Discipline Global MobileKing CrimsonRobert FrippThe VicarTour DatesDiariesnav_catalogNewsAccountsForumShopSearch Archives
  News Login | Register | Help

On This Date 41 Years Ago...
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Tue., Oct 6, 2015

King Crimson released Red, their final studio album of the 1970s on October 6th, 1974.

Now regarded as one the most important albums of that decade, Red frequently turns up in numerous best of lists by artists and magazines.

Here's what the New Musical Express had to say about the album upon its release that week 41 years ago today. 

THE PREVIOUS two albums by this final King Crimson lineup have never been as hysterically self-conscious in their obvious adventurousness as the first four studio records that came out under the band's name.

In fact, listening to certain parts of each of those early albums can frequently provoke nothing as crassly simple as severe brain damage but a rather more civilised basic aural pain.

In general, it's a pretty tidy set of neuroses, instability and insecurity — both musical and personal — that cuts a jagged edged swathe across the eight sides. The psychic melodramas do, though, have the saving grace of being carried out with an appropriate sense of artistic folly.

Indeed when juxtaposed against the histrionics of those records Larks Tongues In Aspic, Starless And Bible Black and, now, Red would seem to have been recorded in a state of almost Calvinistic general togetherness — or, if you prefer, what used to be known at school as "maturity" — and even if Larks Tongues does marginally fail to cut it due to a rather too noticeable excess of zeal then Starless, which is minus both Jamie Muir and His Percussive Pistacchio Nuts and the perfectionist production of the former — though not credited on the sleeve as such the whole of side two was cut live — comes up with a more consistent and relaxed amount of highs than any of its predecessors.

There's one other little plus that Starless has going for it...uh...it...well, it nearly swings.

And so to Red. No two ways about it, and putting aside for the moment any little thoughts we may have about its being The Final Work this outfit — now reduced to the basic three-piece of Robert Fripp, John Wetton on bass and vocals, and Bill Bruford on drums (sorry, percussives) — were really starting to whizz those thought patterns around amongst themselves.

Side One is actually rather a funky, even heavy, piece with 'Fallen Angel' and 'One More Red Nightmare' restating the weighty note progression emphasised almost to the point of a calculated ennui on 'Red', the first track.

'Fallen Angel' moves things on with some of your old mellifluous free-flowing melody ending up as a variant on a basic pop track with a surreal middle eight that has some most impressive reed honking from Mel Collins. Robert Palmer-James' lyrics are virtually indistinguishable, which on past evidence is most certainly in the record's favour, whilst Wetton's voice, doable or triple tracked on the chorus fines has the chore of both sounding like Greg Lake and being able to highlight the inadequacies of any similar ELP technological ballad.

'One More Red Nightmare' puts the rather curious counterbalancing of the first two tracks into a comprehensible perspective as it grips together the main themes of each title with some hot ice howling lead percussion from Bruford that does just now and then veer dangerously towards intellectual doodling.

'Providence', which opens the second side, features "guest" violinist David Cross on a schizoid quasi Prokofiev piece of impressionism which, when joined by the bass and Bruford, displays at first the sense of spacing and notation which was particularly evident on Larks Tongues but which ultimately dissolves as it's hurled into a rather early model King Crimson piece of mellotron madness.

The truly enigmatic side of Crimson gets really well held up to the light on the twelve-minute final track, Starless, with the baroque intensity — and extremity — of Fripp's Mancini-like mellotron strings that carry a hint of the mood of side two of Lizard until the scorching guitar, bass and jangling percussion work up and along several note and chord structures with each instrument underlining the other until a pattern is shaped like a continuous loop of sound restating the album's themes.

It's really quite curious and should, I suppose, be put down to some psychic state evolving from the demise of the band but Red is truly the first Crimson album that I can find myself listening to over and over again.

Would it be that same psychic state that makes me believe it's the best album ever made under the name of King Crimson?

More news

Displaying 5214 items (Viewing 151 to 160 of 5214)

Extra Show In Toronto
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Tue., Jun 9, 2015
An extra date has been added to King Crimson’s run of shows in Toronto.

In addition to the 19th and 20th, the group will also be performing on Saturday November 21st. Tickets will go sale this coming Friday. Grab your tickets here. 

Running Out Of Tape
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Mon., Jun 8, 2015
Here's a fascinating, and potentially sobering piece in The Quietus on the race against time when it comes to archiving all those old tapes. 

Happy Birthday Jakko!
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Mon., Jun 8, 2015
Crack open a bottle of something convivial and raise your glasses in the direction of Jakko Jakszyk, who celebrates his birthday today.

In case you missed it first time around, Jakko's solo album, The Bruised Romantic Glee Club, is available at an agreeably decent price here.

Happy Birthday Tony!
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Sat., Jun 6, 2015
Tony Levin, bespoke bassist and Stick man to the stars, celebrates his birthday today.

Old road dog that he is, Tony is currently out with Stick Men - check out his great photos from the tour so far over on his website.

David Cross Competition
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Fri., Jun 5, 2015
David Cross' new album, Starless Starlight is getting some favourable reviews in the press. This just in from the latest edition of Prog magazine.

If you would like to win a copy of the above album all you have to do is email me the name of the live album by the David Cross band. Please head your email DAVID CROSS COMP. The name of the winner will be plucked from a hat and announced on Friday 12th June.

Meanwhile part of David's back catalogue has just been made available via Burning Shed.

Pat Plays & Plays
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Thu., Jun 4, 2015
If you ever wanted proof that Pat Mastelotto is one of the busiest players on the planet then take a look through this interview which covers his recent work with KoMaRaStick Men and David Cross, O.R.k, Samuel Hallkvist, the Three Of A Perfect Pair bootcamp and er, what was the name of that other band, again? 

Gunn Talk
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Wed., Jun 3, 2015
West Virginia Public Broadcasting recently aired an interview with Trey Gunn which you can listen to here. Also worth checking out is Trey Gunn's blog where you can find out about his latest release, The Waters, They Are Rising.

Mister Stormy's Monday Selection
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Mon., Jun 1, 2015
DGM's Alex Mundy has blown the dust off the In The Wake Of Poseidon multi-track tapes to present us with Giles, Giles and Fripp tackling take four of Cat Food. Check it out here. 

Keith Tippett's Nine Dances
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Mon., Jun 1, 2015
Keith Tippett, whose work with King Crimson can be heard on Poseidon, Lizard and Islands, is featured on BBC Radio 3 tonight. Along with his Octet, he'll be performing one of his recent compositions,  The Nine Dances Of Patrick O'Gonogon.

You can check out the programme details over on the Radio 3 website.

Vault! Who Goes There?
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Fri., May 29, 2015
Wolfgang's Vault are facing another lawsuit,this time from a group of music publishers. Read more about the action over at Music Week.  

<< Previous 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 Next >> 

King Crimson Tour 2015
Newest Additions

King Crimson
Live At The Warfield Theatre

Full Recording

Subscribe to Podcast

Latest Music
Robert Fripp in Patrimonio 07/17/2004
Robert Fripp in Patrimonio 07/17/2004

Latest Photo

New to the DGM Shop
The Power To Believe
The Power To Believe

Top Downloads
King Crimson - Aug. 7th, 2008 in Chicago

King Crimson - Jun. 28th, 1974 in Asbury Park

King Crimson - Oct. 23rd, 1973 in Glasgow

Fripp & Eno - May. 28th, 1975 in Paris

Fripp & Eno - Mar. 14th, 2006 in London

Follow Us

Home | About DGM | Contact Us | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Help | RSS Feeds