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King Crimson - Islands CD (album) cover

ISLANDS

King Crimson

 

Eclectic Prog

3.80 | 1599 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

ProgBlob
5 stars Islands is a very special album to me. Partly because it was the first King Crimson album I ever listened to, and partly because it shows their softer side. For some reason, this album has been vastly underrated, and critics tend to really give it to the singing, which i thought fit the album perfectly.

Starting off with the entrancing Formentara Lady, which starts with some nice vocals and other classical instruments, and then launches into some experimental meanderings for the remaining five minutes. This section does tend to linger for a while, but its like nothing I've ever heard, the sound is something no other band has reached. It definitely deserves more credit.

At the end of Formentara Lady, the ride symbol slowly introduces Sailers Tail, a loud jazzy instrumental, that never gets out of hand. It has a Soft Machine sound to it, but undeniably King Crimson. They give it their all from beginning to end, not wasting any time. This is one of my top ten favourite Crimson tracks.

"Impaled on nails of ice!" The Letters is about two women fighting over a man, writing letters to one another. It begins mellow, but breaks into some chaotic sax, not unlike Van Der Graaf Generator. Clocking at only 4:32, it gets a lot done before the gentle ending leading to the Prelude.

Song of the Gulls is a beautiful classical track. This really shows how much King Crimson is capable of. They can compose chaotic songs like Schizoid Man, but song of the gulls is really something else.

I love albums that save the best for last. This is surely the case here with the 9 minute title track. This song is like a dream, with the lyrics taking you off to your own island somewhere. I enjoy the simplicity, but it isn't repetitive at all. Keeping you interested the whole way through, it is a song unlike any other (maybe Raven That Refused To Sing). Improving upon every listen, this ranks as one of my all time favorites.

ProgBlob | 5/5 |

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