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Soundscapes favs?
:: Posted by acroyear on January 19, 2015

World Trade Center 2000 and the Big Chill shows of August 2005 tend to come to mind as my personal favs, as do some of the Estonia shows.


Live At The Orpheum
:: Posted by richardrogers on January 19, 2015

Iíve had two days to enjoy Live at The Orpheum, and itís been a truly revelatory and enjoyable listening experience. I was perplexed originally by the choosing to release a 40 minute ílive samplerí, rather than a complete gig. But I did understand the rationale behind it.

Having listened to the album though, I absolutely need to see this band if they play again. Even if last years wedding and my on-going chemo treatment have completely emptied my pockets, I will find a way to see this band.

The Islands era material is arguably the best itís ever sounded, One More Red Nightmareís live recording debut is impeccable and Starless is just incredible. All of the band sound as though theyíre at the top of their game, with Mel and Jakko making brilliant impressions. TCoL doesnít quite work, for me, but the first part is very, very good.

As for the much-discussed mastering, it is interesting, and it works, I think fantastically. Yes, it is íquieterí than most other recordings out there, but crank it up a bit and the range you can hear is perfect. You can decipher different drummers, there is space between each of the instruments, and it just sounds like a treat.

What they sound like playing Level 5 or VROOOM or LTiA (1 and 2) is just too tantalising a thought, and I need to hear this band.


No squash please!
:: Posted by bloggulator on January 19, 2015

To heighten my sense of anticipation comes word from fellow posters that the sound reflects the dynamics of the performance - unmolested by brick wall limiters and multi band compression algorithms. In other words, here we have a rarity amongst the standard "squashed-flat-as-the-proverbial-pancake" fare that has become the industry standard, and which marches in fashionable lockstep alongside its totalitarian partner in unmusicality - the "volume wars". As of yet, I havenít laid ears on "Orpheum" - but the prospect of an album where the music is permitted to breathe - is an exciting one indeed.

Yes, it may be unsuitable for cars, or any other surrounding where the quiet passages are masked by ambient noise. It may also not be suitable fare for the kitchen, elevators, stores, airports and restaurants. But is it possible to "listen" to music in those environments anyway? Perhaps people are confusing "hearing" with "listening"? Hearing music is unavoidable - the ears cannot be switched off - but the attention can be directed elsewhere. Listening, on the other hand, is a choice, where the attention is deliberately focussed on the music.

I go a theater to watch a movie, and get absorbed with the plot, the characters, the dynamics and development of the story, and its climax and conclusion. Theater staff request that you donít disturb other patrons; people universally donít appreciate being distracted by something else which interferes with their absorption of the movie. Itís the same with watching a football match, having a business meeting, eating dinner, or even having sex. So why has music being relegated, almost universally in todayís world, to "just another auditory input" fighting to compete with all the noise of everyday life? Does the fault lie with music, or perhaps because there is no visual input with the listening experience, we feel that just one sensory source (audio) is insufficient to mandate our undivided attention, when there is so much else going on in our overstimulating environment?

Just my 2 red kCents.

Nik G


Let the power fall
:: Posted by kingcrimson7 on January 19, 2015

I consider robert fripp unimaginable guitarist, the guitar can do what you want, the churchscape,
but you know fripp youíll think thereís a orchestra playing, We are dealing with someone who is also an inventor,  they do not understand that what they are hearing is a guitar, Robert thanks for your music, and with that I am satisfied.

Jesus is God, 

Peace be with you.



Orpheum
:: Posted by fishbonealice on January 19, 2015

íAinít there just one damn song that can make me break down and cryí sang the Dame. Iíd thought, cynical and ageing old bastard that I am, that I was becoming immune to the ability of music to induce the waterworks. But I have to confess to fighting back the tears in parts of Orpheum. I donít think itís simply that itís so masterfully conceived and played (and isnít it just) but that it encapsulates the uncompromising and steadfast drive for human excellence and beauty in an increasingly perplexing and alienating world. If KC can still pull that off after 40-odd years without cynicism or rancour then thereís hope for us all. Thank God for that.


:: Posted by JBeerLTIA on January 19, 2015

The soundscapes are of course circumstantial. It is one man performing an enveloping tidal wave of sound, and the performer is a human being. Feelings happen to make their way into a performance. There is no one good soundscape as there is one that "sucks". It is a wordless diary. And a beautiful sounding one at that. I will say with a particular mindset there will be difficulty listening to certain pieces. Around the time my grandmother died I happened to listen to A Blessing of Tears. I lost it. But looking on that now, I realize that that music made me truly feel. Soundscapes, if you let them in, can be quite therapeutic. The audience is already present, if only more people could use music as a tool of emotional extension, catharsis, and meditation.


Orpheum
:: Posted by snkzato1 on January 19, 2015

Listened to it this evening and absolutely loved it. I love that the album is not compressed to kingdom come like most modern albums. It has so much breathing room and space. I was reminded of albums of the 70s in how it was mixed. One More Red Nightmare brought me back to my show in Madison.

Canít wait for the vinyl to arrive at my doorstep. Cheers!


:: Posted by emory0 on January 18, 2015

íIím leaning towards the "Less is more" philosophy. And am finding that vinyls distortion and slight wobble may be its greatest strength. Music is not performed digitally, it does not lend itself well to digital reproduction.í

I basically agree. At least, with certain "albums" (these were groups of songs played together before we called them "tracks", kids), I want to SIT DOWN and LISTEN and enjoy a music-listening session as if it were almost a little concert. I DONíT want to listen to good music while Iím scraping plates into the garbage or taking a dump. And I donít have the time or concentration-juice to set there for 90 minutes. 45 to 50 minutes is good.

As for vinyl, with great vinyl rigs the wobble is reduced to pretty much zero. So the ear-appeal is due to something else. Iíve read technical discussions on why that is, but since I havenít owned a vinyl rig for several decades I didnít follow it too closely (though I suspect that when SACD and DVD-A fully mature theyíll finally be the digital formats that are better than even the best vinyl).

Theoretically, the new Crimson will be showing up on these shores in a couple of days, but Iím hoping to get a copy over in the new Williamsburg Rough Trade shop (which devotes maybe 2/3 of its space to vinyl, by the way). I guess Iím just a cranky old guy talking about the "good old days" of vinyl records and record shops. Ah well.


orpheum
:: Posted by gregory1 on January 18, 2015

Iíll open up by saying its possibly 267 years since I last posted to this forum... and as Iím typing this, I wonder why I should choose to pick this moment to break the silence. Iím not 100% sure, but here goes.
Iíll confess to being a pathetically anal completist when it comes to King Crimson. I have (as Iím sure many others do as well) not only The Road To Red, but also the Street To Starless, Lane To Larks, the Freeway to Fame By Frame, Esplanade to The Essential King Crimson, the Court To The Court Boxed Set, The Grove to The Great Deceiver & The Track to the 21st Century Guide to King Crimson. Not to mention various more compact compilations (Concises,Compacts & Abbreviations). I have all the Collectors Club releases,singles,various live and of course the studio albums... get the picture yet?

It was with barely-controlled excitement that I followed the tour through the US during September & October (from my faraway home in Australia... unable to justify to my lovely, normally accommodating, completely sympathetic and fully understanding best wife ever, the "crash-and-burn" cost of flying to the US for a couple of days to see at least one of concerts from the aforementioned tour.

Now the CD of the Orpheum performance(s).
I am happy to be happy with what I have to be happy with. And what I have is music which sounds fresh and vibrant. Iím hearing things performed in the "NOW" that I would not have ever dreamed of hearing. Iím hearing familiarity but with a dash of surprise, humour and daring. Iím getting Mel Collins (what a bonus!),3 drummers, Jakko and of course Messrs Levin & Fripp.

Iíve heard some of the criticisms and wonder why they bother. Perhaps they feel it would have been better to have not an audio record at all?
Itís hard on CD to hear the 3 drummers separately, but hey, this was a live concert... you had to be there to see it. Iíve had to settle for the poor cousin in that respect. I can pick out Pat on the left & Gavin on the right and Iím sure if I had a third ear protruding from my forehead Iíd pick out Bill perfectly well too. As I donít, I make do.

As for the track selection, Iím not going to muse over what may have been but instead embrace the wonder of hearing The Letters & Sailorís Tale played by a crack band (with no disrespect to the Islands-era lineup), One More Red Nightmare (for the first time live by a KC lineup), The Construkction Of Light with Melís contribution and the glorious Starless.

The volume? Sure, instead of waiting for the previously mentioned wife (who has, it must be said, dropped a few rungs in the respect stakes) to take the dogs out for a walk before cranking up the stereo to 35 or thereabouts I now have to push it up to 45 to get the same degree of intensity... but I Am getting the same degree of intensity. And I love it!

In my opinion: a winner!!

Weíre planning a trip to Europe in the second half of this year... despite my wifeís efforts at pinning me down to dates, Iím trying to stall her foe as long as I can until somethingís announced by "you-know-who" before Iíll commit myself.


Regarding the popularisation of soundscapes
:: Posted by Maximus on January 18, 2015

I love that music and there is also a strong notion within me to share it with the others. But that is very difficult. One thing, is simply attention. This music is blissfuly fantastic, even when its dark (because it tells you how to live with negativity!), but to really hear what is going on, and not just say that "the guy is playing one monotonous thing for 10 minutes, and then another", one has to focus. Focus a lot. The same goes for KC music, how many of us did present it to their acquaintances or people they know? Now, how many of us heard something like: "what is this strange shit?", "10 minutes?? This is too long!" or "Some rock and jazz noises, hey listen to this, dude(insert something veeery low)". Painful like hell. Now, some of the KC audience is like this towards soundscapes! Even the KC audience I personally know. What I want to imply is... LISTEN. The richness is there, the joy, the bliss.

But one has to move their ass and pick it up! Effort is required, and for soundscapes it is the first thing that allows them to be in oneís awareness. You enter a hall with "SOUNDSCAPES" written above the entrance, but the bouncer is kicking off the inattentive. Some people do not even notice the entrance, they see the name above the hall, but just pass. So what can WE do about this? Not much. Perhaps making people aware of the fact that it is difficult listening. But that is already somehow implied everywhere. Iíd go for a warning.

Another thing that has entered my mind, why not make one PROPER easily digestable, contemporary soundscape gig for free. If it was not youtube or torrents, I would not be here today! Yes Iím buying DGM stuff, but that is because I noticed KC on the internet. Iím buying in the sheer joy of gratefulness for what the guys do, add to it how much work they put into ONE download. And every 2 weeks we get one piece of hours of studio work for free.

Did they have to do it? DGM became profitable not so long ago, so the guys are making the music available as a mission. They do it for... the music, for us to be able to listen to it. When I first came here, I was joyfully shocked, that Iíve found chests of gold online, and that DGM is basically an intelectually-artistic charity. I wanted for it to last, because I was bothered by the finances, and all.

Guys, Iím a soundscape madman. The soundscapes that are available online and on youtube, are one of the worst for beginners IMO. The Gates Of Paradise? It would be nice of Robert to mention that you have to get through The Gates Of Hell first, to get to a soundscape that will make you survive the whole album. 1999? I listen to those 2 dark destroyers (1999 and 2000) c. once a year. I consider them more to be a tool, a huge driller, or big amount of explosives. The music that is rather being chosen out of necessity, not because I WANT to listen to it. A cure, I once had a such a dark wake-up moment, that one radiophonic-alike-1999 helped me out of it. That Which Passess? Passed through unnoticed, still gathering courage for it. The rest is just... old.

Completely different, hard to digest (Blessing Of Tears, Radiophonics). So what made my love affair with íscapes to take off? The Atlanta gig. The reviewer suggested that this is the best gig to start with. I was flabberggasted! Because it turned out for me, that soundscapes are something, may I even say, ENTIRELY different. Rather than being some sound atmosphere, I could find a melody, something to grab upon, and that was definitely easier to listen to than what I had experienced so far. The CD íscapes suck. Only for a die-hard conoisseur. The Blueberry Hill is somehow available, but thats even worse.

The strangest gig I could listen to, and one of those 2006-5-4 that for me are the juice. Only Starlight II had something that was really exceptional, something for the wider public. I scarcely look upon Blueberry Hill and its themes as a choice of listening. Very situational, and not that great.

Churchscapes realease has a general atmosphere that is not appealing to me, like too positive, but at the same time too serious and devotional. Rather for a deep meditation on an autumnal evening. They did not present the whole picture! IMO you picked the worst scapes of í05-í06, they gave me a wrong impression, an impression that íscapes are quite different, more of a music for a specific purpose or event, while it is not so.

Guys, the stuff available made me quite distant from that music. That is how people find music, theyíre not gonna just buy it beforehand, and what is available "for free while no one see" is bad. I think in those times we have to count on gratitude in repayment, stories that Robert is telling are making people feel guilty. And thats good. Those ideas, the discussions whether it is OK to download my favourite artistsí music just like that, are present everywhere. Even "I go to the gig so its OK" is making people thinking and so is DGM by its policy. Maybe something more is required, maybe that album purchase is the way to go.

But coming back to the point, the vast majority of íscapes I love. And these are not available like the others! I have like 2 areas, the releases (I donít listen to them), and what-I-have-bought-and-its-not-a-release (almost everything from íscapes). I think what DGM would need is a steady high level of the quality throughout the whole gig, for a free release. A release that has a diverge flavor throughout it. And is somehow easily drawing one in.

What I would recommend: Stockholm í04(its darker, like 50% of it, so uneasy of those easy), Wolverhampton í05(!!!!!!!!!!!!!!), Ely í05 (seems mainstream), Carrboro í06(diverge), WFC í00(more diverge) and that very Atlanta í06.
And that other thing besides attention and availability. Soundscapes bring the stuff up. "Bad" people canít listen to them, I had friends coming to me that wanted me to stop playing them! Because it was too "hard" for them. Too "sad".

Soundscapes are for the emotional balls of steel. How you deal with pain in your daily life, and if you are dealing with it. It took me years to find out (donít ask how), that my "friends", had remorses of conscience so big while listening to that music, that they had to stop. Not even a remorse, something more. Guilt, true guilt, the repercussions coming for them, the consequences of their actions rising up in their consciousness due to the boost of attention from íscapes. Soundscape are catharsis, they are the clearance. They make you think creatively, on a higher level, from love, not lower fear. They erase fear. You may resist a little, you may lack some courage, but you will live, you may call soundscapes hard but beautiful.

Now, one can be that bad guy, intentionally destroying the world around them. Soundscapes will show the truth, the repressed conscience, something which they donít want to see, hide intentionally. No wonder some people cannot bear them. Ignore them!

So it is going to be difficult anyway, finding the audience for the íscapes. But keep it going. I hope that my ruminations will be of help.

And remember: Say "Hello Bob!" And you will have good music. May we trust the inexpressible hard work of our beloved DGM.


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