EGKC 1 In The Court of the Crimson King
Produced by King Crimson
Released on October 1969
UK CHART POSITION #5 . . . US CHART POSITION #28
Find it at GEMM
EGKC 1 cover  

A n eye-opening debut if ever there was, there was, there was. That bespectacled musical mage, Robert Fripp, indeed assembled a court of kings for this adventure: Michael Giles, Greg Lake, Ian McDonald, Peter Sinfield. Most would remain for Crimson’s next voyage, but already the band was writing their epitaph. With such a sense of urgency, the band takes pains to get it right the first time, and they do. In fact, beyond peradventure, no band had sallied forth into the forest for the first time and achieved this measure of fame on their return. When the dust had settled, King Crimson was crowned rock’s new champion, ushering in a golden age of music where brute force and beauty commingle with the sounds of distant worlds. That such powerful songs could be rendered with as deft a touch was a revelation. Cream had aspired to this place with “Tales of Brave Ulysses,” the Moodies had sought to soar so high on their mellotron one “Tuesday Afternoon,” but both were revealed as pretenders to the crown by The Court of the Crimson King. The album also set the stage for the further adventures of ELP and the progressive paladins who followed. Though perhaps inspired by the psychedelic spelunkering of The Beatles, Pink Floyd and Cream, King Crimson was birthed a titan, fully formed in body and in vision. Everyone has their appointed post, and all perform their duties with skill and imagination. They were in some sense the original sonic sculptors; with the exception of the instrumental experimentation of “Moonchild,” the outcome is pre-arranged and the players have but to execute their parts to bring their work of art to life. No other flower in the prog garden has bloomed so brightly in its first season. Subsequent albums may have exceeded their first in execution, but never in artistry. In The Court of the Crimson King remains the cornerstone of the temple, and thus a cornerstone of any progressive rock collection.

EGKC 1 inner gatefold EGKC 1 back cover
EGKC1 inner gatefold EGKC1 back cover

TRACK LISTING

  1. 21ST CENTURY SCHIZOID MAN including MIRRORS    (Robert Fripp/Ian McDonald/Greg Lake/Michael Giles/Peter Sinfield)    6:52
  2. I TALK TO THE WIND    (Ian McDonald/Peter Sinfield)    5:40
  3. EPITAPH including MARCH FOR NO REASON and TOMORROW AND TOMORROW    (Robert Fripp/Ian McDonald/Greg Lake/Michael Giles/Peter Sinfield)    8:30
  4. MOONCHILD including THE DREAM and THE ILLUSION    (Robert Fripp/Ian McDonald/Greg Lake/Michael Giles/Peter Sinfield)    12:09
  5. THE COURT OF THE CRIMSON KING including THE RETURN OF THE FIREWITCH and THE DANCE OF THE PUPPETS    (Ian McDonald/Peter Sinfield)    8:48

CREDITS

ROBERT FRIPP -- guitar
MICHAEL GILES -- drums, percussion, vocals
GREG LAKE -- bass, guitar, lead vocals
IAN McDONALD -- reeds, woodwinds, vibes, keyboards, mellotron, vocals
PETER SINFIELD -- words and illumination
Robin Thompson -- engineer
Barry Godber -- cover

return to KING CRIMSON discography

REGION RELEASE DATE LABEL MEDIA ID NUMBER FEATURES
UK October 1969 Island LP ILPS 9111 gatefold cover
US October 1969 Atlantic LP SD 8245 gatefold cover
FRA   Island LP 6936 023 gatefold cover
FRA   Island LP 9101 660 gatefold cover
GER 1969? Island LP 85796IT gatefold cover
UK 1977 Polydor LP 2302 057 reissue, gatefold cover
US 1978 Atlantic LP SD 19155 reissue, gatefold cover
US/CAN January 1987 Editions EG LP/CD/CS EGKC/EGCD/EGKCC 1 Collector's Edition remaster, gatefold
WW September 14, 1999 Virgin CD 844 066 30th anniversary edition remaster
US 1999 Caroline CD 1502  
JPN 1999 Pony Canyon? CD PCCY-01421 30th anniversary edition
POL 1999 Selles CD SELL 1098 different cover
RUS 1999 Kankard CD KCCD 001 digital remaster, lyric sleeve

 

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