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King Crimson -  Cat Food CD (album) cover


King Crimson

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4 stars " It's rock 'n' roll if you want a label for it. But it's rock as only Crimson can play it". Robert Fripp - March, 1970

The only King Crimson single in the history of the band to chart , reaching #35 on the Benelux charts in March 1970, Cat Food was a futuristic sounding single that appeared in it's full length version ( 4:54 ) on King Crimson's second LP In The Wake Of Poseidon. Laced with artsy avant garde lyrics penned by Pete Sinfield, it's beatlesque qualities owed much to tracks like Helter Skelter and Come Together but with experimental substance.

Improvisational jazz pianist Keith Tippet was invited by band leader/guitarist Robert Fripp to participate on the album allowing him free range in the studio to add pretty much whatever he wanted and the result was a bizarre marriage of his flailing spidery ad-lib piano technique to Greg Lake's boisterous delivery of Sinfield's derisive meanderings in incedulous 19/8 time! Definitely rock as only Crimson can play it! This single version, which clocks in at 2:45, unfortunately cuts out just when the interaction between Tippet and Fripp just starts to get interesting going off on a more jazzy tangent. Nonetheless one reason to check out the single version is for Lake's vocal track which seems to have been kicked up in the mix. If you don't have a time machine this single version can be heard in a remastered form on the definite CD remaster of In The Wake Of Poseidon along with the B side a cut down studio version of an equally strange free form jazzy imrovisational blowout entitled Groon. Although it was one of the first improvs that was played by Crimson on stage during the '71-'72 period along with Mel Collins on tenor sax this more polished cut down studio version ( clocking in at 3:31 ) features only the Giles brothers, Peter on bass and Michael drums along with Fripp on guitar..

Certainly one of the most bizarre singles of 1970, with it's psyched out cover and pink label, definitely worth hunting down if you're an insatiable collector of classic vinyl.

Report this review (#254733)
Posted Monday, December 7, 2009 | Review Permalink
Symphonic Team
1 stars "Don't think I am that rude if I tell you that it's cat food, not even fit for a horse"

Cat Food is an early single by King Crimson released in 1970. The title track is an edited version of a song from the band's second full-length album In The Wake Of Poseidon from that same year. The song is not a particular favourite of mine but one has to admit that it is probably one of the most suitable songs from In The Wake Of Poseidon to be released as a single. I prefer the longer album version anyway as this edit sounds truncated.

What is of special interest here is the b-side Groon. Or at least it is interesting in virtue of being a non-album b-side. However it is actually not very interesting in its own right as it is a jazzy, improvised piece that comes across as a throw- away. I don't particularly enjoy listening to it at all to be honest.

Both the edited version of Cat Food and Groon have now been made available as bonus tracks on the remastered CD version of In The Wake Of Poseidon so there is really very little intrinsic value in this single. For completionists only.

Report this review (#1301713)
Posted Saturday, November 8, 2014 | Review Permalink

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