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King Crimson - In The Wake Of Poseidon CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

3.83 | 2040 ratings

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Eclectic Prog Team
4 stars If King Crimson only had five tracks on the album, we would almost have In the Court of the Crimson King part two. I think of In the Wake of Poseidon as a younger brother to their debut album, as several of the songs are very similar to songs recorded before, even if they are not quite as a strong. Every time I hear most any King Crimson album (their first two in particular), I'm always impressed by how Robert Fripp, though the leader of the band, is very restrained and doesn't attempt to hijack any of the songs with pompous guitar playing. Overall, this is a very good album, a worthy acquisition, but just slightly weaker than their first album. As a side note (I usually do not comment on visuals), the cover artwork is a 1967 painting by Tammo De Jongh entitled "The 12 Achetypes," and is very interesting to read about.

"Peace- A Beginning" The album opens with Greg Lake's quiet singing laden with effects that gradually go away, eventually leaving his bare voice.

"Pictures of a City" With wailing saxes and distorted guitar, this song is fairly similar to "21st Century Schizoid Man." Something often not associated with progressive rock music (and certainly not with King Crimson) is heard here- a standard blues chord progression. There's some clever guitar work and drumming that goes on midway through. Everyone gets a piece of the action- there's even a reserved bass solo five minutes in. And as with the first song from their first album, the song ends with unrestrained improvisation.

"Cadence and Cascade" Beautiful acoustic guitar and singing, with piano, flute, and light drums throughout, make up this pretty song. While not progressive rock, per se, it is a welcome constituent to this album.

"In the Wake of Poseidon" Waves of Mellotron envelop this song, paving the way for Lake to sing over sad acoustic guitar, bass, and drums. If "Pictures of a City" was the "21st Century Schizoid Man" of the album, and "Cadence and Cascade" the "I Talk to the Wind," then "In the Wake of Poseidon" is definitely the "Epitaph."

"Peace- A Theme" Fripp treats us to a lovely but fleeting acoustic guitar interlude.

"Cat Food" My least favorite track on the album, it's a fairly straightforward song with a good bass groove. The constant dissonant piano runs get annoying, but the flourishes in the end are gorgeous, in stark contrast to the raunchier feel of the rest of the song.

"The Devil's Triangle" The album's longest track is an instrumental based on Gustav Holst's "Mars: Bringer of War" from his suite, The Planets. The first third of this piece consists of a Mellotron fading in with a marching drum that eventually pitch shifts up to welcome the next, more demoralizing part of the piece. This section would have fit in well in the soundtrack of a movie like The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. One cannot help but imagine wave after wave of goblins and orcs marching their way from Isengard. The third section is less imposing then the second, employing jazzier elements and a bit of strange improvisation. The last moments are feathery, unlike anything that came before, perhaps welcoming peace.

"Peace- An End" Very similar to the first track, what remains on the album is something of an extended reprise of "Peace- A Beginning." Except this time, there is acoustic guitar accompaniment and Lake doubling-up on vocals, singing an octave below himself in some parts.

Epignosis | 4/5 |


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