Starless And Bible Black

Artist: King Crimson
Label: Atlantic
Catalog#: SD 7298
Format: Vinyl
Country: United States
Released: 1974-02
A1 The Great Deceiver 4:02
A2 Lament 4:00
A3 We'll Let You Know 3:46
A4 The Night Watch 4:37
A5 Trio 5:41
A6 The Mincer 4:10
B1 Starless And Bible Black 9:11
B2 Fracture 11:14

Bass, Vocals - John Wetton
Drums - Bill Bruford
Guitar, Mellotron, Featuring [Devices] - Robert Fripp
Producer - King Crimson
Violin, Viola, Keyboards - David Cross


Recorded at AIR Studios, London, January 1974

Strawberry Bricks Entry: 
Appearing a little over a year after their last album, Starless And Bible Black was the second album from the new and improved King Crimson. Most of the record was based on live recordings from the previous fall in Amsterdam. It's no wonder, as Crimson spent the better part of March through November 1973 on the road, with only a few weeks in the summer to rest. The first side contains shorter instrumental pieces, as well as a few songs proper. Both "The Great Deceiver" and "We'll Let You Know" rely on fury to get their point across (which they do), while the gentler "The Night Watch" is simply resplendent. The other tracks on the first side are compositional fragments, the drum-less "Trio" being a throwback to the Islands era band. The second side houses the big pieces, beginning with the title track. After a slow start, it gains significant mass, rising to a glorious climax. With the added studio overdubbing, "Fracture" is far more structured but nonetheless exciting. The first half of the track hints at its potential, but it's not until its closing section that it fully erupts. Again, the key is the rhythm section of John Wetton and Bill Bruford; as Robert Fripp would later comment, they were "terrible to play over." Indeed. With only 12 minutes of studio recordings, the album is a little short on new material; but taken as a live record, it's another matter. The album charted in both the UK and US, at No. 28 and No. 64, respectively. King Crimson was back on the road after the album's release, and stayed there until their last concert on July 1st, 1974 in New York's Central Park.
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