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King Crimson - The Night Watch  CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

4.46 | 308 ratings

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4 stars The 90's were a great decade for King Crimson fans. There was not only the new studio album Thrak but also an unstoppable flow of superb live material. The 1973 Night Watch concert easily ranks among the best of those releases and serves as the perfect companion for the 1974 USA live album.

The setlist largely overlaps with USA, but the renditions vary a lot. First of all in sound, Wetton isn't as dominant yet as he would become, resulting in a concert that has a better balance between all instruments. Again, the entire band is really on fire and sounds crisp and tight. Crimson always improvised a lot; the standard song material was interpreted differently every night, making each Crimson live album a worthy addition to your collection. With Starless and Bible Black and Fracture, The Night Watch features two songs that would be selected for the 1973 'studio' album Starless and Bible Black. They are more effective within their proper live context here.

With a setlist that can easily serve as a best of 1973 Crimson, this album is my preferred buy. Also 21 Century Schizoid Man is real fun, maybe even better then the USA version, a bit less powerful but more subtle.

The Night Watch is the first King Crimson album to feature artwork from PJ Crook. It would be the start of a long-standing relationship and numerous tasty album covers. Die-hard fans might prefer the 4CD Great Deceiver box (or re-issues), but as an alternative for King Crimson's rather cold 1973 studio albums, this is another live album that comes with the greatest of recommendations from me. 4.5 stars

Bonnek | 4/5 |


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