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King Crimson

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King Crimson Heavy ConstruKction album cover
3.70 | 152 ratings | 8 reviews | 22% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Live, released in 2000

Songs / Tracks Listing

Disc 1: 70:27
1. Into the Frying Pan (6:20)
2. The ConstruKction of Light (8:29)
3. ProzaKc Blues (5.:25)
4. Improv: München (8:35)
5. One Time (5:44)
6. Dinosaur (5:24)
7. Vrooom (4:44)
8. FraKctured (8:46)
9. The World's My Oyster Soup Kitchen Floor Wax Museum (7:38)
10. Improv: Bonn (9:22)

Disc 2: 47:34 (plus live concert video)
1. Sex, Sleep, Eat, Drink, Dream (4:30)
2. Improv: Offenbach (6:30)
3. Cage (3:54)
4. Larks' Tongues in Aspic, Part Four (12:51)
5. Three of a Perfect Pair (3:42)
6. The Deception of the Thrush (8:26)
7. "Heroes" (6:10)

Disc 3: 67:28
1. Sapir (5:40)
2. Blastic Rhino (4:13)
3. Lights Please (part 1) (0:56)
4. ccccSeizurecc (6:02)
5. Off and Back (4:11)
6. More (and Less) (3:13)
7. Beatiful Rainbow (6:59)
8. 7 Teas (4:07)
9. Tomorrow Never Knew Thela (including Tomorrow Never Knows) (4:49)
10. Uböö (7:59)
11. The Deception of the Thrush (11:10)
12. Arena of Terror (3:24)
13. Lights Please (part 2) (4:55)

Total Time 185:29

Line-up / Musicians

- Adrian Belew / guitar, vocals
- Robert Fripp / guitar
- Trey Gunn / Touch guitar, bass, talk
- Pat Mastelotto / electronic drums

Releases information

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Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to LiquidEternity for the last updates
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KING CRIMSON Heavy ConstruKction ratings distribution

(152 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(22%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(51%)
Good, but non-essential (22%)
Collectors/fans only (4%)
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)

KING CRIMSON Heavy ConstruKction reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars A Masterpiece of Progressive Rock Live Album!

This package that comprises 3 CDs set represents King Crimson's European Tour during the year 2000. CD 1 and 2 are recordings taken from DAT recordings of the front-of-house mixing desk during the KC Tour of Europe, May-July 2000. The FOH sound mixer is George Glossop who has been with KC since 1981. CD 3 is "a cohesive presentation out of a series of incoherent events" - as the sleeve says - imagine an evening of KC improvisations, complete with rouge flash photographers.

As you might have known that King Crimson whom the debut album "In The Court of The Crimson King" (1969) took the music industry by the storm where most music critics acclaimed that this album remarked the birth of progressive rock genre, has changed their music direction since 1981 with the release of "Discipline" album. If you enjoy the music of "new" King Crimson like "Discipline" album, I'm almost pretty sure that you would definitely love this album wholeheartedly. Oh yeah, for me personally, this album is a masterpiece progressive rock live album. Am I exaggerating? Of course not! These are my rationales:

First, this live album delivers King Crimson's sound at its best. What I mean with King Crimson sound here of course their music since "Discipline" album onwards where the music combines raw and rough sounds of guitar (usually played by Adran Belew) and soft, smooth guitar sound like the sound of synthesizer (usually played by Robert Fripp, KC's founding father and leader of the band). You would also hear the sound of touch guitars which also serve as bass guitar made exclusively by Mark Warr of Warr Guitars, played wonderfully by Trey Gunn. In addition to the above, you would also hear great drum playing by Pat Mastelotto and Belew's unique vocal quality. On top of regular songs from their previous studio albums, the European Tour recordings (CD 1 & 2) also include great improvisations like "Improv: Munchen". Oh yes, this improvisation (track 4, Disc 1) is really great and it's probably the "best" of any improvisations that KC has ever made. I especially love how the ambient music is combined with tight drum beats and bass lines. It flows wonderfully and creates wonderful nuance! All tracks featured on Disc 1 & 2 are great. My favorites include: "Prozack Blues" with raw vocal and guitar, "One Time", "Dinosaur", "FraKctured", "The ConstruKction of Light", "Sex, Sleep ..", "Lark's Tongue in Aspic", "Cage", "Three of A Perfect Pair" and song written by Bowie / Eno "Heroes". Really great!

As Disc 3 comprises jam session or improvisations with some regular tracks like "The Deception of The Thrush", "Arena of Terror" and song by Lennon/McCartney "Tomorrow Never Knows", it requires special qualification to enjoy the disc: you must love jamming kind of music. Otherwise, you might suffer listening to the CD. For me personally, I enjoy this Disc 3 as, again, I love the combination of rough and smooth / soft guitars and obvious and tight bass lines - the Crimson sound!

Second, let's talk about non musical thing but it helps build the overall image of the music eventually: production. This album is produced with high standards of quality with George Gossop did the mixing part. Play this CD with high volume at your stereo set! You would be amazed with the quality and do not realize that this is a "live" recording. Yes, I reconfirm that the sound quality is extremely excellent and it sounds like a studio recording!

Third, the artwork is also top notch! This is usually my first attraction point to buy King Crimson album or DVDs like "Eyes Wide Open", "Neal and Jack and Me", etc. where the cover artwork by P.J. Crook. I always enjoy listening to the CD while holding the CD case and sleeve notes. Awesome!

Well, my dear prog colleagues all over the world . what can I say, overall, about the CD package with respect to my above comments? You can see my overall rating. It tells everything and I'm telling you the truth. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
2 stars I must admit that I wasn't very satisfied with this live album. I liked the good parts of their previous studio album, which introduced us the new line-up of this band. But most of the material here which they smashed out at the stage doesn't work very well in my opinion. Also I felt the price of this CD box exceeding its value for keeping up good artists / listener relationship; There is so much material even poor of quality, that the cost of this record is too high for its content. The few very good parts of this album were the aggressive "Larks' Tongues in Aspic: Part Four" and "FraKctured", which I copied for myself before selling this CD away. The material which was done by the double trio doesn't work very well when performed by the quartet, mostly I felt that the sound wall is left too thin. The digitally compressed video included on the CD looked promisingly confusing, but it too was a bit boring for me to get interested. I think this release is only for the fans of 21st century King Crimson. If it is your favorite line-up of this band, then this CD is probably a worthy to be checked out.
Review by Neu!mann
4 stars This year 2000 box set is one of only a few live albums from King Crimson released while the band was still active: quite an achievement for a group that can typically wait years (or even decades) before defining itself with archival live recordings.

Apparently this time the Crimson King couldn't wait for history to catch up with such cutting edge music, recorded on the European tour promoting their prematurely titled "ConstruKction of Light" album. That studio effort was really more of a schematic blueprint, and clearly needed the stimulus of live performance to give the music shape and structure, a familiar complaint throughout the band's uncertain history.

There's an imposing grandeur to the completed edifice, constru(K)cted with a deftness of touch and clarity of sound that lifts it head and shoulders above its studio forefather. Songs that once were unrelentingly oppressive here at last achieve the lightness promised in the original album title, albeit in a loud and often very aggressive fashion.

Listen to the seething juggernaut of the concert opener (the aptly titled "Into the Frying Pan") for proof, or the crashing metallic epiphany of "The World's My Oyster Soup Kitchen Floor Wax Museum", featuring some absolutely ferocious soloing from Robert Fripp. Even the whacked-out rhythms of "ProzaKc Blues" sound looser and more alive (obviously) than in the studio.

And it's a generous package too: three discs, one of them enhanced with a concert video (more about that later). The first two CDs document a more or less complete show, seamlessly grafted together from several different gigs. Notable stops along the way (besides those mentioned above) include a rare performance of Adrian Belew's EP-only dystopian rap "Cage"; an unplugged "Three of a Perfect Pair", with Belew on solo acoustic guitar; and an unexpected encore: the popular David Bowie anthem "Heroes", a personal touchstone for both of Crimson's guitarists (was it recorded at the group's Berlin show?).

But the high point of any King Crimson concert is always the group improvisations, boldly reasserted by this line-up after being somewhat neglected in the earlier Double-Trio. Several examples are included on the first and second discs, but the real treat for the true, forward-thinking Crimson fanatic can be found in Disc Three: a collection of hyper-drive post-millennium techno-grooves, collated from throughout the tour and presented as a sort of alternative, totally unscripted King Crimson gig. Remember ProjeKct X? Consider this a preview of ProjeKcts Y and Z, led by the indefatigable virtual drumming and Warr guitar basslines of arguably the most creative Crimson rhythm team ever (an issue fit for a Prog Archives poll if ever there was one).

The bonus video footage on Disc Two is merely that: a fascinating but hardly essential bonus to an already complete package. No one would ever mistake it for a polished production (blame the artfully underlit stage, for one thing), but it gives fans a chance to see the band in action, even the elusive Mr. Fripp, who typically hides on his stool in the darkest wings of the stage. But not even such a notorious wallflower can evade the probing eye of the camera lens, and together with Adrian Belew he conducts a jaw-dropping guitar clinic on several numbers (in order of performance: a stunning rhythm-and-soundscape improv; "Larks Tongues in Aspic, Part IV"; "Cage"; "The World's My Oyster Soup etc"; "Sex Sleep Eat Drink Dream"; and "Vroom").

Some final thoughts to an already overlong review: maybe the mighty Crimson King should have long ago abandoned their studio work to concentrate strictly on live performance and recording. This is a band that historically has always (repeat: always) put its best foot forward on stage, often up the backside of the unwary listener during some of the heavier songs. The so-called Double-Duo proved it yet again here, and in the process revealed itself as the equal to any Crimson line-up on record.

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars I can understand why this album leave some listeners feeling cold. Where the seventies live perfomanced featured improvs that blew the audiences minds, the improvs on this tour feel quite a bit less adventurous, even sometimes contrived. While the guitaring on said improvisations is still outstanding, Trey Gunn and Pat Mastellotto do not provide backing as deep as Wetton and Bruford. And a featured improv of the tour, titled The Deception Of The Thrush, is just an excuse to drop in noises and spoken word samples over a spacy rhythm section. On the surface it sounds like RIO, but hearing it repeatedly (it appears twice on this collection) it sounds lazy. And a few improvs sound like the band is dropping in large chunks of samples from other songs, and usually they turn into a noisy mess.

Otherwise, this is a good collection from a tour promoting one of the later Crimson's best albums The ConstruKction Of Light. They perform most of that album, and play it fantastically. Other highlights are VROOOM, which actually sounds better played by a smaller group, and a fine rendition of Cage. The cover of Heroes is not bad, but I've never been much of a Bowie fan.

A couple of tracks revel in Fripp's draconian attitude toward audience members taking flash photographs during shows. While Fripp has every right to ask people not to take such photos, stopping shows because of it is unfair to the large majority of the audience who paid to see the band and did not take pictures. Really, Robert. Don't be such a baby about it. Send roadies out to get the camera if you are so worried about the picture. But don't stop the show.

Review by Warthur
4 stars To a large extent, the live tour for The ConstruKction of Light was the redeeming of the material of that album, giving the material on it the extra refinement and workshopping that the group hadn't been able to give it before the studio sessions. For that matter, the improvisation the ConstruKction lineup delivers somehow feels deeper and more emotionally resonant than the empty technical noodling that the ProjeKcts had spent much of the late 1990s wallowing in, despite using much the same sort of hyper-modern textures and instrumentation.

That said, an entire disc of nothing but improvs was perhaps too much for this set, good though these improvs are. It's telling that for the Heaven & Earth boxed set Fripp and company didn't just regurgitate Heavy ConstruKction but put together Live ConstruKction - consisting of most of the setlist from the Shepherd's Bush stop on the tour, with additional improvisations from other stops interwoven into the running order. That provides a more cohesive listening experience than this - a four and a half star one rather than a four star effort - but if the Heaven & Earth box is too rich for your tastes and Live ConstruKction doesn't see a separate release, Heavy ConstruKction might be the best one- stop taste of turn-of-the-century King Crimson.

Latest members reviews

3 stars As I see reading reviews, it's not only me who have problems with this album. Of course still it's the level that very few bands can reach (dead ancient organisms such as Yes or even Jethro Tull cannot even dream of that quality). But compared to other KC live albums this one is a bit dissapoint ... (read more)

Report this review (#69737) | Posted by kajetan | Friday, February 17, 2006 | Review Permanlink

2 stars Well . . . after 30 years of listening to KC I felt this was really ordinary. It's much too long and most of the tracks are done better on earlier releases. I went through it a few times but no, it just didn't do it for me. This is the first time this has happened with me and KC - makes me thi ... (read more)

Report this review (#69727) | Posted by | Friday, February 17, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars No, it isn't perfect. The sound is odd in places, and I could have done with only one episode of "Lights, Please." But HEAVY CONSTRUKCTION _is_ an awesome live set by a band that has always been better live than in the studio. Since it came out I haven't even played THE CONSTRUKCTION OF LIGHT; ... (read more)

Report this review (#15596) | Posted by | Tuesday, January 25, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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