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King Crimson - USA CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

4.05 | 573 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

4 stars Strong, but could have gone without Jobson.

Representing their live concerts from their US tour in the year before Red, this live album contains a lot of strong performances, but is marred by the Jobson overdubs. Unfortunately, when they went to mix this album, they found that David Cross' violin parts were too quiet, so they got Jobson to overdub some violin parts, making this not quite true to their actual live performances. I would have preferred to hear the actual band, with Cross (the "Night Watch" concert, and a number of other live performances, including the ones on "The Great Deceiver" live box set, have this, and they are often better than the live performances here). However, the remastered CD contains bonus tracks "Starless" and "Fracture", which weren't on the original vinyl, and these are the best two tunes on this one, and these feature David Cross, without Jobson overdubs. The best tracks from the original vinyl are the improvisation "Asbury Park" and the version of "Easy Money", with some excellent guitar solos from Fripp. I was never a huge fan of Lament (one of the tunes that, for me, doesn't fit Wetton's voice), or even Exiles, although I like this version of Exiles better than the studio version on Lark's Tongues. The version here of Schizoid Man is distinct, showing Bruford's very different drum treatment, and pointing to the ways that Bruford would time-shift his drumming in the 80s incarnation of Crimson (ie playing a 4/4 drum beat over a 6/8 section, etc). The version of Lark's Tongues Part II is very similar to the studio version - the better live versions were actually the ones recorded by the 80s incarnation (ie the 'Absent Lovers') album. Without "Starless" and "Fracture" (ie: the original vinyl album) I rate this 7.9 out of 10. However, including "Starless" and "Fracture" (ie the remastered CD edition), I give this 8.4 out of 10 on my 10-point scale, which translates to 4 PA stars.

Walkscore | 4/5 |


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