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King Crimson - Lizard CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

4.13 | 2248 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars Oh this album. This can be a slog to get through at times, but it is worth it. In 1970, King Crimson was in some weird line-up changes and had a core band consisting of Robert Fripp on guitar and mellotron, Peter Sinfield on lyrics, Gordon Haskell on bass and vocals, Mel Collins on sax, flute and mellotron and Andy McCullouch on the drums. This is a difficult album, to say the least, with an almost Soft Machine Free-Jazz direction(Their album Third came out in the same year, very jazzy as well) with some symphonic feel of the last two albums, but you could feel a change was happening.

Cirkus(Including Entry of the Chameleons): A great opener and probably the most famous song on the album. Starts with some dark mellotrons with a heavy rhythm section. An incredibly dark song that makes me feel uncomfortable at times, which sounds like the idea.

Indoor Games: One of my favourites. It has a dark humour feel to it and I think is detailing couples having weird sex fantasies or something like that. I can't make it out but it a great song with some excellent sax from Collins. Also, it ends with some creepy laughter from Haskell

Happy Family: Opens with a distorted, heavy mellotron and discusses the break-up of The Beatles. It is kind of funny but also kind of mournful tone to it as well.

Lady of the Dancing Water: The soft, gentle track of the album. Excellent flute work by Collins with a great vocal from Haskell. I always thought he was a great voice for softer, balladry type of songs, and this song is a great showcase with that.

Lizard: The centerpiece of the album. 20+ mins, takes up all of Side 2 of the LP, and is one giant load of I don't know what. It is an incredibly confusing mess of sounds that I still don't quite get, It is the tipping point of experimentation in rock music before becoming complete Jazz or Avant-Grade music. I love the opening section with Jon Anderson on vocals, the most coherent part of the song and the best.

Overall, this is a strange album, but a underrated album over the years. I think if this album had more of a direction and coherence to the weird atmosphere, it would not have as much of an effect as it does. Come to this one later on, or if you love Jazz music, it is right up your alley. 4 stars. Highlights: Cirkus, Indoor Games, Happy Family and Lizard

criticdrummer94 | 4/5 |


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