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King Crimson - In The Court Of The Crimson King CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

4.63 | 4185 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars I listened to this album for the first time in 1975 or 1976, and I liked it a lot, and I still like this album a lot. The cover art is fantastic, and the music is fantastic, too. In my opinion, this album represents maybe the only line-up of this band which had a better balance between the members, all very good musicians. This is really a band`s abum. K.C. was a "real 5 member band" then, in my opinion. Robert Fripp wasn`t the leader then, I think. Ian McDonald`s work in this album is very good, and maybe he is the most "dominant" musician in this album, being a musician who plays several different instruments. In fact, he appears as composer in all the songs in this album, with lyricist Peter Sinfield too. The rest of the songs are credited to the five members of the band. Michael Giles is a very good drummer, and I don`t know why he and McDonald didn`t work in other bands for a long time after being in K.C. After leaving K.C., McDonald and Giles recorded a very good duet album called "McDONALD AND GILES" (with Peter Giles on bass guitar, and guests like Steve Winwood in one song, plus Sinfield`s lyrics in one song). The "dominant" instrument in this "In the Court..." album is the Mellotron, played by McDonald. This instrument gives the music a lot of "fantasy" to the sound of the songs (I don`t know why McDonald didn`t use it in the "McDonald and Giles" album). The Mellotron became a very important instrument in the Progressive Rock Music bands. "Schizoid Man" is the "heaviest " song in this album, with Fripp still developing his very original style of playing. In this song, Greg Lake and Michael Giles play very good jazz-rock sections, with McDonald`s saxes. "I Talk to the Wind" has very good flutes by McDonald. "Epitaph" is a sad song, but very powerful, with very good arrangements, and Lake`s sensitive vocals. "Moonchild" is maybe the first example of improvisation from this band, being a compostion with verses in the beginning, and later, this song has a "jam" section, with interesting parts. The song "In the Court of the Crimson King" has the Melloton as the main instrument, and it is maybe the best song in this album.Unfortunately, after the tour for this album, this line-up split, with Lake and Giles appearing in the next album almost as "guests" with other "guests" or "session" musicians. Fripp was almost left "alone" with Sinfield, and their next albums show mainly Fripp`s musical ideas. By late 1971, Sinfield also left K.C. This first K.C. line-up was maybe the best. I think that Fripp`s ego spoiled this line-up. Maybe he didn`t like other musicians who also "shone" like him. McDonald was one of these musicians, and years later he appeared as member of FOREIGNER between 1976 and 1980, and he also had problems in that band too, as guitarist Mick Jones wanted to be the only ""musical director" in the band (which led to their most commercial and successful album called "4", but that`s another history!). After being a very important member in K.C. and Foreigner, McDonald had to leave both bands due to "different musical ideas" with the guitarists.It is a shame that some good line-ups are spoiled by egos.
Guillermo | 5/5 |


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