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King Crimson

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King Crimson Sleepless: The Concise King Crimson album cover
3.06 | 52 ratings | 7 reviews | 13% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Boxset/Compilation, released in 1993

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. 21st Century Schizoid Man (7:20)
2. Epitaph (8:45)
3. In the Court of the Crimson King (7:19)
4. Cat Food (edit) (2:45)
5. Ladies of the Road (5:30)
6. Starless (abridged) (4:36)
7. Red (6:16)
8. Fallen Angel (6:00)
9. Elephant Talk (4:41)
10. Frame by Frame (5:07)
11. Matte Kudasai (3:45)
12. Heartbeat (3:53)
13. Three of a Perfect Pair (4:11)
14. Sleepless (remixed) (5:22)

Total Time 75:30

Line-up / Musicians

- Robert Fripp / guitar
- Adrian Belew / guitar, lead vocals
- Tony Levin / bass, Chapman Stick, support vocals
- Bill Bruford / percussion, electric & acoustic drums
- Ian McDonald / woodwind, keyboards, Mellotron
- Greg Lake / bass, lead vocals
- Michael Giles / drums, percussion
- Peter Sinfield / words & illumination
- Keith Tippet / piano
- Mel Collins / saxophone, backing vocals
- Boz / bass, lead vocals
- Ian Wallace / drums, percussion, backing vocals
- John Wetton / bass, vocals
- Marc Charig / cornet
- Robin Miller / oboe

Releases information

Caroline CAROL-1887-2

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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Buy KING CRIMSON Sleepless: The Concise King Crimson Music

KING CRIMSON Sleepless: The Concise King Crimson ratings distribution

(52 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(13%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(38%)
Good, but non-essential (29%)
Collectors/fans only (13%)
Poor. Only for completionists (6%)

KING CRIMSON Sleepless: The Concise King Crimson reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars I'm not very pleased with this compilation. Their 1974 masterpiece "Starless" is raped to a blasphemous torso, and the attempt to crunch KING CRIMSON's essential material (up to the year 1984) is doomed. If this CD has introduced anybody to the music of this great band, then there's some value in it, but I think "Young Persons guide" double LP and "Frame by Frame" 4CD box succeed in this task much better.
Review by memowakeman
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Time to listen to another compilation!

I have taken the easy way to make a review, itīs easier to review a compilation or "Best of" than an a complex studio album.

King Crimson being a monster of Progressive Rock, is neccessary to be tasted by every prog fan, if you like it or not, thatīs the less important, but you have at least to listen to them to haveyour persola criteria about the band, i think for deep prog fans like the most of the people in this site, is not important to own a compilation, at least itīs not that usual that i put my Bests Of in my CD player very often, sometimes is good because maybe you have the mood of listen to those classic songs (usually called hits) , but itīs obvious that we prefer much more the studio albums.

The fact is, that the opposite happens when you are a newbie, i mean, i have had the experience of people that are interested in new bands, the first thing that they do before buying the album , is download some songs, usually the most well known songs, and then they decide if dig the band or saty away, so my thoughts here is that a compilation or best of could be recommendable for people who is not familiar with the band or the songs, they probably dont know the names of the most beautiful albums, so the easy way is buying a compilation which supposes to contain the most representative songs (not always the best songs.

King Crimson had released some compilation albums, Sleepless is one of them, and maybe the one that i prefer.

A newcomer of King Crimson maybe wonīt know that they have had several line up changes, and musical changes, in this album i think the track selection is suitable for newbies and also for Crimson lovers (as i said above, a Crimson lover wonīt play a compilation that often, but sometimes itīs ood to have a nice time).

The order of the tracks is chronologically , which is a good point, because you will appreciate the different eras one by one, and not suddenly like in "The Compact King Crimson" which track list is not that different from this one, but the order makes it terrible to listen to. Also we wonīt find the original songs, some of them have been edited to give pass to other ones, itīs only like a proof of what King Crimson music is about.

I like it, for me itīs a nice compilation, and every lover should own it, my grade is 3 stars!

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Having just released Frame by Frame compilation two years before, this compilation was actually released not at the right timing even though the songs featured were quite representative for the band. This might be considered as budget boxset for those who missed Frame by Frame. Newbie would see the change of music direction starting from track 9 Elephant Talk onwards. In terms of music style, this compilation starts from high drive 21st century schizoid man (7:20) with its heavy guitar riffs, dynamic combined work of bass guitar, drum, guitar and mellotron to Epitaph (8:45) with its dark mellow nuance. In the court of the Crimson King (7:19) continues the style of Epitaph and it provides a complete picture to newbie on how King Crimson sounded at the beginning of their career. Cat food (edit) (2:45) would provide another style of Crimson sound followed with Ladies of the road (5:30) in similar vein. Starless (abridged) (4:36) is a great introduction to another bluesy dark prog style of the band. The listeners will get surprised with the entry of Elephant talk (4:41) which sounds very differently with previous eight tracks. The only missing track that should be included here is The Sheltering Sky from Discipline album.

It's a good compilation, but I recommend Frame By Frame because it's much more comprehensive to give the picture of King Crimson music.

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Review by VianaProghead
2 stars Review Nš 389

"Sleepless: The Concise King Crimson" is a compilation of King Crimson and was released in 1993. It's a compilation album that comprises tracks from seven studio albums of King Crimson, "In The Court Of The Crimson King", "In The Wake Of Poseidon", "Islands", "Red", "Discipline", "Beat" and "Three Of A Perfect Pair". Despite it covers almost all their albums at the time, it miss to it tracks from "Lizard", "Larks' Tongues In Aspic" and "Starless And Bible Black".

"Sleepless: The Concise King Crimson" has fourteen tracks. The first track "21st Century Schizoid Man" including "Mirrors" is from "In The Court Of The Crimson King". It's a heavy song very close to the hard rock style. It has a great improvisation with some jazz influences. It's notable the distorted vocals by Lake. It became very influential to the future of the progressive metal style. The second track "Epitaph" including "March For No Reason" and "Tomorrow And Tomorrow" is from "In The Court Of The Crimson King". It's a notable and beautiful track, which would become one of the best and most beautiful symbols of the progressive rock music. It's one of my favourite progressive rock songs too. The third track "In The Court Of The Crimson King" including "The Return Of The Fire Witch" and "The Dance Of The Puppets" is from "In The Court Of The Crimson King". This track is with "Epitaph" one of the best and most beautiful symbols of the progressive rock music. It represents a hymn to the symphonic progressive rock music. The fourth track "Cat Food" is from "In The Wake Of Poseidon". It's composed as something between jazz and rock, making an interesting fusion. It's very strange but very curious too. It also features a neat vocal work from Lake and has also some tasty guitar work by Fripp. This is an edited version. The fifth track "Ladies Of The Road" is from "Islands". It's a theme with a lyrical tone and is a song playfully sexist. The vocal choir reminds me The Beatles. This is probably the nearest thing on that album capable to be a proverbial hit single. The sixth track "Starless" is from "Red". It's the lengthiest track on that album and it's a real masterpiece, one of my favourite King Crimson's songs. It's a great dark song with Wetton's melancholic voice. This is a classic song from them. This is an abridged version. The seventh track "Red" is from "Red". It's an instrumental track, very powerful and heavy. It features heavy guitars, an incredible bass line and a unique drumming style. It shows the band's ability to feature multiple time signatures in only one song. It sounds very futuristic, even now. The eighth track "Fallen Angel" is from "Red". It's a very beautiful ballad with great vocal performance by Wetton. It has beautiful musical arrangements that include reverse delays and Mellotron lines, which give to it a unique flavour. The ninth track "Elephant Talk" is from "Discipline". The four players twisted and turn their way through an unbelievably complicated and yet somehow almost danceable. Fripp and Belew guitar works are excellent, making a very powerful force, showing a great chemistry between both musicians. The tenth track "Frame By Frame" is from "Discipline". It represents another great musical moment. It's a more subtle work with amazing band instrumental passages and some tasteful guitar duets. Fripp's own performance of extremely fast and repetitious guitar work is simply amazing, and Bruford's drumming work which ranks among the best of his career. The eleventh track "Matte Kudasai" is from "Discipline". It's a very beautiful and nostalgic song. The instrumental backing contains itself a great mood to the song. This track also features the best vocals on that album and proves that Belew is a fine singer. The twefth track "Heartbeat" is from "Beat". It has beautiful guitar tones, a good bass line and nice lyrics and vocals. This is undeniably a cheesy and pop song, but this is still a great song. Probably, you may actually have heard it on the radio from time to time, which is a real rarity with King Crimson. The thirteenth track "Three Of A Perfect Pair" is from "Three Of A Perfect Pair". It has tight harmony vocals from Belew that soar over top of some intricate guitar work from Fripp and a great drum work of Bruford. This is a very solid track. The fourteenth track "Sleepless" is from "Three Of A perfect Pair". It begins with a fast bass line that is soon joined by Bruford's bass drum beat and Fripp's altered guitar sound. It sounds very nice. However, this is probably my least favourite song on that album. This is a remixed version.

Compilation: I'm not very pleased with this compilation album despite it have some really great tracks. For instance, their masterpiece "Starless", which is, in my humble opinion", one of the best prog tracks ever made is shorted to a blasphemous and incomprehensible small extract. Of course we can't forget that it has "21st Century Schizoid Man", "Epitaph", "In The Court If The Crimson King" and "Elephant Talk", for instance, which are some of the best things ever made by King Crimson. Still, I can't accept that masterpieces can be amputated to can be part of any compilation album. By the other hand, would seem to be natural that it should have tracks from the other three albums. But, King Crimson never was a band of singles and compilations. Anyway, I think "The Young Persons Guide To King Crimson" and "The Essential King Crimson: Frame By Frame" are better options. It's a compilation for collectors and fans only.

Prog is my Ferrari. Jem Godfrey (Frost*)

Latest members reviews

4 stars Yes, yes......... I have their studio albums and King Crimson is not a new band to me. But this album is a good introduction and a very nice appetizer for those who want to have a nibble at King Crimson. This album is guaranteed to give the band new fans. Well, unless the listener prefer easy ... (read more)

Report this review (#278924) | Posted by toroddfuglesteg | Thursday, April 22, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Take some of the best songs of King Crimson and make a compilation: you get "The Concise King Crimson". Nothing much to say here... I just regret the abridged versions of "Cat Food" and "Starless". A great album for any person not familiar with King Crimson or for someone that doesn't have all ... (read more)

Report this review (#70553) | Posted by zaxx | Sunday, February 26, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars For the new listener of KC, this is the perfect start, this record includes the "greates hits" of the band from the most important records to 1993, perhaps is not a wise desition to keep this album as a whole, this will give a very serious hint to the serious listener. A good record that plays ... (read more)

Report this review (#15434) | Posted by | Thursday, June 24, 2004 | Review Permanlink

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