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King Crimson - The Noise: Frejus CD (album) cover


King Crimson

Eclectic Prog

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3 stars King Crimson - Frejus (1984, recorded 1982)

The King Crimson records of the eighties are relatively easy to find and must have been quite succesful. On this registration of a 50 minute show of the band we get so some of their greatest tracks of period played live. No keyboard, but some guitarsynths do give us some of that adventerious prog sound that so many of us like. Seeing the band live in this stage was helpfull for me to understand the way the band was still being progressive within the boundaries of eighties styles.

The recording quality of the sound is good and footage is actually well shot. I just love the way Fripp sits in the back with his dark scientist look and Andrew Belew vocals, guitar playing and performance style has really grown on me last two years. Bill Bruford impresses wiith tight playing and an unusual drumkit, which gets explored during his drumsolo. Tony Levin looks enthousiastic and during the finale 'Lark Tongues in Aspic part 2' he's really very enthousiast and impressing.

Opening with 'Waiting Man' wasn't what I expected, but the song turns out to be a good vehicle for building things up. The ballad 'Matta Kadusai' sounds really good and Belew plays beautiful, yet experimental guitar solo's between his vocal lines. During 'The Sheltering Sky' both Fripp and Belew show what modern music was all about in the eighties and the experimental sounds are inspiring. 'Neal Jack and Me' was a bit harder to like, because the sound of this song isn't as impressive as the studio version in my opinion. Still a great track though. 'Indiscipline' is perhaps my favorite of this set. Belew has a great theatric performance "I wish you were here to see it!" and the heavy parts of the track really sound mean. After a comeback King Crimson re-ignites the public with a bit tame version of 'Heatbeat', a song I myself seem to like a bit more then others. Luckily the extremely well played and intensive version of 'Lark Tongues in Aspic part 2' leaves every-one speechless.

Conclusion. If you haven't developed to much hostility towards eighties King Crimson this is a very interesting and enjoyable concert. You can see the complete concert on youtube. A good three and a halve stars!

Report this review (#794592)
Posted Wednesday, July 25, 2012 | Review Permalink
4 stars Only one review of The Noise: Frejus so far? You mean other people aren't as obsessive about King Crimson as yours truly? I"m shocked! I think your ultimate opinion of this DVD may depend greatly on how you feel about what the band was doing during this period. I know there are listeners out there who think Robert Fripp and friends should have stopped at Red, if not before. I like what King Crimson was doing in the 1980's; I think "Heartbeat" is a great song! So, I love this DVD.

I don't watch a lot of concerts. I can't stand it when live performances of songs sound just like the studio versions, and the band members don't bother to interact with the audience. Even though the band doesn't talk to the audience much on this DVD, you can tell that Adrian Belew and Bill Bruford are having fun and appreciate the feedback from the audience. Since this is King Crimson, it's a given that the playing is beyond reproach.

I especially enjoy it when Bruford steps up with Belew to perform "The Sheltering Sky". My only minor quibble with this concert is "Indiscipline". It's my least favorite song on Discipline, and I think this version is self-indulgent. However, this song wouldn't be nearly as interesting played by almost any other band. In conclusion, I'm giving The Noise: Frejus 4 stars. Anyone who's at all interested in this period of King Crimson should see this.

Report this review (#1323754)
Posted Saturday, December 13, 2014 | Review Permalink

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