Music Banter

Go Back   Music Banter > The MB Reader > Album Reviews
Register Blogging Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read
Welcome to Music Banter Forum! Make sure to register - it's free and very quick! You have to register before you can post and participate in our discussions with over 70,000 other registered members. After you create your free account, you will be able to customize many options, you will have the full access to over 1,100,000 posts.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 12-27-2011, 04:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
RMR
Front to Back
 
RMR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 360
Default King Crimson: In the Court of the Crimson King- 1969


King Crimson In the Court of the Crimson King- 1969
Album Rating- 8


“In the Court of the Crimson King,” and most notably “21st Century Schizoid Man” (the lead track of the album), is to music what the “Wizard of OZ” is to movies. It’s really a perfect analogy. “The Wizard of OZ” is the first widely accepted color movie, and “In the Court of the Crimson King” is the first widely accepted progressive rock album.

On the movie side, there were actually movies made in color dating all the way back to the early 1900’s, and “Gone with Wind” was also released in color in the same year as “OZ,” but color movies didn’t really take off until Dorothy stepped into the land of OZ and the movie changed from black and white to color in a single instant. It was an absolutely groundbreaking moment in film history.

On the music side, there were progressive rock elements in music dating back to the mid-sixties, and the Moody Blues had released three semi-progressive albums by the time “In the Court of the Crimson King” was released, but it took Greg Lake screaming into a megaphone during “Schizoid Man” for progressive rock to really take off; therefore, I consider King Crimson’s “In the Court of the Crimson King” to be the first true progressive rock album, and the song and album were absolutely groundbreaking moments in music history.

If you haven't heard King Crimson or "21st Century Schizoid Man" before, check out the YouTube clip of the song below. Now, if you’re hearing this for the first time, it might not seem that groundbreaking, but you have put yourself back in 1969. There was just nothing else like this. This pre-dates Sabbath, so there was nothing this heavy; there was nothing this chaotic, and there was certainly nothing that had its title track sung through a megaphone; “Schizoid Man” was completely unique. Remember, this was 1969, and The Beatles, The Stones, and The Who still owned the airwaves. Those are all great bands, but their music was nowhere near as groundbreaking as “Schizoid Man” or the remainder of this album.

The album contains four other tracks. “I Talk to the Wind” and “Epitaph” are much calmer than “Schizoid,” and provide a soothing and needed break from the chaos that ensued from that track. Both are great songs, and both make great use of the Mellotron, which make them sound very similar to what the Moody Blues had already been doing for a few years. The Moodies really pioneered the use of the Mellotron as an instrument, but I prefer these two Crimson tracks to any of the early Moody Blues tracks. Then you get “Moonchild,” which is also an extremely important track; it is my least favorite track on the album, but it is by far the most avant-garde track of the album, and I comment on its importance because this concept of avant-gardism and experimentation would become a staple of Crimson’s music on every album they released, and it also pushed the boundaries of what other bands were willing (and were allowed) to do on studio albums. Lastly, you have “In the Court of the Crimson King,” which is certainly the most influential track on the album, in that it absolutely defines progressive rock, and it laid the groundwork for progressive rock in the early 1970’s and as we know it today.

In closing, “In the Court of the Crimson King” is the album that brought progressive rock into the mainstream; it is a landmark album, and even if you’re not into progressive rock, you should at least hear it. Lastly, let’s circle back around to the “Wizard of OZ” comparison one more time. “OZ” didn’t win the academy award for best picture in 1939. It was beat out by “Gone with the Wind,” but I think “OZ” was more important in pushing the boundaries of color in movies. This is the same reason that I’m not scoring this album a perfect-10, but there is no doubt that it did more to push the boundaries of progressive rock than any other album in history.

__________________
RMR
My music reivew site: RMR Music Reviews
RMR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2011, 06:11 PM   #2 (permalink)
Music Addict
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 936
Default

A lot of very subjective comments I thought, particularly the last one. You obviously prefer King Crimson to The Moody Blues, but some out there might not agree with you. And ultimately who really cares who was the first (if it can even be accurately judged anyway, which I doubt). I remember liking about three songs at the most off the album, which means I'd rate it behind On The Threshold of a Dream from the same year.
__________________
non-cliquey member of every music forum I participate on
starrynight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2011, 07:47 PM   #3 (permalink)
RMR
Front to Back
 
RMR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 360
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by starrynight View Post
A lot of very subjective comments I thought, particularly the last one. You obviously prefer King Crimson to The Moody Blues, but some out there might not agree with you. And ultimately who really cares who was the first (if it can even be accurately judged anyway, which I doubt). I remember liking about three songs at the most off the album, which means I'd rate it behind On The Threshold of a Dream from the same year.
I will make the case that reviews need a level of educated subjectivity to be interesting and relevant. Otherwise, you could basically eliminate a rating system as well, and if you do that, than you are really treating all albums as equals, which I doubt any of us do. The point of reviews is to express an opinion, which means that there has to be some subjectivity-- the great thing about this is that the reader has the option to agree, disagree, or to just call the whole review unfounded. Any of these are fair reactions because by putting a review out on an open forum, the writer is putting his opinion on the metaphorical chopping block.

In terms of not really caring about who came first-- that's a subjective comment in itself, in that some people care and some people don't. I find it interesting to create a timeline in music, but you are right. There's definitely a level of subjectivity and opinion to it, and there's is no way to 100% accurately judge it, so I definitely agree with you there. Also, notice that I make it clear that King Crimson didn't invent Progressive Rock, they just put out what is now widely considered the first progressive rock album. I also never knock the Moody Blues (a band that I really like).

Lastly, I agree that my last statement is a pretty bold statement, which probably should have been softened a bit, but I'll maintain that "In the Court of the Crimson King" is certainly in the running for an album that "did more to push the boundaries of progressive rock than any other album in history."
__________________
RMR
My music reivew site: RMR Music Reviews
RMR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2011, 10:44 PM   #4 (permalink)
Live by the Sword
 
Howard the Duck's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Posts: 9,039
Default

it's a solid enough debut but i think it's slightly overrated - i also actually prefer the extended passages within some of the songs to the actual songs themselves, besides "Schizoid Man"

i'm more of a fan of their New Wave era, particularly "Discipline"

i also prefer "Red" over "ItCoCK"
__________________


Malaise is THE dominant human predilection.

Quote:
Originally Posted by The Virgin View Post
what? i don't understand you. farming is for vegetables, not for meat. if ou disagree with a farming practice, you disagree on a vegetable. unless you have a different definition of farming.
Howard the Duck is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-27-2011, 11:36 PM   #5 (permalink)
RMR
Front to Back
 
RMR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 360
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Il Duce View Post
i also prefer "Red" over "ItCoCK"
"Red" is my favorite Crimson album. The crescendo in "Starless" that goes from about the 4-minute mark to the 9-minute mark is amazing.

__________________
RMR
My music reivew site: RMR Music Reviews
RMR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2011, 06:36 AM   #6 (permalink)
Music Addict
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 936
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by RMR View Post
In terms of not really caring about who came first-- that's a subjective comment in itself, in that some people care and some people don't.
I know, but there always seems to be the unspoken assumption that everyone cares a great deal about who is thought to have been first with something. And that's even though, ironically, people often seem to have a limited knowledge about precursers of styles anyway and just talk about the most famous things with this. I'm not really talking about you on this aspect, just my general experience on boards.
__________________
non-cliquey member of every music forum I participate on
starrynight is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2011, 07:58 AM   #7 (permalink)
RMR
Front to Back
 
RMR's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Richmond, Virginia
Posts: 360
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by starrynight View Post
I know, but there always seems to be the unspoken assumption that everyone cares a great deal about who is thought to have been first with something. And that's even though, ironically, people often seem to have a limited knowledge about precursers of styles anyway and just talk about the most famous things with this.
Definitively agree, and in progressive rock (just like any genre) the debate is discussed ad nauseam as to was first. You have the corner of support for The Beatles' SPLHCB as the first, the corner for The Moody Blues, the corner for Pink Floyd, and the corner for all the other smaller acts like The Nice. For me, and as I mention in my review, the incarnation of progressive rock is not equatable to the Big Bang theory applied to rock with KC's ITCOTCK. I think all of the aforementioned bands played a role in the development of the sound, but ITCOTCK was the first to get the mainstream credit for it, and it had arguably the greatest impact on the other bands that really forged that original scene (Yes, Genesis, ELP, etc).
__________________
RMR
My music reivew site: RMR Music Reviews
RMR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2016, 03:28 PM   #8 (permalink)
Groupie
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 15
Default

Perhaps the most impactful album I ever head bought.
I was about 17 when I got this album, and listening to for the first time left me stunned.
I remember listening to the last song, "In the court of the crimson king" and felt feelings that I've never felt before.
I would say this album is much more than an album, it's a whole experience.

5 songs, simple masterpiece.
Roysh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2016, 04:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
Mord
 
Zhanteimi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Tokyo
Posts: 4,587
Default

Just listened to this the other day. I like it more now than I used to. Prog rock ftw!
__________________
"Use every man after his desert, and who shall 'scape whipping?"
Zhanteimi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-12-2016, 07:03 PM   #10 (permalink)
Music Addict
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 60
Default

This is the reason i fell in love with prog rock.
Just bought this the other day on cd from a Vinyl Collector in Brussels.
Robbe264 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Similar Threads



© 2003-2019 Advameg, Inc.

SEO by vBSEO 3.5.2 ©2010, Crawlability, Inc.