You might expect King Crimson’s energies to be flagging a little by the time they appeared in Berkeley. After all this was the 34th gig on 40-plus series of concerts in North America. Yet if the chaps are tired they certainly don’t sound it in this fiery gig where they opened for The Eagles.

Doctor D and a frankly astonishing LTIApt1 suggest that in a parallel universe , Crimso could have been a top-notch jazz rock outfit giving the Mahavishnu Orchestra a run for their money. The section where Wetton solos is made all the more dramatic by a dark rumbling lines from Fripp that initially evoke the horror-tinged menace of Mars before they transform into some mutant brand of whacked-out rock. Bruford is on terrific form throughout. Not only do we get his trademark ability to swing like the clappers but his more abstract ruminations in the set-up to The Talking Drum demonstrates just how much he had absorbed from Jamie Muir’s short time within the band.

Right from the beginning of the show till its thunderous conclusion, the sheer drive and pace never lets up for an instant. This bootleg source tape has been given a bit of the old Mister Stormy wash and brush up, and despite the occasional dip in quality here and there, Crimson’s capacity to grab an audience by the lapels comes through loud and clear. If you’re a fan of this period Crimson there’s plenty of variation and detail to keep you happy.

AUDIO SOURCE: Bootleg CD and Cassette



Dr Diamond
Larks Tongues In Aspic Pt I
RF Announcement
Easy Money
Improv Intro To Exiles
Improv I
The Talking Drum
Larks Tongues In Aspic Pt II
21st Century Schizoid Man


Written by Tom Murphy
First KC Show
Great show. I remember my school chum Brian and I had 2nd row sets. Got there early after having smoked some hash. Very entertaining pre-show as we turned in our seats to observe the crowd entering the venue, trying to guess if they were here for KC or The Eagles. Crimson came on first. I vividly remember the audience being assaulted by white floods at some point. Perhaps upon entrance or the segue from Talking Drum to LTIAp2. The Eagles entered adorned in matching sequin outfits. We departed soon after a few of theirs. I have photos somewhere. Tom Murphy, Oakland, CA
Written by Brad Wilmot
Great show
This was my first time seeing the band though I'd been a fan since the beginning. I, too, regret being too much of a prog snob to stick around for the Eagles. At the time Dr Deeds blew me away, although it didn't stand up to my first impression when I heard it again on Great Deciever. Lark's One is amazing. The thing with this period is the band tries so hard to create the illusion that Muir is still there. It's not just banging on sheet metal and wood blocks. Bruford's fills have the same controlled frenzy bordering on chaos that Jaime brought to the band. At the beginning of Wetton's fuzz/wah solo Bruford erupts into a kick ass hard rock beat. No artsy fartsy stuff here. This is stand on your chair pump your fist in the air rock and roll. Fripp adds a horror movie soundtrack over the top of it. This is probably the hardest rocking minute you'll ever hear from King Crimson! This leads into a sublime David Cross violin break and of course the big finish.Easy Money features little Robert Fripp pickin' and grinnin' like he grew up in Nashville. The rest of the show is all top form concluding with an amazing Schizoid Man. All in all an excellent show to pick up.
Written by Jerry Smith
A really good audience recording for the era
A really good show in very good audience quality. Features Dr. Diamond in that cool early arrangement. You can never have enough Larks’ Tongues Part 1 and this one is superb. Pretty much the Larks’ Tongues album minus Book of Saturday unfortunately. On the bright side, there’s a cool 21st Century Schizoid Man as an encore. Here’s hoping more from this era turns up.  
Written by Jeff Oaster
More please...
Judging by this performance and the Atlanta one the following week, Crimso were really on fire at this point - moreso than usual. While the sound quality isn’t pristine and has some occasional dropouts, it is certainly listenable (B quality would be my rating). The version of LTiA1 is one of the finest I’ve heard, ranking up there with Brescia from March 74, the aforementioned Atlanta concert and the Oxford show with Jamie Muir. Fripp and Cross really shine on Exiles - I wish the intro improv was a bit longer but I have the feeling the band was on a a tight schedule. Bruford totally dominates on percussion during the lead-in to Talking Drum. All in all, a really terrific performance from start to finish. I hope that more of the spring/summer 1973 concerts get released at some point. Oh yeah, it’s also worth mentioning that Fripp’s announcement prior to Easy Money is among his best ever, as he attempts to work the audience into an "incredible pitch of excitement" as he Fripp can.