King Crimson

Profile:
One of the pioneers of the progressive rock genre. The first official rehearsal of the band was on January 13, 1969. The first line-up comprised guitarist Robert Fripp, lyricist and lighting man Peter Sinfield (who “invented” the name of the band), composer and multi-instrumentalist Ian McDonald, bassist and vocalist Greg Lake, and drummer Michael Giles. They toured extensively and released the album In The Court Of The Crimson King (An Observation By King Crimson), a seminal piece of late ’60s music. Shortly afterwards, the band split to reform again suffering continuous personnel changes for a period of two and a half years (early 1970-mid 1972), releasing three more studio albums and one recorded live, with Robert Fripp as the only remaining member.

The new King Crimson that evolved in July 1972 (featuring ex-Yes drummer Bill Bruford, ex-Family (6) and later Asia (2) bassist/vocalist John Wetton and other more transitory members) marked a turn toward a heavier progressive sound, with experimental and fusion overtones, climaxing in unique semi-improvisatory live performances. This core line-up carried on until mid-1974, when Fripp broke up the band (as he thought) for good.

In mid-1981, after a full 7 years, a newly-formed band including Robert Fripp, with Adrian Belew on vocals and guitar, Tony Levin on bass and Chapman Stick, and Bill Bruford on acoustic and electronic drums, changed its name from Discipline to King Crimson. This line-up remained intact until summer 1984, releasing three studio albums.

Ten years later (May 1994), King Crimson started rehearsing again, this time as a "double trio" including Pat Mastelotto on drums and percussion and Trey Gunn on Stick in addition to the 1980s line-up; it released two full albums and a handful of EPs through Fripp's own Discipline Global Mobile label. A process of “fractalization” led to the creation of multiple spin-off groups containing three or four King Crimson members, dubbed "ProjeKcts" One, Two, Three, Four, and X, which released live and studio sessions through DGM. Having regained the rights to the full King Crimson catalogue, DGM put out numerous other recordings from all periods of the band's existence, including "King Crimson Collectors' Club" bi-monthly releases available only to members of the label's website. In the hands of DGM, the King Crimson back catalogue (with most late additions available only on FLAC/MP3 format rather than on CD) grew enormously, making it one of the biggest for any rock group ever.

The next reincarnation of the band, jokingly dubbed the "double duo", omitted Bill Bruford and Tony Levin. Its first complete studio album was “The ConstruKction of Light” (May 2000), and the line-up carried on until the end of 2003. Since then, Tony Levin rejoined the group and Trey Gunn departed. In 2008, with the addition of Gavin Harrison the new King Crimson began and performed a 40th Anniversary Tour.

Robert Fripp stated in an August 2012 interview that he had retired from the music business, but 2014 found a new King Crimson line-up touring, including Fripp (guitar), Mel Collins (saxophones, flute), Tony Levin (basses, stick), Pat Mastelotto (drums, percussion), Gavin Harrison (drums, percussion), Jakko M. Jakszyk (vocals, guitar, flute), and William Rieflin (drums, percussion, synthesizer). In 2016 Jeremy Stacey (drums, keyboards) joined as an eighth member making the group a "double quartet".

The band toured North America and then Japan in 2021. Levin and Jakszyk had earlier said that the North America tour was probably the band's last there.
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Albums

ILPS 9111, ILPS-9111 In The Court Of The Crimson King (An Observation By King Crimson) — King Crimson King Crimson In The Court Of The Crimson King (An Observation By King Crimson) (Album) Island Records, Island Records ILPS 9111, ILPS-9111 UK 1969 Sell This Version
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SD 8266 In The Wake Of Poseidon — King Crimson King Crimson In The Wake Of Poseidon (Album) Island Records, Island Records SD 8266 Canada 1970 Sell This Version
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ILPS 9141, ILPS-9141 Lizard — King Crimson King Crimson Lizard (Album) Island Records, Island Records ILPS 9141, ILPS-9141 UK 1970 Sell This Version
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ZCI 9175 Islands — King Crimson King Crimson Islands (Album) Island Records, Island Records ZCI 9175 UK 1971 Sell This Version
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IL-K 719201 Earthbound — King Crimson King Crimson Earthbound (Album, Comp) Island Records IL-K 719201 Italy 1972 Sell This Version
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D-54455 Larks' Tongues In Aspic — King Crimson King Crimson Larks' Tongues In Aspic (Album, Comp) Island Records D-54455 Spain 1973 Sell This Version
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CN 2063/S Stereo Pop Special-70 — King Crimson King Crimson Stereo Pop Special-70(LP, Transcription) BBC Transcription Services CN 2063/S UK 1974 Sell This Version
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IL.35313 Red — King Crimson King Crimson Red (Album) Island Records IL.35313 Australia 1974 Sell This Version
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D-54896 Starless And Bible Black — King Crimson King Crimson Starless And Bible Black (Album) Island Records D-54896 Spain 1974 Sell This Version
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#165-168 Nightbird & Company: Cosmic Connections Presented By The Us Army Reserve — King Crimson Dr. John / Janis Ian / Billy Cobham / King Crimson Dr. John / Janis Ian / Billy Cobham / King Crimson - Nightbird & Company: Cosmic Connections Presented By The Us Army Reserve(2xLP, Transcription) Nightbird & Company #165-168 US 1974 Sell This Version
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TP-18136 USA — King Crimson King Crimson USA (Album, Comp) Island Records, Island Records TP-18136 US 1975 Sell This Version
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40 The Best Of The BBC Rock Hour #40 — King Crimson King Crimson The Best Of The BBC Rock Hour #40(Reel, 2tr Stereo, 7" Reel, Transcription) London Wavelength 40 US 1978 Sell This Version
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31 84 184 Discipline — King Crimson King Crimson Discipline (Album, Comp) EG, Polydor 31 84 184 Spain 1981 Sell This Version
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WBMS 119 The Return Of King Crimson — King Crimson King Crimson The Return Of King Crimson(LP, Promo, Transcription) Warner Bros. Records WBMS 119 US 1981 Sell This Version
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92 36921 Beat — King Crimson King Crimson Beat (Album) EG 92 36921 Canada 1982 Sell This Version
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26 BBC College Concert #26 — King Crimson King Crimson BBC College Concert #26(LP, Transcription) London Wavelength 26 US 1983 Sell This Version
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BC 520 B BBC Rock Hour - #520 (Version B) — King Crimson King Crimson / Pink Floyd King Crimson / Pink Floyd - BBC Rock Hour - #520 (Version B) London Wavelength BC 520 B UK & US 1984 Sell This Version
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EGLP 55 Three Of A Perfect Pair — King Crimson King Crimson Three Of A Perfect Pair (Album) EG, Polydor EGLP 55 Israel 1984 Sell This Version
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none King Biscuit Flower Hour  — King Crimson King Crimson King Biscuit Flower Hour (LP + LP, S/Sided + Transcription) D.I.R. Broadcasting Corp. none US 1984 Sell This Version
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KC DIS1, CAROL 1597-2, 0170 4 61597 2 2, 0777 7 86543 2 2 The Great Deceiver (Live 1973 - 1974) — King Crimson King Crimson The Great Deceiver (Live 1973 - 1974) Discipline Records (3), Discipline Records (3), Virgin, Virgin KC DIS1, CAROL 1597-2, 0170 4 61597 2 2, 0777 7 86543 2 2 UK, Europe & US 1992 Sell This Version
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KY190-2 B'Boom (Official Bootleg - Live In Argentina) — King Crimson King Crimson B'Boom (Official Bootleg - Live In Argentina) (Album) Discipline Global Mobile KY190-2 Philippines 1995 Sell This Version
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none THRAK — King Crimson King Crimson THRAK (Album) Discipline Global Mobile, Discipline Global Mobile, Virgin, Virgin none US 1995 Sell This Version
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DGM96042 THRaKaTTaK — King Crimson King Crimson THRaKaTTaK (Album) Discipline Global Mobile DGM96042 UK 1996 Sell This Version
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PCCY-01087 Epitaph — King Crimson King Crimson Epitaph (Album) Discipline Global Mobile, Discipline Global Mobile PCCY-01087 Japan 1997 Sell This Version
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DGM9707, DGM 9707 The Nightwatch (Live At The Amsterdam Concertgebouw November 23rd 1973)  — King Crimson King Crimson The Nightwatch (Live At The Amsterdam Concertgebouw November 23rd 1973) (Album) Discipline Global Mobile, Discipline Global Mobile DGM9707, DGM 9707 UK 1997 Sell This Version

Add Review

Vinyloteka_Vilnius

Vinyloteka_Vilnius

July 21, 2019
Best rock band ever. With rock I mean all popular music - pop, psych, blues, prog, folk etc.
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irenebullock

irenebullock

May 23, 2019
edited over 4 years ago
After taking my time listening to King Crimson I can say without a doubt they are "progressive rock". Not "prog rock". Progressive, as abided by the definition. It keeps on evolving, innovating and it does it many times you would lose track how many times they have changed - right until The Power to Believe. Wonderful, and they aren't afraid of expressing many fields left in music. However, the Mellotron is beyond outdated and Fripp was right to ditch it for the sake of it.
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esoteric_death

esoteric_death

July 28, 2018
King Crimson is the only classic prog rock band still relevant today in my opinion!
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