Written by Roderich Von Detten
tears of joy
"baby blue, I was there", and what a special night it was, this 3rd gig at the RAH. having seen this 4th definite formation of Krimson two times before (@Stuttgart in 2016 and @Munich in 2018), travelling from south-west germany to london with the prospect of seeing them playing at the RAH was like a dream coming true. to put it simple and straithforward (with a quote): “Sometimes it’s like angels descending from the clouds on chariots of fire, blowing trumpets of gold in your ear. Baby Blue, I was there” . in fact: an outstanding, exceptional experience - what a sublime concert it was. tight, energetic, relentless, compelling & forceful: those would be some adjectives to describe what can only be experienced live: like a giant force whose beauty lies in the combination of a machine-like, steel-cold precision and the organic cohesion of the individual parts. there would be various points to talk about: the setlist, consisting of smaller "units" (the first set starting with a "discipline-suite", continuing with a "court-suite"), the outstanding pieces (really difficult to single out some: surely the "discipline-suite" with the propelling precision of "discipline" followed by "frame by frame" with an incredibly forceful yet elegant fripp guitarwork & the best "pictures.." i have heard so far. then of course the "flow" of "level 5 -> islands (!) -> easy money -> starless -> 21stcentury.."), the presence of the players, namely Mr. Fripp in an obviously fiery and fierce mood (Moonchild cadenza! Pictures! Starless!), the overall dramaturgy of the concert ... but I should probably just mention the physical experience of the whole evening. from the first drum beat it became clear once again, what is missing from even the best live recordings of that incarnation (Toronto, Chicago, Mexico): the feeling of the sheer power of their sound, combined with the rigidness of the lines played: deepness and warmths on the low end combined with sharpness and acidity on the upper registers. here, both of the specific acoustics of RAH as well as the sound system have to be mentioned: i have never before perceived a better sound at a krimson concert (this was my #6, at 5 different concert halls/ venues): loud, but very clear (with the exception of some weak bass sound at the beginning). exceptional. to summarize: go, see and hear them playing live as long as they tour. for me, definitely the best krimson gig i have attended so far. "baby blue, i was there"
Written by Ashley Gray
Royal Albert Hall, 20 June 2019
What a fabulous gig! The sheer energy, imagination and emotions I experienced last night makes this quite possibly the best gig I've ever attended (and I saw many of the classic bands of the late 60s and 70s). This line-up's interpretation of Islands is only the second time during any gig where i've been emotionally moved to the point of tears of joy - (the other time being Mr Fripp's own Soundscapes gig at Exeter Cathedral in June 0f 2006). And this band has not only technique but also humour in bucket-loads - witness the incredibly innovative interplay between Gavin, Pat and Jeremy. It's clever and very engaging stuff. Although their individual contributions are not competitive, in the sense of any one of them trying to outdo the other two, the overwhelming sense of all three having a lot of fun bouncing off each other is palpable. They each have great flair but they integrate this so well and add to the sum of the parts in a truly staggering way. Anyone who doubts the three drummer ideology need only see these guys live - even if they are set up at the front, it's heard to divert one's attention from what they are doing - individually and collectively. It's incredibly tight but also organic and alive. Nice to see Robert "shredding" with the best of them! It's also obvious that things are not static within the camp, as both the set and the arrangements have grown since last I say KC in Cardiff last year; witness the fascinating new into to Frame by Frame. Nice to see Mel "the Governor" Collins add his inimitable stamp to more recent material too. The incredible breath control shown on the lengthy arpeggio section at the end of his flute solo on "In the Court Of..." is something than many half his age could not pull off. Tony Levin is simply the best bass player on the planet at the moment. I seriously hope that Messrs. Fripp & Singleton, on listening to tonight's recordings, consider this (or at least one of these Royal Albert Hall gigs) worthy of a CD or download release, as I'd buy it in a heartbeat (no pun intended!). Thanks you to all involved in putting this event on, it was a truly fantastic evenings' entertainment!
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