jump to navigation

Larks’ Tongues in Aspic (King Crimson, 1973) 6 September 2008

Posted by Basilios in King Crimson, Music Reviews.
Tags: , , , ,
add a comment

After releasing the previously reviewed In The Wake Of Poseidon, King Crimson lost those members with the greatest songwriting talent. The group found itself directionless from a creative point of view, and did what directionless groups do: drift. After a couple of not really good albums (Lizard and Islands, which I have but am not interested in reviewing at the moment, to be honest), the group finally collapsed.

Thus ended King Crimson, Phase 1; but that was not going to stop group leader Robert Fripp for very long. After a couple of years he assembled another group to raise the King Crimson standard, and set forth to create more innovative music; Phase 2 had begun. Once again, he picked very good musicians: bassist John Wetton (later of Asia), violinist David Cross, drummer Bill Bruford (earlier of Yes), and genial percussionist Jamie Muir.

(more…)

Advertisements

Pill Review: Time And A Word (Yes, 1969) 24 October 2007

Posted by Basilios in In Pills, Music Reviews, Yes.
Tags: , , , , ,
add a comment

timeandaword.jpg

 

A few months after Yes released its self-titled first album, they released their second, and it was something completely different. Peter Banks’ guitar, so prominent in the older album, remains unnoticed in the background, barely audible, and smothered by layers of orchestration. And was that a bad thing? (more…)

Pill Review: Yes (Yes, 1969) 15 October 2007

Posted by Basilios in In Pills, Music Reviews, Yes.
Tags: , , , ,
add a comment

yes-yes.jpg

This is the first album Yes released, and it sounds completely and absolutely different from any of its successors. None, not even the following one, sounded like this one. As for how this one sounds – in a word, poppy. In three words, poppy, jazzy and hippy. Well, sorta. What we have here, two covers and six original composition, is characterized by long jazzy instrumental workouts – they’re not jams, but more structured and focused than the random, aimless jams of contemporary groups – and by the high pitched voice of lead singer and main songwriter Jon Anderson.

Either of these can be turnoffs for many, and the combination of the two could be unlikeable for some; not for me, though, because I just plain like both: the way they play, with the prominent bass of Chris Squire and the fuzzy guitar of Peter Banks, and Jon Anderson’s voice, which is not memorable in this record, but pleasant and original, without sounding like fake falsetto or like forced screeching. The group will abandon this particular, guitar-heavy musical direction immediately after this album, so it’s something not to be experienced elsewhere.

Bad points: the song Looking Around, very nice on the old ears, but just a tad silly; the song Harold Land, not a bad listen, and interesting lyrics about the emotional damage of a man drafted to fight in a war, but the music doesn’t match at all the mood of the lyrics.

Good points: most of the rest, really, but I really like the opening Beyond and Before and the cover of the Beatles’ Every Little Thing. I also like the closing Survival, with its odd Darwinian lyrics.

In conclusion, a very pleasant, listenable album that doesn’t cover much new ground but has lots of musical skills on display.

Final Rating: 26/30