King Crimson

Live in Orlando, FL 1972

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The version of King Crimson from the Islands (1971) era is the subject of Live in Orlando, FL 1972 (2003). This two-disc set is likewise the 23rd installment in the D.G.M. Collectors' Club series of archival releases. The quartet of Boz Burrell (bass/lead vocals), Robert Fripp (guitar/mellotron), Mel Collins (sax/flute/Mellotron), and Ian Wallace (drums/vocals) has been well-represented with four earlier entries. Among them is the previous evening's performance, which is available on Live at Jacksonville, 1972 (1998). Material from both also respectively contributed to King Crimson's first live effort, Earthbound (1972). The recording -- derived from 1972 cassette tape technology -- is admittedly lo-fi. Regardless, there is an undeniable energy and passion barreling throughout comparatively newer instrumentals "The Sailor's Tale" and "Groon." Of equal intensity are the diffused drive of "Pictures of a City" as well as the noir and beautiful "Cadence and Cascade" from In the Wake of Poseidon (1970). The same is true of the song's eerie, lopsided calliope rhythm that contrasts the bombast of "Cirkus" from Lizard. As alluded to above, the title track to the Earthbound live platter was lifted from the first part of this show's encore. It remains a centerpiece of the unique interaction that was merely hinted at on their studio efforts. The foursome rhythmically congregates behind a funky, midtempo bout of slinky syncopation from Wallace and Burrell with supporting solos from Collins and especially Fripp, whose excursion is nothing short of urgent and incendiary. The jam languidly dissipates into the delicate finale of "Cadence and Cascade" -- which had replaced "Lady of the Dancing Water" as the closer. Shortly after this North American tour, these musicians would disband and effectively end the second full re-formation of the concert King Crimson. However, less than six months later, Fripp would emerge with a new sonic direction and cast of characters.

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