Let's be honest; the group on this album is King Crimson in name only. It could equally be named Talking heads (ft. Fripp & Bruford). But that means it can only be good.
If I'm brutally honest with myself the classic line-up only went downhill after "Court". I expected big things for the follow-up "Poseidon" but it only left me indifferent (they even sang Catfood on Top of the Pops FFS). People also rate Red highly (by another in-name-only incarnation); I didn't last ten minutes with it.
This album however has balls. It's one I can listen to repeatedly if only to completely (impossibly?) grasp all the interwoven guitar/chapmanstick magic that's going on. And then the voice of Adrian Belew offsets it all marvellously and turns the cacophony into bona-fide songs. It sounds new, it sounds fresh, it sounds different, it sounds prog!