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The brandy of the damned . . .
:: Posted by cloudscapes on June 27, 2014

Interesting chat about Ian McDonald possibly playing some shows with the upcoming,  updrummed version of KC.  I concur, but why just Ian . . ?  I have never understood why a longstanding, on-going invitation isn’t in place for any of the alumni to join the cirkus for a show or three.  Conflicting schedules or lack of rehearsal time or I’m-just-too-bloody-old come swiftly to mind as possible excuses to not participate, or is it something else, perhaps that grotty faerie that, with whatever reluctance, seems to cleave to Crimson . . .  In an industry where-in grudges are clung to until the rattling last breath, Crimson grudges are particularly substantial.  Ian is on record (no pun there) as saying that he never got enough credit for ITCOTCK.  Erm, Ian, last time I looked mate you received composer credits for all five of the songs on the album.  Greg Lake, who increasingly seems to believe he invented rock-n-roll, says that some of the guitar parts on the album are his and not RF’s, and, oh, by the way, I can do everything that Robert does and he can do everything I do because we had the same teacher!!!  I believe this is called basking in reflected glory . . .  And the inimitable RF still defends his questionable behavior to, among others, Gordon Haskell, Peter Sinfield, and Bill Bruford.  I could go on, but to what purpose?  As an interested outsider these squabbles, however seemingly legitimate on the inside, distress me.  Is the bitterness so intense that not a smidge of room can be made for the music . . ?  Existence is butterfly-brief, music, somewhat longer lived.  I, for one, continue to hope that all Crimson Kings will have the opportunity to collaboratively contribute to the latter . . .  Cheers!

:: Posted by DeVito on June 27, 2014

Someone has leaked this rehearsal video of the new King Crimson in action:

re: With or without Belew
:: Posted by Rhymes_With_Eloquent on June 27, 2014

I agree whole completely, and hope they take the long standing Crim tradition of playing almost strictly new material with the new incarnation. I love the songs from the past, but the great thing about KC is they’re always looking to the future rather than the past. Those songs are well documented in live and studio recordings, here’s hoping to a whole fresh batch of new ones!

Cutty Sark
:: Posted by nighthealer on June 27, 2014

The url for the video on Facebook is:


It might not work if you don’t have a Facebook account.

It is completely surreal and well worth watching if you can though. 21CSM played by about 10 people on weird brass instruments wearing weird costumes circling round on scooters!

The Cutty Sark!?
:: Posted by albemuth on June 27, 2014

The London history museum The Cutty Sark (as in "the clipper ship") features a band that plays horns and drums, dresses in odd costumes, and runs around on Segway scooters.  One of the tunes that it plays is 21st Century Schizoid Man.  Someone posted a video of this strange cultural collision on facebook.

Nameless Lovers
:: Posted by albemuth on June 26, 2014

Thanks JBlock for reminding me of the clip of Absent Lovers from March 10, 1982.  Now that I finally listen to it, I think that it’s the piece I heard at Princeton just four days earlier.  But I suspect that "(nameless)" on the Mining Rocks bootleg is something different.  "(nameless)" was a fairly simple piece.  The bassline is in 4/4 and has a "4-and kick" to it.  The first part goes back and forth between two textures: a repeated minor chord and the interlocking 5/4-type guitar lines.  Then there is a cut and we hear just Tony’s bass and another spidery line from Fripp (but lower down on the guitar).  Then Bill and Adrian come in, with Adrian laying some very cosmic sounds over the top: big washes of sound.  It’s a simple track but, I liked it a great deal.  Maybe this is one of those crazy situations where the bad recording makes the piece sound better or more interesting?

In any case, I cannot help but think that late 1981 and early 1982 contain evidence of yet another "Crimson Not Taken."  This particular CNT would have been a more thorough elaboration and exploration of Discipline.

Re; McDonald by starman.
:: Posted by Valhalla on June 26, 2014

You are a big Ian McDonald fan then. Regarding who composed what way back in the ’dark ages’ on Crimson’s debut album, it is impossible to tell unless you were there. I have noticed over time that the ’credits’ for a song or title, can be a grey area for some artists. The Mark 2 lineup of Deep Purple credited everything to the 5 members, as did the original 4 members of Black Sabbath. Surely all members were not contributing to every song on those albums? But who can tell? Then there is the classic Lennon/McCartney scenario. Another example is the Supertramp songwriting ’duo’, Davies/Hodgson?
Who wrote or composed or arranged what, is a ’dark’ area for many bands I would think! Ian McDonald played his part no doubt on that early Crimson, brilliantly!

Ian McDonald's birthday
:: Posted by Frank78 on June 26, 2014

Happy Birthday to Ian! I hope he’s doing fine. I think no one can deny Ian’s key contribution to KC’s first two albums in many aspects: beautiful and fine compositions (I talk to the wind, The court of the crimson king, possibly Cadence and cascade, Cat food, The devil’s triangle...), virtuosic playing (many memorable sax & flute passages and solos), song arrangements (probably of almost all songs of the 1st album). And let’s not forget he contributed his magnificent sax playing to One more red nightmare and Starless again in 1974
Also, the LP McDonald & Giles (in some way, a lost KC album) is absolutely wonderful. In fact, it’s one of my all-time favourite albums. And I’m sure it’s many people’s too.
I had the privilege of meeting Ian McDonald, talk to him and stretch his hand in Madrid, 2003, when whe played there with the 21st Century Schizoid Band. He seemed to me a very humble and warm person.
As far as I know, Ian and Robert Fripp appreciate one another very much. Also, Ian played together with Jakko and Mel when they all were members of the 21st CSB. So, I just hope that, at some point, the current KC lineup calls Ian McDonald up to join them on stage for some dates. That would be SO ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!!!

Happy Bday to Ian.
:: Posted by starmore on June 25, 2014

I got in some trouble with the Venal Leader with an inarticulate post that stated Ian should have been involved with the re-remastering of ITCOTCK and  that Fripp “owed” him for basically being the primary architect of the success of that album and thus the foundation of the name “King Crimson “. That is pushing it a bit (sometimes it seems the only way to get noticed online is to be “provocative”; when people agree they are not as motivated to respond). The main point is just that Ian’s contribution to both Court  (and some of  the Poseidon material) was simply HUGE

 Industry-wise Lake was the breakout star/lead singer, but the rest really featured Ian in a huge way. Schizoid Man did also feature the first glimpse of  the future trademark Fripp laser soloist  and guitar gymnastics and was the most group written tune, but the overdubbed horn section and twisting  (almost Belew-y, certainly Dolph-y) avant solo are 100% Ian.

“I talk to the Wind “was mostly about McDonald and Giles, a Beatles-esque  flute and drum showcase with good lyrics.

Greg Lake claimed “Epitaph” was basically his song (he also said the guitar part of Court was his), and to be fair Lake’s future work does sound a lot like “Epitaph “(and the guitar bit on the end verse of “Court”) . But not the arrangement, which is a wonderful musical orchestration by Ian on ‘tron and clarinet and towards the end is again a multi-tracked McDonald &Giles showcase. This type of ending became a template for future Crimson.   The same thing with the title track, Ian again outdoes himself with the vocal arrangement, the basic song itself ,tasteful Mellotronics, and the flute solo; then the ending is again basically McDonald and Giles.

“Moonchild” and the improv bring Fripp forward in a tentative way (If you you know MST3K,  the film Monster a Go-Go features a very familiar sounding dream-like Jazz  noodling guitar as we see a “monster” walking down a hallway, and Joel says “He’s sneaking past Robert Fripp’s room!” ), yet again Ian comes in with a vibe solo that just makes it work and bridges the guitar/drum interplay. It was well said that Ian contributed “sheer musicality”. He was like the Gil Evans of the band and really deserves a lot of the credit.


It is really sad that “Birdman” was not a Crimso song, and kind of ironic that Ian’s guitar playing on that tune is so Fripp-y (with a touch of Badge-Clapton /Harrison thrown in)

Oh why was there never a follow up to Mcdonald and Giles !!!

It should be re-mastered too!  In short, Ian rules! 

McD & G was remastered in 2002 with liner notes by yours truly


Ian McDonald
:: Posted by Frippouille on June 25, 2014

Happy birthday to Ian McDonald! And thanks to him for the sublime and timeless music of the grrreat grrreat record «McDonald & Giles».

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