not that good (Formentera Lady/Saliors Tail). Anyway, as usual for King Crimson, another line up change occured for this one. The most noticable (and the one people seem to complain about) is the addition of Boz on bass, and vocals. Granted he is not as skilled as Lake, Wetton, or Belew (i put him on the same level as haskell) he isn't that bad, and his vocal style fits the album pretty well.

The songs: Formentera Lady. I find this song to go nowhere and not that fast. Definitely the low point of the album. Next comes Sailors Tale. In the same vein as FL, but IMO better. Starts off with a nice cymbol "riff" and also has some nice sax parts. Not as bad as the first track, but not overly fantastic. The Letters come next. Awesome sax part to this one! Also the first time we hear Boz chime in in the vocal department. Nice lyrics top off this very solid track. After that is Ladies Of The Road. A great little catchy song reminiscent, at times, to the british pop bands of the sixties. Great instramental work throught this song (not to mention the album). Prelude: Song Of The Gulls is great if you like classical. A very unexpected turn for KC with this song. Not to say its a perfect classical composition, but very nice and a lovely way to introduce the next song, Islands. This is a masterpiece of a song. Brilliant lyrics, awesome mood creating atmosphere, and one of the best trumpet solos i've ever heard. Such meloncholy is created by this song, truely wonderful! Unfortunatly, for whatever reason, they included a long pause and some studio ramblings at the end. Luckily it is at the end and doesn't ruin the song. Overall, an absolute masterpiece of a song.

All in all this album is uneven. It isn't all that coherant and the songs don't flow as they did in previous albums. Instrumentally there is no complaints, with tons of sax, mellotron, and guitar to satisfy that need. Definitely not KC's highest point, but an album that King Crimson fans should own, but not all of the prog community. Somewhat reccomended (even if its just for Islands).

Man With Hat | 3/5 |


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