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King Crimson - Larks' Tongues In Aspic
Label: Caroline Records
Release: 1972

Tracklisting:
Larks' Tongues In Aspic, Part One
Book of Saturday
Exiles
Easy Money
The Talking Drum
Larks' Tongues In Aspic, Part Two
Larks
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So what do you do when you're left as the only original member of a prog band? Well, if you're
Fripp, you pull your socks up, and recruit new musicians. Bill Bruford from Yes, John Wetton
from Family, violinist David Cross and percussionist/madman Jamie Muir. You then proceed to
create one of Prog's defining moments, and you change your sound completely.

No more "jazz" here folks. Fripp's band are now utterly vicious - even more so than they were in
'69. The album kicks off with the violent "Larks' Tongues In Aspic Pt. 1" with classic riffs and
guitar abound, and a great violin backing (along with a nice violin solo in the quiet part). A
very full song and worthy of it's running time (13 mins.)

The band then go quiet for the short "Book of Saturday" and the excellent, longer "Exiles"...a
piece that runs on it's great mellotron, and, for the first time since the days of Greg Lake,
some fine vocal chords. Fripp contributes a classic guitar solo near the end of the song, and
it'll just be enough for it to pip both Larks' for best song. Great track.

I said that there's no standard "rock" here, but i kind-of lied a little. Thing is, they've got
about a million times better at doing it. "Easy Money" is a big rocker, but with a massive riff,
and short verse and chorus sections that make the song the perfect excuse for Fripp to play a
5-minute guitar solo. He proceeds to do so, but he manages to keep it interesting. Heck, it's
certainly a trillion times better than the vile turd that is "Ladies of the Road".

We then go into the almighty, lengthy "Talking Drum" crescendo. Wetton provides the big bass,
while Bruford's drums get louder, and louder, while David Cross provides a violin. The song
constantly gets more menacing all the time, before finally ending on one very high, screaming
violin note. And then...enter Fripp.

Roberto di Frippio starts up that classic "DUN-da-da-DUN-da-da-DUN--DUN" riff and "Larks'
Tongues In Aspic Pt. 2" begins, and it starts choking you. It doesn't stop throttling the life
out of you with it's massive percussion, humongous guitar and schizophrenic violin until the very
end, when all the instruments bash in harmony for the grand finale to both song and album.

A classic in every sense of the word, Larks' is simply outstanding. I give this album a 10 without a moment's thought.
One of the cornerstones of prog-rock.


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