Given the weight of history that presses down upon KC’s debut album, it’s often something of a surprise to discover that some gigs such as this (their 47th) have an almost carefree sense of abandon to them.
The improvisations are clearly amorphous zones where ideas were thrown up in the air to see where they might land. Sometimes the intention is playful and obviously designed to entertain both crowd and band members alike. On other occasions the music is deadly serious and there’s a sense of steely purpose to the proceedings.
Most of this concert first appeared on disc 4 of the Epitaph box set but due to a combination of CD time limitations in 1997, and the wayward tuning on some tracks (primarily caused by voltage fluctuations on the Mellotron), significant edits and excisions were made when preparing the gig for release.
Over twenty minutes of this concert has been restored - primarily the inclusion of The Court of the Crimson King and full versions of the improvisation and Mars. If you already have this concert as part of the Epitaph box set then you already have what Robert felt to be the essence of the concert and will almost certainly not need to proceed to download.
If however, the Epitaph box set is not part of your collection then this download offers a “warts and all” through-view of the kind of things that happened on a King Crimson stage in 1969.