Massey Hall

Whenever the song is performed the audience reaction usually consists of folks gasping and other people loosing it completely. It’s easy to understand why. Firstly, it’s a great song. Secondly, *that* guitar line. Thirdly, There’s not many points in the Crimson set that lend themselves to blissed-out, air-punching singalongs but Heroes does just that. Fourthly, cowbell.
Written by Michael Inman
Music the Catalyst- Bringing People together
Having been at the Nov 20, 2015 show in Toronto I didn't think anything could top that night. Front and Center in front of 3 drummers was something of a dream when each and every member could be heard perfectly in the mix. After that gig I drove home to Michigan in a snowstorm 6hrs in total silence only hearing the words to Epitaph over and over in my head as sung by Jakko the night before. How could this show top that? Well it all started with a wonderful gracious pair of hosts....David Singleton and his daughter Iona who work tirelessly to make sure each Royal Package member was treated with the best service! The lecture by David was great as he talked about the beginnings of DGM Live and how it all came about and where it's going in the future. Then joined by Jakko for a Q&A Session. Lots of great insights! All pre-show! Next up the main event! Seated center 3rd row on an aisle I was pleasantly surprised by how close I was to the stage yet once again. Immediately the comradery of fellow Crimson fans set in....talking to the man to my left who brought his 15yr old son with him to see what he had seen in 2015. Well what was about to unfold was still a mystery yet. The Audience was very well behaved or so it seemed. And then the band began to play. Immediately I noticed that the addition of Jeremy Stacy in the center drum position added a much heavier sound to the mix. He also doubled on keyboards on several pieces and did so quite eloquently. Larks Tongues in Aspic Part 1 was beautiful from the onset. Then they broke into a very wonderful version of Neurotica, followed by Radical Action III an added new piece. But what was about to begin was the Lizard Phase of the show. First up was Cirkus! As mellotron Madness ensued I looked to my right across the aisle from me and there was a fellow fan freaking out laughing, crying, gripping his face in sheer joy and excitement. He caught my look and gave me a high five to the side across the aisle. And then....a simply frightening version of Dawn Song began. I have to say this was one of my favorites of the entire set. Prince Ruperts Lament is so divine and really showcased Roberts infamous sliding sustaining guitar work quite nicely. He never ceases to amaze me each time I see him play. My first time was in 1984 on the Three of a Perfect Pair tour....and that technique made me feel like I was witnessing the avant Hendrix. In the terms of what it must have been like for a fan to see Jimi play for the first was how I felt watching Robert play. And again in Toronto the other night on Prince Ruperts Lament. Watching the three drummer lineup play perfectly orchestrated complex parts as a greater whole was so amazing! There were moments when I was watching the drummers go full on and it felt like a runaway freight train going down a mountain with no was absolutely breathtaking! Pat was playing with such intensity that I watched him lose his breath several times throughout the night. Jeremy really pushed them to play harder....and what a great drummer he is as well. WOW! So powerful! His solo section on 21st Century Schizoid Man was just intense! After he was done then Gavin proceeded to show us how one can make very complex things sound easy! Let us not forget Mr. Mel Collins in the background going hysterically crazy on horns and flutes and such all through the show. Tony was playing with precision and grace as always. Bill was covering a lot of keyboard territory, Jakko was singing flawlessly and Robert....well Robert was playing like a madman storming the gates. Each and every member of this band is as important as the next and each and every member contributes in a way that adds to the intensity that is King Crimson! When they played Islands I don't think there was a dry eye in sight! I saw the man sitting next to me wiping his eyes...and the guy across the aisle was weeping as well. Oh and so was I...what a melancholic song of Beauty Islands is! So glad they have made it a staple of this go round! Just wanted to say thanks to all the members of the band, David and Iona Singleton and all the crew members for making this night a night to remember. In a time when many people are torn apart Music is the Catalyst that brings us all together. Thanks again for such a beautiful experience!
Written by Stefan Blazanovic
It was good the first time hearing them, Second time was even better!
Well what can I say it's a great improvement from the 2015 show I've seen in the queen elizabeth theatre. King Crimson was amazing in terms of quality and musicianship they've shown throughout the show. There was no moments where the band was slacking or wasn't performing as well, the only issue I had was jakko's vocals seems too underwhelming when singing in the morr bombastic songs whereas islands & cirkus was clear to hear his voice. Also this is single handedly the best incarnation as well. The only incarnation to preform all eras of king crimson (yep from 1969 to present day crim) and they preform each piece well. And it was heart warming to hear fallen angel and lizard/cirkus played in concert. I'm only in my early 20's and for a while I was jealous of those of the older fans that they had the opportunity to listen to the older crim incarnations. But now after that night of hearing crim playing for the second time. I'm not too angry seeing how this concert (and possiblity this tour) will be known as king crimson's best incarnation to date.
Written by ALLAN G OKADA
Lizard !
A tremendous show in Toronto last night at the beloved Massey Hall. This is my favourite venue to see a show in the city for sound, sight lines and general "good vibes" that you get being between those historic walls. Ample warnings before the show reminding everyone of the camera/video policy appeared to work as I did not witness any offenders which is a real pleasant bonus. So many shows are marred by a sea of video screens, which is pointlessly annoying. I saw the 7 piece band last time around and could immediately sense an elevated level of confidence in the playing. Most notable was Fripp himself who was really fired up. A natural evolution of a band the longer it stays together I suppose. Lots of "new" old material that was nothing short of thrilling to see performed. Fallen Angel and Islands were very welcome additions. The latter highlighted by the superb piano playing of Jeremy Stacey. His drumming during Schizoid man was also particularly riveting. A fantastic choice and great addition to the KC monster. Even stronger which I did not think possible. Other pieces which I had seen them perform the prior year were even more powerful. Easy Money was fantastic. The Letters contained Mel Collins' best improvisations. The unexpected "Indiscipline" was also another treat. Jakko's choice to add a melodic reading of the lyrics was a nice choice. For me however the biggest thrill of the evening was the material from Lizard. I have loved this album since childhood and never dreamed I would ever hear it performed. Cirkus was incredibly powerful with again the piano and the playing of Mel Collins. Much stronger than the Islands band ever did it thanks to the power of the drum section. However it was The Battle of Glass Tears played in its entirety that totally floored me. It was astoundingly powerful. The Prince Rupert's Lament solo by Fripp was nothing short of riveting. The highlight of the evening for me. Of course all of the favourites where there in shining form as well including Heroes which was a great version. It felt like a tribute to a departed friend which added a level of poignancy. I sensed many audience members risen to heights of pure ecstasy that was a joy to behold. I witnessed literal tears of joy during Starless :) Thanks so much to all !