Le Capitole Theatre
The Night Watch is of special interest here because of the ending; a two-mellotron reprise of the intro theme combined with a gentle backbeat gradually slowing to a halt after a few bars. This is the first time that these ears have heard this particular arrangement for the song and one that they subsequently revised into the standard coda pretty soon after this gig. Lament is given a forceful reading but the final verse is delivered over the descending/ascending patterns heard in the instrumental breakdown.
Also of special interest is the improvisation. Underpinned by a Tight Scrummy-style rhythm box albeit at a much slower tempo, there’s a degree of hesitancy in the embellishments from Wetton and Bruford. Fripp and Cross, however, dive in. The snaking, sinuous guitar has the same howling quality that modern-day listeners will be familiar with from Asbury Park, while Cross turns in some gothic Mellotron that adds grandeur and depth. When everything slows down and spaces open up, Fripp ushers in the introduction to LTIA Pt II, the band dispensing entirely with The Talking Drum that would usually set the track up in later gigs. A boomy but eminently listenable audience recording, along with a couple of laugh-out-loud moments courtesy of Robert’s announcements and dynamic, persuasive versions of the LTIA material this show is a must-have for fans of this incarnation.