What does it sound like?:
This is a 3 cd set bringing together a collection of previously available studio and live recordings from the ‘double duo’ era of Crimson, comprising Fripp alongside Adrian Belew, Trey Gunn and Pat Mastelotto. Originally from 2003, the ‘Happy’ set was something of an appetiser for the following year’s The Power To Believe album (18 tears later this is still, almost unbelievably, the band’s most recent studio recording), and comprises shorter, more song based pieces. The second album included, Level Five, actually predates it by a year, and is in effect another work in progress report on the then still unfinished Power To Believe album – this is a very good live set with three previously unrecorded pieces sitting alongside the more familiar The Construktion of Light and The Deception of the Thrush, plus the previously ‘hidden’ bonus track, the improvised ProjeKt X. The live theme continues with the third cd, Elektrik, taken from a Japanese show in 2003. This is actually the soundtrack of the DVD that was released of that show (itself available as the first disc of the Eyes Wide Open set), and for me is perhaps the pick of this particular bunch, with the band, in its final throes of this particular line up, putting on some very powerful performances, particularly of The Power To Believe material, and ending the set with a scorching LTIA Part IV. This era of the band isn’t every fans cup of tea, with its intense, aggressive experimentation creating an almost industrial sound at times, but whether in the studio or on stage they never delivered with less than 100% conviction and commitment.
What does it all *mean*?
It’s not been that easy in the past to get hold of these cds, so this is an ideal opportunity to scoop them up in one go and fill that gap in your collection.
Goes well with…
Still hoping we may see one more studio album, although that recedes with each passing year.
Might suit people who like…