King Crimson

King Crimson (2007`den beri yapım aşamasındadır)

Bugünkü King Crimson kadrosu sırasıyla Trey Gunn, Adrian Belew, Robert Fripp ve Pat Mastelotto

Sayfada yorumlanan albümleri:
The Cheerful Insanity Of Giles, Giles And Fripp – In The Court Of The Crimson King – In The Wake Of Poseidon – Islands – Larks’ Tongues In Aspic – Red – Evening Star – One Of A Kind – Discipline – Beat – Three Of A Perfect Pair – Absent Lovers – Earthworks – Dig? – Mr. Music Head – Young Lions – Show Of Hands – Inner Revolution – Here – VROOOM – THRAK – The gitar As Orchestra – Op Zop Too Wah – Salad Days – The ConstruKction Of Light

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King Crimson progressif rock dünyasının kimi zaman en anlaşılmaz, kimi zaman da yüreklerden yıllarca silinmeyecek izler bırakabilen bir grubudur. Sürekli olarak müzik yetenekleri en üst düzeyde olan elemanları barındıran diğer bu tarz gruplarda olduğu gibi yine bir virtüöz ve Robert Fripp gibi bir öndere sahip olan grup Jethro Tull da Ian Anderson`un olduğu gibi kuruluşundan bugüne dek değişmeyen tek sanatçı. Birçok yetenekli müzisyene ev sahipliği yapan ve bu sayede de bir çok stilde ürünler veren grup, popüler rock müziğinden olabildiğince uzak kalmaya çalışan Fripp`in izinde ismini sürdürmektedir. Buna örnek olarak, hemen her Türk gencinin bir kere dinlemiş ve kız arkadaşına hazırladığı kaset veya CDye koyduğu, bir çoğunu aşık olduğunda ağlatabilen (oysa ki sözler çok başka şeyler anlatır) “Epitaph” ve bulunduğu albüm In The Court Of Crimson King, grubu ticari olarak büyük başarılara götürebilecektiyse de Fripp, popülerlik yerine deneysel sanat formları içinde arayışlarda bulunmayı tercih etmiştir. Crimson`un gerçek tarzını yakalayabilmek için albümlerin içerisinde dikkatli ve açık fikirli bir araştırmaya ihtiyaç vardır.

King Crimson müzik dünyasına muhteşem girişini 1969 yılında çıkarttığı ilk albümü In The Court Of The Crimson King ile yaptı. Fakat ne yazık ki kişisel problemler ve farklılıkları yüzünden 1971 yılına kadar büyük bir basçı ve solist olan Greg Lake`i Emerson Lake And Palmer grubuna, bir multi-instrumentalist olan Ian McDonald`ı da Foreigner grubuna kaptırmış oldu. 4. ve en gelişmiş formasyonlarının 1973 yılı itibariyle Fripp, Yes davulcusu Bill Bruford, ve solist/basçı John Wetton ile sağlandığı düşünülür. Fakat bu versiyon da tek albümlük oldu. Ancak 80lerde oluşan ve günümüzde de devam eden formasyonu en kalıcı olanı oldu. Davulda zaman zaman yer alan Bruford`un yanısıra, Brian Eno`nun David Bowie, Frank Zappa, ve Talking Heads albümlerindeki yardımcısı şarkıcı ve gitarist Adrian Belew, basta dünyanın en iyi basçılarından Tony Levin`in katılımıyla üç albüm gerçekleştiren grup bir süre ara verdiği kariyerine 90larda Trey Gunn ve eski Mr. Mister`in davulcusu Pat Mastelottoyu da dahil ederek ikişerli gitar davul ve bas triosu yarattı. Bu ekip kendi içinde çeşitli değişikliklerle günümüzde çalışmalarını sürdürüyor.

Kadro:
Robert Fripp (gitar, mellotron) tüm albümlerde yer alır.

1969 – 1970: Michael Giles (davul, vokal), Greg Lake (bas, solist), Ian McDonald (saksafon, nefesliler, klavyeler, vokal), Peter Sinfield (sözler). McDonald daha sonra Mel Collins (saksafon, flüt) ve Keith Tippet (piyano) ile yer değiştirdi, Peter Giles Lake den bası aldı, 1969.

1970 sonlarında: Mel Collins (saksafon, flüt), Gordon Haskell (bas, vokal), Andy McCulloch (davul), Keith Tippet (piyano).

1971 – 1972: Sinfield, Boz Burell (bas, solist), Mel Collins (saksafon, flüt, mellotron), Keith Tippet (piyano), Ian Wallace (davul). Burell daha sonra Bad Company`e katıldı.

1973 – 1975: Bill Bruford (davul), David Cross (viyolin, viyola, klavyeler), Jamie Muir (perküsyon), Richard Palmer-James (sözler), John Wetton (bas, solist). Muir 1973 de, Cross 1974 de ayrıldılar.

1980s – 90s: Adrian Belew (gitar, solist), Bill Bruford (davul), Tony Levin (bas, stick, geri vokal). Grup 1984 de dağıldı, ancak 1994 yılında Trey Gunn (stick, geri vokal) and Pat Mastelotto (perküsyon)nun ilavesiyle yeniden bir araya geldi.

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The Cheerful Insanity Of Giles, Giles And Fripp (Giles, Giles And Fripp: 1968)
Crimson öncesi pek bilinmeyen bir dönemin albümüdür. Çok farklı caz tonlarıyla pop tarzı parçaların karışımından (“Digging My Lawn”) hatta 1920lerin orkestral pop tarzı parodilerinden (“The Sun Is Shining”) oluşur. (“Erudite Eyes”) adlı enstrumentalde olduğu gibi Peter Giles’in yürüyen bas hatları, Michael Giles’in mükemmel lezzetli caz davuluyla birleşir ve pes tonlardaki vokal ile vahşi denemeler ile tuhaf eski tarzlar arasında gider gelir.(“Newly-Weds”; “How Do They Know”; “Little Children,”). Fripp çoğunlukla temiz , düşük volümlü bir tonla çalar, fakat (“The Crukster”) ve (“Suite No. 1”) meletron hatları ilave ederek ilginç bir çalış tarzı elde eder. Bu albümden hatırlanacak parçalar komik tarzıyla “Elephant Song,” “North Meadow,” bosa nova ile The Kinks tarzı karışımlı “One In A Million,” ve hoş bir balad olan “Thursday Morning.” McDonald saksafon ve flütüyle katkıda bulunur.
In The Court Of The Crimson King (1969)
Onların altın plak alan tek albümleridir. Progresif Rock akımının yeni parlamaya başladığı 1969 yılı yapımı bu baş yapıt her müzik dinleyicisinin elinin altında olması gereken bir albümdür. Mükemmel pasajlar, dokunaklı sözler, melletron`un belki de en iyi kullanıldığı orkestrasyonuyla, gitarda Fripp`in, vokalde yumuşak ama etkili Lake`in, davulda daha sonra izine rastlanmayan ama müthiş tekniğiyle herkezi hayran eden davulcu Michael Giles`in bulunduğu bir albümdür. Sözler Tolkienden esinlenerek grubun bir elemanı haline gelen Peter Seinfield tarafından kaleme alınmıştır. Nefesli sazlar ve klavyede Ian McDonald grubun müziğinin tamamlayıcısı olur. Bir çeşit progresif rock klasiği sayılan “21st Century Schizoid Man” ile açılan albüm, daha sonra mükemmel bir balad “I Talk To The Wind” ile devam eder. Benzer bir temaya LP dönemlerinde 2. yüzde olan “Moonchild” da da rastlarız. Fakat Bu parçanın ilerleyen bölümleri caz etkisindeki prog rock takılmasından başlayarak bitmeyen bir atonal denemelerle devam eder. Ian McDonald`ın yazdığı parçaların gücü ayrılışıyla grubu bu yönde zorlamaya başlayacaktır.

In The Wake Of Poseidon (1970)
Kayıtların ortasında Lake`in Emerson Lake & Palmer`i oluşturmak için terk ettiği bi albümdü. Onun yerine akustik gitar, flüt ve piyanoyla çalınan yumuşak “Cadence And Cascade,” balad parçasında vokalde Gordon Haskell yer aldı. “Pictures Of A City,” büyük metalik bir koro ve çılgın bir enstrumantal bölüm içeriyordu. Albüme adını veren parça Greg Lake`in ayrılmadan önce kaydettiği, melletron`un ağırlıklı kullanıldığı, sekiz dakikalık süresiyle In The Court dan büyük izler taşıyan hoş bir parçaydı. Daha da uzun deneysel bir parça olan “Devil’s Triangle,” yine bu albümde yer aldı. Temel problem, Fripp`in düzgün melodilerle besteye katkı yapıp albümü tamamlamak yerine, ne yaptığını bilmez bir şekilde az veya çok amplifikasyonla ambient ses tayfları oluşturmaya başlaması ve tuhaf fikirler peşinde koşması idi. Fripp`in solo tarzının ilk işaretleri bu albümde ortaya çıkmaya başlamıştır. Bu forma istisna tek parça ise “Cat Food,” adlı vahşi bir piyano ve funk tarzı bas hattının Zappa esintili nakaratıyla tamamlanan modern pop şarkısıydı. Bence tüm King Crimson severlerin arşivlerinde bulunmalı.

McDonald And Giles (McDonald And Giles: 1970)
McDonald ve Giles 1969daki turnenin sonunda gruptan ayrıldılar ve birkaç ay sonra bir araya gelerek kendilerine ait bir albüm kaydettiler. Ve sonuçta beklentilerin de üzerinde bir yapıtla müzikseverlerin karşısına çıktılar çünkü Giles çok yetenekli bir solist ve McDonald da çok başarılı bir şarkı yazarı ve multi enstrumantalist idi. Peter Giles, Lake`in hala bir miktar King Crimsonda olmasından dolayı çalamayacağı için kendisi bas gitarı çaldı. Bu albümde Steve Winwood konuk sanatçı olarak yer aldı.

Lizard (1970)
Fripp bu albümde yarı akustik klasik caz`a doğru yöneldi ve sonuç hayranlarında karmaşık duygular uyandırdı. Sinfield`in de katkılarıyla çok daha dikkatli şarkılar yazılmıştı bu albümde. Diğer albümlerdeki karanlık, dramatik sert rock bu albümde sadece bir iki parçada kendini gösterebildi. Fripp de elektrik gitarını diğer albümlerden daha az çaldı. Orjinal kadrodan artık sadece Fripp ve Sinfield kalmıştı fakat yeni gelen Mel Collins (flüt, saksafon) ve Andy McCulloch (davul) ayrılanların yerini başarıyla doldurdu. Üç kişilik nefesliler grubu bazı parçalarda gruba eşlik etti. Yes`in solisti Jon Anderson (“Prince Rupert Awakes”) isimli parçayı seslendirdi.

Islands (1971)
Fripp ve Sinfield önderliğinde her türlü uç noktaları deneyen grup bir çıkmaza girdi. Grup orkestral müziğini (“Formentera Lady”), yapısız jams that retread their first album (“Sailor’s Tale”), sloth-like piyano/horns/choirboy-vokal balladry (title track), or the occasional rock song (“The Letters,” which goes to hell in the middle; “Ladies Of The Road,” the only really good tune, but a truly snotty tribute to the band’s groupies). At least you get to hear more of Fripp’s mellotron playing and his loud and crazy gitar parts. Bir rock albümünde klasik müzik dinleme ilginçliğine bu albümde de rastlıyoruz – Fripp’in bestesi “Prelude: Song Of The Gulls” 18. yüzyıldan çıkıp gelmiş gibidir. Diğer taraftan çalışma o dönemki Frank Zappa’nın benzer ve çok daha ciddi ve yaratıcı çalışmalarının yanında sönük kalmaktadır. Another album, another drummer and another singer/basist: this was Boz Burrell’s sole appearance on a Crimson studio recording. His voice is grittier, lower, and less far-ranging than that of any other singer associated with the group, but since there aren’t a lot of vokal here it never really matters. (JA)

Earthbound (1972)
Burrell`li kadrosuyla Amerika da verilen bir konser kaydı. Açılış parçası yeni bir kompozisyon ve “Cat Food” 45liğinin ikinici yüzünde yer alan “Groon”, burada 15 dakika sürüyor. Ayrıca “Peoria,” adlı bir jam ve ona bağlanan “21st Century Schizoid Man” yaklaşık 12 dakika sürüyor.

Larks’ Tongues In Aspic (1973)
Yeni King Crimson kadrosunun birlikte çalışmasından ortaya çıkan bir albümdü. Sözler bu kez Richard Palmer-James, bas/vokal John Wetton, viyolinist David Cross, ve Yes`in son derece başarılı davulcusu Bill Brufordlu kadroya perküsyonist Jamie Muir de dahil olmasına rağmen albüm çıkmadan önce gruptan ayrılmıştı. Albümde çok hoş, sakin pop tarzı bir parça vardı (“Book Of Saturday”) ve bize ilk albümdeki “Moonchild.”`i hatırlatıyordu. Fakat geri kalan altı parçanın dördü, yedi dakikanın üzerinde idi ve bunlara ilaveten bir King Crimson klasiği sayılan 13-dakikalık jam parçası “Larks’ Tongues In Aspic, Part One” yer alıyordu. Bu arada, “Talking Drum” isimli emprövize parça gölgede kalmış bir groove a sahiptir. Ancak buna karşın “Exiles” muhteşem yapısıyla ilk dönem Crimson sounduna sahipti; “Easy Money” albümün en başarılı parçalarındandı ve etkili vokal rifi ile grubun uyumunu en iyi yansıtan parçalardan oldu. Tabi albüme adını veren enstrumantal “Larks’ Tongues In Aspic, Part Two” Prog Rock camiası için artık bir köşe taşıdır. Yoğunluğu ve heavy metal tarzı andıran matematik Fripp rifflerinin viyolin melodisyle oluşturduğu kontrast dinleyicileri her zaman etkiler. Island dan sonra bize çok daha başarılı bir döneme girildiğini ve ardından gelecek mükemmel bir albümü müjdelemektedir.

(No Pussyfooting) (Fripp & Eno: 1973)
Bu ikilinin belki de yaptıkları en tanınmayan enstrumantal albümleri saylabilir. Bir yıl içinde uzun iki jam session da kaydedilenlerden oluşturulmuştur. Temel olarak o gün için bir çığır açan ancak bugün pek anlam ifade etmeyen ambient seslerin kaydını içermektedir.

The Nightwatch: Live At The Amsterdam Concertgebouw Kasım 23 1973 (kayıt. 1973, yayın. 1997)
Çiftli olarak yayınlanan CD Fripp, Wetton, Cross, ve Bruford`lu kadronun yıllar sonra piyasaya sürülen konser kayıtlarını içerir. Starless And Bible Black bu kayıtların yarısından hareketle yaratıldığı için Fripp tarafından gün ışığına çıkarılmakta yarar görülmüş bir kayıttır. İki parça (“Fracture”) Starless, de yayınlanmadan önce yeniden kaydedildi. Fakat bu albümde bu kayıtlar yer almıyor. “21st Century Schizoid Man” haricindeki tüm parçalar bu dönemde bestelenmiştir. Büyük bir hayran değilseniz çok gerekli görünmüyor.

Starless And Bible Black (1974)
Yukardaki konserin kayıtlarından oluşturulan çoğunluğu canlı kaydedilmiş bir albümdür. Ancak stüdyoda üstüne yeni kayıtlar ilave edilmiş veya düzeltilmiştir. Albümün hit single`ı “The Night Watch.” oldu. Yine Fripp`in döngüsel deneyleri ve avangard yaklaşımlarının yer aldığı, vokal bölümlerine pek özen gösterilmeyen, grubun jam sessionlarındaki eforunu daha çok yansıttığı bir çalışma olmuştur. Fakat Wetton`un az olsa da vokali son derece etkileyici şekilde dramatiktir. Ve hem Bruford hem Fripp yaratıcı tarzlarını fazlasıyla bu kayıtlarda gösterebilmişlerdir. Evet bir sonraki albümün düzeyinde olmamasına rağmen gidiş yönünün çok başarılı olduğu bir diğer albüm olmuştur.

Red (1974)
Kurulduğu günden itibaren prog rock müzisyenlerinin kendilerini gösterme yeri haline gelen Crimson Fripp dışındaki tüm üyelerinin değişimiyle ticari bir kaygının da peşinde olmamıştı. Ancak 1974 tarihindeki bu albümle kuruluşundan itibaren ulaştığı en büyük popüleriteyi yakalama şansı elde etmişti. Uzun, neredeyse kaotik jam parçası (“Providence”) i da içerir ancak Fripp’s yüksek voltajlı enstrumantal açılış parçası 80lerdeki King Crimson`u da şekillendirirken bir yandan da prog rock müziğinin söyleyecek sözleri olan virtüözlerin elinde nasıl bir rock klasiği haline geleceğini de gösterir. Diğer parçalar da birbirinden etkileyicidir (“Fallen Angel”; “Starless”). John Wetton`un Lake`i andıran söyleyişiyle sanki klavyesiz ELP albümüyle karşı karşıyayızdır. Bruford’un davulu da Carl Palmer`in davul tekniğini andırır. David Cross kayıtların ortasında gruptan ayrılmasına rağmen katkıları albümde belirtildi. Grubun eski halindeki diğer nefesli çalgılar elemanları Mel Collins, Ian McDonald, albüme katkıda bulundu.

USA (1975)
David Cross`un yer aldığı fakat Muir`in bulunmadığı bir konser albümüdür. Üstüne yapılan kayıtlarda Roxy Music üyesi Eddie Jobson (viyolin, piyano) bazı parçalarda yer alıyor. “21st Century Schizoid Man,”in farklı bir versiyounun da yer aldığı albümde üç farklı versiyonu ile Larks’ Tongues, Starless albümünden (“Lament”), ve yeni bir parça olan (“Asbury Park”) bu albümde yer alıyor. Fripp, Bruford, ve Wetton bu albümden sonra solo ve süper gruplarla kariyerlerine devam ettiler. Fripp belki de en yüksek profili çizerek, Brian Eno, Peter Gabriel, Darryl Hall, ve David Bowie ile birlikte çalışmalar yaptı.

Evening Star (Fripp & Eno: 1976)
I have to admit that I find Frippertronics boring. But this time around there are enough distractions to at least make the record good background music. Side 1 is broken up into four segments. “Wind On The Water” is standard-issue Frippertronics, one big soup of humming noises that does nothing more interesting than gradually increasing in volume. The high point is the title track: Fripp taps out a gentle harmonic arpeggio and solos atonally while Eno plays some mellow keyboard parts reminiscent of his slightly later work with David Bowie. On the briefer “Evensong” and “Wind On Wind,” Fripp mostly lays off but Eno pumps out more of the same. All of this is relaxing and aesthetic. But with a half-hour running time, side 2 (“An Index Of Metals”) is more daunting. Eno and Fripp trade off introducing tonal ideas that take minutes to build, and although there’s a progression and they succeed in creating an eerie mood, the lack of any melody or rhythm leaves you unsatisfied. More substantial than much of Fripp’s solo work, the album is still only of interest to serious fans. (JA)

Feels Good To Me (Bruford: 1977)
By now Bruford had formed an instrumental combo with Allan Holdsworth (gitar), who had just left Tony Williams’ jazz-fusion ensemble Lifetime; Jeff Berlin (bas, some vokal); and Dave Stewart (klavyeler). Vocalist Annette Peacock and horn player Kenny Wheeler also appear on the record. (JA)

UK (UK: 1978)
A temporary diversion for Bruford and Holdsworth as they teamed with ex-Crimson frontman John Wetton and ex-Crimson/Roxy Music multi-instrumentalist Eddie Jobson to take a stab at the prog rock supergroup thing. The result was critically acclaimed, but Bruford and Holdsworth ditched the band almost immediately. Despite this, Jobson and Wetton quickly recorded two further UK records before folding the band. (JA)

In 1978 Fripp produced Peter Gabriel’s second self-titled solo album and appeared on Blondie’s Parallel Lines. (JA)

One Of A Kind (Bruford: 1979)
This an immediately likeable effort, although it’s completely in the mainstream of late 70s instrumental jazz-fusion. Berlin sounds exactly like Jaco Pastorius, Holdsworth a lot like John McLaughlin, and Bruford like himself, which is a damn good thing. But there’s a big difference: unlike such highly commercial fusion acts as Weather Report, these guys manage not just to stay melodic and accessible even at their most technically dazzling, but to avoid the repetition, self-indulgence, and sentimentality that often made the genre unbearable. Better still, you’ll hear encouraging echoes of 1980s Crimson in Bruford’s clattering technique and arrestingly unusual time signatures; Berlin’s moaning bas; and Holdsworth’s vaguely Fripp-like speedy arpeggiation, imaginative dissonance, and synthesized noisemaking. And impressively, Bruford wrote most of the material himself. In sum, a good buy for any Crimson fan who doesn’t care about vokal. The occasionally over-the-top, but mostly tasteful keyboard mania was handled here by the Dave Stewart who wasn’t in the Eurythmics. (JA)

Danger Money (UK: 1979)
Bu dönemde Bruford ve Holdsworth gittiler yerlerine ise olağanüstü bir adam geldi; Terry Bozzio (o dönem Frank Zappa`nın grubundan yeni ayrılan), ve volümlü bir gitarist yerine Jobson’un klavye ve kemanına ağırlık verildi.

Exposure (Fripp: 1979)
Darryl Hall ve Peter Gabriel`in vokalde yer aldığı Fripp’in ilk gerçek solo albümüdür. İçerdiği kendi albümünden farklı olarak sadece solo piyano ile seslendirilen Gabriel klasiği Here Comes The Flood için bile alınabilecek bir albüm. 1979 yılında ayrıca Fripp, Roches grubunun ilk aynı adlı albümünü de prodükte etmiştir.

Night After Night (UK: 1979)
Eddie Jobson, John Wetton ve Terry Bozziolu kadro ile gerçekleştirilen Danger Money albümünün turnesinde gerçekleştirilen bir çeşit konser dökümanteri. Seslendirilen parçaların çoğunluğu ilk iki albümden oluşmaktadır fakat bazı parçaların nereden geldiği belli değil. (“Night After Night”; “As Long As You Want Me Here”).

Gradually Going Tornado (Bruford: 1980)
I’ve actually seen this one, but figured I’d start with One Of A Kind because Holdsworth is replaced here by self-described no-name gitarist John Clark. Not the easiest pair of shoes to fill; I pity the guy. (JA)

God Save The Queen/Under Heavy Manners (Fripp: 1980)
An instrumental album with a solid block of Frippertronics on side 1 but a rhythm section added on side 2. Fripp produced Darryl Hall’s solo album Sacred Songs the same year. (JA)

Let The Power Fall (Fripp: 1981)
A full-length album of Frippertronics. (JA)

Discipline (1981)
Easily one of the best records of the 80s, although precedent was set by Fripp’s earlier work with Crimson and Eno (e.g., on late 70s David Bowie records). What’s really striking about it isn’t just Fripp’s stuttering, broken-record lead arpeggiations and Bruford’s precise, creative polyrhythms, but the new elements: Tony Levin’s bas parts throb and pulse like nothing that went before, and Adrian Belew delivers some impressively fractured poetic imagery and a haunting vocal delivery. He owes a lot to David Byrne, but he’s got greater vocal range and a better command of balladry (“Matte Kudasai”) and wordplay (the alphabetical, free-association “Elephant Talk”). Together, the result is one of the hardest-hitting, technically impressive, and, well, disciplined rock records ever made: it all comes together on tracks like “Thela Hun Ginjeet” that you won’t soon forget. The good news is that this, the ultimate Crimson combo, stayed together for three studio albums in the early 80s. The bad news is that the later albums are weaker; only Discipline is a fully realized masterpiece. Start here if with anything by the band. (JA)

At this point John Wetton joined Asia, which also featured members of Yes and ELP. Wetton lasted a couple of years before quitting. (JA)

Beat (1982)
There’s some good material here, but it doesn’t have the depth of the last record, which it otherwise closely resembles; there’s just too much instrumental messing around (the formless, noisy “Requiem”) and not enough crafty songwriting. Several tracks are merely loud instrumentals with Belew improvising melodically inscrutable vokal (the World Music-y “Waiting Man”; “The Howler”). On the plus side, the single “Heartbeat” is a truly great tune, and even if it’s a bit on the pop side for Crimson, its extraordinary backwards lead gitar part lifts it above mere balladry. “Sartori In Tangiers” is a first-rate instrumental; “Neurotica” captures the crazy, electronic rhythms its title suggests, as does “Neal And Jack And Me”; and “Two Hands” is yet another fine, if slightly over-mellow Belew love song. Move on to this if you found Discipline totally enthralling, like I did. (JA)

Lone Rhino (Belew: 1982)
Belew’s solo debut. I’ve heard it’s a good one, but it and the follow-up are not available on CD (fortunately, the compilation Desire Of The Rhino King collects much of the material). Belew recruited a full-blown band to record it, but played all the drum tracks himself. (JA)

In 1982 Fripp recorded I Advance Masked with Andy Summers. (JA)

Twang Bar King (Belew: 1983)
The same band appears here, augmented by a full-time drummer. (JA)

Three Of A Perfect Pair (1984)
Another sporadically brilliant effort by the hottest instrumental combo of the decade. There’s plenty of Levin’s hyperkinetic slap bas and burbling stick parts, Bruford’s tricky time signatures and unexpected electronic drum noises, and extraordinary gitar parts by Fripp and Belew. The vocal numbers are outstanding: the title track, an exciting and monumentally complex rock song; the crawling, cathartic “Model Man”; the double-time funk-neurosis masterpiece “Sleepless”; and “Man With An Open Heart,” a solid rock ballad with clever Japanese motifs. All of this is on the first side. But then Fripp takes over with the usual pointless instrumentals: there’s a densely arranged Frippertronics showcase (“Nuages”), an ominous, updated take on “Mars” (“Industry”), and a bunch of random noisemaking (“No Warning”). They do pull out one jaw-droppingly impressive instrumental with crazy modulations and warp-speed digital delay gitar parts (“Larks’ Tongues In Aspic Part III”), and the only vocal number on side 2 is unclassifiably brilliant (“Dig Me,” which swerves from mock-automotive sounds and bizarre rhythms to a Paul McCartney-like chorus). Flawed like Beat, but with a few more quality tunes this time. (JA)

Absent Lovers (rec. 1984, rel. 1998)
A live double CD recorded at the band’s last show before taking a decade-long break. This being Crimson’s tightest, cleverest, and funkiest lineup (“Elephant Talk”), they mostly focus on the stronger material from their last three studio albums. But they do deliver impressively accurate recreations of two key instrumentals from the mid-70s lineup’s repertoire: “Red” and “Larks’ Tongue In Aspic (Part II).” Belew’s poppier tunes get plenty of air time (“Matte Kudesai”; “Three Of A Perfect Pair”; “Frame By Frame”; “Heartbeat”), and the parade of ear-blasting instrumentals is mostly compelling (“Thela Hun Ginjeet”; “Discipline”). Admittedly, you do have to tolerate a chaotic noise jam (“Entry Of The Crims”), the oppressively militaristic “Industry,” and a bit too much of Bruford and his tuned electronic davul (“Indiscipline”). But Crimson’s arrangements had gotten staggeringly complex by this point, and hardly anything is lost in the transition to the stage – thanks to the rhythm section’s jaw-dropping virtuosity and the rich interplay between Fripp and Belew’s arpeggiating gitars (“Sleepless”). You won’t find “Court Of The Crimson King” here, but who cares? (JA)

In 1984 Fripp recorded a second and final collaborative album with Andy Summers called Bewitched. (JA)

In 1985 Fripp guested on ex-Japan frontman David Sylvian’s solo album Alchemy – An Index Of Possibilities. (JA)

Desire Caught By The Tail (Belew: 1986)
An experimental gitar album without vokal or much of anything else, other than some creative perküsyon. (JA)

Live! (Fripp & The League Of Crafty gitarists: 1986)
Fripp’s first release of a set of acoustic gitar instrumentals played by himself and a large group of students, this one cut live. (JA)

Earthworks (Bill Bruford’s Earthworks: 1987)
With Crimson on hold, Bruford went back to jazz, this time using more traditional jazz instruments (sax, acoustic bas and klavyeler) instead of the usual jazz-fusion instruments (electric gitar, electric bas and klavyeler). In terms of tone he gets the worst of both worlds – breezy, Kenny G-like sax and fuzzy, cloying New Age synth (“It Needn’t End In Tears”). But the music is so solid that it hardly matters; tons of his signature freakazoid time signatures and madcap perküsyon, plus plenty of spacey Third World world influences (“The Shepherd Is Eternal”), unexpected modulation, repetitive Fripp-like melodies, and Mick Hutton’s pulsing stick-like bas lines. If you have an aversion to “lite jazz” you might not be able to stand it, but if you can cope and you’re a Crimson head anyway you’ll find a lot to like. And there’s even a dissonant, Crimson-style meltdown jam (“Emotional Shirt”). Bruford, keyboardist/trumpeteer Django Bates, and saxophonist Iain Bellamy wrote the tunes; co-produced by ex-Bruford member Dave Stewart, who adds some synth parts. (JA)

Dig? (Bill Bruford’s Earthworks: 1989)
This is another pleasant, enjoyable jazz record, with essentially the same band (Hutton was replaced by Tim Harries, and Bates handles all the klavyeler). There isn’t as much of a Crimson influence this time, so the Muzak factor is starting to be a problem – the World Music elements on the sprightly, West African pop-influenced “Libreville,” and on “Corroboree,” with its atonal intro, didgeridoo and assorted noises, don’t really ameliorate the album’s easy-listening vibe. Worse, several tracks are longwinded, forgettable, generic, and low-energy jazz tunes (“Pilgrim’s Way”; the late 50’s-style “A Stone’s Throw”). But it’s still well-performed and tasteful enough to be worth a few spins: “Stromboli Kicks” is indeed a kick, with a mesmerizing, Mach 2 jazz-fusion bas line; “Gentle Persuasion” has a catchy, mellifluous theme that nearly rises above the shopping mall-style arrangement; “Dancing On Frith Street” can’t make up its mind between hi-tech funk and updated big-band swing, which is more fun than you might think. Co-produced by Bruford and Adam Moseley. I suspect there are one or two other albums by the band, but I can’t say anything more definite right now. (JA)

Mr. Music Head (Belew: 1989)
This is a gorgeous record, but it has some weak points. Although it’s pretty and extremely clever, it’s more generic and less well-written than his 90s offerings. The big number is unfortunately a gimmick tune that gets old fast: “Oh Daddy,” with 11 year-old Audie Belew’s surprisingly mature, but cloying backup vokal, and a doubled-note riff that won’t go away. Several other tunes like “One Of Those Days” are interesting but fluffy, and even when Belew goes native with the pseudo-African “Peaceable Kingdom” or wheels out a psychedelic experiment (“Hot Zoo”), it’s feather-light. Worse, the CD bonus track is a dull sound collage, really a photocopy of “Revolution No. 9,” that in all honesty detracts from the listening experience. Still, the album does feature a ton of great tunes: the rocking, intricately arranged “House Of Cards,” the heart-rending breakup song “Bad Days,” the goofy, irresistable “Motor Bungalow,” and “1967,” a jaw-dropping psychedelic pop symphony that’s even more eerily similar to Paul McCartney than the rest. As on all of his later records, Belew handles virtually all the instruments here, except for string bas by Mike Barnett on two tunes. (JA)

Young Lions (Belew: 1990)
Adrian Belew is indeed a talented guy. But here he mostly falls back on his resume, needlessly reworking Crimson’s great ballad “Heartbeat” and summoning David Bowie to sing lead on two tracks. There’s also a cover of an Everlys-like Traveling Wilburys tune and an instrumental with a dopy, rambling street preacher voiceover (“I Am What I Am”), and frankly a professional rhythm section would have helped. But most of the record sports a completely unpretentious attitude that belies Belew’s David Byrne-like vocal mannerisms and lyrical acrobatics. There are plenty of squawking gitar noises and retro rock riff tunes to liven things up, and Bowie’s actually in peak form here, lifting his two tracks to the inventive punk/art rock heights of his late 70s Brian Eno period – “Gun Man” hits harder than almost anything else he’s done since then. Plus Belew gets in a marvelously neurotic environmental tirade (“Men In Helicopters”). If you’ve got any liking for Belew to start with you’ll find the record witty and tuneful, but occasionally insubstantial. (JA)

Show Of Hands (Fripp & The League Of Crafty gitarists: 1991)
Another all-acoustic instrumental gitar album with Fripp leading a score of students. This time he varies the formula in two ways. First, he showcases 11 of the students’ own compositions – only two tracks are his (“Eye Of The Needle,” which uses his usual arpeggiating triplets-plus-madcap modulation formula, like almost everything here; “The Moving Force,” a duet with violist Cathy Stevens). At least the students have a subtle sense of humor (Nigel Gavin’s joyful Mediterranean circus tune “A Connecticut Yankee”; Ralph Gorga’s aptly named “Spasm For Juanita”), or at least a solid sense of melody (Steve Ball’s “Scaling The Whales”). It’s also intriguing that future Crimson member Trey Gunn is in the mix, as are all three future members of the California gitar Trio – Bert Lams gets in three tunes, and his “An Easy Way” stands out with a majestic Aaron Copland-y sound; however, Hideyo Moriya and Paul Richards aren’t spotlighted. Fripp’s second and much more foolish innovation is to let soprano Patricia Leavitt ruin the record with five solo a capella numbers. Unlistenably pretentious, her main talent is enough range and pitch control to imitate Fripp’s geometric riffs, and add to it some stridently “soulful” note bending. And most of the student tunes aren’t very enlightening because they’re so imitative of Fripp’s approach, whether fast-paced (Curt Golden’s “Bicycling To Afghanistan”) or stately and cerebral (Gorga’s “Hard Times”; the spaced-out group composition “Circulation”). (JA)

Inner Revolution (Belew: 1992)
This and the next solo album are Belew’s best. Adrian proves here, for example, that you really can rock out in 7/4 time. But more importantly, he pulls off the most convincing middle-period Beatles imitation I’ve ever heard. Everything sounds authentic (“Everything”): gorgeous harmony arrangements, Ringo-ish thumping davul, George-ish 12-string gitar, Paul-ish piyano and bas, and startlingly authentic Lennon-ish vocal mannerisms. There are even some specific Revolver references like backwards solos and a psychedelic string quartet arrangement (“Big Blue Sun”). A few tunes actually sound more like the Traveling Wilburys (“I’d Rather Be Right Here”), there’s a small Crimson influence in the throbbing bas lines and modernized gitar effects (“Member Of The Tribe”), and the sözler are up-to-date, complete with eco-ranting (“Only A Dream”) and current events (“The War In The Gulf Between Us”). But it’s always a joyful, clever, and engaging homage: Belew seems to grasp – and everyone else seems to have forgotten – that intricate harmony and unexpected melody are the key to great rock music. No guests at all, and since Belew’s bas and drum machine playing are more solid here it doesn’t matter. (JA)

Here (Belew: 1994)
This is another enjoyable, Beatles-influenced, one-man-band pop record, stuffed with superb song material and awesomely complex arrangements (“May 1, 1990”). There are several powerful rock songs that are piled up with hooks and layers of blaring instrumentation (“I See You”), and there are some mid-tempo numbers that again strongly recall Paul McCartney (“Burned By The Fire We Make,” yet another eco-anthem and a damn good one). But much of it is quieter and less bold than the preceding effort; several dreamy, competent, and entertaining sitar parts really set it apart (“Fly”). Not surprisingly, Belew’s progression to a mellower, more complex, and more tripped-out sound parallels the difference between Revolver and Sgt. Pepper’s. The only weaknesses are relative: a few stridently political sözler (“Peace On Earth”) whose sentiments can’t be argued with, and some drum machine parts that do sound cold and mechanical despite being loud and exciting. You’d have to be deaf not to enjoy this pop masterpiece, but being more of the same approach you’ll probably want to hear Inner Revolution first. (JA)

VROOOM (1994)
A dispensable, for-collectors-only six-track EP heralding the group’s return after a decade off for solo projects. It’s basically the 80s King Crimson lineup with two additions (Trey Gunn, stick; Pat Mastelotto, davul), making them a doubled power trio. Most of the selections are simply alternate takes of songs that resurfaced on the next album, and for the most part it’s hard to hear any substantial differences, as on the intricate title track – which doesn’t help, because the vocal numbers are outnumbered by occasionally daunting instrumentals like “Thrak.” The one instrumental they didn’t rerecord is a loose, flakey jam loaded with electronic noisemaking, which is interesting only because it shows how well the group could improvise (“When I Say Stop, Continue”). The good news is a first-rate Belew spotlight that wasn’t rerecorded later by the band and should have been (the manic, nightmarish “Cage”). Plus “Sex Sleep Eat Drink Dream” is harsher, looser, and arguably funkier here, and this early version of the ballad “One Time” is of course gorgeous. (JA)

THRAK (1995)
The new lineup’s first full-length record sounds like Crimson all right, especially on the instrumentals: Fripp hauls out the mellotron, gets the whole band arpeggiating, and lets Bruford bash and clatter. Some of it’s so harsh it even sounds like mid-70s Crimson (“VROOOM”; “VROOOM VROOOM”; etc.). But the half-dozen vocal tunes are much softer, and so close to Belew’s recent solo work that it’s hard to see what the band is contributing – they just make him sound like more of a Beatlemaniac than he already is, with Levin echoing McCartney’s bas (“Walking On Air”) and Fripp adding psychedelic solos and “soundscapes” (“People”). With such a split personality, the record is a little frustrating. But Belew’s pop formula is so melodic it’s irresistable (“One Time”), and the instrumentals are an enjoyable blast from Crimson’s past. And when they blend the two styles, it’s a brief trip to nirvana (the cathartic “Dinosaur”; the funky “People”; the blistering, 60s Crimson-style “Sex Sleep Eat Drink Dream”). The first single (“VROOOM”) appeared in 1994, well in advance of the album; “Dinosaur,” “People,” and “Sex Sleep…” also became singles. (JA)

The gitar As Orchestra (Belew: 1995)
A set of gitar improvisations, lightly edited and with minimal overdubs, with the only point of interest being Belew’s extremely deceptive aping of classical orchestral instruments with special gitar effects. So there are lengthy solos on “piyano” (the watery “piyano Recital” and “piyano Ballet”) and “strings” (“Finale”), occasional mock-horns, and modernistic perküsyon parts, often with two different voices sounding at once – there’s even fake crowd applause (“Score With No Film”). You can only tell something’s “wrong” because the notes often bend unpredictably. All of which sounds impressive, except that Belew can’t be bothered to write a solid, coherent tune, so he falls back on snobbish, academic, tuneless expressionism of the most indulgent and impenetrable sort (“…Strangers On A Train…”). One track after another leaves you with nothing to think about other than which instrument is being imitated and just what the heck all these notes are supposed to add up to – although there is some pure, note-free soundscaping (“If Only…”), and a couple of near-melodies that get drowned by all the randomness (“Laurence Harvey’s Despair” and “Rings Around The Moon,” both on “strings”). A record you might put on only if you have no intention paying attention to it. (JA)

B’Boom (1995)
A live double CD recorded in Argentina. Some of the oldies include “Red,” “Elephant Talk,” “Matte Kudasai,” “Heartbeat,” and “Sleepless.” Have this one and I look forward to reviewing it. At this point I think it’s a pretty good buy, although the jams and instrumental solos aren’t so fantastic. (JA)

THRaKaTTaK (1996)
Another live album, this one with two versions of “THRAK” and some titles that sound like jams (“Fearless And Highly THRaKed”). (JA)

Op Zop Too Wah (Belew: 1996)
Apparently tired of releasing high-quality, but basically conventional pop records, Belew tried here to make an album that was more than just a collection of songs. His approach was to frame the finished numbers with a bunch of song fragments. You have to give a guy credit for breaking rules, but most of the shorter tracks just don’t go anywhere, and several are little more than sound collages (“Word Play Drum Beat”). This sort of incoherency even disrupts finished compositions like “Modern Man Hurricane Blues,” which literally sounds like Captain Beefheart. The record is so long that of course there are plenty of good numbers: some piyano-driven, McCartney-esque ballads (“On”; the beautifully harmonized “Time Waits”; the mid-60s style “Something To Do”; the melancholy “The Ruin After The Rain”), a jazz gitar solo (“Conversation Piece”), a nice psychedelic tune a la late 60s George Harrison (“Sky Blue Red Bird Green House”), an exciting, 90s King Crimson-style pop song (“I Remember How To Forget”), another Travelling Wilburys-style roots rocker (“Six String”). And he successfully adds wild tabla and manic gitars to his usual pop craftsmanship on “All Her Love Is Mine” and “Of Bow And Drum.” But this is an advanced course in Adrian Belew, not for beginners. (JA)

Starting in 1998, Crimson began releasing an endless stream of live records, numbering over two dozen at this point. Most of them are in the “King Crimson Collectors’ Club” series. I won’t even try to document them, but I might review a couple if I happen to find them cheap (which seems very unlikely). (JA)

Bruford Levin Upper Extremities (Bruford & Levin: 1998)
By now the group had splintered again, but this time into just two factions: Belew and Fripp absconded with Gunn to record a double album and go on tour as “ProjeKt Two,” while Bruford and Levin formed a new band, recorded a disc, and embarked on a tour of their own. I think the ProjeKt Two disc goes under that name; I’ve seen that act live and explain why I think the “project” is a mistake on our concerts page. As for the other band, the frontmen are gitarist David Torn and trumpeter Chris Botti. I’ve also seen them live (see the concerts page), and although Botti is talented, Torn’s relentless avant-garde noisemaking nearly drowns out Bruford and Levin’s usual brilliance. (JA)

Salad Days (Belew: 1999)
By now Belew had released two solo acoustic records that got very limited distribution in the USA: The Acoustic Adrian Belew (1993) and Belewprints (1998). This confusingly packaged disc presents three tracks from the former record and 11 of the 15 that appeared on the latter record, plus two live cuts recorded in Argentina (“Fly”). He turns “Men In Helicopters” into a 90s “Eleanor Rigby” by handing over the instrumentation to an energetic string quartet, and several numbers have piyano, standup bas, and even perküsyon (“Everything”; “Cage,” otherwise available only on the EP VROOOM; his bas really swings on “Never Enough,” “Bad Days,” and the jazzy “One Of Those Days”), But the two new titles are expendable, tuneless, and mercifully brief instrumentals: “Return Of The Chicken” is a collage of one-bar piyano/harmonica/gitar/vocal/etc. snippets, whereas “Things You Hit With A Stick” is another of his chaotic perküsyon-plus-effects experiments. Elsewhere, he mostly stays pretty close to the original arrangements (“The Man In The Moon”; “I Remember How To Forget”; “Young Lions”). And almost all the tunes will be familiar to fans, including some real oldies (“Lone Rhinoceros”; the plaintive steam train epitaph “Rail Song”) and a few Crimson songs (the live “Three Of A Perfect Pair,” showing off his awesome Fripp-style technique; “Dinosaur”). It ends up like a low-budget greatest hits compilation: not enlightening for veterans, but so crafted and crowded with songwriting gems that it might convert a few newbies to the Belew cult. (JA)

Coming Attractions (Belew: 2000)
A sampler of cuts from multiple new records that Belew plans to release. It’s weak to the point of being annoying. There’s a trio of new compositions that rehash his early 90s sound, pointlessly if impressively (the poppy “Inner Man” and the Crimson-y instrumental noisefest “Predator Feast,” from a planned solo album; the joyful “117 Valley Drive,” from a Bears reunion). There’s a really dull, chaotic 12-minute perküsyon selection from an ill-advised instrumental project (“Animal Kingdom”). There’s a pair of live solo acoustic numbers (“Inner Revolution”; “Time Waits”). And most of all there’s a pile of alternate versions and re-recorded classics from an enormous box set – including the excellent demo of Crimson’s “People.” Much of that stuff is expendable (remixes of “Bird In A Box” and “House Of Cards” and a remake of “The Man In The Moon”), or second-rate (“No Such gitar,” an instrumental with plenty of gitar; the incredibly annoying “I Know What I Know And That Is All I Know And I Know It,” a retread of “I Am What I Am”). But at least the record gives a good sense of Belew’s artistic range. (JA)

The ConstruKction Of Light (2000)
Fripp grubu Levin ve Bruford olmadan Gunn ve Mastelotto yardımıyla yeniden şekillendirir. Sonuç şok edecek derecede zayıftır. Besteler virtuozlükten uzak yapılarıyla bazı parçalarda güçsüz performans sergiler. Hatta “Kitchen Floor Wax Museum,” gibi parçalarda sanki karşımızda bir metal grubu vardır.  Gunn’ın stick kullanımı Levin ile kıyaslamaktan kurtulamaz.  The super-indulgent running times don’t help (“FraKctured”), and most tracks are discombobulated riff sessions – who cares if they’re well-practiced (title track, with Belew doing a Jon Anderson impersonation on the better second half). The low point sees a failed, unintentionally funny attempt to push the band’s limits with a deconstructed blues progression, where Belew employs a pitch-lowering vocal effect that’s annoyingly mannered (“ProzaKc Blues”). It’s not at all a disaster: Fripp’s unpredictable and dextrous work is still awe-inspiring (“The World’s My Oyster Soup”); “Coda: I Have A Dream” is a good example of their usual ominous trance-rock thing; and like several tracks, the intentional instrumental retread “Larks’ Tongue In Aspic-Part IV” and the plodding psycho rocker “Into The Frying Pan” are pleasingly familiar. But where’s Discipline when you need it? (JA)

Happy With What You Have To Be Happy With (2002)
An 11 song EP featuring the title track, previewed from Power To Believe, and an acoustic version of “Eyes Wide Open,” also on that later record. It’s awful, with lame performances and sketchy songwriting despite the fact that the band sounds the same as ever. (JA)

The Power To Believe (2003)
A new 11-track studio album. I’d be a lot more excited if it weren’t the same lineup that did the last couple of discs.

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PinkFloydTurk.Net admini, Floyd fanı, müziksever, eski ses mühendisi.

22 Ekim 2007 tarihinde Prog Grupları içinde yayınlandı ve , , , , , olarak etiketlendi. Kalıcı bağlantıyı yer imlerinize ekleyin. Yorum yapın.

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