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King Crimson - The ConstruKction Of Light CD (album) cover


King Crimson


Eclectic Prog

3.14 | 771 ratings

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Sean Trane
Special Collaborator
Prog Folk
2 stars 2.5 stars really!!

The double trio era only lasted so long, and by the turn off the century/millennium, Crimson was reduced to a quartet, but not exactly the one wished for. Indeed both Bruford and Levin are gone, but it didn't really appear as a permanent move back then, because as the title indicates, this album is a bit the continuation of the different ProjeKcts discs/albums, which saw many different formations of the double-trio line-ups, some without Fripp. Rest assured Fripp is still part of this KC line-up, but then again, this album is so heavy (as in slow and heaeaeavyyyyyyy >> weighs like a ton in your ears) that you'd wish he wasn't part of it. But he is, and there is no mistaking about it: Half the tracks sound like rehash of Crafty League of Gentlemen or his other forms acoustic guitar clubs, while the rest can be linked with the Wetton-era Crimson, mainly on the huge riffing. Hiding behind a construction of eclipse light artwork filled with grey and midnight blue, if Trey Gunn holds its own, I find that Matselotto's drumming very average, if not downright shocking at times. Hey, Bill, I'll double your wages....

Beyond the atrocious ProzaKc Blues, probably the most indigestible Crimson track ever, the title track, which besides its weird intro is a Crafty League work, while tracks like Frying Pan or Oyster Soup are more reminiscent of Thrakk or Red, partly due to the huge riffs, but in Frying Pan, the drums is definitely not Bruford's!! I doubt Bill would've dared such an ordinary binary pattern and the rest of the band being so obtuse, sounding like a troubled muddied soup.

Of course FraKctured can only draw comparisons with the SABB instrumental, rightly so, there are similarities and familiarities, enough to wonder what would be the point of reworking this piece outside of a live setting and releasing it as a studio track. Nevertheless, this is probably my fave track on this album, especially in the quieter arpeggios, where you'd swear Phillips Rutherford where around. In the same manner Lark's part IV can only draw comparisons with the first three, and you know it will, so the album is forcibly taking an upward curve. Linked to this rework is a weird short Coda, where Belew's dreams of peace find some sonic support, but it's a bit too bad it's all too distorted byeffects. But on another side this avoids Belew sounding like the pretentious bono. Only the closing Heaven and Earth and its ultra repetitive riff with a mellotron outro

Not really Crimson's best album (almost the opposite), I find TCOL is relying too much on elements of the past (and most notably winking at the Wetton-era) with these two elongated tracks. The real fresh material is left to be found in the excrutiatingly bad opener and in the so-called ProjeKct X trazck that closes the album.

Sean Trane | 2/5 |


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