So.... The third night at Nokia my 4th Crim Show ever (1 L5, 1TPTB, 1x Philly, 1x Nokia).
Maybe the last?
What a show. To start, sonically, way better than the Keswick. It sounded like was listening to this band through Bose headphones. Also, got to talk to Sid before the show and also got to be in the camera a little bit. W00t!
The Song By Song:
Opening Soundscapes: Two scapes! So cool. Many stupid people jibber jabbering during it and either proving that they ARE once and for all the biggest king crimson fan or just heckling fripp on how boring these soundscapes are, even they're just gravy for our show. It seems like people could just leave if they hate it so much or if they WERE the biggest crim fans they could...I don't know, do something a true crimson fan never does and actually listen to the music. Anyway these scapes rocked. We got a starless tease and a TPTB II tease. Then Fripp walks off stage and lets the loops run for another 20 mins before the band comes out.
Drums: Cool. Pat is turned way down in the mix and either Gavin is and he's hitting his drums WAY harder or he's just always clear as a bell. Love Gavin. It seems like Fripp's flaunting him: "see this guy. He's the best drummer alive, and guess what...we got him."
TCOL: This song kicks so much ass I don't even know where to start. Tony fills Treys shoes nicely. Tony also seems to really enjoy playing the new tunes, which I'm glad of. Really blew the doors off the place right out the gate.
Neurotica: Again, drums only for the chaotic parts. Looks like they run through the "arrive in neurotica" part once without vocals before they sing it. Tony sounds great on back up vocals. He was missed when all they had was Trey. This becomes a lot more evident later on in the show.
Red: Smokin version, much heavier than the one in Philly. Adrian flubbed a little bit during the first pre-"chorus" breakdown but whatever, who cares. They more than made up for it in heaviness towards the end of the song.
TOAPP: Started off to me as rather weak but just got amazing by the first chorus. Really glad they played this song tonight. Tonys vocals again really made the song for me. <3 adrian nevertheless though. Guess I just take him for granted nowadays.
Dinosaur: This song stomped this time around. Super fast intro from Adrian. His orch simulator sounds really keyboardy these days. Wish he had the old one back. It still shreds though. At the very end of the song when fripp slides up the neck to end the song the rest of the band wasn't done yet so he did it 2-3 times to make everything click.
One Time: Fripp was rushing a little but this time it sounded much better than Keswick. Tony was much louder in the mix and Adrian's voice sounded superb. The soundscape in the middle was heavenly as usual.
The Talking Drum: Funk fingers/bass in lieu of stick! Much better decision. Adrian left the stage for the first two minutes leaving fripp to take his place for some soloing.
Larks Tongues: SLOW and SLUDGY. Loved it. Gavin really powerhoused the hell out of this song.
B'BOOM: Creepy soundscape intro. Very THRAK-era-ish. They really do beat the shit out of their drums.
Frame By Frame: The duo vocals were awesome on this song. Tony was really loud in the mix and made the song sound really good. Adrian continued to play at the end of the song and seemed surprised when fripp stopped even though it was time. They also did the harmony guitars a-la live on broadway, loved it. Maybe that's a new york tradition, I wouldn't know, it's my first show here.
Sleepless: Why they continue to force this song is beyond me. It's pretty fun though.
Level 5: Pop-> Metal way better than Metal-> Pop. This song is the defining song for this lineup. Everyone does such a stellar job and it's just heavy beyond all reason. They got a standing ovation. During the Cymbal Choke switch section, when the guitar/stick do their fast runs, for the final run, Tony crouched down and really let it rip. Sounded fantastic. Can't wait to hear it on DGMLive some time in the future WINK WINK
Indiscipline: This song goes over so well. Tony seemed to be having a blast. Pat does sweet electronic drums while adrian borderline taunts the audience.
Thela: A really stomping version. I think gavin gives this song the drums it really deserves. Between hearing adrian cover it solo/claypool/primus/the last incarnation of crim, i thought the drums were continuously lacking (Bruford's shoes are pretty big to fill) but gavin really fills the song out and makes you forget that you're missing Billy. Funk fingers sounded awesome this time around.
Elephant Talk: Sounded almost exactly like the album version, at least stick wise. Lots more energy than the Philly show. My only gripe with this song is that I loved the fast rip roaring version of the Double Trio and that has somewhat spoiled me.
VROOOM/CODA MARINE 475: Great closer. Extremely powerful as expected. At the end Adrian took a huge mimed box and squashed it down while the drums lingered and then on the last cymbal crash he stomped it out. HILARIOUS.
Speculations: Adrian and Tony clearly had huge sway in these setlists. My guess is that Adrian voted to play all the songs that he plays on his solo tour: Neurotica, TOAPP, Thela, and Dinosaur. Same for Tony, as we got Elephant Talk AND Sleepless. Not that I mind much, that's just how I think it went down when they were picking songs. I'm guessing robert voted for Red, LTIA, TCOL and L5. Those seem to be his songs.
I really love this band. As of this post I also picked up the Chicago PW show, although I made my review before listening, as not to be tainted by it. This lineup is as strong if not stronger than any we've seen in the past 25 years. For me my fav lineup so far, followed closely on the heels by the TCOL/TPTB guys. They were just too much. I hope there's something just around the corner for these guys, they're too good to stop making new music, but hey, I'll take the oldies any time they want to play 'em.