All SIX shows! May 24, 2012
Written by mannylunch
Yes, I was at ALL six NYC ’81 shows, including both early and late shows on the first night of the three, which begs the question: If this is the first set, why not come out and label it ’First House’? Or ’Second House’ if that’s what it is? Even though the recording of other show this night has still not come to light, DGM, please do identify which set this is.
Individually, and taken together, theses were perhaps the most defining musical experiences of my life [the 1974 Central Park show was another such live experience for me]. The first set this night was so unbelievable, I was depressed - I thought they must have cheated with tapes in the background. Then the second set that night I stood front center stage, watching every last note be the result of the work of the hands present - my jaw had to be picked up off the floor - by others. I was tearing with joy!
Rather than puttering around further trying to ape literacy through a display of verbosity, I’ll simply say: EPIPHANICALLY INDESCRIBABLE!
Do not hesitate to purchase these downloads!
Not a review, more like waking up from an intense dream May 24, 2012
Written by fermentedmusic
I felt a chill come up my back as I listened to this.
It does help (in the murkiness here and there) to know the tunes well over many years, but somehow the recording quality seems irrelevant. I had meant to give this a casual listen while working. I had to frequently drop what I was doing and let the music burn. Part of me wondered if the energy in it would relent, and it didn’t.
The ’81 Crimson is already among my favorite music ever, but these versions go beyond what I "know" of that music. The "Beat" songs sound almost like completely different material, wilder, more dreamy.
But maybe what struck me the most was what this show does to the meaning of the word "band". This is less like listening to 4 musicians, more like listening to a strange boisterous creature that keeps morphing into different shapes as it careens about. If I use the word "dances" instead of "careens", it would have to be like the Balinese masked Rangda and Barong. Each musician sounds electrified, simultaneously ready to hold down (and maybe even "improve") the foundation of the house and be ready to leap out of it into the sky, sometimes joining another musician who is doing the same. In fact, this happens in most of the songs (maybe most spectacularly in "Satori", "Indiscipline", and "The Sheltering Sky").
This music sounds new and ahead-of-its time even now, and that is mysteriously true of many musics that mean the most to me, whether ethnic or in the rock or jazz or electronic or classical or folk or whatever musical-cultural worlds.
Scary in the best sense, and as deep as it gets.
The audience are also a huge factor in making this gig what it is. (And they aren’t holding up cell phones, cameras, texting or staring at iPads.) It may be that a gig this explosive and creative is only possible before a great audience.
This show also gives a sense (as all great music does) of the endless creative possibilities inherent in music.
It seems silly to give this a "rating" in "stars", unless those star-shapes are furiously making mosaics around the screen and then catapulting off of it.
Audio Source: Bootleg Cassette
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