UK, 1969, progressive rock / art rock

King CrimsonIn the Court of the Crimson King

I imagine one doesn’t get into the Crimson King’s court without an audition in which the moorings of your mind are thoroughly examined. Do you question war, religion; do you have equal love for pastoral flutes and jazz-rock? Have you committed William Faulkner’s Nobel prize acceptance speech to memory?* Welcome. I hear bits of this album strung far and wide across prog rock’s 70s heyday, from its smooth, streamlined full-bodied sound to its minimalist experimental textures.

*(an excerpt) “Our tragedy today is a general and universal physical fear so long sustained by now that we can even bear it. There are no longer problems of the spirit. There is only the question: When will I be blown up? … It is easy enough to say that man is immortal simply because he will endure: that when the last dingdong of doom has clanged and faded from the last worthless rock hanging tideless in the last red and dying evening, that even then there will still be one more sound: that of his puny, inexhaustible voice still talking.”

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