Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography


Robert Fripp

Eclectic Prog

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Robert Fripp Let the Power Fall album cover
3.03 | 66 ratings | 7 reviews | 18% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

Write a review

from partners
Studio Album, released in 1981

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. 1984 (12:10)
2. 1985 (11:03)
3. 1986 (5:12)
4. 1987 (5:07)
5. 1988 (6:24)
6. 1989 (11:14)

Total Time 51:10

Line-up / Musicians

- Robert Fripp / guitars, Fx (Frippertronics), producer

Releases information

Sub-titled "An Album of Frippertronics"; Recorded live April - August 1979 at various locations

Artwork: Danielle Dax

LP EG ‎- EGED 10 (1981, UK)

CD EG ‎- EEGCD 10 (1989, UK) Remastered by Tony Arnold

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
Edit this entry

Buy ROBERT FRIPP Let the Power Fall Music

ROBERT FRIPP Let the Power Fall ratings distribution

(66 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(18%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(14%)
Good, but non-essential (35%)
Collectors/fans only (24%)
Poor. Only for completionists (9%)

ROBERT FRIPP Let the Power Fall reviews

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

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by soundsweird
3 stars Similar in style to Fripp's collaborations with Brian Eno ("No Pussyfooting" and "Evening Star"), but without the synthesizers, this album features long slowly building tracks made up of looped guitar riffs. Done before the days of digital delay lines, Fripp used Eno's trick of using two reel-to-reel tape recorders in tandem, and then called it Frippertronics. So, each track starts with a note or two, then that plays back a few seconds later, while Fripp plays another note on top of it, and so on. Soon there's a "melody" of sorts, with layers of guitar built up into a wall of sound. Some tracks are quieter and somewhat "soothing", and some louder and a bit abrasive. King Crimson fans will recognize the various guitar sounds that Fripp employed at the time this was recorded (between "Red" and "Discipline"). Imagine a King Crimson song that consists of a slow, multi-tracked Fripp guitar solo. If that idea appeals to you, check this out.
Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars After few years past the Fripp & Eno collaborations and disbanding of King Crimson, Robert had worked out larger questions troubling him. If I remember correctly, I red him devoting to teachings based on George Gurdjieff's methods. Return to music business happened slowly, and in addition of being a background supporter for some artists, his solo works started appearing in 1979. This third solo album of his relies completely to frippertonic-minimalism, set on a scheme of humanity's "spiritual drive" on forthcoming years, these being presented as solitary tracks of guitar-looping aural tapestries. I personally felt his "small, mobile and intelligent unit" for music creation worked out better when united with Brian Eno's synthesizers and mutual collaboration. On the other hand, if one wishes to analyze Robert's playing, this might be a good record to listen, as his guitar's non-synthesized sound is easier to recognize here. Also the idea of his own way of performing without the band is however interesting, and these recordings document the transition of these ideas to actions. This record could possibly be seen ideological both in the way it is performed and also from content, as I fear the predicted / wished collective drive on 1980's maybe did not occur. My misunderstandings can be cleared by reading Robert's essays accompanying the album, sharing his views how world and people actually should run. If looking now forward, I believe the musical seed of this 1970's technique loop-system developed further on 1990's evolved to more cinematopic, denser and protean qualities with 1990's digital technologies. Also about prophecies and divine contemplations, "it is easy to be wise after the event" ? I believe all ponderings around vague concept of Truth all necessary, not because they would be right or wrong but part of humanity's vivid progress in the chaotic world. If this approach should not open, maybe one gin & frippertonic with lemon and ice might help.
Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
2 stars Let The Power Fail

This was the most disappointing Robert Fripp album to date.

On the previous release, "God Save The Queen/Under Heavy Manners", Fripp intoduced us to the soporific sound of "Frippertronics" as a complete art form. Where Fripp used this delay technique, using two tape recorders strung together with the single tape running across both heads, on "Exposure" as a wash effect behind some rather spectacular music, and as a brief intro Here Comes The Flood as an interesting production form, here, in it's raw form, it proves to be boring (sorry fot the run-on sentence).

You may choose to use this as background to meditation, and here you will find it's only truly useful application. The only other option is to play a game of figuring out which note Fripp adds on each loop. This game gets quite tedious after only a few short minutes, and could also end up with the listeners' brains melted and puddling at the bottom on the cranium.

Recommended only for fans of this genre.

Review by friso
2 stars Robert Fripp - Let the Power fall (1981)

Robert Fripp is known as founding member and brain behind major progressive rock group King Crimson. Besides that he is known for experimenting with the electric guitar and the equipment available. Perhaps this is the definitive record if you like Robert Fripp's frippertronics, but it has nothing else to offer then just that.

Frippertronics could be described as use for electronic equipment and electric guitar in order to create repetitive loops that allow for adding one note every loop. This results in endless loops of about six seconds with minor changes of single electric guitar notes that sound as if played by a cheap synthesizer. With this technique Robert Fripp managed to fill a record (without any other musicians or instruments). All compositions sounds the same and evolve in same way. This often results in sound-scape-like creations that don't have to much emotional depth, whilst offering some concentration and non-threatening atmospheres. There is no variety in approach and sound of the guitar on this album. Furthermore I assume all compositions are played in one take, where the addition of a 'normal' guitar line would not have hurt at all. Actually, this album just sounds like standing in a mad, but static scientist's laboratory without sounding psychedelic.

Conclusion. Unless you really want to know what frippertronics are I can recommend spending your money elsewhere. Later sound-scape albums of Robert Fripp are said to be way more interesting and this one just doesn't make too much sense. Two stars.

Review by admireArt
5 stars It takes guts, will and lots of vision!

Robert Fripp became the instant deconsacrated target of his self created "King Crimson Frankensteins". They neglect the fact of abandonment. They just hate him.

So, do not feel surprised by this PA's "extreme" underratings. Feel instead invited to a very different way of music expression, unorthodox to the point of uncomparable, "Cosmic Progressive Electronics".

Achieved solely by the multiple layering of "live" and pre-recorded electric guitar loops, his always photogenic Gibson Les Paul, + his personalised Dual Tape recording system. Add to this technique his restless musician's creativity to go beyond his past comfort zone's achievements and be born again to this new "electronic" world which outcome is also known as FRIPPERTRONICS, nor close or far related, as you may have guessed, from his King Crimson's musical language. Pure and uncomparable (meaning UNIQUE!, never before done, therefore truly PROGRESSIVE) electronic guitar poetry, forget the past and.....


*****5 "Full to the Top" PA stars.

Review by Warthur
4 stars Though released in 1981 (along with the sole album from the brief League of Gentlemen new wave band project), Let the Power Fall actually dates from Fripp's burst of solo activity in 1979 - a year when he released his first solo album, recorded his second, and instead of doing a full-band tour opted to perform in unusual venues (like music shops and the like) as just him, his guitar and pedals, and a tape setup to perform "Frippertronics". The idea was to act as a "highly mobile unit" - taking the DIY ethos of the era to the next level - and some of the results are found on this album, which compiles some of the Frippertronic improvisations from these shows.

The way Frippetronics works inevitably means that all the tracks are somewhat samey: each starts out with Fripp and a blank tape. He plays some guitar; the sound goes on the tape; the Frippertronic tape system then replays what's been recorded so far and Fripp adds a further level of music. As such, every composition starts out fairly sparse and simple, and then becomes more ornately layered as the track progresses.

This was all pioneered by Fripp and Eno on their collaborations, but here Fripp is doing a deep dive into the art form, doing what he can to tease out fhte possibilities of a format which, whilst interesting, has certain restrictions. Inevitably, as time goes by the repeated phrases become softer and quieter as they become more overlaid by subsequent recordings. In some respects this is a strength; a harsh or discordant note is smoothed out by this process, an error can be "painted" over. In other respects, this constrainst Fripp in how he constructs tracks: he always tends to have some harsh, loud notes early on, because he knows he'll need to use them to construct the early layers of the track, and if he doesn't lay them in firmly at the start they'll get lost in the tape fairly quickly.

Let the Power Fall is honest about what it is - it bills itself as "an album of Frippertronics", and that is what you get. One such album is, to be honest, probably enough. Fripp would go very sparse on the solo albums after this - he's done much more as a collaborator or as a member of various band projects - and maybe part of the reason is that having satisfied himself here with the possibilities of what he can do with just himself and his equipment, he has only infrequently felt a need to do more.

The album is interesting both as a guitar-oriented ambient release - a rarity in the field - and as a snapshot of Fripp developing the sort of guitar tones he'd bring to the table in the 1980s incarnation of King Crimson, which was already coalescing when Fripp decided to release this onto the market. Perhaps, then, this was a farewell letter - however temporary - to Fripp's brief but interesting solo career of 1978-1981.

Latest members reviews

1 stars Let the Power Fall seems to be based on the novel 1984 of by George Orwell; a story about facism and power. The songs are titled 1984, 1985, etc... Robert Fripp shows his skills on the so-named Frippertronics. While these tunes are made by a guitar with taperecorders they sound synthesizer-like, c ... (read more)

Report this review (#489671) | Posted by the philosopher | Sunday, July 24, 2011 | Review Permanlink

Post a review of ROBERT FRIPP "Let the Power Fall"

You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives

Donate monthly and keep PA fast-loading and ad-free forever.