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P2 At Albany Again
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Mon., Feb 20, 2012

My thanks to J Eric Smith for sending in this marvelous review of P2 playing Albany. You can hear the gig that Eric is writing about here.



Eric writes "I was a music critic (for better or worse) in Albany, New York for many years. My wife and I recently relocated to Des Moines, Iowa, and as part of launching a web presence in my new home community, I have been reviewing old archives of my work for items that might lend themselves to new purposes. I found a ProjeKCt Two live review (copied below) while digging through old floppy discs and files, and thought I would share it here, since I have not seen many other formal newsprint reviews from that era posted here. It was a lovely show, one that I still cite as one of my all-time favorite live performances.

****************************

ProjeKct Two
Valentine’s Music Hall, Albany, New York, May 8, 1998
Copyright 1998, J. Eric Smith (Originally appeared in Metroland, The Alternative Newsweekly of Northeastern New York)

"OK, now we’ve played everything we don’t know,so we can play something that we actually do know," announced electronic drummer Adrian Belew at the end of ProjeKct Two’s second all-instrumental, all-improvised set. Belew, 10-string Warr guitarist Trey Gunn and electric six-string guitarist Robert Fripp then encored with King Crimson’s "Vrooom," an angular number originally created by Fripp, Belew, Gunn and their Crimson bandmates Tony Levin, Bill Bruford and Pat Mastelotto.
 
As nice as it was to hear "Vrooom," the true value of the encore was to place the evening’s improvisational extravaganza in context by providing a single sample of how ProjeKct Two sounded when tackling a fully developed and structured instrumental piece. Frankly speaking, the encore paled in comparison to the 90 minutes of music preceding it, as its rehearsed complexities and nuances were nowhere near as impressive as the knotty, towering sound collages that ProjeKct Two created on the fly as the rapt audience watched and listened.
 
Fripp, Belew and Gunn were watching and listening to each other as well, and much of the thrill of this concert came from witnessing the interactions between these deeply talented musicians who have played together long enough to anticipate each other’s thoughts, sometimes before they eve realize that they’ve had them. Belew or Fripp typically opened each number with a drum or guitar pattern that the other musicians would would investigate, mount and ride, sometimes to loud and uplifting summits, sometimes to quiet, scary grottoes, sometimes back to the point at which they started. It was actually harrowing to experience in many cases, as the trio careened just on this side of control as they rode, the looks on their faces indicating that it was just as thrilling (and frightening) for them as it was their audience.
 
As important as technical prowess was to the concert’s success, mention must also be made of ProjeKct Two’s technological proficiancy. Belew was playing the latest generation of Roland virtual drums, allowing him to create a seemingly infinite number of sonic assaults as he clattered and rattled along with a look-Ma-I’ve-got drums grin on his face. (Understandable, given that he’s normally a guitarist.) Gunn matched Belew’s rhythmic and textural intensity as he tapped, stroked and and beat the touchboard of his Warr guitar.
 
Fripp spun out any number of his trademark spine-tingling sustained guitar lines but also used the treatment technology he has developed over the years via his Soundscape and Frippertronic performance experiments to create a wealth of tones and intonations. At times, the bands’ sounds were so far skewed from what your eyes were reporting to your brain that it was almost psychologically easier to look at the floor and imagine that Fripp was playing cluster chords on some beaten-up jazz-hall piano while Gunn blew on a baritone sax and Belew kept time by tapping on whisky bottles and ashtrays. Crazy, man, crazy.
 
All told, ProjeKct Two’s concert was a magnificent one, and I must confess to feeling great relief in being able to report that. Why? Because Robert Fripp’s written and recorded works have done more to shape both how I listen to and how I think about music than have any other artist’s over the last two decades, although I never actually stood in the same space with Fripp until last Friday. So imagine the potential for debilitating disappointment at this show, and then imagine the transcendent relief and joy when it didn’t come to pass. It literally moved me to tears. And how often can a wordless concert do that?"
 


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Robert Fripp Speaking At Lady & The Champs 15
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Sun., Jan 18, 2015
Patricia Fripp answers the question "why is Robert Fripp speaking at Lady And The Champs Speakers Conference" in this video. You can find out more about the event and how to stream Robert and Patricia's contributions direct to your PC here. 


Here Comes The Gunn
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Sun., Jan 18, 2015
Trey Gunn is a busy, busy man. This week in Seattle  he takes part in what's described an electro-acoustic semi-improvised opera entitled The Ballad of Ishtar (more details about the cast here).

At the end of the month he's in the UK and Europe as part of the Security project, performing the music of Peter Gabriel alongside Jerry Marotta with whom Trey first worked with on the Sylvian Fripp release, The First Day back in 1993.

Trey is also releasing a new album. Entitled The Waters, They Are Rising it includes a series of improvisations based around Peter Gabriel's Here Comes The Flood.





You can listen to one of the improvs and a haunting version of Bob Dylan's Not Yet Dark here.

Live At The Orpheum At Home 2
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Sat., Jan 17, 2015
As Live At The Orpheum begins to arrive in people's houses, so too do the photos. First up today, looking decidedly cheery with his purchase, is Theo Horneman from Friesland, in the Netherlands.



Also spotted via Twitter comes this picture from the artist Martin Hoogeboom, spookily also from the Netherlands! Martin writes "Man in painting turns around saying 'I hate King Crimson!'. Me? On the contrary..."



Please keep 'em coming via competitions@dgmlive.com marked Orpheum.

Grooning?
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Sat., Jan 17, 2015
My thanks to Eric for this intriguing item. "I regularly follow a satirical webzine called Des Mean in Iowa, where I live. Today the following post appeared in their Twitter feed . . .

Get to Know an Iowan #1: Konrad Yüngermann


I followed it to an interview with their curator, who is apparently from a Swedish town called Gröön . . . among other details of a Crimson hue. Hmmmm . . . . "


KC: Transmitting From The Future...
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Fri., Jan 16, 2015
Live At The Opheum receives a thumbs-up from the pages of online journal, The Quietus.



"...On the evidence of Live At The Orpheum, KC still sound like they're transmitting from a future we haven't reached yet..." Read the full review here.


Robert Fripp: Up Close & Personal
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Wed., Jan 14, 2015
Robert and his sister will be appearing at the Las Vegas Public Speaking Conference. If you're unable to attend but would like to hear what the duo have to say you're able to stream the video into the comfort of your own home. Find out how by clicking here! 


On This Date 46 Years Ago
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Tue., Jan 13, 2015
This date in 1969 marks the official beginning of King Crimson with the start of rehearsals in the cramped basement of the Fulham Palace Cafe. Situated at 193 Fulham Palace Road, W6, the cafe was owned by George and Peter Calatychos who let out their basement as a rehearsal space. It had been found by Peter Sinfield, then the band's roadie and lighting person.

According to Ian McDonald's diary at around 7.30pm, Dik, Pete, Bob and Greg called round to his flat to come and shift the 'tron to the new rehearsal rooms on the Fulham Palace Road. Once they'd set everything up, McDonald's diary also reveals the band had a blow until just after 10.00 p.m.

It would be King Crimson's base of operations for the next two and a half years.




Here's how the cafe was looking in 2011 when I visited the location to take part in a Japanese TV documentary...











It's astonishing to think that a four piece band and all their gear used to fit into such a confined space. The same space was used by bands after King Crimson vacated the cafe in 1972 for several years.





Live At The Orpheum At Home
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Tue., Jan 13, 2015
Here's a picture of composer Andrew Keeling at home with his copy of Live At The Orpheum taken from Andrew's Facebook page.



If you've got a snap of the album at home and you'd like to share with everyone, send it to us via competitions@dgmlive.com marked Orpheum.

Guestbook Reprieved
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Mon., Jan 12, 2015
Just when you thought it was all over - the guestbook has received a last-minute stay of execution! Check out David Singleton's updated diary for the details. 


Mister Stormy's Monday Selection
:: Posted by Sid Smith on Mon., Jan 12, 2015
Mister Stormy has blown the dust off Robert Fripp's appearance on the Mark Radcliffe Show on Radio 1 back in July 1995 There's nearly 25 minutes worth of witty banter and three soundscapes (including the legendary No Pottyflushing) to tickle your earbuds. Tune in to the fun right here.


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