- Audio CD (12 Oct. 2009)
- Number of Discs: 2
- Format: CD+DVD, Original recording remastered, Extra tracks
- Label: Discipline
- ASIN: B002M3GPOS
- Other Editions: Audio CD | Audio Cassette | Vinyl | DVD
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (276 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,797 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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In the Court of the Crimson King, 40th Anniversary Series CD+DVD, Original recording remastered, Extra tracks
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Top Customer Reviews
The CD contains the original album with five songs remastered in clear stereo arguably better than the 2004 release. Every instrument is clearly heard and separated. But the bonus tracks are the most compelling. The full version of "Moonchild" is here along with a `duo version' and an alternate mix' (different solos) of the romantic " I Talk To The Wind". The backing instrumental track of "Epitaph" is mystical and mesmerizing. Remember that short intro of `wind/organ-like' sounds before "21st Century Schizoid Man"? Extracts from that are also included giving the listener an idea of how special effects were produced forty years ago.
The DVD is really why I bought this edition. The entire album is presented here in DTS 5.1 digital surround sound, giving new life to every instrument and vocal. The harsh quick guitar riff that runs throughout "21st Century Schizoid Man" travels from speaker to speaker around the room, while Greg Lake's equally sharp vocals are blasted from the front center. And that is just one song. The percussion varies throughout each song, but is so exact and clean you get a true sense of the extent of Michael Giles talent. Ian McDonald's woodwind instruments vibrate as if they are in the room with reed-like clarity. Fripp's guitar work is as varied as the song he is playing on. Also, many thanks go to lyricist Peter Sinfield.Read more ›
The only band to come close was Van Der Graaf Generator with "The least we can do is wave to each other".
As with all music of that era, you either love it (like me) or hate it (like everybody else!) - so, track by track...
1. "21st Century Schizoid Man" - WOW. The ultimate screaming polemic against all forms of pollution. Legend has it that KC were booked as a Soul band by mistake, and played this track to a startled audience of gentle groovers. Nasty!
2. "I Talk To The Wind" - gentle flutes and beautiful poetry, before the onslaught continues...
3. "Epitaph" - magnificent orchestral sounds, but with dynamic rock backing. Powerful and dramatic - play it LOUD!
4. "Moonchild" - one for the hippies... sort of free-jazz-ish.
5. "The Court Of The Crimson" - and what you've all been waiting for. The one and only. The ultimate. The awe-inspiring. The tear-jerking. The spine-tingling. The utterly utterly gloriously perfect "Court of the Crimson King".
And the cover (at least on the original LP) was quite amazing - a blood-red moon-faced planetary giant - some dark-side of Gaea perhaps.
Somebody got this very right. The 'major' record labels - what's left of them - would do well to pay close attention. Offering "remasters" from the CD mix, come on! Fools.
Kudos to Fripp
However 36 years on I still listen to it on a regular basis and still remain surprised by how far ahead of its time it was. It is very easy to criticise the lyrics listening to the album in 2005 but in 1969 they were quite acceptable (if a little odd). Musically, however, it remains an album of the highest quality; although it has to be said that the self-indulgence of 'Moonchild' drags a little. The power of 21st CSM still shines through today and this is then followed by a total contrast in 'I Talk to the Wind' with some beautiful flute playing from Ian McDonald. 'Epitaph' has always been my personal favourite and rewards frequent listening. The title track is perhaps a touch over long but remains a joy to listen to. I am sure somebody listening to this album for the first time today would not find the whole album a treat but there is plenty there for everyone and as for me - it can take me back 35 years in an instant!!!
The idea is that they have found the original recorded tracks for this album and a big fan was able to put these tracks onto digital recording and then worked with Robert Fripp to do a proper digital re-master for the first time!
On the original album - there were so many instruments that they had to do "sub-mixes" to deal with the limitations of the technology at the time, so final mixing was compromised as these stereo sub mixes could not be separated.
Of course this is a classic album and those who like this genre will already have it at least once - but this has loads of bonus tracks - live versions and demos which add interest.
But this is nothing besides the real selling point - a new 2009 digital mix from Robert Fripp with no compromises due to the limitations of recording technology!!
It certainly sound much clearer - Schizoid man, which was basically live is not much different, but you notice how the instruments become clearer in the tracks with more going on - wider instrumentation - flute, woodwind,percussion, mellotron etc. - they all now are absolutely clear and not lost in reverb etc.
The grandiose, classical-style arrangments are now there for all to love or hate!
Not everybody's cup of tea - but the sound was unique at the time and it deserves this lavish attention to detail - maybe only the fans will notice, but Steve Wilson has done us all proud!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A striking cover containing one of the greatest albums of the late '60s . This ,the first King Crimson album arrived unheralded and quickly became for many the soundtrack of 1969 . Read morePublished 25 days ago by David Nissen
I seem to be going forwards then backwards in time with my King Crimson purchases! I started off with 'Red,' fast forwarded to 'Discipline,' then rewinded to this album. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Blew1